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Wayne Kramer Reanimates MC5 with New Album 'Heavy Lifting'

We Are All MC5
(Image credit: We Are All MC5)

MC5 founder Wayne Kramer and A-list rock producer Bob Ezrin have teamed up with the earMUSIC label in a collaboration that will see one of the longest-awaited returns in music history come to fruition.

“I’ve been thinking it’s been a long time since there’s been any new MC5 music," says pioneering electric guitar player Kramer. "I’ve been busy writing and recording a new album produced by the great Bob Ezrin. And we’ll take it to the streets ‘cause I feel like we are all MC5.”

Speaking of the project, Ezrin (whose credits include Aerosmith, Pink Floyd and Deep Purple among other household names) commented, “Kramer is a rock and roll treasure because he is keeping the spirit of the MC5 and Detroit’s unique and hugely important blend of punk and funk alive and well in all that he does.

“I’m excited and honored to be working on this project with him and the supremely talented group of lunatics we have assembled for it. We are all MC5!”

The highly anticipated new album Heavy Lifting is set for release in October 2022 and represents Wayne Kramer’s first MC5 release in 50 years.

We Are All MC5's 'The Heavy Lifting Tour' promo

(Image credit: We Are All MC5)

Ahead of the album’s October release, the band will be putting out two songs: the title track “Heavy Lifting” and “Edge of the Switchblade.”

Co-written by Kramer and singer Brad Brooks along with Tom Morello, “Heavy Lifting” is described in a press release as a “fiery guitar-dueling anthem” that is indicative of the axeman’s “creative vision for the MC5 today.”

This will be followed by the Heavy Lifting Tour which kicks off at Detroit’s El Club on May 5. Joining Kramer on the road will be Brooks, drummer Stephen Perkins (Jane’s Addiction), bassist Vicki Randle (Mavis Staples), and guitarist Stevie Salas (David Bowie.)

Current tour dates also include concerts in Pittsburgh, Philadelphia, Brooklyn, Sacramento, San Francisco, Los Angeles and San Diego.

Check out the “Heavy Lifting” preview here…

Tickets go on sale this Friday, March 11. Click here (opens in new tab) for more information.

Rod Brakes is a music journalist with an expertise in guitars. Having spent many years at the coalface as a guitar dealer and tech, Rod's more recent work as a writer covering artists, industry pros and gear includes contributions for leading publications and websites such as GuitaristTotal Guitar, Guitar World (opens in new tab)Guitar Player (opens in new tab) and MusicRadar (opens in new tab) in addition to specialist music books, blogs and social media. He is also a lifelong musician.