Pere Ubu frontman David Thomas has built a parallel solo career for himself by heading off periodically with varying collections of sidemen -- who have gone on record under such various names as the Wooden Birds, the Pedestrians, and the Two Pale Boys -- and creating music that is, if anything, more abstruse and difficult than even that of his regular band. This project came about as the result of a one-off improvisational concert he performed in Copenhagen with guitarist Jorge Teller; the concert went so well that the two decided to make an album together, so Teller and Thomas got together with percussionist P.O. Jorgens and clarinetist/bassist Per Buhl Acs to record Bay City under the name David Thomas and Foreigners. The result isn't exactly atypical for Thomas -- the focus is, as always, on the lyrics, which he delivers in a speaking voice as often as not. That leads to a certain melodic dryness, but the lyrics are worth focusing on. The music itself is consistently interesting; it varies from clanky ("Salt") to abrasive ("Nobody Lives on the Moon"), relaxing occasionally into something approximating gentle rock & roll. Consider this one a must-own to Thomas fans, but even those with a more casual interest should definitely give it a listen.
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AllMusic Review by Rick Anderson