The Pere Ubu project was supposed to be an end, not a beginning. Assembled in August 1975 to be the Crosby Stills Nash & Young of the Cleveland music underground, the plan was to record one, maybe two singles and exist no more. Within months, however, those first self-produced records were being snapped up in London, Paris, Manchester, New York and Minneapolis. Pere Ubu was changing the face of rock music. Over the next 39 years they defined the art of cult; refined the voice of the outsider; and inspired the likes of Joy Division, Pixies, Husker Du, Henry Rollins, REM, Sisters of Mercy, Thomas Dolby, Bauhaus, Julian Cope and countless others.
Frontman David Thomas’s absurdist approach to lyricism and experimentation is at the heart of the band’s long career. Their sound is utterly unique – from Thomas’s demented vocal delivery to an all-round self-destructive melodic dissonance and wild rhythm section.
The next Pere Ubu album, Carnival of Souls, is scheduled for release in September and we can’t wait!
‘It is obvious that (the history of) Pere Ubu should not be thought of in terms of a linear development – reducing its entire operation and presence to an exclusive concern for ‘working and succeeding in’ rock and roll. Unfortunately, most criticism – of Pere Ubu, of many other folks – assumes that words have one meaning, that desires point in a single direction, that ideas are logical; it ignores the fact that the world of language, noise and desire is one of lack, insecurity, interruption, struggle, blundering, disguises, ploys, embarrassed grins.’ NME
‘Ubu are generally regarded as the missing link between the Velvets and punk. From the beginning they obviously understood the nuts and bolts of popular music, and then loosened them.‘ Mojo