Skip to main content

Devo to unveil long-lost live set

Devo are set to release a long-lost live album recorded in 1977 but never made public until now.

Miracle Witness Hour will be issued on 180g coloured vinyl and as a digipak CD on November 17 and can be pre-ordered now. It has been remastered by the band themselves. The outer sleeve reverses to reveal a second one, containing rare and unreleased photos. The liner notes were written by singer Gerald Casale.

The band say in a statement that the 10-song set was recorded in “a biker bar turned total dive” and that it offers “a rare glimpse into the embryonic stages of the groundbreaking band, an experience so intimate that you can make out individual hand claps of the sparse crowd.”

The album’s version of Uncontrollable Urge – originally released the following year on debut Q. Are We Not Men? A. We Are Devo! – is available to preview now at label Futurismo’s website.

Casale previously recalled the band’s early days, telling God Is In The TV: “I met Mark at Kent State University in the early ‘70s and we started experimenting. We were artists and the idea was actually originally visual. At that time there was no real term as deconstruction or postmodern.

“When we look back, that’s what we were doing, but we didn’t know it consciously. We thought man was extremely flawed and the worst part of human nature was taking centre stage. There wasn’t progress or journey or humanity. So later on, we started making music that embodied that idea.

“One of the defining moments was when Richard Branson talked us into playing Knebworth. We were on before Genesis and were staring out at all these hippies who fucking hated us and they started throwing things at us. It took us back to when Devo started in Ohio, when people would threaten us to quit playing.”

Devo recently launched a crowdfunding campaign for a live recording of their first concerts without guitarist Bob Casale, who died in February. It currently sits at over 130% of the target.

Miracle Witness Hour tracklist

  1. Be Stiff 2. Uncontrollable Urge 3. Mongoloid 4. Timing X Soo Bawls 5. Polyvinyl Chloride 6. Jocko Homo 7. Huboon Stomp 8. Praying Hands 9. Secret Agent Man 10. Smart Patrol Mr DNA