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Arcade Fire Cover Dead Kennedys, Impersonate California Governor Jerry Brown

The band's epic run of tributes just got longer...

Olivia Forman // August 5, 2014

Arcade Fire have been embellishing their Reflektor tour with geographically appropriate cover songs, and now the Canuck band adds to that repertoire a version of Dead Kennedys’ “California Über Alles.” At the Santa Barbara Bowl on Monday, August 4, Win Butler donned a papier-mâché mask of California governor Jerry Brown and introduced the 1979 non-conformist anthem: “I am Governor Jerry Brown, my aura smiles and never frowns, soon I will be President.” The tongue-in-cheek punk song originally played with Nazi terminology to evoke a critical comparison of the state under Brown’s leadership from 1975 to 1983. What makes it relevant now: Brown returned to that office in 2011.

While the theme song for “Beverly Hills Cop” may seem like a quirky outlier, the Canadian sextet has paid tribute to a rogue’s gallery of music legends thus far, including Jane’s Addiction and Guns N’ RosesCreedence Clearwater Revivalthe SmithsEcho & the BunnymenR.E.M., Boyz II MenPrince, and Stevie Wonder. Watch fan footage of the latest sonic salute above.