For years, legend had it that this "Paisley Underground" supersession -- starring Dan Stuart from Green on Red and Steve Wynn from the Dream Syndicate, with three-quarters of the Long Ryders joining members of the two above-mentioned groups as the backing band -- was recorded in a mere three days over a long weekend in 1985. In his liner notes to the 1996 CD reissue, Wynn sets the record straight; actually, the basic tracks were cut in a single beer-fueled recording session (lasting a whopping 36 hours), with the guys calling it quits on Saturday night in order to give themselves Sunday to recover. Fortunately, their muses appear to have been knocking 'em back right alongside them; The Lost Weekend is often sloppy, but just as frequently inspired, with Stuart and Wynn throwing their best Dylan-gone-goofy wordplay at each other, and the players (especially Chris Cacavas on piano and Sid Griffin and Stephen McCarthy on guitars) generating a good and greasy faux-country groove that sounds like a well-oiled honky tonk band having some left-of-center fun before last call. Most of the cuts are played for a laugh, or at least a smirk (most notably "The Word Is Out" and "Song for the Dreamers"), but "Miracle Mile" and "Down to the Bone" prove that the darker sides of Stuart and Wynn's musical personas could still cut through the boozy haze, and "Send Me a Postcard" is a lovably wobbly buddy number that makes the guys sound like a post-modern Waylon and Willie. For the most part, The Lost Weekend is studiedly non-serious, but for sheer entertainment value it's stood the test of time better than much of Steve Wynn and Dan Stuart's official product from the period; it's wiry roots rock that's low on pretension and high on good times. Or cheap beer.
Share this page
AllMusic Review by Mark Deming