Lee Perry Repentance

I would be the first to say Lee Perry is a genius but, like other mad geniuses (Victor Frankenstein, Lex Luthor), Perry creates the occasional hideous monster. In an almost unfathomable pairing, Perry linked up with jock rock joke Andrew W.K. to produce Repentance and, to be obvious, Perry may need to do a little repenting of his own after dropping this soiled ball of garbage on fans. Whereas any Lee Perry album should be a master class in reggae and dub, it’s surprising and utterly disappointing that "Shine,” the kick-off track, is a derivative heap of reggae 101. The majority of the rest are mismatches of sub-par ’80s knock-offs and banal, danceable dreg. By the time you hit "Babe Sucker” and "Santa Claus” it’s obvious that Andrew W.K. didn’t know what to do with Perry (did he even know who he was?) and his stream-of-conscious, self-indulgent song monologues. The ultra-slack "Pum Pum” is the only thing salvageable here — the rare moment when genius and jock appear to be working on the same song. Perry’s typical irreverence ("pussy may come and pussy may go but Jesus Christ remains!”) is emblematic of his need to push limits and shock listeners. Too bad he enlisted a guy with the artistic scope of day-old bread to help him do it. (Narnack)