The apocalyptic comedians of the Firesign Theatre return with Give Me Immortality or Give Me Death, their first studio recording in nearly 20 years. Like their original classics, this one tells a story that is greater than... more » the sum of its satire, double entendres, and nonstop puns. Join the festivities as FT's own Radio Now broadcasts the end of the world, live on December 31, 1999. You'll hear Joe Camel's farewell speech, learn about the mysterious guys in eyeball hats, and be on the scene for the Princess Goddess Doll Drop. Old fans will get goose bumps as used-car dealer Ralph Spoilsport returns to sell cloned body parts, but even (puzzled) newcomers to the Firesign universe should be hooked after a few repeat plays. The more you listen to Give Me Immortality, the funnier it gets. --John Sulak« less
The apocalyptic comedians of the Firesign Theatre return with Give Me Immortality or Give Me Death, their first studio recording in nearly 20 years. Like their original classics, this one tells a story that is greater than the sum of its satire, double entendres, and nonstop puns. Join the festivities as FT's own Radio Now broadcasts the end of the world, live on December 31, 1999. You'll hear Joe Camel's farewell speech, learn about the mysterious guys in eyeball hats, and be on the scene for the Princess Goddess Doll Drop. Old fans will get goose bumps as used-car dealer Ralph Spoilsport returns to sell cloned body parts, but even (puzzled) newcomers to the Firesign universe should be hooked after a few repeat plays. The more you listen to Give Me Immortality, the funnier it gets. --John Sulak
The Firesign Theatre is back with the best work in 17 years!
John Scialli | Phoenix, AZ | 08/31/1998
(5 out of 5 stars)
""Give Me Immortality Or Give Me Death" is the first studio work by all four (or five) members of The Firesign Theatre in 17 years. It is a comedy album for those with more (or less) between their ears than toothpaste (it's electric). The Firesign Theatre sets this cohesive story at a radio station, Radio NOW, on 12-31-99, and as the excitement builds towards the new millenium (or the same old Armageddon) a cat of...a cast of characters sails forth (or fifth) over the airways and the haM-Bone (listen, you'll get the pun in a thousand ears). This is a funny CD but don't expect Bob Newhart (noooobody expects Bob Newhart). The studio work is multi-layered and there are wheels within eels within heels enough for everybody. It is a work about the future and about the past (remember Ralph Spoilsport, well he's here and he tastes like pork!). The Firesign Theatre is Phil Proctor, Phil Austin, David Ossman and Peter Bergman and you the e-viewer too. Where else will concepts from the internet and pop peneology be combined. Where else will your hours spent in freshman English nigh unto 30 years or minutes ago stand you fast. No where. Not hear certainly. This is a rare comedy CD. It must be heard multiple times to be appreciated. It may very well turn into one of the Firesign's "new Classics" (unless Walt's got a lock on that term) along with their first four albums, "Waiting For the Electrician...," "How Can You Be In Two Places At Once...," "Don't Crush That Dwarf..." and I Think We're All Bozos On This Bus." "Give Me Immortality Or Give Me Death" is a 64-bit bus if ever I heard one. There is a remarkable LONG booklet which comes with the CD. Rhino records has been in the business, and IS the business, long enough now that they are backing this release 1000%. The booklet complements the CD and might give you hints about reality.No, I'm not on the Firesign's payroll or layer of the onion roll but I'm on a roll about this role play. In fact I'm about to pre-order THREE of the new CDs so I can have one unopened for the collection. Do not hesitate to buy this release. For anyone involved in the Web, this is a CD which spreaks your language. For nybody who ex iences drop ts in their ansmission (well you know the rest of at)."
Back in the shadows again
Michael Gebert | Chicago, IL USA | 07/16/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This is easily the masterpiece of the recent batch of Firesign reunion discs, and where the others have an easygoing feel that's downright likable, this one is dark and scary enough to take you right back to those Altamont Gram Parsons-dying-in-the-desert LA-sliding-into-the-Helter Skelter 70s. The difference is that it's all in bite-sized bits-- if the best older albums were like an LP-long guitar solo (brilliant or self-indulgent, as the case may be), this one is as slick, disciplined and hooky as a Clapton comeback album."
Welcome the Firesign back and BUY THIS ALBUM
Captain Opinionated | Los Angeles, CA USA | 10/30/1999
(5 out of 5 stars)
"First off, let me say to the uninitiated, the Firesign Theatre are very funny. Definitely one of the most unsung comedy teams ever. Why? Well, first, their primary medium was the comedy album, a dying artform, and they revolutionized it. Second, the laughs require some degree of patience and intelligence: literary references, outrageous word-play, and surrealist humor pepper the landscape of their albums (though they're also adept at funny voices and TV riffs). Plus, they're constructed as movies-for-your-mind, massive radio drama/comedy. The Firesign can and will transport their listeners everywhere, from the eye of a tornado to the Academy Awards. And they'll have you laughing in wonderment all the way. Luckily for newcomers, this album is quite accessible - set against the back-drop of a fictional radio station, "Radio Now," it's a device anyone can identify with. The four take stabs at the paparazzi, Joe Camel, Princess Di, overblown epics like "Titanic," self-help gurus, and much, much more. And, the CD deals with the paranoia gripping the nation as the new milennium draws nearer (it's set on the final day of 1999). So funny, it holds up to repeated listenings... one finds something new everytime. How many other comedy albums can you say that about? Answer: barely any. This is the genius of the Firesign Theatre, shown here and on all their other mostly out-of-print-but-hopefully-not-for-long titles from the '60s and '70s. Viva el Firesign!"
Not for everyone, but worth a try
Kevin L. Nenstiel | Kearney, Nebraska | 03/14/2000
(4 out of 5 stars)
"I've had people tell me right out loud that they don't see what I find funny about Firesign Theatre. When people say this, I know they just don't THINK the same way I do. It takes a certain kind of outlook to appreciate this humor, and if you have it you have it, and if you don't you don't.One thing people don't understand is that funny and laugh-out-loud funny aren't always the same thing. The late Mike O'Donoghue once said, "Making people laugh is the lowest form of humor." There's also humor in turning people's expectations on their heads, spotlighting the absurd in everyday life, and making people think in new ways, even if it's just for a few moments. And this is where the Firesign Theatre excells.That said, this album isn't as good as the Firesigns' work from the sixties. It lacks the same sense of absurdity as they once did, nor the same gift for an exemplary turn of phrase. This doesn't impugn the quality of the finished product by any stretch. Some of the difference might be that they've changed with the times; it might also be that they've simplly been apart too long. Still, this is a worthwhile album, even if the subject matter (the hypothetical Y2K Crash) is now dated. Enjoyable with a glass of sherry or a cold beer."
Hello to the Future
Clark Johnson | Huntington, NY United States | 10/04/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This is a great CD. As a fan of the original FT, I was worried that new work would not live up to my expectations. Needless concern! This new disc is "weirdly cool" (one of the repeated phrases on the CD, soon to become another FT idiom in our house). Cloned body parts, anyone? Also, nice to hear from Ralph Spoilsport again.Firesign Theater has brought their piercing commentary into our age. Despite the GREAT and manic layered humor of the disc, one of my favorite sections is the last cut, during which the radionow staff says goodbye to the past ("goodbye Death, goodbye Lincoln Towncars") and says hello to the future ("hello global warming, hello aluminum radio hats"). Comedy for our time. BUY THIS DISC!"