The MC5-kick out the jams 12”LP:
Well worth the exhumation. Its the truly arse-shredding & shit-kicking hard & harsh, radical Detroit rock torpedo the MC5 with their unbridled debut “Kick Out the Jams” from 1969. a live record, in more mannerisms than one, this cordon smashing, unruly & brazen youth flash-mob belts forth a staggeringly energetic & wild elaboration (or ultimate definition?) of the Rock canon, locking antlers with psychedelic, or if you like ‘noise’, swagger & Free Jazz/improvisational exuberance. It’s harder, noisier & rawer than any ‘Rock’ anchored outfit I am aware of in the proceeding decade at least & has a hurtling, barley contained power that personifies some of the best of the 60’s turbulence & “positive confrontation” with a riderless-optimism & soaring revolutionary visceral-vehemence.
This shit doesn’t just kick-up a dust-storm, its colossally uplifting & positively drenched in the highest caliber of liberated youth zest & the shredding of morally-dubious rule-book decorums from an outdated & out-of-touch hand-me-down pigeon-hole. On the burner. The groups alacrity for distortion (the guitars are gigantic), volume & abrasiveness (far beyond their peers within the rock strata) was one advantage, but (& more standard for the era) the degree of musicianship & push for structurally confident joints with more bite than a standard rock unit (or Punk for which they would later be associated with). The crew were influenced a lot by the Free Jazz magma that was pouring out of the fissures & there are admissions of them crashing by Cecil Taylor & Archie Shepp’s pad, without invitation, brimming with bodacious yoot’ drive (knock knock). Likewise, & long before the genre developed, the Mc5 are often quoted as a huge inspiration on forerunners of the Punk movement. Its not at all hard to see why, yet still, many Punk bands couldn’t even summon the level of flame & grit that Kick Out the Jams dispensed on distortion & guitar sound alone despite all the advances available.
The MC5 also didn’t shy-away from a certain standard of musicianship as an advantageous application, giving them way more powers to administer their expertise. Ideologically, energetically, culturally – these guys blasted an ideal amalgam of the Yippies, revolutionary fervour with balls & teeth & ecstatic young-gun freewheeling wildness jostling on a tidal wave of surging societal change. Shit is electrifying! Blatantly enthused with the Black Power movement with the main vocalist lifting the demeanour of a hyperactive preacher between tracks only juice the groups cult credentials way into the firmament. A pinnacle moment captured. Storming!
1969, Elektra Records