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Dead Kennedys - Albums - (Reviews / Ratings)

On this page I have tried to compare and rate the releases from Dead Kennedys and tried to highlight which tracks I see as the most important on the individual releases.
This is before Jello Biafra went away to do what ever he went to do, but that is another story.

 Rating: 8/10
Dead Kennedys - Give Me Convenience Or Give Me Death
Title: Give Me Convenience Or Give Me Death
This one was a collection to sum up all the anarchistic fucked-up shit that never made it onto the albums as well as some of the single versions and b-sides. A total must-have.
"I Fought The Law" is one hell of a version and "Short Songs" is one of my favourite DK songs ever. All that power in so few seconds. The Prey has the coolest and simplest bass line and is simply out-standing. I reach out for your face and I strike!
"Buzzbomb From Pasadena" is the flexi disc included with the lp. Not only is it cool. It is totally über cool compared to the original 1982 version.
Important Tracks: Police Truck, Too Drunk To Fuck, California Über Alles, Insight, Holiday In Cambodia, I Fought The Law, Pull My Strings, Short Songs, The Prey, Buzzbomb From Pasadena
©: 1987   (p): 1987   Label: Manifesto (A.T.)   #: MFO 42904 (virus 57)   Media: CD   
Notes: LP version included a flexi single and a totally cool magazine.

 Rating: 4/10
Dead Kennedys - Bedtime For Democracy
Title: Bedtime For Democracy
I kinda think the plan with this release was to make one last punk album after the experimental "Frankenchrist" that brought the whole ship down because of insane religious forces and fucked-up lawsuits.
Well, it kinda succeeded. The sound is very much punk, but the musical ideas and lyrics are left behind. Besides the tracks I've listed below there ain't much else of interest on this album.
Rumour has it that especially lead-singer Jello Biafra had had enough of it all and wanted the band to end after the enormous pressure. No one can blame him... He wrote most of the lyrics and he was more than anybody the political impersonation of the band.
Important Tracks: Take This Job And Shove It, Cesspool In Eden, Where Do Ya Draw The Line
©: 1986   (p): 1986   Label: Manifesto (A.T.)   #: MFO 42903 (virus 50)   Media: CD   
Notes: LP version included newspaper and double fold-out cover.

 Rating: 9/10
Dead Kennedys - Frankenchrist
Title: Frankenchrist
I'm not really sure what they thought here...but this album is freakin' great! It ain't punk at all, in any traditional sense. It is very experimental and different. It shows that besides being pioneers in the punk world these dudes were (and still are) great musicians.
Very much worth noting is that the so-called "penis-poster" by mr. H.R. Giger (designer of "Alien") that was included with the original lp release caused so much rampage in the us, that it eventually led to the split-up of the DK band because of lawsuits and bullshit against the band.
A sad story that a poster with a lot of penises can cause so much trouble... But really, it has just been repeated in Denmark with something else on the poster...but with the same result. Some people just won't accept the freedom of speech. So the world has learned nothing since 1985. Sad but true.
Important Tracks: Soup Is Good Food, This Could Be Anywhere, A Growing Boy Needs His Lunch, Chicken Farm, Goons Of Hazzards, MTV - Get Of The Air, At My Job
©: 1985   (p): 1985   Label: Manifesto (A.T.)   #: MFO 42902 (virus 45)   Media: CD   
Notes: The lp version included the world's most dangerous poster at that time(1985). It included penises and vaginas. Scary stuff that almost made the US fall apart... Jesus crap on a goat.

 Rating: 9/10
Dead Kennedys - Plastic Surgery Disasters
Title: Plastic Surgery Disasters
Difficult one this one. After the easily digested debut and the aggressive but short ep this one made it harder for many to follow the punk-rockers. The tracks are more complicated, not necessarily so ear-pleasing, but never-the-less very unbelivably cool in terms of topics and humour. This time it just required a bit more work from the listener to get into it. Once you did that, this album is one hell of a cool thing.
"Forest Fire" has one of the coolest bass lines ever in punk and "Moon Over Marin" is just one god damn fucking great song.
Important Tracks: Government Flu, Trust Your Mechanic, Buzzbomb, Forest Fire, Winnebago Warrior, Riot, Bleed For Me, I Am The Owl, Dead End, Moon Over Marin.
©: 1982   (p): 1982   Label: Alternative Tentacles   #: Virus 5/27 cd   Media: CD   
Notes: Includes the "In God We Trust, Inc." ep as a bonus cd. The lp version included a totally cool magazine.

 Rating: 10/10
Dead Kennedys - In God We Trust, Inc. (ep)
Title: In God We Trust, Inc. (ep)
This one educated me in terms of garage production and direct-to-tape aggression. Nobody among my 1980's friends understood a freakin' thing when I bought it back then. I guess they never took the time to understand it and listen to the lyrics. Today it stands out as one of the most important punk records ever. Short as it is.
"Religious Vomit", "Moral Majority" shows exactly the same problem we still have with religious morons (no matter what-ever fucked-up religion they may belong to.) "Nazi Punks Fuck Off" is a legend and "We've Got A Bigger Problem Now" is a fantastic part 2 of "California Über Alles". To Top it off we get "Rawhide" in it's coolest version ever. Period.
This was the first record with the immortal lineup of: Jello Biafra (vocals), Klaus Flouride (bass),East Bay Ray (guitar) and D.H. Peligro (drums).
Important Tracks: Religious Vomit, Moral Majority, Nazi Punks Fuck Off, We've Got A Bigger Problem Now, Rawhide.
©: 1981   (p): 1981   Label: Statik   #: stat ep2   Media: CD   
Notes: Included as a bonus cd with the "Plastic Surgery Disasters" cd.

 Rating: 10/10
Dead Kennedys - Fresh Fruit For Rottening Vegetables
Title: Fresh Fruit For Rottening Vegetables
This one still stands out as maybe the ultimate punk record for many people. It certainly has great melodies, lyrics that makes you think and lots of attitude. No matter what, it was one hell of a debut. Sex Pistols and Ramones can kiss my ass in comparison.
"Kill The Poor", "Chemical Warfare", "California Über Alles" and "Holiday In Cambodia" should be enough to make you lose your breath. The rest of the record is just as great...
Important Tracks: Kill The Poor, Let's Lynch The Landlord, Chemical Warfare, California Über Alles, I Kill Children, Stealing People Mail, Funland At The Beach, Ill In The Head, Holiday In Cambodia
©: 1980   (p): 1980   Label: Cherry Red   #: cdsbred 155   Media: CD   
Notes: On this first record Ted was on the drums. On the following albums it would be D.H. Peligro. If you buy the "2001 digitally remastered cd" you will get a 6 track bonus cd with 7"/12" versions and b-sides. LP version includes poster with lyrics.