Arguing about indie-punk sensation Jay Reatard has become a popular pastime for music snobs on the Internet.
Seems that with his move to Matador he's become too polished and power-pop for fans committed to his earlier, thrashier teenage punk.
I thought he lived up to the hype in his first-ever Pittsburgh show Monday night at the Brillobox, especially considering that he's still breaking in a new rhythm section.
The 29-year-old Reatard was a ball of energy, with shaggy hair flying everywhere as he negotiated guitar parts both spastic and epic. As promised in the interview he did with the PG, the new trio was up to the task of capturing the up-and-down dynamics of new songs like "I'm Watching You" and the soaring "There is No Sun."
Although there were some words exchanged with the people dancing close to the stage, there were no punch-ups as there have been at some of his shows. Maybe it was a Monday night thing.
Pittsburgh-based opener Kim Phuc came on harder and heavier with a set that kept the threshold at bruising levels.