crass

CRASS CrassCrass - Be Warned!

Formed: Epping, Essex, England, UK, as Stormtrooper

“Crass did actually sound like two lathes buggering each other on an elevator in an aircraft hangar". - Martin Newell, Cleaners From Venus

"Any of you lot like Crass? Crass are a big bunch of wankers, you cunts" - The Exploited

"Crass were first to say punk is dead
Now they're rightly labelled as being red
Commune Hippies That's what they are
They've got no money Ha! Ha! Ha!"
- Special Duties, "Bullshit Crass", 1982

"The single most important punk band. They were also great" - Punky Gibbon

CRASS!!!

Crass were (and some of the members, as the Crass Collective/Agenda, remain) a bunch of (mostly) middle class ex-hippie anarchists from the Dial House commune in Epping Forest. Inspired by the first wave of punk bands, they were swiftly disillusioned by the rapidity with which punk became assimilated into the mainstream. As a result they attempted to reclaim punk as the peoples’ music, by creating music that was largely unmusical, introducing radical left-wing politics to the masses and setting up their own label, which recorded and distributed likeminded outfits such as Poison Girls, Conflict and Omega Tribe. They also issued three Bullshit Detector albums, compiling the vast amounts of demos they received from bands they directly inspired. (These compilations are notable for a complete absence of quality control: 90% percent of the bands on these three LPs - two of them doubles - were atrocious, and the sound quality was largely appalling, due to many of the tracks being recorded in living rooms.) Founding member - and mainstay of Dial House - Penny Rimbaud formed the band in early 1977 with working class teenager Steve Ignorant. The motley collection of likeminded souls were also Dial House residents: a couple of women (Eve Libertine, Joy de Vivre), two middle-aged men (Phil Free, Pete Wright) and a young toff (Andy Palmer, who replaced hippie Steve Herman in 1977). Rimbaud's previous musical experience was with another Dial House "group", Exit, a sprawling experimental hippie concern prone to lengthy extemporisation and art pieces, and his avant garde pretensions fuelled some of Crass's more experimental releases.

As a phenomenon, Crass’ influence cannot be overstated. For many, they were the only true punk band, shunning the cult of stardom at every level (there are no glossy pictures of the band on their records), refusing to play big venues, charging ridiculously low entrance fees to their gigs, and housing their amazingly inexpensive records in stark black-and-white wraparound sleeves loaded with shock slogans and lengthy political statements. By using a peace sign as a backdrop at their concerts they single-handedly galvanised new life into CND (which had faded from prominence), took anarchist theory off the bookshelves and onto the streets, and inspired a generation to become new age travellers and crusties. Their practice of pricing their records at insanely low prices led to a proliferation of bands adopting their “pay no more” policies. Most people, and also many of their admirers, thought their music was utterly abysmal, but it's not the case. They were simply brilliant, and totally fascinating. Steve Ignorant's plebeian Cockney ranting and Eve Libertine's terrifying shrieking were two of their greatest weapons, and along with an incredible, unmistakably scratchy guitar sound (they tuned all the strings to the same note) and militaristic drumming, they were absolutely distinctive. In the space of three years they went from hammering out simplistic two-minute punk diatribes to issuing six- or seven-minute singles of incredible ambition.

Blood Revs

Brushes with the police and other government agencies was a regular occurrence: the Bloody Revolutions 45 came with a "blasphemous" poster (above) that resulted in a HMV ban; the authorities attempted to outlaw their debut 7" Reality Asylum. under blasphemy laws; Penis Envy was banned outright in some quarters; they famously broke into the Zig Zag club to hold a free festival; How Does It Feel? - their response to to the Falklands War - provoked another ban and the humiliation of a particularly slimy Tory MP during a radio interview; and police surveillance was not uncommon.

Poison Girls / Crass - Persons Unknown / Bloody Revolutions - UK 7” 1980 (Crass/Xntrix - 421984/1) A-SidePoison Girls / Crass - Persons Unknown / Bloody Revolutions - UK 7” 1980 (Crass/Xntrix - 421984/1)  B-Side

BLOODY REVOLUTIONS

You talk about your revolution, well, that's fine
But what are you going to be doing come the time?
Are you going to be the big man with the tommy-gun?
Will you talk of freedom when the blood begins to run?
Well, freedom has no value if violence is the price
Don't want your revolution, I want anarchy and peace

You talk of overthrowing power with violence as your tool
You speak of liberation and when the people rule
Well ain't it people rule right now, what difference would there be?
Just another set of bigots with their rifle-sights on me

But what about those people who don't want your new restrictions?
Those that disagree with you and have their own convictions?
You say they've got it wrong because they don't agree with you
So when the revolution comes you'll have to run them through
You say that revolution will bring freedom for us all
Well freedom just ain't freedom when your back's against the wall

Will you indoctrinate the masses to serve your new regime?
And simply do away with those whose views are too extreme?
Transportation details could be left to British rail
Where Zyklon B succeeded, North Sea Gas will fail
It's just the same old story of man destroying man
We've got to look for other answers to the problems of this land

Vive la revolution, people of the world unite
Stand up men of courage, it's your job to fight

It all seems very easy, this revolution game
But when you start to really play things won't be quite the same
Your intellectual theories on how it's going to be
Don't seem to take into account the true reality
Cos the truth of what you're saying, as you sit there sipping beer
Is pain and death and suffering, but of course you wouldn't care

You're far too much of a man for that, if Mao did it so can you
What's the freedom of us all against the suffering of the few?
That's the kind of self-deception that killed ten million jews
Just the same false logic that all power-mongers use
So don't think you can fool me with your political tricks
Political right, political left, you can keep your politics
Government is government and all government is force
Left or right, right or left, it takes the same old course
Oppression and restriction, regulation, rule and law
The seizure of that power is all your revolution's for
You romanticise your heroes, quote from Marx and Mao
Well their ideas of freedom are just oppression now

Nothing changed for all the death, that their ideas created
It's just the same fascistic games, but the rules aren't clearly stated
Nothing's really different cos all government's the same
They can call it freedom, but slavery is the game

Nothing changed for all the death, that their ideas created
It's just the same fascistic games, but the rules aren't clearly stated
Nothing's really different cos all government's the same
They can call it freedom, but slavery is the game
There's nothing that you offer but a dream of last years hero
The truth of revolution, brother................... is year zero.

Initially known as Stormtrooper, Crass got banned from the Roxy (during their second gig there) and recorded two demos, the first in August 1977 with original guitarist Steve Herman, the second in February 1978 with his superior replacement Palmer. The band signed to Small Wonder in 1978 and issued a startling 12" "EP", The Feeding Of The 5000. The disc - which actually ran for more than 30 minutes - originally ran into problems with the pressing plant, which refused to press the inordinately blasphemous 'Asylum', which describes Christ as “the ultimate pornography” and accused Him of "digging the pits at Treblinka". To get round this setback the disc was issued with two minutes of silence as a replacement and a coupon to send off for a copy of that track on a tape. The track – Eve Libertine reciting over drone/feedback guitar – was reinstated on the second pressing on Crass’ own label, several years later. They also issued a much longer version of the song as their debut single, Reality Asylum. The 45 was seized by government officials and led to the group being prosecuted for blasphemy. The case was thrown out of court. A terrific Peel Session was also recorded in 1979.

BANNED FROM THE ROXY

Banned from the Roxy... O.K.
I never much liked playing there anyway.
They said they only wanted well behaved boys,
Do they think guitars and microphones are just fucking toys?
Fuck 'em, I chosen to make my stand,
Against what I feel is wrong with this land.
They just sit there on their overfed arses,
Feeding off the sweat of less fortunate classes.
They keep their fucking power cause their finger's on the button,
They've got control and won't let it be forgotten.
The truth of their reality is at the wrong end of a gun,
The proof of that is Belfast and that's no fucking fun.
Seeing the squaddy lying in the front yard,
Seeing the machine guns resting on the fence.
Finding the entrance to your own front door is barred
And they've got the fucking nerve to call it defence.

Seems their defence is just the threat of strength,
Protection for the privileged at any length.
The government protecting their profits from the poor,
The rich and the fortunate chaining up the door.
Afraid that the people may ask for a little more
Than the shit they get. The shit they get.
The shit they get. The shit they get.
The shit they get. The shit they get.
The shit they get. The shit they get.
DEFENCE? SHIT, IT'S NOTHING LESS THEN WAR
AND NO ONE BUT THE GOVERNMENT KNOWS WHAT THE FUCK IT'S FOR.

Oh yes they say it's defence, they say it's decency,
Mai Lai, Hiroshima, know what I mean?
The same fucking lies with depressing frequency,
They say "We had to do it to keep our lives clean"
Well whose like? Whose fucking life?
Who the fuck are they talking to?
Whose life? Whose fucking life?
I tell you one thing, it ain't me and you.
And their system, christ, they're everywhere,
School, army, church, corporation deal.
A fucked up reality based on fear,
A fucking conspiracy to stop you feeling real.
Well ain't got me, I'd say their fucking wrong,
I ain't quite ready with my gun, but I've got my song...
Banned from the Roxy, well O.K.
I never much liked playing there anyway.
GUNS.

Crass - The Feeding Of The 5000 -UK 12" 1978 (Small Wonder - WEENY 2)Crass - The Feeding Of The 5000 -UK 12" 1978 (Small Wonder - WEENY 2)

Crass - Reality Asylum UK 7” 1979 (Crass - 521984/1) 2nd Pressing Back

Crass - Reality Asylum (Crass - 19454U) A-SideCrass - Reality Asylum (Crass - 19454U) B-SideCrass - Reality Asylum UK 7” 1979 (Crass - 521984/1) 2nd Pressing Poster

Crass!Crass - Stations Of The Crass - Label

For the next six years they issued records, supported other bands and relevant causes, and made trouble for the government on a regular basis. Stations Of The Crass (a double LP) spent over two years in the Indie Charts, while superb singles Bloody Revolutions and Nagasaki Nightmare lingered there for more than a year apiece. In 1981 they released a couple of prank singles under the name 'Creative Recording And Sound Services'. Merry Crassmas did OK in the indies but was not otherwise especially notable. Our Wedding, however, earned them yet more notoriety when they convinced the publishers of Loving magazine to give it away with their shitrag in May 1981. The song was a deliberately over-the-top piece of schmaltz, sung by Joy De Vivre, that started very sweetly and ended with distorted wedding bells.

Crass - Nagasaki Nightmare / Big A Little A - UK 7” 1981 (Crass - 421984/5) A-SIdeCrass - Nagasaki Nightmare / Big A Little A - UK 7” 1981 (Crass - 421984/5) B-Side

NAGASAKI NIGHTMARE

They're always there high in the skies...
Nagasaki nightmare, Nagasaki nightmare
Pretty as a picture in the generals' eyes
Nagasaki nightmare, Nagasaki nightmare
They've done it once, they'll do it again
They'll shower us all in their deadly rain
Nagasaki nightmare, Nagasaki nightmare
Nagasaki nightmare, Nagasaki nightmare
Nagasaki nightmare, Nagasaki nightmare

Fishing children fish in the Imperial Waters
Nagasaki nightmare, Nagasaki nightmare
Sons and lovers, lovers and daughters
Nagasaki nightmare, Nagasaki nightmare
Cherry Blossom hanging on the cherry blossom tree
Flash, blinding flash, then there's nothing to see
Nagasaki nightmare, Nagasaki nightmare
Nagasaki nightmare, Nagasaki nightmare
Nagasaki nightmare, Nagasaki nightmare

Dying they're still dying, one by one
Nagasaki nightmare, Nagasaki nightmare
Darkness in the land of the rising sun
Nagasaki nightmare, Nagasaki nightmare
Lesson learnt the lesson? No, cos no one really cares
It's so easy to be silent just to cover up your fears
Nagasaki nightmare, Nagasaki nightmare
Nagasaki nightmare, Nagasaki nightmare
Nagasaki nightmare, Nagasaki nightmare

So they die in the nightmare, nightmare, nightmare, Nagasaki nightmare
And live with the nightmare, nightmare, nightmare, Nagasaki nightmare
Will you stand by and let it happen again?
Nightmare death in the deadly rain
Nagasaki nightmare, Nagasaki nightmare

Live with the nightmare, nightmare, nightmare, Nagasaki nightmare
And die in the nightmare, nightmare, nightmare, Nagasaki nightmare
Nightmare comes in deadly rain
Nightmare, nightmare, nightmare, rain
Nagasaki nightmare, Nagasaki nightmare

Manmade power, manmade pain, Nagasaki nightmare
Deadly rain, deadly rain, Nagasaki nightmare
They'll do it again, shower us in rain
Deadly, deadly, deadly rain
Nagasaki nightmare, Nagasaki Nightmare

BIG A LITTLE A

Big A, little A, bouncing B
The system might have got you but it won't get me

1 - 2 - 3 - 4

External control are you gonna let them get you?
Do you wanna be a prisoner in the boundaries they set you?
You say you want to be yourself, by christ do you think they'll let you?
They're out to get you get you get you get you get you get you get you

Hello, hello, hello, this is the Lord God, can you hear?
Hellfire and damnation's what I've got for you down there
On earth I have ambassadors, archbishop, vicar, pope
We'll blind you with morality, you'd best abandon any hope,
We're telling you you'd better pray cos you were born in sin
Right from the start we'll build a cell and then we'll lock you in
We sit in holy judgment condemning those that stray
We offer our forgiveness, but first we'll make you pay

External control are you gonna let them get you?
Do you wanna be a prisoner in the boundaries they set you?
You say you want to be yourself, by christ do you think they'll let you?
They're out to get you get you get you get you get you get you get you

Hello, hello, hello, now here's a massage from your queen
As figurehead of the status quo I set the social scene
I'm most concerned about my people, I want to give them peace
So I'm making sure they stay in line with my army and police
My prisons and my mental homes have ever open doors
For those amongst my subjects who dare to ask for more
Unruliness and disrespect are things I can't allow
So I'll see the peasants grovel if they refuse to bow

External control are you gonna let them get you?
Do you wanna be a prisoner in the boundaries they set you?
You say you want to be yourself, by christ do you think they'll let you?
They're out to get you get you get you get you get you get you get you

Introducing the Prime Sinister, she's a mother to us all
Like the dutch boy's finger in the dyke her arse is in the wall
Holding back the future waiting for the seas to part
If Moses did it with is faith, she'll do it with an army
Who at times of threatened crisis are certain to be there
Guarding national heritage no matter what or where
Palaces for kings and queens, mansions for the rich
Protection for the wealthy, defence of privilege
They've learnt the ropes In Ireland, engaged in civil war
Fighting for the ruling classes in their battle against the poor
So Ireland's just an island? It's an island of the mind
Great Britain? Future? Bollocks, you'd better look behind
Round every other corner stands P.C. 1984
Guardian of the future, he'll implement the law
He's there as a grim reminder that no matter what you do
Big brothers system's always there with his beady eyes on you
From God to local bobby, in home and street and school
They've got your name and number while you've just got their rule
We've got to look for methods to undermine those powers
It's time to change the tables. The future must be ours

Big A, little A, bouncing B
The system might have got you but it won't get me

Be exactly who you want to be, do what you want to do
I am he and she is she but you're the only you
No one else has got your eyes, can see the things you see
It's up to you to change your life and my life's up to me
The problems that you suffer from are problems that you make
The shit we have to climb through is the shit we choose to take
If you don't like the life you live, change it now it's yours
Nothing has effects if you don't recognise the cause
If the programme's not the one you want, get up, turn off the set
It's only you that can decide what life you're gonna get
If you don't like religion you can be the antichrist
If your tired of politics you can be an anarchist
But no one ever changed the church by pulling down a steeple
And you'll never change the system by bombing number ten
Systems just aren't made of bricks they're mostly made of people
You may send them into hiding, but they'll be back again
If you don't like the rules they make, refuse to play their game
If you don't want to be a number, don't give them your name
If you don't want to be caught out, refuse to hear their question
Silence is a virtue, use it for your own protection
They'll try to make you play their game, refuse to show your face
If you don't want to be beaten down, refuse to join their race
Be exactly who you want to be, do what you want to do
I am he and she is she but you're they only you

Crass - Merry Crassmas - UK 7” 1981 (Cold Turkey - COLD TURKEY 1) A-SideCrass - Merry Crassmas - UK 7” 1981 (Cold Turkey - COLD TURKEY 1) B-Side

 

Penis Envy was released in 1981, mainly as a feminist statement but also intended to flummox fans and music critics who had them tagged as a bootboy group. Ignorant's voice was notable by its absence. Also notable was the album's increased "melodiousness", which didn't detract from its rancour. However, tracks like 'Poison In A Pretty Pill' and 'Health Surface' presented a more complex and, believe it or not, lovely side to the band. One council in England outlawed the record several years after its release.

BERKERTEX BRIBE

Berkertex bribe. Oh! Berkertex bribe.
Berkertex bribe. Oh! Berkertex bribe.
Berkertex bribe. Oh! Berkertex bribe.
Berkertex bribe. Oh! Berkertex bribe.

The object unsoiled is packed ready and waiting,
For the moment of truth in this spiritual mating.
The object unsoiled is packed ready and waiting,
To be owned, to be cherished, to be fucked for the naming.
The public are shocked by the state of society,
But as for you, you're a breath of purity.
Well don't give me your morals, they're filth in my eyes,
You can pack them away with the rest of your lies.
Your painted mask of ugly perfection,
The ring on your finger, the sign of protection,
Is the rape on page 3, it the soldiers obsession,
How well you've been caught to support your oppression.
One god. One church. One husband. One wife.

Sordid sequences in brilliant life,
Supports and props and punctuation
To our flowing realities and realisations.
We're talking with words that have been used before
To describe us as goddesses, mother and whores,
To describe us as women, describe us as men,
To set out the rules of this ludicrous game,
And it's played very carefully, a delicate balance,
A masculine/feminine perfect alliance.
Does the winner take all? What love in your grasping?
What vision is left and is anyone asking?
What vision is left and is anyone asking?

She's a Berkertex bribe... Bribe. Bribe...

Crass - Steve Ignorant

Controversy followed controversy with the release of How Does It Feel?, which faced bans here there and everywhere and the striking double set Christ - The Album, where they laid into Oi! music as well as consumerism, war, sexism and other likely targets.

All this provocative behaviour culminated in 1983 when the band manufactured a cassette consisting of cut and spliced speeches/interviews by Thatcher and Reagan. The cleverly edited dialogue seemed to have Thatcher admit to sinking the Belgrano and starting the Falklands War merely to get re-elected. They sent it to the newspapers and watched the sparks fly. The Houses of Parliament initially thought it the work of the KGB and, when it became clear Crass were the culprits, police surveillance increased. It also demonstrated the limitations of their musical endeavours: music was, after all, entertainment.

HOW DOES IT FEEL?Crass - How Does It Feel? UK 7” 1982 (Crass - 221984/6) A-Side

When you woke this morning you looked so rocky-eyed,
Blue and white normally, but strange ringed like that in black.
It doesn't get much better, your voice can get just ripped up shooting in vain,
Maybe someone hears what you say, but you're still on your own at night.
You've got to make such a noise to understand the silence.
Screaming like a jackass, ringing ears so you can't hear the silence
Even when it's there - like the wind seen from the window,
Seeing it, but not being touched by it.

(We never asked for war, nor in the innocence of our birth were we aware of it.
We never asked for war, nor in the struggle to realisation did we feel there was a need for it.
We never asked for war, nor in the joyful colours of our childhood were we conscious of its darkness.)

HOW DOES IT FEEL?
How does it feel to be the mother of a thousand dead?
Young boys rest now, cold graves in cold earth.
How does it feel to be the mother of a thousand dead?
Sunken eyes, lost now; empty sockets in futile death.

Your arrogance has gutted these bodies of life,
Your deceit fooled them that it was worth the sacrifice.
Your lies persuaded people to accept the wasted blood,
Your filthy pride cleansed you of the doubt you should have had.
You smile in the face of the death cause you are so proud and vain,
Your inhumanity stops you from realising the pain
That you inflicted, you determines, you created, you ordered -
It was your decision to have those young boys slaughtered.

You never wanted peace or solution,
From the start you lusted after war and destruction.
Your blood-soaked reason ruled out other choices,
Your mockery gagged more moderate voices.
So keen to play your bloody part, so impatient that your war be fought.
Iron Lady with your stone heart so eager that the lesson be taught
That you inflicted, you determines, you created, you ordered -
It was your decision to have those young boys slaughtered.

How does it feel to be the mother of a thousand dead?
Young boys rest now, cold graves in cold earth.
How does it feel to be the mother of a thousand dead?
Sunken eyes, lost now; empty sockets in futile death.

Throughout our history you and your kind
Have stolen the young bodies of the living
To be twisted and torn in filthy war.
What right have you to defile those birth?
What right have you to devour that flesh?
What right to spit on hope with the gory madness
That you inflicted, you determines, you created, you ordered -
It was your decision to have those young boys slaughtered.

How does it feel to be the mother of a thousand dead?
Young boys rest now, cold graves in cold earth.
How does it feel to be the mother of a thousand dead?
Sunken eyes, lost now; empty sockets in futile death.

You accuse us of disrespect for the dead,
But it was you who slaughtered out of national pride.
Just how much did you care? What respect did you have
As you sent those bodies to their communal grave?
You buried them rough-handed, they'd given you their all,
That once living flesh defiled in the hell
That you inflicted, you determines, you created, you ordered -
It was your decision to have those young boys slaughtered.

You use those deaths to achieve your ends still,
Using the corpses as a moral blackmail.
You say "Think of what those young men gave"
As you try to bind us in your living death,
Yet we do think of them, ice cold and silence
In the snow covered moorlands, stopped by the violence
That you inflicted, you determines, you created, you ordered -
It was your decision to have those young boys slaughtered.

How does it feel to be the mother of a thousand dead?
Young boys rest now, cold graves in cold earth.
How does it feel to be the mother of a thousand dead?

1 - 2 - 3 - 4 - We don't want your fucking war!
1 - 2 - 3 - 4 - We don't want your fucking war!
1 - 2 - 3 - 4 - We don't want your fucking war!
1 - 2 - 3 - 4 You can stop your fucking war!

Crass - Sheep Farming In The Falklands - UK 7” 1983 (Crass - 121984/3) Back Cover

Crass - Sheep Farming In The Falklands - UK 7” 1983 (Crass - 121984/3) A-SideCrass - Sheep Farming In The Falklands - UK 7” 1983 (Crass - 121984/3) B-Side

Not that their musical endeavours was approaching easy listening. Indeed, it was getting angrier and angrier: the Sheep Farming In The Falklands/Gotcha single was unbelievably ferocious (albeit peppered with humour) and on You’re Already Dead< their previous pacificism was giving way to a Conflict-like despairing militarism. Yes Sir, I Will, their final album, was two sides of complete noise, horrible to listen to and completely ineffective as protest. The band ceased operations in 1984, but issued a farewell statement two years later in the form of Ten Notes On A Summer's Day, a weird, jazzy 12" single. These final recordings were marked by a) a desire to break free of the constraints of a straight-jacketed genre and b) the addressing of political and sexual matters in an abstract and poetic fashion, but all that one can honestly say about Yes Sir I Will and the Who Dunnit single (an actual pub singalong) is that musically are absolutely useless.

YOU'RE ALREADY DEADCrass You're Already Dead

ATTENTION. Fuck American power. Fuck Russian power. Fuck British power.
Fuck all power.
ATTENTION. These ignorant shits arm themselves for annihilation and call it world peace.
Bollocks.

Pacified. Classified.
Keep in line. You're doing fine.
Lost your voice? There ain't no choice.
Play the game. Silent and tame.
Be the passive observer, sit back and look
At the world they destroyed and the peace that they took.
Ask no questions, hear no lies
And you'll be living in the comfort of a fool's paradise.

You're already dead, you're already dead,
You're already dead, you're already dead.

If you're the passive observer, here's a message for you...
You're already dead, You're already dead.
Afraid to do what you know you should do...
You're already dead, You're already dead.
The world's at the edge of nuclear destruction,
But your too afraid to make the connection.
You still believe the system's there for your protection...
You're already dead, You're already dead.

You're already dead, you're already dead,
You're already dead, you're already dead.

By letting it happen without a fight...
You're already dead, You're already dead.
With your endless debates about wrong and right...
You're already dead, You're already dead.
Nothing's going to change if you're not prepared to act,
There's no point complaining after the fact,
Content to be a number, branded X and neatly packed...
You're already dead, You're already dead.

You're already dead, You're already dead,
You're already dead, You're already dead.

Four hundred thousand people marched for CND...
They're already dead, They're already dead,
Unless they're willing to act on what they can see...
They're already dead, They're already dead.
If each and every one of us was prepared to fight for more,
To stand against the system that creates the need for war,
The elite would have to run like it's never run before...
They're already dead, They're already dead.

They're already dead, They're already dead,
They're already dead, They're already dead.

We don't need organising
Or politicians being patronising.
We don't need their leadership,
Trendy lefties being hip.
Don't need their condescension
Or their back to root pretension.
We've heard it all before,
Politicians saying "No more war",
Pulling wool across our eyes.
We don't need their dangerous lies.
We won't accept capitulation,
It's just manipulation.
They want the smooth without the rough,
But words and gestures aren't enough.
We've got to learn to reject all leaders
And the passive shit they feed us...

They're already dead, They're already dead,
They're already dead, They're already dead.

If you think moderation's going to pave the way to peace...
You're already dead, You're already dead.
What good is moderation 'gainst the army and police?
You're already dead, You're already dead.
We're not promoting mindless violence, keep that for the fools,
We're simply saying be prepared to break their laws and rules,
Let them know the bigger they come, the harder they will fall...
They're already dead, They're already dead.

They're already dead, They're already dead,
They're already dead, They're already dead.

If they're going to play it dirty, so are we...
They're already dead, They're already dead.
They can keep their lies about the land of the free...
They're already dead, They're already dead.
We've allowed them too often to use their iron fist,
But there's one little detail they appear to have missed...
You don't have to be PASSIVE just because you're a PACIFIST...
They're already dead, They're already dead.

They're already dead, They're already dead,
They're already dead, They're already dead.

They'll try to sell their system
Like it's some kind od age-old wisdom,
But we've been had like that before,
It's just the rich exploiting the poor.
Well here's an honest confession,
We think it's time they learnt a lesson.
They've tried to hold the people down,
But we've simply gone underground,
Moving in the darkness looking for the light,
Looking for a future and ready to fight.
Looking for the freedom that's been denied,
Fast to attack and fast to hide.
In a world where the people can't make it,
They've simply got to learn to break it,
And if the wealthy aren't prepared to shake it...
O.K., we'll simply have to take it...

You're already dead, You're already dead,
You're already dead, You're already dead,
You're already dead, You're already dead,
You're already dead, You're already dead...

Following Crass' self-imposed disbandment, Rimbaud and Libertine released Acts Of Love (fifty short poems set to classical music). Rimbaud’s follow-up efforts, Christ’s Reality Asylum and The Death Of Imagination (again with Libertine) are based on his books are spoken word stuff, with minimal acoustic accompaniment on the latter. (Libertine has also issued solo records.) Ignorant went on to join Conflict, subsequently forming Schwartzeneggar and The Stratford Mercenaries.

Their importance simply cannot be understated.

 

DISCOGRAPHY

Singles / Albums

Crass - The Feeding Of The 5000 Crass - Reality Asylum Crass - Stations Of The Crass Poison Girls / Crass - Persons Unknown / Bloody Revolutions Crass - Nagasaki Nightmare / Big A Little A
The Feeding Of The 5000 (12", 1978)
Reality Asylum
(7”, 1979)
Stations Of The Crass (2xLP, 1979)
Poison Girls / Crass
(7”, split, 1980)
Nagasaki Nightmare / Big A Little A
(7”, 1981)
Crass - Penis Envy Crass - Merry Crassmas Crass - Christ The Album Crass - How Does It Feel? Crass - Sheep Farming In The Falklands
Penis Envy (LP, 1981)
Merry Crassmas
(7”, as Creative Recording And Sound Services, 1981)
Christ The Album
(2xLP, 1982)
How Does It Feel?
(7", 1982)
Sheep Farming In The Falklands (7”, 1983)
Crass - Yes Sir, I Will. Crass - Who Dunnit? Crass - You’re Already Dead Crass - 10 Notes On A Summer’s Day  
Yes Sir, I Will.
(LP, 1983)
Who Dunnit?
(7”, 1983)
You’re Already Dead
(7”, 1984)
10 Notes On A Summer’s Day
(12”, 1986)
 

Extraneous Releases

Crass - Rival Tribal Rebel Revel Our Wedding Crass/ Poison Girls - Anarchy Live Tape Crass - Sheep Farming In The Falklands Flexi Crass - Best Before
Rival Tribal Rebel Revel (7”, flexi, 1981) Our Wedding
(7” flexi, as Creative Recording And Sound Services, 1981)
Anarchy Live
(Tape, split with Poison Girls, 1982)
Sheep Farming In The Falklands (7”, flexi, 1982)
Best Before
(2xLP, 1986)
Crass - You'll Ruin It For Everyone Crass - Christ - The Bootleg      
You'll Ruin It For Everyone
(LP/CD, 1993)
Christ - The Bootleg (LP/CD, 11/96)      

Bootlegs

Crass - 1979 John Peel Session Crass - Demos 1977-79 Crass - Conway Hall Crass - Punk Is Dead Crass - London 1979
1979 John Peel Session (7", 2004) Demos 1977-79
(LP, 2007)
Conway Hall
(LP, 2010)
Punk Is Dead (CDR) London 1979 (CD)

Various Artists

Bullshit Detector UK LP 1981 (Crass): Do They Owe Us A Living [demo]

P.E.A.C.E. US LP 1984 (R. Radical): It’s You

Devastate To Liberate UK LP 1985 (Yangki): Powerless With A Guitar

In The Old Days...No.7 UK Tape 1987 (RAC Cassettes): Rival Tribal Rebel / Unknown / Unknown

1984 And All That... UK Tape 1980s (no label): Whodunnit?

This Is The A.L.F. UK CD 1998 (Mortarhate): Sentiment

Rough Trade Shops - 25 Years UK 4xCD 2001 (Mute): Reality Asylum

Anti-Capitalism: Anarcho-Punk Compilation Vol. 4 UK CD 2007 (Overground): What Do You Want?

Links

 

 

 

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