. . .
Eventually — and around the same time, honestly — Lou Barlow figured it out just like Robert Pollard (sorta) did: you can still make a weird-sounding lo-fi album be consistently great by focusing on the songs, not the the goofarounds.
And so, Bakesale was by far the most consistent album Sebadoh had ever done, and that was probably because co-founder Eric Gaffney had left and bassist Eric Lowenstein’s songs were more in line with Barlow’s than Gaffney’s ever were. Barlow was never going to fully lockdown the songwriting, because that was at least part of why he left Dinosaur Jr in the first place (and to be sure, he’s had a pair of songs on all five of their great 21st century reunion albums), but his songs were still the reason to put on Bakesale. Or at least my reason.