Fighting Clowns Fighting Clowns

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Category: Audio
It's the start of the Reagan-era '80s, and the 101st Fighting Clown battalion brigade wants you! This album combines Firesign's full-frontal live "Eight Shoes" vaudeville-style song & revue show with additional in-studio improvisations, captured just as the Sappy Seventies gave way to the belligerent and self-satisfied Empty Eighties. Semper Humorous, indeed.

Fighting Clowns (1980)

Review from

* * * All-musical Firesign from the '80s before the hiatus. September 19, 2001

Reviewer: A music fan from Los Angeles, CA USA

This album was originally released by Rhino in 1980. It consists largely of songs of political satire relevant to the times (Reagan, Ford, and the war in the Middle East are among the targets) with quick spoken word bits to break them up a bit. The songs were originally part of a larger concept which was scrapped at the eleventh hour. It's funny enough but nowhere near as complex and layered as the Firesign's best work. The group was not doing well commercially in the '80s and would take a 14 year hiatus not too long after this release. The production is fine and the performances are very good, as usual, but the whole affair comes off as sort of a last gasp (which it, in fact, was at the time). Again, it is quite amusing, but, unlike such classics as "How Can You Be..." and "Everything You Know Is Wrong" and the newer "Bride of Firesign" and "Boom Dot Bust," it CAN all be absorbed in one or two listenings. Still, to paraphrase a quote once applied to the work of the Marx Brothers, "the worst thing they can do is still better than anything else I can think of."

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