From the Vaults, Vol. 1 (Season of Mist)
By Mike Delano
Odds and ends collections like this might seem like passionless, quick ‘n’ easy record contract fulfillment to some, but if they’re done right (and, crucially, if you’re a fan of the band), they can offer an interesting new perspective on a band’s musical evolution. The cover tunes on Deftones’ B-Sides & Rarities – Cocteau Twins, The Smiths, The Cure – lay bare the eclectic sounds that have always influenced their singular style. Life of Agony’s 1989-1999 is a vibrant portrait of a band internalizing everything from their environment, from Biohazard to Type O Negative to the emotional honesty of New York hardcore. There aren’t many surprises on the Kylesa collection From the Vaults, Vol. 1 (covers from Pink Floyd and Buzzov*en, bass and drum jams of questionable worth), but what’s here is mostly good stuff. Surging tracks like “Bottom Line II” and “Wavering” bring their punk tendencies to the forefront, while “Inverse” is a throwback to their early days — noisy and unhinged. “End Truth” would fit in comfortably alongside anything from the band’s new alterna-metal sound (best realized on 2010’s Spiral Shadow), and songs like “111 Degree Heat Index” are the reason comps like this exist — so fans can hear lost tracks that are too good to languish hidden in the vaults.