February 20, 2008

VA: Let Them Eat Jellybeans!

Let Them Eat Jellybeans!: Thanks go to B Minus who sent me this rarity: [from Wikipedia] " , subtitled "17 Extracts From Americas Darker Side", is a compilation album released by Alternative Tentacles in 1981. It was one of the earliest compilations of underground music in the United States and its original release included an insert of all of the punk bands known to be playing in the U.S. and Canada at that time. The first side of the LP features songs by a number of bands that formed the canon of American hardcore punk in the 1980s, while the second side features more of an art rock sound.

At least two of the cuts on the punk side of the album have never been issued in the same form heard on Let Them Eat Jellybeans. The version of Black Flag's "Police Story" heard on ...Jellybeans was recorded during the sessions for the Six Pack EP and features Dez Cadena on lead vocals, although the album's insert features the then-current Damaged-era lineup with Henry Rollins. Also, the version of Dead Kennedys' "Nazi Punks Fuck Off!" is a wholly different recording than the versions heard on both In God We Trust, Inc. and the "Nazi Punks Fuck Off!" single.

The album has been in high demand for reissue from fans who have either worn out their original vinyl copies, or never got to hear the original compilation. However, Alternative Tentacles Records were forced to admit in their website's FAQ section in 1999 that they were unable to reissue the full original album due to licensing issues with Black Flag and what is referred to as "a falling out" between Jello Biafra and one of the other acts on the record, although no names are given. Likely possibilities for the unnamed act in question are said to be either Biafra's former band Dead Kennedys, with whom he was in a protracted copyright and royalty dispute with for several years, or The Feederz, whose lead singer had an affair with Biafra's wife in 1986.


Eyes and Teeth said...

You rule for this!

Anonymous said...

A classic album! And indeed it's a shame there will be no new release because of the 'problems' with other bands...then again..this is why the bloggers are so important to keep the music alive!

Anonymous said...

This record changed my life!

solsound said...

One of the best punk comps ever! ...with classic tracks from Black Flag, Bad Brains, Circle Jerks, & The Dead Kennedy's. Plus 2 of my all time fav's, Isotope Soap by Geza X and Sleep by Voice Farm (early downtempo). Thank god I still have my Vinyl.