Arty Lenin CD CDs discography Syracuse NY
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Arty Lenin CD Ease Of Life Arty Lenin - Ease Of Life
  CD $11.99 (2001) Arty Lenin - Ease Of Life CD

Tracks -
01 Mr. Acarious 06 Cherry's World
02 This Sweet Smell 07 Crack of Midnight
03 Not Much 08 When We Close Our Eyes
04 Little Sister 09 Leave Yourself Behind
05 Destiny's Plaything 10 One and One Makes Seven
Gary Frenay and Arty Lenin CD Live At Pastabilities Gary Frenay and Arty Lenin - Live At Pastabilities
CD $11.99 (1999) Gary Frenay and Arty Lenin - Live At Pastabilities CD

Tracks -
The Flashcubes CD Brilliant Flashcubes - Brilliant
CD $11.99 (2003) The Flashcubes - Brilliant CD more info
The Flashcubes CD Live In Japan Flashcubes - Live In Japan Raw Power Pop
CD $19.99 (2003) The Flashcubes - Live In Japan CD more info
The Flashcubes CD Bright Lights Best of Flashcubes - Bright Lights / Best of
CD $11.99 (1997, 71 min.) The Flashcubes - Bright Lights more info

Arty Lenin

Goldmine Magazine
Carl Cafarelli  04-19-2002

Guitarist Arty Lenin, a founding member of the fab power-pop group The Flashcubes (he wrote the group's first single, "Christi Girl") and a former member of The Paul Collins Band (circa that band's 1993 From Town To Town album), steps out for his first solo album, an unassuming package of wistful pop music that's unafraid to rock but isn't ashamed to weep, either.
A few of the songs on A Life Of Ease will already be familiar to Lenin's fans, as "The Sweetest Smell," "Cherry's World" and "When We Close Our Eyes" have all been staples of The Flashcubes' live set for years (and the latter tune is likely to be recorded by The Flashcubes for their forthcoming album). But each song makes its recorded debut here, and each still shines in Lenin's solo environment. "When We Close Our Eyes," in particular stands out as a defiant expression of vulnerability, a brilliant call-to-arms for dreamers struggling to get by in a harsh, cynical world.

Much of the album deals, in varying degrees, with themes of alienation, of balancing vulnerability with durability. The opening track, "Mr. Acarius" (misspelled as "Acarious" in the track listings), name-checks William Faulkner's short story to set the proper tone and, more important, to instantly captivate pop fans with a breezy, catchy vibe that belies its Iyrical concerns. It's followed by the sprightly, lighthearted "The Sweetest Smell," providing a study in contrasts before returning to the unsatisfied longing that lurks within the country-ish "Not Much Has Changed," cowritten by Paul Collins.

The magic of Lenin's songs is that they express feelings of longing eloquently and yet never fall prey to an oh-woe-is-me capitulation. This is partially due to the unspoken - (perhaps imaginary) optimism that seems to lie beneath the surface of Lenin's Iyrical alienation, but mostly it's just because the songs are pretty damn catchy. Thus does "Destiny's Plaything," a ditty about predestination and inevitability, wind up as a toe-tappin' celebration rather than a mope-a-thon. Only the standard-issue boogie strut of "Little Sister" and the bar-band workout "One And One Makes Seven" fail to distinguish themselves.

The cover of A Life of Ease shows Lenin standing in front of a yellow submarine, making it clear where the album's title originates. If it seems incongruous to consider the notion of livin' a life of ease against the backdrop of Lenin's square-peg ruminations, you've forgotten the cathartic power of pure pop, you big ol' Blue Meanie. When we close our eyes, time is so forgiving.

Arty Lenin
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