Those who know G.G. Allin only as the feces-slinging maniac who put himself and his audiences in jeopardy with his suicidal stage shows will be surprised by the relative coherence of these early tracks. Banned in Boston is a collection of songs recorded with Allin's first backing band, the Jabbers (1976-1984), and there's plenty of tight, tuneful punk rock that those with a high tolerance for stupidity and pointless aggression will enjoy. Composed of early singles, unreleased material, and nearly all of the band's debut album (1980's Always Was, Is, and Always Shall Be), Banned in Boston captures Allin before he reached the full heights of his now-legendary extremism. The lyrics prove that Allin was always a misogynist and a moron, though his youthful exuberance renders lyrics like, "Why don't you just leave me alone/Suck my bone" and "I used to sniff girls' pantyhose/But there's nothing like a girl sitting on your nose," sublimely ridiculous rather than offensive. The band comes off like clueless hick cousins to the Dead Boys, rocking hard on great tracks like "Bored to Death," "Don't Talk to Me," and the immortal "Assface." Allin even managed to convince the mighty Wayne Kramer to supply some blazing lead guitar on the classic "Gimme Some Head"; though the ex-MC5 axe-slinger must have been suffering a particularly lean year to accept such dubious session work, the result smokes. Live material from a Boston gig reveals that early G.G. Allin audience members were either apathetic or contemptuous, so it isn't hard to see how a desperation to be heard compounded by massive substance abuse and emotional immaturity might lead to extreme measures like defecating on-stage and physically attacking hecklers. Allin quickly began alienating bandmates and ended up a free agent, touring alone and performing with whatever group of musicians were brave enough to back him up for the night, the music merely a backdrop for the outrageous antics that his fans had come to expect. While there are some sluggish clunkers among the gems, Banned in Boston provides proof that at one point the G.G. Allin experience was more about rock & roll than performance art.
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AllMusic Review by Fred Beldin