http://assets-s3.rollingstone.com/assets/images/album_review/3075b1b4a7c8fb6b434e1f9ecca02676339deac8.jpg Pioneers Who Got Scalped (The Anthology)


Pioneers Who Got Scalped (The Anthology)

Rolling Stone: star rating
Community: star rating
5 3.5 0
June 8, 2000

Devo didn't really fit into New Wave — or anywhere else. Their whole point was how weird they were. Their ludicrous costumes and ultrastiff delivery were barbed jokes about profound alienation, and they used synthesizers to make their point because those were the most inhuman-sounding instruments around. This catch-all retrospective is weird in a different way: It's half album tracks and half alternate mixes, rarities and tracks from Z-grade movie soundtracks. The first disc roars from start to finish, kicking off with the hysterical-in-every-sense Midwestern rage of their first Booji Boy single, running through early MTV staples like "Through Being Cool" and "Freedom of Choice" that passed for synth pop then and sound like riff rockers now, and peaking with their greatest moment, the heartbroken, viciously sarcastic "Beautiful World." Disc Two tries to salvage the last eighteen years of Devo's career and manages pretty well for a while. As the rest of the pop world caught up to their bitter ironies, though, the Spudboys themselves were increasingly running on fumes. Their mock-robotic stabs at "(I Can't Get No) Satisfaction" and "Are You Experienced?" were a great joke; it didn't work as well with "Head Like a Hole" — in part because young alien types like Trent Reznor had already grown up knowing the truth about de-evolution.

Album Review Main Next


Community Guidelines »
loading comments

loading comments...


Sort by:
    Read More
    Around the Web
    Powered By ZergNet
    Daily Newsletter

    Get the latest RS news in your inbox.

    Sign up to receive the Rolling Stone newsletter and special offers from RS and its
    marketing partners.


    We may use your e-mail address to send you the newsletter and offers that may interest you, on behalf of Rolling Stone and its partners. For more information please read our Privacy Policy.

    Song Stories

    “Bird on a Wire”

    Leonard Cohen | 1969

    While living on the Greek island of Hydra, Cohen was battling a lingering depression when his girlfriend handed him a guitar and suggested he play something. After spotting a bird on a telephone wire, Cohen wrote this prayer-like song of guilt. First recorded by Judy Collins, it would be performed numerous times by artists incuding Johnny Cash, Joe Cocker and Rita Coolidge. "I'm always knocked out when I hear my songs covered or used in some situation," Cohen told Rolling Stone. "I've never gotten over the fact that people out there like my music."

    More Song Stories entries »