Saturday, 1 September 2007



There was never a time when a DEVO treatment of a song would not add all kinds of exciting new shit to a song and always this would done as an act of affection to the song rather than with spite or mockery.

In many ways “Secret Agent Man” is the perfect addition to the DEVO song arsenal, a slick (ish) tie in to the Booji Boy and General Boy set up and military feel to their apparent covert operations and mission at large. If there wasn’t an air of mystery to the band before this, there most certainly was one beyond it.

It enters with a sly surf riff that is soon pierced by an electronic keyboard sequence before the driving force of the song kicks in with another guitar riff sounds straight out of Peter Gunn and the sound of being followed by the police. As things get jumpy towards the climax a fear and urgency take over that eventually manifests into revelation and declaration of loss of old identity and the enforcement of a government issued ID number. This is a subject you feel weighs heavily on the DEVO agenda.

On the flipside comes “Soo Bawlz”, a keyboard driven frenzied act of song about a person and her craziness. This truly is an ode.

Thesaurus moment: discreet.

Virgin Records

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