Jello Biafra with the Melvins

Sieg Howdy! (Alternative Tentacles)

When you combine former Dead Kennedys lead singer Jello Biafra with seminal sloth-rock monsters the Melvins, you get (a) what the DKs might sound like today if Jello still sang with them, and (b) the Melvins playing much faster than usual. This album gets off to an intriguing start with a rendition of the Alice Cooper chestnut "Halo of Flies," on which Biafra takes his trademark sneer/yodel to the limit over a song the Melvins were born to cover. Sieg Howdy! continues with seriously rocking social commentary throughout, from the cautionary tales of "Lessons in What Not to Become" to the nonconformist pride of "Voted Off the Island." Four remixes of songs from last year's album Never Breathe What You Can't Seemight seem a bit redundant, but they're substantially different from their predecessors. "Those Dumb Punk Kids (Will Buy Anything)" is a brazen swipe by Biafra at his former Kennedys cohorts, and "Kali-fornia Über Alles 21st Century" is an update of the DKs classic that has in the past lyrically taken to task former state guvs Jerry Brown and Ronnie Reagan. This time, it's the Governator: "I am Governor Schwarzenegger, pretty soon I'll be dictator, when they make me president." Sure do hope Jello's wrong on that one.

 
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