🎵 Sebadoh - Sunshine: I’m still deciding how I feel about the majority of the new Sebadoh album, Celebrate The Void. Sebadoh and I have a long history and it has been about 27 years since I heard that the bassist who got kicked out of Dinosaur Jr. had his own band. At the time I nearly flipped my lid. In the fall of 1994, I went to see Sebadoh and Dinosaur Jr. within a week of each other and teased Lou Barlow a bit about it while getting to hang out with him as well as Mike Flood at the merch table (I didn’t ride with the flood that night).
Although, it’s hard to call such a unique and prolific band “consistent,” I would maintain that the majority of their records have a sizable number of songs that have stuck closely with me throughout the years. Even the previous record, Defend Yourself, which appeared after a fairly lengthy hiatus, has a couple of tracks that rank among their better material.
It’s hard to predict how the latest record will age, though. I’ve liked it better than I thought I would and the track “Sunshine” is one reason for that. Barlow’s clever lyrics about needing the brighter side of life so he can shut it out speaks to a part of the human condition that’s hard to name or even describe well. The slow and angular guitar part lazily wraps itself around some soothing negative space. The classically and unmistakably Sebadoh baseline anchors the song and gives it a bit of a jaunty feeling. The whole song comes together as a remarkable entry in the band’s catalog and makes you glad they are still doing their thing.