Robert Christgau: Dean of American Rock Critics

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Consumer Guide Album

Clem Snide: Forever Just Beyond [Ramseur/Thirty Tigers, 2020]
His folk-rock strictly utilitarian and his unaccented vocals plain verging on bland, Eef Barzalay knows his own strength: a serious gift for transforming philosophical apercus into legible rhymes. "Oh God is simply that which lies/Forever just beyond the limits/Of what we already seem to know." "There is a vastness that can't be contained/Or described as a flash in the flesh of our brains/It's everything, everywhere, future and past/Dissolving forever in an eternal flash." "Oh Emily I believe there ain't much of nothing/That we can change in this world/Except for our own mind and heart/To be more kind and brave in the face of it all." "We've never left the place we're searching for/Don't bring no ladder when you die." And it don't stop. A-