Rock savant David Thomas, of art "punk" acts Pere Ubu and Rocket from the Tombs, weasels his way out of logical contradictions surrounding the early days, consumer culture, and the state of music today.
Lady from Shanghai finds Pere Ubu bopping to the beat of their own drum, while making inroads and concessions to the world of pop culture, without ever "selling out" or sounding something unlike they are.
Thomas still frequently sings with that halfway hiccup in his voice, as if he can't get the words out without being slightly nauseous. The overall sound tells one right up front that life is ugly and hard. But there is also a subtle beauty in the noise.