Jeffrey Lewis is an anti-folk music, comic book writer, and rather than mince words he’s simply an artist. I have been aware of his music via The Moldy Peaches and Kimya Dawson through their project “The Bundles.” His narrating of everyday life’s drab or thrills, or simplicity is where he resides. There really are no frills overcomplicating these songs.
The Los Bolts have a new album out called Manhattan. This new record shows growth as a human while remaining true to his and their sound. Lyrically and sonically on the record they put eleven songs together about pigeons, having a baby, a thunderstorm, and coming back home to Manhattan, and simply carry on the biography being written by this artist through his and their music. Now, Jeffrey having been born in New York and residing there for quite a while these songs reference the streets he once walked now or as a kid with graffiti, the Bronx or Bedford Styveson, or his Yiddish, it is all in there and you just have to kick your shoes off and listen.
Some would call him anti-folk, and that’s just a label that honestly that not even this guy, me the writer of this, actually knows the meaning of. He’s an artist no matter what “genre” or “label” that falls under doesn’t really mean anything, because in the end it is all about the music. In accordance with the music, I’ve been listening to Manhattan and he captures the sounds of car horns, sirens, and a bus letting on the brakes. I’ve had the pleasure of walking around the East Village where many of my heroes once roamed, however I did not live there, but when I hear the record I can see the basketball being played in the parked and the restaurants putting chairs and tables outside. You also do not have to any recollection of times once had in a place such as Manhattan, because this record Manhattan is a record you can put on almost anywhere in any city and make up your own versions of whatever you hear. And, that is the beauty of what music does. Hell, the record even has a song called “Thunderstorm” which the song is a nice musical instrumentation where you can let your mind go, and it’s a frickin’ thunderstorm, well the oncoming of one at least.
Jeffrey Lewis & Los Bolts there’s nothing more and nothing less they hit the sweet spot with this record like an Aaron Judge homerun. We’re lucky here in Cincinnati to have him and the band coming to town. I would highly recommend the show and the latest album. I give him the Moose’s Michelin rating with a three-star rating out of three stars. Take a listen and check ‘em out, they are a great time and a great listen.
They’ll be at Urban Artifact on Monday, July 24th for an ALL Ages show, beginning at 4pm, and only $5! Check it out and enjoy.