Something for Everybody (Devo album)

Something for Everybody
A digital image of a Caucasian woman swallowing a blue energy dome.
Studio album by Devo
Released June 15, 2010 (2010-06-15)
Recorded July 2007 – mid-2009
Mutato Muzika, West Hollywood, California
Genre New Wave, synthrock
Length 37:50
Label Warner Bros.
Producer Devo, John Hill, John King, Greg Kurstin, Mark Nishita, Santi White
Devo chronology
Smooth Noodle Maps
(1990)
Something for Everybody
(2010)
Singles from Something for Everybody
  1. "Don't Shoot (I'm a Man)"
    Released: April 10, 2009 (2009-04-10)
  2. "Fresh"
    Released: February 27, 2010 (2010-02-27)

Something for Everybody is the ninth studio album by American New Wave band Devo. The album was released on June 15, 2010, after previously being slated for release in May 2010, having been pushed back from its original release date of late 2009 due to "radical remixing." Something for Everybody marks 20 years since the release of Devo's last studio album, Smooth Noodle Maps, in 1990. The album was released by their original label, Warner Bros., and is the first Devo album to be issued via the label since Shout in 1984. The cover depicts a woman referred to as the "Sexy Candy Dome Girl" (Russian model/musician Natasha Romanova of the band Discrete Encounter)[1] holding a miniature blue energy dome to her mouth.

Contents

History

Though a new Devo album had been considered as far back as the band's 1996 reunion, efforts by Gerald Casale to get one off the ground were repeatedly unsuccessful. Devo produced some new material in the late 1990s and early 2000s, mostly for soundtracks and commercials, and toured regularly, but a new album had not been forthcoming. In interviews, Casale described the situation as "a cocoon of silence" and his solo project Jihad Jerry & The Evildoers was an attempt to spawn new Devo material. However, following the 2007 release of the non-album single "Watch Us Work It," Casale indicated that the band might be ready to work on a new album. That same year, LA Weekly, in an article on Mark Mothersbaugh's production studio Mutato Muzika, reported that, "After touring sporadically over the past decade but not releasing any new material, Devo are spending December at Mutato trying to create an album’s worth of new material and contemplating a method of dispersal in the post-record-company world."[2]

In a later interview, Mark Mothersbaugh revealed a song title from the in-progress album ("Don't Shoot (I'm a Man)"),[3] but hopes were briefly deflated when Jerry stated that Mark had "killed the project" and that there would be no new Devo album.[4] Casale eventually stated that Devo would "finish what we started" [5] and later interviews confirmed that Devo would complete their new album.[6] The "Studio Notes" section of the November 27th issue of Rolling Stone stated that "Devo are working on their first album of new material since 1990's Smooth Noodle Maps. 'We have about 17 songs we're testing out,' says frontman Mark Mothersbaugh. 'We've already been contacted by 20 producers—including Snoop Dogg, Santigold, and Fatboy Slim.'" Fall 2009 was confirmed as a possible release date at the time.[7][8]

Devo announced in early 2009 that they would be performing at the South by Southwest International Conference in Austin, Texas on March 20 with a warmup show in Dallas on March 18. At these shows, Devo performed a new stage show utilizing synchronized video, similar to what they had done for their 1982 tour. They also debuted new costumes and three new songs: "Don't Shoot (I'm a Man)," "What We Do" and "Fresh." All of these songs included a video backdrop, with the band performing in front.

On Friday, April 10, 2009, Devo debuted the music video for "Don't Shoot (I'm a Man)" on their website, through Vimeo.[9] In an interview for the website "Subba-Cultcha", Casale stated that "regardless of the final [album] title, it will be 'Fresh'!"[10] This statement led to speculation among fans that Fresh would be the new album's title. According to the "In the Studio" section of the June 2009 Rolling Stone, the album was pushed back to 2010 to allow for "radical remixing".[11]

In late 2009, Devo announced that it had signed a new contract with their original label, Warner Brothers, to release their new album. In an interview with Gerald Casale in late October 2009, he announced that Devo's new album would be picking up from where they left off: "We think it’s the best record that we’d ever done although we’re not certain that Fresh will be the title. There are more good songs on this album than any other record that we’ve made. We’re aiming for a spring release." [12] In January 2010, Billboard wrote a preview of the upcoming album, stating that it would be released in April 2010. In the interview, it was stated that Casale hoped to call the album "Something for Everybody, despite the publicized working title of Fresh."[13] The final track listing was still being decided but was likely to feature the high-energy (and "focus group-approved," according to Casale) "Please Baby Please" as well as tracks produced by Greg Kurstin and John Hill.

On January 17, 2010, it was announced that Devo would be performing on the second day of the 2010 Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival in Indio, California.[14] On February 22, 2010, Devo performed at one of the 2010 Vancouver Winter Olympics victory concerts at Whistler Medals Plaza. They returned to the SXSW conference in Austin, TX on March 11 to conduct a panel entitled "Devo, The Internet & You."[15]

On April 17, 2010, the same day as both their performance at the Coachella festival and Record Store Day, Devo released a 12" vinyl single of "Fresh" backed with "What We Do." A sticker on the sleeve confirmed that the title of the new Devo album would be Something for Everybody. On April 20, Devo released the Song Study EP on iTunes which contained the same tracks as the "Fresh" single, along with the addition of the "Song Study Video." That night, Devo performed "Fresh" and "Whip It" on Jimmy Kimmel Live, where it was announced that the album would be released on June 15. Devo also performed "Fresh" on Late Night with David Letterman on June 16, 2010.

For one week beginning on June 10, the album was streamed online through Colbert Nation.[16]

On April 19, 2011, a video based on "What We Do" was released on Mashable.com.[17] The video features an interactive 360° camera, which can be set on "auto pilot" or controlled by the viewer, allowing them to choose which part of the scenery to watch and to click on items to buy at the bands merchandise website. A non-interactive version was released to YouTube on April 20.

Promotion

Starting in early 2010, Devo began marketing the new album through a series of satirical videos and communiques from Greg Scholl, a former executive with NBC Universal, now billed as the Chief Operating Officer of "DEVO, INC." Devo also began working with a newly opened Los Angeles branch of New York City-based marketing group Mother New York to produce a number of videos designed to satirize the use of focus groups in marketing research and radio programming. The first of these was released in February to determine the new color for the band's famous Energy Dome headgear and asked participants what sound colors made and how they made them feel. Ultimately, blue was the color that was selected. Other videos used focus groups to arrive at conclusions like "'Fresh' alleviates aches and pains" and "3 out of 5 people would hold 'Fresh' with their feet for more than 3 minutes."

On February 22, "Fresh" was made available as a free download, following the band's performance at the 2010 Winter Olympics.

Devo returned to the SXSW conference in Austin, TX on March 11, 2010 to conduct a panel entitled "Devo, The Internet & You." During this panel, a "focus group study" was conducted in which a total of four potential titles for the album were revealed: Fresh, Something for Everybody, Devolution and Excuse Our Mess.[18] It was also announced at SXSW that Devo would be conducting a "Song Study," an interactive online survey created to determine the final 12 songs (out of 16 total) to be included on the new album.[19] The survey ended on May 3, 2010 and the results were revealed on May 18, 2010 via uStream at 12pm Pacific Time. The track listing of the Song Study Version was announced.

The song "Human Rocket" was featured in the trailer for the film Paul.

Track listing

At DEVOtional 2008, Mark Mothersbaugh indicated via a video conference that the already released "Watch Us Work It" might be included on the album.[20] Three songs, all of which were performed at SXSW in March 2009, were confirmed for inclusion: "Fresh," "Don't Shoot" and "What We Do." At DEVOtional 2009, several new tracks were aired, including versions of the three songs performed at SXSW. A fifth song, "Step Up," was also played during a radio interview.

The following day of the press conference, the album was put up for pre-order through Club Devo with a different track listing than announced, noting that it was "88% focus group approved":[21]

Standard

All songs written by Mark Mothersbaugh and Gerald V. Casale except when noted

  1. "Fresh" – 3:02
  2. "What We Do" – 3:19 (M. Mothersbaugh/G.V. Casale/Max Liederman)
  3. "Please Baby Please" – 2:43 (G.V. Casale/Bob Casale)
  4. "Don't Shoot (I'm a Man)" – 3:28
  5. "Mind Games" – 2:32
  6. "Human Rocket" – 3:25 (M. Mothersbaugh)
  7. "Sumthin'" – 2:48
  8. "Step Up" – 3:03
  9. "Cameo" – 2:52
  10. "Later Is Now" – 3:55 (G.V. Casale)
  11. "No Place Like Home" – 3:21
  12. "March On" – 3:53
Song Study Version
  1. "Watch Us Work It"
  2. "Fresh"
  3. "Sumthin"
  4. "Don't Shoot (I'm A Man)"
  5. "Step Up"
  6. "Signal Ready"
  7. "What We Do"
  8. "Please Baby Please"
  9. "Let's Get To It"
  10. "Mind Games"
  11. "Later is Now"
  12. "Human Rocket"[22]
Deluxe
  1. "Fresh"
  2. "What We Do"
  3. "Please Baby Please"
  4. "Don't Shoot (I'm a Man)"
  5. "Mind Games"
  6. "Human Rocket"
  7. "Sumthin'"
  8. "Step Up"
  9. "Cameo"
  10. "Later Is Now"
  11. "No Place Like Home"
  12. "March On"
  13. "Watch Us Work It"
  14. "Signal Ready"
  15. "Let's Get To It"
  16. "Knock Boots"[23]

Further confusing the issue is an article and interview published in the Los Angeles Times on May 18, in which Jerry Casale reiterates that the final album will consist of the 12 songs voted on by fans.[24] A posting on Devo's official website later explained the change in the track listing. It stated that "'March On' and 'No Place Like Home' were undervalued in the study" and that Devo felt they should be included. "Cameo" was also included due to the band's feelings that "it is the new Devo and will prevail in the end" (Interview with Gerald Casale, Record Collector, August 2010). It was later revealed that the album as determined by the Song Study would be released as an mp3 album available only through online retailers, while the physical CD release would have the "partnership-approved" track listing. The posting also announced the release of a deluxe edition with all 16 songs. It will include the four excluded tracks: "Signal Ready", "Let's Get to It", "Watch Us Work It", and "Knock Boots". The Japanese edition contains 13 tracks with "Watch Us Work It" as a bonus track. Only the iTunes version of Something For Everybody (Deluxe) contains the track "Knock Boots".

Reception

Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic 3.5/5 stars[25]
The Independent (Andy Gill) 4/5 stars[26]
The Independent (Simon Price) 4/5 stars[27]
The Times 4/5 stars[28]
Rolling Stone 3.5/5 stars[29]
Pitchfork Media (6.6/10)[30]

Andy Gill—writing for The Independent—gave the album four out of five stars comparing it favorably to Freedom of Choice.[26] BBC gave the album a more mixed review.[31]

Personnel

Devo
Additional personnel
  • Jeff Friedl – additional drums
  • Doug Boehm – additional engineering on "Fresh" and "Don't Shoot (I'm a Man)"
  • Andrew Clark – additional production on "Step Up" and "Cameo"
  • Van Coppock – engineer, additional guitar on "Cameo", "No Place Like Home", and "March On"
  • Paul Hager – additional recording, programming and engineering on "Fresh", "Don't Shoot (I'm a Man)", "Step Up", and "Later Is Now"
  • Josh Hager – additional programming and editing on "Fresh", "Don't Shoot (I'm a Man)", "Step Up", and "Later Is Now"
  • John Hill – production on "Fresh" and "Don't Shoot (I'm a Man)"
  • John King – production and mixing "Step Up" and "Cameo"
  • Greg Kurstin – production and mixing on "Fresh", "What We Do", "Please Baby Please", "Don't Shoot (I'm a Man)", "Mind Games", "Human Rocket", "Later Is Now", "No Place Like Home", and "March On"
  • Mark Nishita – production on "Step Up"
  • Santi White – production "Fresh" and "Don't Shoot (I'm a Man)"

References

  1. ^ "Natasha Romanova - Strange Request - solo piano performance.". Russian Mix. http://www.russianmix.com/events/details/1688-natasha-romanova-strange-request-solo-piano-performance. Retrieved October 30, 2010. 
  2. ^ LA Weekly Article
  3. ^ Williams, Jonathan (2008-04-17). "Access Atlants Article". Accessatlanta.com. http://www.accessatlanta.com/news/content/arts/stories/2008/04/15/mothersbaugh_0417.html. Retrieved 2011-02-25. 
  4. ^ "YouTube Radio Interview w/ Gerald Casale re: New Album". Youtube.com. 2008-10-17. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DNY8qpPOtcU. Retrieved 2011-02-25. 
  5. ^ "Timeout Sydney". Timeout Sydney. http://www.timeoutsydney.com.au/music/devo-gerald-casale.aspx. Retrieved 2011-02-25. 
  6. ^ Lina Lecaro (2008-10-31). "Preschool Confidential - Page 2 - Music - Los Angeles". LA Weekly. http://www.laweekly.com/2008-10-30/music/preschool-confidential/2. Retrieved 2011-02-25. 
  7. ^ "Devo announce first album in 19 years | News". Nme.Com. http://www.nme.com/news/devo/43368. Retrieved 2011-02-25. 
  8. ^ [1][dead link]
  9. ^ Don't Shoot, I'm a Man video.[dead link]
  10. ^ http://www.subba-cultcha.com/article_feature.php?id=5967 Subba-Culture interview revealing album title.
  11. ^ DEVO in June 2009 Rolling Stone[dead link]
  12. ^ "8 QUESTIONS WITH: DEVO". The Music Slut. October 28, 2009. http://themusicslut.com/2009/10/8-questions-with-devo/. Retrieved 2009-10-31. 
  13. ^ "Devo Album Preview". Billboard. January 12, 2010. http://www.billboard.com/news/news/devo-album-preview-1004058475.story#/news/news/devo-album-preview-1004058475.story. Retrieved 2010-01-18. 
  14. ^ Tom Breihan (January 19, 2010). "Coachella Lineup Announced". Pitchfork. pitchfork.com. http://pitchfork.com/news/37620-coachella-lineup-announced/. Retrieved 2010-03-08. 
  15. ^ "DEVO, The Internet & You". http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UKQ_lgEHuoY&feature=related. 
  16. ^ "New DEVO Album on Colbert Site + More TV!". http://www.clubdevo.com/news/new-devo-album-on-colbert-site-more-tv/. 
  17. ^ http://mashable.com/2011/04/19/devo-what-we-do/
  18. ^ "Devo and Mother LA Conduct Live Focus Group Study at SXSWi". http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SWPJhIpbn-A. 
  19. ^ "http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fO9GEicoX0c". Youtube.com. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fO9GEicoX0c. Retrieved 2011-02-25. 
  20. ^ "DEVO Videoconference". Youtube.com. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Vgz77OkOmQs. Retrieved 2011-02-25. 
  21. ^ "Something for Everybody | Devo Store". Store.clubdevo.com. http://store.clubdevo.com/store/product/something-everybody/?cmpid=051910/devo/preorder/thegoods. Retrieved 2011-02-25. 
  22. ^ Latest activity 14 hours ago. "Something For Everybody (Song Study Version)". Amazon.com. http://www.amazon.com/dp/B003PYAB6Q. Retrieved 2011-02-25. 
  23. ^ "Entry for deluxe edition of Something For Everybody on iTunes". Itunes.apple.com. 2010-06-11. http://itunes.apple.com/us/preorder/something-for-everybody/id375997568. Retrieved 2011-02-25. 
  24. ^ "Pop & Hiss". Los Angeles Times. May 18, 2010. http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/music_blog/2010/05/devos-lessons-learned-from-a-focus-group-dont-give-the-kids-a-ballad.html. 
  25. ^ Jeffries, David. "Something for Everybody - Overview". Allmusic. http://www.allmusic.com/album/r1809531. Retrieved June 16, 2010. 
  26. ^ a b Gill, Andy (2010-06-11). "Album: Devo, Something for Everybody (Warner Bros)". London: The Independent. http://www.independent.co.uk/arts-entertainment/music/reviews/album-devo-something-for-everybody-warner-bros-1996887.html. Retrieved 2010-06-10. 
  27. ^ Price, Simon (2010-06-13). "Album: Devo, Something for Everybody (Warner Bros)". London: The Independent. http://www.independent.co.uk/arts-entertainment/music/reviews/album-devo-something-for-everybody-warner-bros-1999369.html. Retrieved 2010-06-13. 
  28. ^ Paphides, Pete (2010-06-11). "Album: Devo, Something for Everybody (Warner Bros)". The Times. http://www.thetimes.co.uk/tto/arts/music/albumreviews/article2549829.ece. Retrieved 2010-06-10. 
  29. ^ Walters, Barry. "Something for Everybody by Devo: Rolling Stone Music: Music Reviews". Rolling Stone. http://www.rollingstone.com/music/reviews/album/17385/116888. Retrieved June 16, 2010. 
  30. ^ Masters, Marc. "Pitchfork: Album Reviews: Devo: Something for Everybody". http://pitchfork.com/reviews/albums/14369-something-for-everybody/. Retrieved June 21, 2010. 
  31. ^ "Music - Review of Devo - Something for Everybody". BBC. http://www.bbc.co.uk/music/reviews/zhwx. Retrieved 2011-02-25. 

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