Bizarrely for a man who spits out vehemently bastardised pop tunes at an incredibly fertile rate, there seems to be something genuine about Jay Lindsey, or at the very least, his alter-ego Jay Reatard. He may manage to funnel oomph from decades of rock music, mashing Eddie Cochran, The Stones, Ramones, Richman and Dino Jr into one guitar-wielding oddball; yet, Reatard’s splatterings of garage-infused bedlam are far from being the work of a mere revivalist.
In saying that, he has done what few independent artists have even come close to doing in recent times, and that is to incite pandemonium via the outlet of 7’s, so much so that the six released this year all feature on Matador Singles ’08, Reatard’s second singles compendium. It’s a dizzying journey that sounds way more cohesive than a bunch of singles lashed together, even if they are in chronological order, have any right to be. -See/Saw’ is a blistering start, but Reatard takes it up a notch with the lethal cowboy punk of -Screaming Hard’, parading just how prolific a writer he is that it was relegated to a b-side; and, as he demonstrates on numerous occasions, an acoustic can be punk rock.
-Always Want More’ has, like a quasi-Bob Mould, a pop sensibility underneath its barbed wire exterior, while a cover of chums Deerhunter’s -Fluorescent Grey’ may hint at more experimental forays in the future. For the moment, however, after this frenetic 25 minutes, one is left only wondering of the possibilities for Jay Reatard’s next full-length, due in early 2009.