I had to explain the story behind Negativland to a friend recently, when I discovered the original U2 single in a CD collection. I told her that it was quite rare (I just checked the numbers, there's roughly about 7,000 copies were sold).
So, the story that was told to me, back in the 90s, was that Negativland was sued by Island Records for unauthorized usage of "I Still Haven't Found What I'm Looking For" sample, as well as misleading the single as a U2 release. So upon release, the single was immediately pulled from store shelves, and the value of the CD went through the roof. It even spawned some bootleg singles, so be careful when buying on ebay!
The "song" itself wasn't that inspiring, it just features samples of "I Still..." and "America's Top 40" host Casey Kasem foul-mouthed-rant. If you're easily offended by the word "sh*t" and "godd*mn", then please avoid listening to the song. Negativland made their song available for download on their website under the The Forbidden Single section.
Trivia: The Guns single was released shortly after their run-in with the lawyers, which had nothing to do with the U2 single, but featured a very similiar artwork. You can read more details about this controversial story over at foetusized.org
NEWS FLASH: Apparently Bono was Knighted the other day!
Some additional useful comments:
Mar 30, 2007 at 2:45 PM
I haven't heard this classic for years - thanks!
Stay Free magazine (www.stayfreemagazine.org) put out a free cd of illegal music a few years ago with this on it, along with many others. If I can find my copy, perhaps I'll share something...
|Angry Tiki wrote:
Mar 30, 2007 at 2:52 PM
It is available here with the liner notes as to why each track caused a fuss:
Mar 30, 2007 at 4:09 PM
Wow. I remember reading about this in Bill Flanagan's U2 book back when I was an obsessed fifteen-year-old. I had no idea they still existed.
Mar 30, 2007 at 4:33 PM
There is also a CD called THESE GUYS ARE FROM ENGLAND AND WHO GIVES A SH*T on the suspiciously-named Seelard Records which contains the two original mixes plus a number of live performances and variations on the same theme. You can gleefully pay money for it here: