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Punk Vets Fear Continue ‘To Offend and Ignore’ With Massive ‘The Record’ Box Set

Group is also working on a new album with Slash, Duff McKagan, and Shooter Jennings and participating in career-spanning documentary

Kevin Estrada*

Four decades after Fear’s debut album shook up punk-rock morals for a generation, the band is recognizing its legacy with an expansive box-set reissue. Earlier this year, frontman Lee Ving and his bandmates reacquired control of the original master tapes of The Record from Warner Music, which they’re remastering. (The rights officially reverted to the group on Monday.) They’re complementing The Record with a collection of 28 demos, rough mixes, and outtakes as well as live recording from 1982. Preorders for the reissue will begin on May 16 — the 40th anniversary of the original album — via the band’s website and the group expects to start shipping the box sets in December.

“I’m exhausted, but it feels great,” Ving tell Rolling Stone about reclaiming the rights to the album. “We’ve waited years for the writers and creators to get the benefits of our own record whose profits were expunged from us.”

Highlights from the bonus material include alternate takes (such as “Beef Bologna” with different vocals), long-lost instrumentals, a demo of the song “Neighbors” with John Belushi, and rough mixes of songs that the band had cut with Three Dog Night producer Richie Podolor, who originally worked on the album. “It was way faster,” Ving says, “and was being saved until later.”

The live album comes from a radio broadcast of Fear’s gig at San Francisco’s Elite Club on June 11, 1982. The set will also come with a 20-page book containing Barbra Biro’s photographs of the group and the songs’ lyrics, and a reproduction of one of Fear’s promotional posters containing a Biro shot.

The band also intends to surprise 25 fans with a random “golden ticket” inclusion of a 7-inch containing radio spots the band made at the time.

Looking back on lyrics like “I don’t care about you … fuck you,” Ving says the band’s mission was “to offend and ignore” and that, in his opinion, Fear was “brainiacs leading maniacs.” “Offense was the vehicle with which to deliver the message,” he says.

The band is also working with filmmaker Jason Zink (Straight Edge Kegger) on a feature-length documentary about Fear’s history, beginning with Ving’s beginnings in Philadelphia and New York in the late Sixties and early Seventies. Since then, the band became L.A. punk mainstays (appearing in the documentary The Decline of Western Civilization), put out The Record (which they claim has sold 500,000 copies), as well as four subsequent LPs and a remake of The Record. The group was the first punk outfit to appear on Saturday Night Live and Ving also enjoyed an acting career, appearing in Flashdance and Clue. Ving hopes the doc will shed light on Fear’s “collaborative wisdom and commercial appeal.”

In addition to reissuing The Record, Fear are working on a new album. Original lead guitarist Philo Cramer and drummer Stix, who both played on The Record, reunited with Ving in 2018, rounding out Fear’s current lineup alongside bassist Geoff Kresge and guitarist Eric Razo. The group is recording 24 new songs for a double album that will feature guest appearances by Slash, Duff McKagan, Shooter Jennings, Scott Ian, and others. Ving says the album will be “Everything [Fear fans] have been waiting for and depending on.”

The Record Deluxe Edition Track List

Disc One: Original Album (Remastered) + Bonus Tracks

1. “Let’s Have A War”
2. “Beef Boloney”
3. “Camarillo”
4. “I Don’t Care About You”
5. “New York’s Alright If You Like Saxophones”
6. “Gimme Some Action”
7. “Foreign Policy”
8. “We Destroy The Family”
9. “I Love Living In The City”
10. “Disconnected”
11. “We Got To Get Out Of This Place”
12. “Fresh Flesh”
13. “Getting The Brush”
14. “No More Nothing”
15. “Fuck Xmas”
16. “Hoochie Coochie Man”

Disc Two: Demos (Abandoned Studio Sessions) / Outtakes / Rough Mixes (Richie Podolor Producer / Bill Cooper Engineer on Demos) – All Unreleased

1. “Beef Bologna” (Alternate Vocal Take)
2. “Camarillo” (Alternate Guitar Take)
3. “Disconnected” (Rough Mix)
4. “Foreign Policy” (Rough Mix)
5. “Fresh Flesh” (Drum Mix)
6. “Getting The Brush” (Rough Mix)
7. “Gimme Some Action” (Rough Mix)
8. “I Don’t Care About You” (Rough Mix)
9. “Let’s Have A War” (Nuclear Intro)
10. “No More Nothing” (Rough Mix)
11. “We Destroy The Family” (Rough Mix)
12. “Camarillo” (Demo)
13. “Cat Fight” (Demo – Philo Vocal)
14. “Disconnected” (Demo)
15. “Fetch Me One More Beer” (Demo – Instrumental)
16. “Getting The Brush” (Demo)
17. “Gimme Some Action” (Demo – Instrumental)
18. “Homocide” (Demo – Instrumental – Previously Unreleased)
19. “I Am A Doctor” (Demo – Instrumental)
20. “I Am An Engineer” (Demo – Previously Unreleased)
21. “Instrumental” (Demo)
22. “New York’s Alright If You Like Saxophones” (Demo – Instrumental)
23. “We Destroy The Family” (Demo)
24. “We Gotta Get Out Of This Place” (Demo)
25. “We Just Love The Little Girls” (Demo – Instrumental)
26. “Bleep Christmas” (Rough Mix)
27. “Neighbors -w- John Belushi” (Demo Version – Previously Unreleased)

Disc Three: Live: June 11th, 1982 – Elite Club, San Francisco (Radio Broadcast)

1. “Gimme Some Action”
2. “Waiting For The Meat”
3. “No More Nothing”
4. “Camarillo”
5. “Beef Bologna”
6. “Strangulation”
7. “Foreign Policy”
8. “We Destroy The Family”
9. “Null Detector”
10. “Fresh Flesh”
11. “Welcome To The Dust Ward”
12. “Do Me Some Damage”
13. “I Love Living In The City”
14. “I Don’t Care About You”
15. “New York’s Alright If You Like Saxophones”
16. “We Gotta Get Out Of This Place”
17. “Let’s Have A War”

Disc Four: Fear Radio Spots*

1. Fear radio spots from KMET, KROQ, etc.

* Only 25 Lathe cut copies distributed at random in box sets

From Rolling Stone US