Wednesday, July 14, 2010

July 14

Happy Birthday to Bob Casale. But if you know Devo, you know him as Bob 2.

And if you don't know Devo, then read on:

Devo was formed in Kent State University, in the shadow of the protest shootings. Devo fit closest to the New Wave sound, with a double dose of art school aesthetic. Bob was recruited by his brother, Gerald, and is considered part of the 'classic lineup'.

If you feel like shopping, that's not accidental. In its original release, "That's Good" was just one of Devo's songs commenting on America's conspicuous consumption culture. In the 2K's, the song was a cornerstone in a marketing campaign for Target department stores. That's how Devo irony works.
This is the same band who concocted Devo 2.0, which used Disney's child actor factory to cast a Devo cover band.

Another example of how the everyday looks when distorted through the Devo lens: their version of the Rolling Stones' classic "Satisfaction".

Devo lingered in the fringes through the 80's, and dissolved after their 1990 release fizzled. Several members continued to work together at Mutato Muzika, a recording studio and music lab in west Hollywood; Bob became a recording engineer there. The ex-Devo would help each other on splinter projects and soundtrack scores, recording together in several bands not named Devo, before formally reuniting for what became a world tour.
In 2009, they released their first new album in 20 years. Here's the first single:

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