DEVOtional 2008 August 30, "2008"
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Mutant Mountain Boys

Mutant Mountain Boys

Mutant Mountain Boys

Power Domes

Power Domes

Power Domes


AlexB - Passing the Hat

AlexB - Draws Winning #s

Rev. Samantha

KRK Ryden
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Preliminary DEVOtional Report  - TOP SECRET

by Rev. Stang

DEVOtional has gotten to be a lot like X-Day, only indoors. About the same number of attendees -- 100 to 200 at peak -- and after so many of these events, it's getting to be as much a reunion of weirdo friends as a DEVO tribute. Like with devivals, only a smattering of the crowd was local. People came all over the USA and even from Australia. We DEVOtees are a dedicated lot.

This one was preceded by the Jocko Dome-O art show the night before. One side of an art gallery in Tremont, Asterisk, was taken up by paintings by Rev. KRK Ryden, and the other contained the couple of dozen mutated Power Dome hats. About half of those were done by SubGenii -- Susie the Floozy, St. Byron Werner, KRK Ryden, Rev. Nickie Deathchick Wild, Salacia the Overseer, StangDoe (with Hellswami Satellite Weavers & St. Joe Riley) and many others. Most of these actually sold, for prices starting at $100. All earnings went to benefit Rev. Magdalen's legal fund. The gallery was pretty crowded by 10 pm. Rev. HV Monkey and his wife Anna masterminded this project and it was very successful on all levels. I have posted photos of the various objects and KRK Ryden's paintings.

The DEVOtional at the Beachland Ballroom was very similar to last year's, that is, A SMORGASBORD OF GORGEOUS NERRRD GRRLS of every shape and size.  Another feature that other persons besides me might have noticed are the various DEVO "research and emulation" bands. Poopy Necroponte's band CLEVO changed some DEVO oldies into, variously, reggae versions, death metal versions, and even "classic rock" style. In the middle of a song they'd suddenly morph it into Sympathy for the Devil, or an old Santana jam. A very sarcastic performance.

I spoke on The Graying of DEVO (not what the title might suggest) and introduced the Mutant Mountain Boys, who convert DEVO songs to Appalachian folk tunes that sound like they're from the 1920s. Main singer Rev. Samantha performed her new antique bluegrass SubGenius hymn, "Billowing Pipe," as well. What a beautant clown. (In real life she's a shrink!)

VIDEO: Rev. Ivan Stang's sermon on DEVO (Part 1 -- also see Part 2)

VIDEO: Billowing Pipe by The Mutant Mountain Boys at DEVOtional 2008

KRK Ryden, who has done DEVO graphics for centuries, accompanied some rare DEVO songs on Theremin. Some pretty amazing archival footage was shown for the first time in public, including a 1975 concert from their earliest days, and an astoundingly re-edited 1977 film (yes, FILM) of their Max's Kansas City (NYC) performance. The Beachland has a nice big screen behind their stage, and this time was benefiting from the sound and projection expertise of our pro A.C.E. friend Regis Sedlock.

About 9:30, the real members of DEVO, who were getting ready to play at a San Diego racetrack, gathered around a video camera backstage so they could answer DEVOtional audience questions live, over a web TV connection. It was a little glitchy technically but basically worked. The DEVOs are still really funny guys. I have always said they missed their calling as sarcastic TV show hosts.

The DEVOtional highlight is always THE SPUDBOYS, who do superb emulations of actual DEVO shows. This year they out-did themselves by procuring and using (with many updated shots inserted by organizer Alex Brunelle) the rear-projection videos made to sync with the band on the SHOUT album tour. That syncing takes some devilish timing, but The Spudboys pulled it off flawlessly. It's highly "interactive." For example, a giant pirate on the screen could kick the band's asses and they'd go flying, or the singer (Rev. Scot Orsi in this case) could pick off vapid computer-girls with his virtual pistol, and when hit they would burst into particles and float away. The Spudboys played for at least 2 hours straight. The second half was a sort of DEVOoke whereby DEVOtees who had arranged for it beforehand could take the stage and provide vocals. This isn't nearly as awful as it sounds! It's a great way to close the DEVOtional.

VIDEO: The Spudboys perform DEVO's "She's Out of Sync" at DEVOtional 2008

VIDEO: The Spudboys perform DEVO's "Big Mess" at DEVOtional 2008

I learned some interesting things. Apparently Prof. Mark Mothersbaugh's Little Red Book has been reprinted in blue, and now has a foldout introduction by me! I'll be very curious to see that someday, as I don't remember writing that. In the '80s I did write some Club DEVO newsletter samples including a ghostwritten General Boy rant, so maybe some of that got used somehow. I also learned that Jerry Casale, the oldest member DEVO, is now 60.

We also got to hear and see very, very special things that I can't talk about! "What happens in DEVOtional STAYS in DEVOtional." This is why the hard-core fans MUST make the pilgrimage to Cleveland at least once in their lives.

I hope this DEVO weekend has managed to shake out the songs that were stuck in my head. Up until this evening I'd been unable to make my brain stop playing the entire Rainmakers catalog inside my skull. Now the only thing stuck in my head is "Uncontrollable Urge." (In more ways than one.)

Special thanks to Rev, Michael Pilmer for managing Club DEVO and DEVO OBSESSOso well! He's a swell interface between DEVO and we DEVOtees. And thanks to SHE-VO for the pizza!

Rev. Toth Wilder has a new compilation DEVO covers CD, "Not Necessarily Beautiful but Mutated, Vol. 7," which is marvelous. It's $15 postpaid in U.S., $17 everywhere else, PayPal to:

Includes many SubGenius-affiliated bands such as Byron Werner's RURAL WAR ROOM, OCCUPANT, MUTANT MOUNTAIN BOYS, and KRK Ryden's band JOSH OF KEN THE MAGIC CORNER GOD.

A future special DEVOtional Hour of Slack, #1175 or thereabouts, will feature audio from all of the above.

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