If ever the world needed a definition for “kick-arse rock ‘n’ roll”, then here it is.
Born in mid-60’s Michigan, MC5 – along with the Velvet Underground and others – punctured a decade that was slowly descending into slow, soft rock hell.
By fusing soul with an uncompromising blues ethic, MC5 beat the lard out of many listeners that happened to be sat within several feet of a large, loud speaker. Black eyes and everything!!
There were other breakaways from convention too. Rather than record their début album in studio, the band decided to make their opening long-player a live album (recorded at the tail end of 1968), thereby giving them the opportunity to showcase their energy and raw power.
That début, Kick Out the Jams, is in some circles considered to be one of the greatest rock albums of the 20th Century and in turn spawned the album’s brilliant lead single of the same name.
This performance of “Kick Out the Jams”, performed on German music show Beat Club in March 1972, was recorded several months before the band split up.
MC5 did eventually reform in 2003, but did so without lead-singer Rob Tyner and guitarist Fred Smith; both of whom died of heart attacks in 1991 and 1994 respectively.