The Tenement Year
Produced by Pere Ubu and Paul Hamann.
Mercury Records 9846251 4/16/7 cd.
Check in at Ubutique to see if in stock.
Robert Christgau, Village Voice, 1988
So what's astonishing isn't just the high spirits and good faith, both rare enough on reunions, but the singleness of purpose. Pick Hit: A.
Adam Sweeting, The Guardian, 1988
As if a mountainside had learned to play Mendelssohn... Even when they make no literal sense, Ubu have the alluring and deceptive plasticity of a foreign language.
Edwin Pouncey, New Musical Express, 1988
The Tenement Year is this year's manna from heaven. For the cold initiate about to enter this strange world... hold on and enjoy the ride, you've never heard anything like it. A classic.
Jon Pareles, New York Times, 1988
It's still a band that blithely upends all that's solid and foursquare about rock. At the center of Pere Ubu is a garage band, one that can knock out guitar riffs fit for any frat party... Solid as the band can be, it's also likely to dissolve songs from the bottom up. For all Pere Ubu's uncertainty, the band isn't arbitrary; its music has the off-the-wall unity of a Marx Brothers routine.
Steve Hochman, Rolling Stone, 1988
Who else could not only write a song with lyrics that are just "George had a hat but it wasn't where it wasn't at" but also make it sound like a love poem to humanity.
Links and Background:
FAQ concerning Fontana and the re-issues • Lyrics • The singles
The original 1988 Fontana release does not seem to have been mastered. David Thomas and Paul Hamann mastered it January 22-23 2007 at Suma. An alternate mix of Dream The Moon from 1987 was substituted in the running order and five extras were added: the UK b-sides Postman Drove A Caddy and The B-Side, live in the studio recordings of Miss You and We Have The Technology for the John Peel Show (never previously released), and an alternate mix of The Hollow Earth (never previously released). As well, the sound of thunder that was found on the original Suma mix of the tracks was added - there was clearly some intention of including this somewhere for some reason. The packaging has been updated by John Thompson and added are extensive liner notes specific to the album by David Stubbs.
Extras on Mercury Re-issue:
David Thomas - vocals, trombone, melodeon, spike
Jim Jones - electric guitars, backing vocals
Allen Ravenstine - EML synthesizers, sax, backing vocals
Tony Maimone - bass guitars, backing vocals
Chris Cutler - drums, percussion, noises off
Scott Krauss - drum kit
John Kirkpatrick played melodeon on Miss You and Busman's Honeymoon.