Ty Segall is frequently compared with the late Jay Reatard, presumably because they both are: 1) young white males who play guitar; 2) generally (though not always accurately) associated with garage rock; 3) dudes whose first names end in “y.” But there are no echoes of Reatard’s music on Segall’s Goodbye Bread—in fact, there’s hardly a trace of any music made during Reatard’s tragically short lifetime. Segall instead takes his cues from more established dead rock stars like John Lennon and Marc Bolan of T. Rex; Segall paid tribute to the latter earlier this year with the Ty Rex covers EP, and his own originals on Goodbye Bread are nearly as indebted to the glitter-rock great.
All clanging power chords and coolly detached vocals, the title track is one tall glass of water, oozing sex appeal and rock-star ’tude as confidently as the album cover of Electric Warrior. The brief “California Commercial” reaches back to Segall’s punk-rock roots, but the bubblegum blues-rock of “The Floor” and the draggy White Album-inspired psychedelia of “I Can’t Feel It” are better indicators of where Segall’s head (and record collection) currently are. While frequently enjoyable, Goodbye Bread is also highly derivative—and here’s where the comparisons with Reatard really start to break down. While Reatard had his antecedents, he swung his music violently into alien terrain; Goodbye Bread is an entertaining trad-rock record made by a talented tunesmith who’d rather make love than war.