Firesign Theater

December 26, 2006

Give Me Immortality or Give Me Death

Rhino Records

Firesign’s return after decades of no real new ensemble albums together. This time around, it’s all about the hysteria of the (then) impending end of the century, the Y2K conundrum (remember how that was going to end the world?) and bad, bad commercial radio.

From Wikipedia:

It takes the form of a fictional radio broadcast on the night of December 31, 1999. Radio Now is a radio station in FunFunTown whose format changes approximately every hour at the slighest whims of overzealous market researchers and focus groups. The album chronicles Radio Now’s attempt to operate normally on the final day before the year 2000, a day riddled with apocalyptic omens, rampant computer errors, and dangerous doomsayers…

…Given specific focus on this album is the Y2K bug. The album, made in 1998, thoroughly lampoons the various world-threatening results which were being predicted from the widespread software defect at that time. Aside from Y2K, topics given satirical treatment include the Y2K bug, the death of Diana, Princess of Wales, the Joe Camel controversy, and the Art Bell radio show…

Many old Firesign characters are there, as well as some new, current cultural skewerings. Some of this doesn’t age so well, having crossed one cultural, consensus reality tunnel and well into another, but it is still a hilarious and intellectually rewarding comedy experience in these Dane Cook/Larry the Cable Guy times.

Radio Now!


One comment

  1. I was lucky enough to see Firesign do a live version of this show at Bagley-Wright theater in Seattle in 1999.I have a CD of this show (actually the one done the day after)and all of their officially released CDs.Ialso have a show that was recorded in Portland Oregon in January of 2005 at the Aladdin let me know if you want me to burn them and snail mail them to you.

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