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MC5 Announces First Album in 53 Years, ‘Heavy Lifting’

todayJune 6, 2024 3

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MC5 will release a new album on Oct. 18. Heavy Lifting marks the band’s first studio record in 53 years.The album was spearheaded by the band’s founding guitarist Wayne Kramer, who died in February. Produced by Bob Ezrin, Heavy Lifting includes performances by original MC5 drummer Dennis Thompson, who died in May, on two songs.Guests on the album include Slash, Tom Morello, Alice in Chains’ William DuVall, Living Colour guitarist Vernon Reid and Don Was. Kramer cowrote 12 of the album’s 13 songs. It will be available in CD, vinyl and digital formats; two-CD and two-LP versions featuring bonus tracks of MC5 classics will also be available.MC5 released only two studio albums following their classic live debut Kick Out the Jams in 1969: 1970’s Back in the USA and 1971’s High Time. The original band broke up in 1972, but various members have resurrected the group over the years for reunion performances.READ MORE: MC5 Manager John Sinclair DiesProducer Ezrin said the new album is “very heavy. … It has a revolutionary message but also a good sense of humor. There’s a little bit of heavy metal. There’s quite a bit of funk. But it is a heavy record, and it’s a guitar record left, right and center. Just a wall of guitars most of the time, and mostly driven by Wayne and his ethos. It’s a snapshot of a guitar man at the height of his powers. We all feel a responsibility to make sure that his work is heard, and he is celebrated. We poured our hearts into the project.”You can hear the first single from Heavy Lifting, “Boys Who Play With Matches,” below. You can see the album’s track listing below.One day after the release of Heavy Lifting on Oct. 18, MC5 will be inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame for Musical Excellence.Why Hasn’t MC5 Released an Album Since the ’70s?Kramer and Thompson were the last surviving members of MC5’s original lineup. Singer Rob Tyner died in 1991, guitarist Fred “Sonic” Smith died in 1994 and bassist Michael Davis died in 2012.Following the release of High Time in 1971, Kramer spent some time in prison for selling drugs to undercover federal agents. Following his release, he released several solo records and fronted different lineups of the MC5. In 2018 he launched the MC50 tour to celebrate the silver anniversary of Kick Out the Jams.MC5, ‘Heavy Lifting’ Track Listing1. Heavy Lifting (feat. Tom Morello)2. Barbarians At The Gate3. Change, No Change4. The Edge Of The Switchblade (feat. William Duvall &Slash)5. Black Boots (feat. Tim McIIrath)6. I Am The Fun (The Phoney)7. Twenty-Five Miles8. Because Of Your Car9. Boys Who Play With Matches10. Blind Eye (feat. Dennis Thompson)11. Can’t Be Found (feat. Vernon Reid & Dennis Thompson)12. Blessed Release13. Hit It Hard (feat. Joe Berry)Additional Tracks on 2CD/2LP Editions1. Ramblin’ Rose2. Kick Out The Jams3. Come Together4. Motor City Is Burning5. Borderline6. Gotta Keep Movin’7. Future/Now8. Poison9. Shakin’ Street10. Sister Anne25 Under the Radar Albums From 1972 You’ve heard classics by David Bowie, the Rolling Stones and Neil Young hundreds of times. Now it’s time to go deeper.Gallery Credit: Michael Gallucci

Written by: Badlands Classic Rock

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