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Mission Of Burma

Boston's Mission of Burma didn't last long as a band (1979 though 1983), but their impact on rock music was immense. Their sound is archetypal: jagged, restless, art-punk that is relentlessly visceral. Mission of Burma drew on the music of proto-punk bands like The Stooges, first wave punk bands like The Buzzcocks, and peers like the Mekons, and threw it even further off-kilter with a dark, sometimes ominous flavor, unexpected tempo changes, layers of feedback, tape loops, and assorted sound manipulation. It's relentless, caffeinated rock that hits you square in the nervous system. MOB punishes you as a listener, but it's punishment you somehow want to receive.

Mission of Burma played together for only about four years before guitarist Roger Miller's extreme tinnitus (ringing of the ears -- the unfortunate result of extremely high stage volumes) led the band to call it quits. During that time, MOB released only one full-length record, VS, in addition to an EP and a few seven-inches. Still, their impact on rock was immeasurable: with post-punk contemporaries like Pere Ubu and Husker Du, Mission of Burma impacted indie rock bands from The Lemonheads to The Pixies to Nirvana.

"Progress" comes from the Ace of Hearts Records 1995 compilation The Wasted Years. "Peking Spring" comes from The Horrible Truth about Burma, a collection of live recordings released by Ace of Hearts shortly after the band's breakup.