Album #158 – Kick Out The Jams

Album #158

This album was phenomenal!!! If this album was not released, I do not think punk would have ended up the way it did. This album is one of the best live albums I have ever heard. I did not even know it was a live album until today. I thought the album was mostly a studio album with the title track being the only live track included. But, this album was recorded in Detroit at the Grande Ballroom on October 30th and 31st, 1968. It feels like a African American Church Service, Vietnam rally, Reliving of the 1967 Detroit Riots and rock concert all in one. The guy introducing the MC5 sounded like a preacher. The MC5 were filled with energy. Fred “Sonic” Smith plays the guitar with the same energy as Hendrix. I could not stop head banging to this album. It is not an album I recommend to every body. It is very loud and it is not for the casual music fan. But, those with an open mind and those who love punk music will love this album. The title track alone is worth the price of admission. My favourite part of this album is when lead singer Rob Tyner introduces Kick Out The Jams with the following: “And right now… right now… right now it’s time to… KICK OUT THE JAMS, M*****F*****S!!!!!” This one, controversial, statement sums up the energy of the whole album. Kick Out The Jams, according to many, means to be liberated and do your own thing. This is what the hippies were aiming for and this is what punk rock was all about. This album was almost not released because of that statement. Somehow, times have not changed. A statement like this today would have the same connotations. But, boy doesn’t it sound good!!!  In an ironic twist, the late Fred “Sonic” Smith ended up marrying one of Punk Rock’s greatest performers and artists, Patti Smith, years after this album was released. If I could I would go out an buy this album today. That is how much I loved it!!! Why can’t music be this good again? Overall, I give this album 5 out of 5.

Next: Cloud 9 by The Temptations

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