Home Read Classic Album Review: Various Artists | The Ecstasy of the Agony

Classic Album Review: Various Artists | The Ecstasy of the Agony

Jello Biafra mixes rock & talk on this budget-priced Alternative Tentacles sampler.

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This came out in 2001 – or at least that’s when I got it. Here’s what I said about it back then (with some minor editing):

 


Punk rock, spoken-word and left-wing politics go hand in hand in hand for Jello Biafra and his Alternative Tentacles label. So it’s no surprise that this budget-priced label sampler (the cover instructs you not to pay more than $6) has a heaping helping of all three, including plenty of tracks unavailable elsewhere.

On the musical front, there’s everything from Biafra’s own post-Dead Kennedys bands Lard and No WTO Combo to noise-popster Jad Fair, electro-metallists Pitchshifter and even wild-man troubadour Wesley Willis. There’s a little CanCon from SNFU and No Means No, who offer up tracks from their last releases. For those who prefer less rock and more talk, Noam Chomsky, Mumia Abu-Jamal, Angela Davis, Howard Zinn and Jello himself contribute mini-lectures on government, politics, crime and punishment. And at 75 minutes, it’s cheap at twice the price — which is probably what you’ll end up paying anyway.