Robert Christgau: Dean of American Rock Critics

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Consumer Guide Album

The Jeffrey Lewis & Peter Stampfel Band: Both Ways [Bandcamp, 2021]
Recorded in 2017 with Stampfel's voice undiminished, this 22-track double album is available only via Lewis's Bandcamp page. It reprises many Stampfel & Antonia chestnuts while introducing many new Lewis songs, some of which cop melodies from such sources as Jimmy Driftwood, the Searchers, Cyndi Lauper, Anthology of American Folk Music, and a Stampfel banjo fantasia. Then there are covers of such arcana as Hawkwind's "Orgone Accumulator," Autosalvage's "Same White Light," (Lou Reed and) the Beachnuts' "Cycle Annie," and retrofitted ditties from the life list in Stampfel's memory book. The Lauper steal "True Tax Forms" addresses a now deposed president. "Heroin" is repurposed with lyrics that merit the stark title "Internet" before "Marquee Moon" is covered straight next track. And the opener is an every-which-way musical manifesto the rest of this curated, offhand hodgepodge embodies like there's no tomorrow on the off chance that there may be one. A