Great Rock Albums of 1981: Devo- Dev O Live



I must admit, I was never much of a Devo fan. I saw them on “Saturday Night Live” in the late 70’s and I can’t really say they impressed me. Therefore, it would be easy for me to pass them by on that account, however, I can’t deny that they are part of our history and the fact I wasn’t impressed with them back then can’t hide that fact. I remember this album because my then girl friend used to play the hell out of the single “Whip It.” Not a bad song, although my favourite all time Devo song appears on a soundtrack that I will be visiting later on in our tour of 1981.

Thanks to YouTube, I was able to give the album a fresh listen. Maybe it’s me mellowing with age or the fact that my musical horizons are much more broader than they were back then, but I somewhat enjoyed listening to “Dev O Live” this time around. The intro song “Freedom of Choice” was a good way to open the concert this live recording was taken from. I also liked “Girl U Want.” Listening to the six song EP that was released in 1981 encouraged me to listen to some of the full album they released in 1999 on the back of this one. My ears are more in tune with their new wave sound. It’s not hard rock or metal but it is far better than much of the synth stuff that would come out later in the decade. “Planet Earth” was a pretty cool song too.

Track Listing:

1. Freedom of Choice

2. Whip It

3. Girl U Want

4. Gates of Steel

5. Be Stiff

6. Planet Earth



Mark Mothersbaugh- guitar, keyboards, vocals

Gerald V Casale- bass, keyboards, vocals

Bob Casale- guitar, keyboards, vocals

Bob Mothersbaugh- guitar, vocals

Alan Myers- drums

In the end, I was pleasantly surprised by this album. Plus, from the footage I saw on YouTube, I think they would have been fun to see live.  My conclusion is that Devo does deserve a place in the annals of rock and metal history for 1981 and not just because of “Whip It.”

Next post: Cheap Trick- All Shook Up

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2 Responses to “Great Rock Albums of 1981: Devo- Dev O Live”

  1. I’m a big fan of Freedom of choice – ever hear Fu Manchu’s cover of it? it’s on Youtube definitely. Worth a few minutes of your time.


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