The Tenement Year is Pere Ubu's first album after reuniting (following their 1982 break-up), and sixth overall. 'Classic lineup' members Tony Maimone and Allen Ravenstine, along with fellow Cleveland scenester Jim Jones and Henry Cow percussionist Chris Cutler found themselves playing with David Thomas for his 1987 album Blame the Messenger, and, discovering they sounded much like Pere Ubu, began incorporating a few Ubu numbers while touring for that album. Eventually, an official reunion was pursued, original drummer Scott Krauss was contacted, and thus the new lineup was completed and the old mantle assumed. The Tenement Year found the group veering in a loose, freewheeling, and decidedly more pop-oriented direction than in the past, though the pop leanings would become even more pronounced on subsequent albums.
After being out-of-print for many years, a reissue was announced in early 2007.