Devo's Freedom of Choice

Devo's Freedom of Choice Review

Finally, after all that waiting, The Future arrived in 1980. Ohio art-rockers Devo had plainly prepared with their 1979 second LP Duty Now for the Future, and now it was go time. Propelled by the new decade's high-tech, free-market, pre-AIDS promise, 1980's Freedom of Choice would rocket what Devo co-founder Gerald Casale calls his "alternate universe, hermetically sealed, alien band" both into the arms of the Earthlings and back to their home planet in one scenic trip.

Before an artistic and commercial decline that resulted in a 20-year gap between Devo's last two studio records, Freedom of Choice made them curious, insurgent superstars, vindicated but ultimately betrayed by the birth of MTV. Their only platinum album represented the best of their unreplicable code: dead-serious tricksters, embracing conformity in order to destroy it with bullet-proof pop sensibility. Through first-hand accounts from the band and musical analysis set against an examination of new wave's emergence, the first-ever authorized book about Devo (with a foreword by Portlandia's Fred Armisen) explores the group's peak of success, when their hermetic seal cracked open to let in mainstream attention, a legion of new Devotees, and plenty of misunderstandings. "Freedom of Choice was the end of Devo innocence–it turned out to be the high point before the s***storm of a total cultural move to the right, the advent of AIDS, and the press starting to figure Devo out and think they had our number," says Casale. "It's where everything changes."

Title:Devo's Freedom of Choice

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    Some Testimonial About This Book:

  • Greg

    I love the 33 1/3 series: focused, intense writing centered around a single album. Some have proven to be better than others, but Evie's ode to "Freedom of Choice" is excellent. Bringing the band into...

  • anas

    I love many 33 1/3 books but some are just better than others; this is one of them. It's an incredible read if you love Devo as I do but it's a good read even if you're just familiar with "Whip It." I...

  • Robert

    Devo's third album Freedom of Choice is the group's most well known album, mainly due to the track Whip It. It is also the album where the band ditched traditional instruments and switched to keyboar...

  • Forrest

    I received a copy of this book through a Goodreads First Reads giveaway.Ah, Devo—a misfit band with a misfit fan base. They're quirky and twitchy, sarcastic and knowing, visually striking and lyrica...

  • Sean Williams

    This was an interesting read without being especially engaging, insightful or ambitious. Straightforward reportage meets Devo - leaving me a little underwhelmed. Maybe my bar was set too high, but doe...

  • Stephen Lewis

    One of the best in the 33 1/3 series. Overall the series is hit or miss. Success depends as much on access to the featured band as it does on good writing. Evie Nagy writes well and got hours of inter...

  • Paul

    Covers the Freedom of Choice album and Devo's subsequent career well, but would have liked more information on the early years of the band....

  • Erika Verhagen

    Don't let what might be the world's worst foreword by Fred Armisen deter you - it was otherwise unusually good!...

  • Thomas Kyhn

    Written in a rather light, not particularly enjoyable journalistic style. Extensive quotes from band members make up for this to some extent. ...

  • David Ashley

    Really really great 33/3. Evie segments the book into chapters based on each of the tracks on the album, I know, that sounds like a bad idea... but somehow it just works. This format allows for a deep...