Top Line: Put that mic in my hands and let me kick out the jams!
This was for years a widely-shared, unofficial bootleg from MC5, the legendary Detroit band. Thunder Express documents their first and last studio work – six tracks recorded in France in 1972 at Studio Castle Herouville for a TV show, and 4 tracks from their first two singles from ’66 & ’68. This new package from Jungle includes a 12-page booklet with notes and interview from 1970, along with the White Panther Party ’10-Point Program.’
The MC5’s first single (included here), “I Can Only Give You Everything” b/w “I Just Don’t Know,” was released in 1967. In ’68 they played the now-infamous Democratic Convention that turned into a police riot, and they went on to be the ‘Official White Panther Party Band.’ Their manager John Sinclair became a hippie martyr, after being jailed for 10 years for 2 joints, inspiring John Lennon’s ’10 For 2′ song. Thrown off their first label Elektra, Ahmet Erdogan signed them to Atlantic for 2 more albums, but they only achieved underground success. The band are now greatly revered as one of the seminal rock-n-roll bands and a huge inspiration for punk.
“There are numerous bootleg packages that contain the same material included here, a blast-through-it-once set of originals and stage staples recorded at Herouville Castle in Europe in 1972. The big ticket here is the inclusion of “Thunder Express,” an original the band never officially recorded. To round things out, the disc also features “I Can Only Give You Everything” and “I Just Don’t Know,” both sides of the group’s first single.”
Rob Tyner: vocals
Wayne Kramer: guitar, vocals
Fred “Sonic” Smith: guitar, vocals
Michael Davis: bass
Dennis Thompson: drums