MC5 — Kick Out the Jams (review)

MC5 — Kick Out the Jams album cover Album · 1969 · Proto-Metal Buy this album from MMA partners
4/5 ·
Time Signature
Kick out the jams, motherfuckers...

Genre: garage rock

MC5 are hugely important in the history of extreme rock. Their style is sometimes described as proto-punk because of its dirty sound, but MC5 are just as important in the history of metal. What they did was to take the hard rock that would eventually develop into metal and take it to the nth degree of extremity - a move which has been incremental in the development of extreme metal genres ever since.

And, although the music is sloppy and noisy on this album, I think that its energy and bluesey groove is more akin to that which is characteristic of hard rock and classic metal, and in addition there are some psychedelic - almost progressive elements on some of the tracks, such as the last track "Starship" as well as "Borderline". While the energy is hard rock and more metal-like the DIY-attitude of punk music pervades the album. Although listed as and treated as a full length release proper, it is in reality a collection of two live concerts, which explains the sloppiness and noise of the album, but it also captures the intensity of the music in a way that a studio recording wouldn't.

This is a classic dirty hard rock release which should be of interest to both punks and metalheads.
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