“Fresh Fruit For Rotting Vegetables” by Dead Kennedys - album review

features in: Album Chart of 1980Album Chart of the Decade: 1980s1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die external-link.png

TJR says

The debut from the Californian quartet arrived in September ‘80, bursting out with classics left, right and centre. Taking their cues from the Pistols and The Clash, the DK’s channelled that energy and aligned it with their own home-grown agenda. The photo on the front-cover, showing several police cars on fire, was taken during the “White Night Riots” of 21st May 1979, that resulted from the light sentence given to former San Francisco City Supervisor Dan White for the homophobic murder of Mayor George Moscone and supervisor Harvey Milk. With songs such as “When Ya Get Drafted” (rallying against calls for the re-introduction of the draft with lines such as ‘stocked with kids from slums’ hitting hard) and “California Über Alles” (satirising the States then-governor Jerry Brown as a supremacist and a totalitarian), these were clearly leftist punk aliens; their homeland occupied by oppressors, materialists and AOR friendly radio stations. Jello Biafra’s (Eric Boucher’s) vocals landed somewhere between John Lydon’s sneer and Feargal Sharkey’s trill, whilst East Bay Ray’s (Raymond Pepperell’s) guitar was something else, incorporating surf / thrash / new wave (sometimes all in the same song); surely “Holiday In Cambodia” stands as one of the greatest guitar works of all-time? Klaus Flouride (Geoffrey Lyall) played bass at 100 mph and still created melody as Ted (Bruce Slesinger) marched and rolled with a relentless energy and a precision that was on the outer-limits of human ability. Biafra’s non-stop verbal bashing for the American government (and, to a large degree, the American people) was laced with a vicious humour and a nasal sarcasm, and was a political wake-up call for many – this fightback against stupid Americans was not a gimmick. “Fresh Fruit For Rotting Vegetables” was completely exhilarating from start to finish. What a rush…

The Jukebox Rebel

A1 [03:07] 10.0.png Dead Kennedys - Kill The Poor (Eric Boucher, Raymond Pepperell) Punk
A2 [01:23] 9.0.png Dead Kennedys - Forward To Death (Carlos Cadona) Punk
A3 [01:23] 8.8.png Dead Kennedys - When Ya Get Drafted (Eric Boucher) Punk
A4 [02:13] 8.4.png Dead Kennedys - Let’s Lynch The Landlord (Eric Boucher) Punk
A5 [01:56] 9.8.png Dead Kennedys - Drug Me (Eric Boucher) Punk
A6 [01:20] 7.9.png Dead Kennedys - Your Emotions (Raymond Pepperell) Punk
A7 [02:58] 9.6.png Dead Kennedys - Chemical Warfare (Eric Boucher) Punk
B1 [03:03] 10.0.png Dead Kennedys - California Über Alles (Eric Boucher, John Greenway) Punk
B2 [02:04] 8.3.png Dead Kennedys - I Kill Children (Eric Boucher) Punk
B3 [01:34] 7.7.png Dead Kennedys - Stealing People’s Mail (Eric Boucher) Punk
B4 [01:49] 7.6.png Dead Kennedys - Funland At The Beach (Eric Boucher) Punk
B5 [02:46] 8.4.png Dead Kennedys - Ill In The Head (Eric Boucher, Carlos Cadona) Punk
B6 [04:37] 10.0.png Dead Kennedys - Holiday In Cambodia (Bruce Slesinger, Raymond Pepperell, Eric Boucher, Geoffrey Lyall) Punk
B7 [02:42] 7.5.png Dead Kennedys - Viva Las Vegas (Doc Pomus, Mort Shuman) Punk

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