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Classic Album Review: The Finger | We are F—k You / Punk’s Dead Let’s F—k

Ryan Adams and Jesse Malin let their Flag flag fly on this undercover punk release.


This came out in 2003 – or at least that’s when I got it. Here’s what I said about it back then (with some minor editing):


Psssst … wanna buy the new Ryan Adams album?

No, it’s not a bootleg or something downloaded off the Net. It’s a legitimate disc on a real label. Only it’s not the major label Adams that has Adams under contract. So he can’t admit he’s the ringleader of The Finger, a punk band that also includes former D Generation singer (and old pal) Jesse Malin. And unless he wants to get sued, he can’t admit they recorded these 20 songs during down time while Adams was producing Malin’s solo album last year. At least, that’s the scuttlebutt about We Are F—k You / Punk’s Dead Let’s F—k, which finds Adams working under the name Warren Peace, while Malin goes by Irving Plaza. And whoever bandmates Jim Beahm and Rick O’Shea really are, there’s no getting around the truth that they provide a reasonable facsimile of Rollins-era Black Flag. Just check out the gruff vocals, swaggering power, bare-knuckle hatred and edgy guitar riffs of two-minute, three-chord, four-on-the-floor salvos like Coma For $$$, Riot, and Never Ever and hear for yourself. The record company may not appreciate it, but Flag fans — and maybe even some of the more open-minded Ryan fans — won’t mind being given The Finger.


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