Volume 9 (Epitaph)
by Ewan Wadharmi
We’re not sure if Epitaph invented the sampler series, they may have stolen it from some unknown indie long forgotten in the amnesiac industry, but they have certainly perfected the marketing end of it. Punk-O-Rama is the longest-running series, and is always a good value. They’re getting harder to discern from each other as well as the annual Warped Tour comps, but there’s always a surprise or two. Sometimes surprises are pleasant, like the reappearance of Refused, Nekromantix, or the exciting techno-Goth of Error. Less surprising but more disappointing are gawdawful surfer dude sap from Matchbook Romance and sing-song pop from Motion City Soundtrack (who are actually greatly improved from last year’s entry).
Epitaph founders Bad Religion are expectedly consistent, as are Pennywise, Bouncing Souls, and Rancid. But we lose Millencolin this time around. Division Of Laura Lee‘s “Dirty Love” is a great cut from their sleazy new album, yet their brethren Ikara Colt are absent. Hip-hoppers Atmosphere make the switch from Warped Tour with the same tune, thus losing out to the incredi-flow of Eyedea & Abilities. The pussy metal from Pestilence can’t touch the hardcore onslaught of Death By Stereo. One note, Tiger Army‘s “Temptation” may seduce you into buying their new Ghost Tigers Rise, but resist. Neither this song nor anything of consequence appears on that disc.