Jeffrey Lewis Plays Local Show on Friday at Mercury Lounge

November 22nd, 2011

Growing up without a TV on the Lower East Side gave Jeffrey Lewis an early appreciation of music and comic books. And to this day, he’s still active in both. (In fact Lewis, who did his college thesis on the much-lauded ’80s series Watchmen, has his very own comic book, Fuff.) He began writing and performing his own songs as part of the antifolk scene at the Fort at the Sidewalk Café, among the likes of the Moldy Peaches. In perhaps a nod to his interest in both the Grateful Dead and Nirvana, Lewis began deftly mixing folk sensibilities with distorted garage rock. He got out the word by distributing cassettes of his recorded music along with his own comic books. And eventually his sound earned him a deal with London-based Rough Trade Records. The humorous singer-songwriter’s sixth album, A Turn in the Dream-Songs, came out last month, and when Lewis performs live, his shows will often include videos and illustrations to accompany some of the songs. You can see for yourself when Jeffrey Lewis & Junkyard (above, doing “If Life Exists” and “Whistle Past the Graveyard”)—and Diane Cluck and Moldy Peaches guitarist Toby Goodshank—play Mercury Lounge on Friday.