Want to learn more about other 33 1/3's latest titles? Here's a smattering of recent releases from Bloomsbury's line of short books about popular music.
The subjects Little Richard was pushing into the mainstream in the 1950s--male bisexuality, religion in pop music--are, in many ways, still challenging the establishment today. Featuring interviews from a range of star musicians, like Sir Elton John and Joan Jett, music journalist Jordan Bassett's take on this 1957 album explores Little Richard's roots in the queer underground of the American South, and how he came to influence canonical acts ranging from the Beatles to Prince.
Once considered the most incendiary band in the world, this side project from Ice-T tackled themes like police brutality and white supremacy with a brutal sound that shattered musical boundaries.
Music writer Ben Apatoff chronicles how the all-Black hardcore band's self-titled 1992 album sparked an uproar: There were protests and boycotts, with the band earning a censure from the federal government. Despite being banned to this day, the album, Apatoff argues, revolutionized modern music and helped reshape the world's cultural conversation.
From 33 1/3's new series, Genre, comes music writer Marshall Gu's treatise on a style of music that emerged from Germany, taking hold in the 1970s, with roots that date back to the post-World War II era. Krautrock saw hundreds of bands forge a unique and experimental sound that is as much about its innovative beat as it is the synchronicity of its musicians.
Krautrock, Gu argues, represents German politics reflected in music: a dictatorship replaced by democracy.
After the Go-Go's Beauty and the Beat dropped in 1981, it went on to sell over 2 million copies and produce two hit singles, making it one of the most successful debut albums of all time. Despite its achievements, the all-female band behind it often went overlooked.
In Canadian author Lisa Whittington-Hill's telling, the Go-Go's still have not gotten their due. Before Courtney Love or Beyoncé or Billie Eilish, there were the Go-Go's. And Beauty and the Beat is the record that inspired countless girls to follow their lead.