Devo: Live 1980 (1980)

Genres - Music  |   Sub-Genres - Concerts, Vocal Music  |   Run Time - 75 min.  |  
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One of Devo's greatest assets was a strong image. Unfortunately, their nerdy, humorous public persona was so strong that it overshadowed their achievements as musicians. The truth is that they were one of the strongest bands of the new wave era and Devo: Live 1980 is a testament to that fact. This tight 75-minute set finds the group burning their way through an exciting set of 18 classics drawn from their first three albums. The video quality and some of the camerawork is a bit dodgy, but the sound is pretty decent considering the primitive circumstances. Besides, the concert is so strong that fans won't be paying attention to the technical quality: highlights include fierce readings of "Gut Feeling" and "Smart Patrol/Mr. DNA." The band's performance is energetic throughout, never stopping for a moment, and the show also includes some dramatic lighting effects and a few amusing costume changes. All in all, this is a great live set and it triumphs over its technical crudeness thanks to the thrilling performances and its inherent historical value. Devo fans will definitely want Devo: Live 1980 in their collection.