"Media hacker" band who appropriate material from the airwaves and elsewhere to provoke and provide pointed commentary on the culture industry's machinations.
Hosting Over the Edge, a weekly three-hour improvised radio show on San Francisco's KPFA-FM. In 1988 the artistic pranksters fabricated a Midwestern "familicide" allegedly inspired by their track _Christianity Is Stupid._ The resulting media hoopla was documented on the album _Helter Stupid_.
In 1991 they released _U2_, a single that sampled both the Irish pop stars and wholesome DJ Casey Kasem caught in a foulmouthed moment. Negativland documented the case--which cost their label SST a substantial settlement--in Fair Use: The Story of the Letter U and the Numeral 2 (1995), which delineates the paradoxes and pitfalls of artistic use of copyrighted material.
Don Joyce: "The corporate music mind is in a desperate,
horrified turmoil over the potential of free music on the Net.
They will lash out to protect their greedy living based on the private
ownership of all music until their last breath is gone." Joyce
said the Napster fight might be simply the beginning of what he calls
a war between digital art and "artifact commerce."
"The traditional music biz simply can't accept the fact that music no longer needs to be an object, and once that happens it doesn't need to be owned or bought or sold by anyone in particular, either. I fear they will drag yet bigger weapons to the battlefield where music is being shared for free," he chided. "Next: poison gas?"
[angry] "This is bullshit!
Nobody cares! These guys are from England, and who gives a shit! It's a
lot of wasted names that don't mean diddly shit!!!"
[seethingly quiet] "Emmm...too many... Come out of those goddamn up-tempo numbers, man, It's impossible to make those transitions. Then you gotta go into somebody dying! [raises voice] Goddamn it if we can't come out of slow records. I don't understand it, Why aren't we doing these instrumentals, too? Do we got 'em?"
[shouting] "Will somebody find the goddamn answer?"
[livid] "I want a goddamn concerted effort to come out of a record, that isn't a... a fucking up-tempo record , every time I do a goddamn ...DEATH Dedication! This is the last goddamn time. I want somebody to use his fucking brain to not come out of a goddamn record that is a ... up-tempo, and I gotta talk about a fucking dog dying!!!"
[beside himself] "What is this... this is fucking ponderous, man..."
[perky]"This is American Top 40, right here on the radio you grew up with, Music Radio 138... Oh Fuck!"