Devo and David Byrne Donate ‘Empire’ for Noise for Now Project -
David Byrne and Devo

Devo and David Byrne Donate ‘Empire’ for Noise for Now Project

by Paul Cashmere on June 7, 2024

in News

Noise for Now, the non-profit project benefiting abortion access and reproductive rights, will release a second volume ‘Noise for Now Volume 2’ on 21 June, 2024 with a rare David Byrne and Devo collaboration recorded 30 years ago.

The track ‘Empire’ was one of two songs Byrne recorded with Devo for his 1997 album ‘Feelings’. ‘Wicked Little Doll’ went on the album. ‘Empire’ did not.

Byrne says, “‘Empire,’ is an ironic capitalist fascist anthem and, at the time, I thought our version was just too mean and caustic for release. Well, times change, and it certainly resonates now in ways it maybe didn’t then. It was a joy to work with the DEVO guys, they knew exactly what the song is about.”

DEVO’s Gerald Casale also says, “We were on board working with the dark satire of David Byrne’s ‘Empire’ over 30 years ago. The song was prescient and we got it. Now it can be hear. Unfortunately the forces of tyranny are striking with impunity now. These bad actors are not Pro-Life so much as they are Anti-Choice. They want women to live in a real life version of The Handmaid’s Tale”.

“But there’s more of us who respect human rights than those who want to crush those rights. Freedom of Choice is a constant fight. DEVO salutes NOISE FOR NOW for their efforts to save a woman’s right to abortion.”

The song was originally released via the 2022 digital-only benefit compilation, Good Music To Ensure Safe Abortion Access To All, which was available for only 24 hours via Bandcamp and, along with the t-shirt sales featuring the album’s Kim Gordon-created “Liberate Abortion” cover art, grossed over $230,000.

The album also features two Australia artists, Julia Jacklin and Courtney Barnett.

01 – Julia Jacklin – “Dead From The Waist Down (Catatonia cover)”
02 – Courtney Barnett – “Boxing Day Blues (Demo)”
03 – Becca Mancari – “It’s Too Late (Demo)”
04 – The War On Drugs – “Victim (Live)”
05 – MC50 feat. Arrow DeWilde – “High School (Live)”
06 – A.J. Haynes (of Seratones) – “Everything is Change”
07 – Claud – “Spare Tire (Demo)”
08 – Faye Webster – “Lifetime (Live)”
09 – SOFIA ISELLA – “Hot Gum (she version)”
10 – David Byrne and Devo – “Empire”
11 – Big Freedia – “Holatta”

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