This month in 1981, DEAD KENNEDYS released the In God We Trust EP (September, 1981).The eight-track EP, IN GOD WE TRUST, INC., a defining moment in Hardcore, was the first DK album to feature drummer D.H. Peligro and one that offered a blistering attack on the newly elected President Reagan. Ramping up the energy to a new level, recently written material plus a few tracks from their early live shows and ’78 demo were recorded with an emphasis on a raw, unadulterated sound. To this end, announcements of take numbers and percussive clicks made during the recording were left on the final cut.
Uncompromisingly agitational, a blistering unrelenting selection of fury that mirrored the direct challenge of the words exactly, In God We Trust, Inc, shot up the UK indie chart to reach #3.The Kennedy’s opposition was not only a rallying cry for a whole generation of American rebel youth, it was also positively revolutionary and therefore potentially a threat to those in power. But this was positive protest, and correspondingly Jello was articulate and passionate in the flesh.”The Moral Majority are led by a sort of born-again Christian version of Adolf Hitler called Jerry Falwell,” Jello explained, “and he’s got this high-budget Sunday morning religious programme which he uses to urge people to send him money ‘in the name of God’ for all these extreme right-wing crusades.
The Christian religion’s a really big industry in America.””They want more domestic CIA intervention, which Reagan has just sanctified, and forced prayer in schools. On one Sunday morning gospel show they play our ‘I Kill Children’ as an example of devil worship! And we’ve seen book and record burning for the first time since Lennon said The Beatles were bigger than God, back in the sixties.””They’ve also co-ordinated boycotts of TV shows. If they think a show’s got too much sex and indecency they organise boycotts of the sponsor’s products. Between 15 and 20 popular TV shows have been forced off the air by this sort of action. Now I’ve got no objective to them taking off Charlie’s Angels but the funny thing is the shows they’re replacing them with are those ultra-violent cop shows. Sex is a no no, but violence is okay.””It’s kinda like McCarthy all over again. They’re really into witch-hunts in a big way.
Once they were going to major on an anti-homosexual campaign but now their main campaigns are anti-sexual provocation and campaigns against people who are ‘anti-family’.”Following a promotional tour of Britain in 1982, Jello said, “Yeah, there are some places where I ran out of breath. The tour that blew my throat the worst is the one that was dominated by a lot of the songs on In God We Trust. I didn’t realise till I listened to some live cassettes after the ’82 tour in England, that we turned almost every song into an In God We Trust song — there was no difference in tempo between ‘Nazi Punks Fuck Off’ and ‘Man With The Dogs’.”