VARIOUS ARTISTS: Redefiling Music: LP

First things first. In my humble estimation, No Idea’s one of the best totally indie, totally reliable labels – punk or otherwise – on the planet. Their mailorder smokes. They’ve got the sweetest, most unpredictable vinyl color schemes (this one’s yellow, red, and blue, with green where the colors meet). Not only do they keep the rock coming at a rapid, glorious pace, and with high caliber precision, they’re some of the nicest folks I’ve come in contact with but have never personally met. There’s no reason for my tongue to be in their ass. They’re just a great example of what’s right about the underground and I’m stoked they’ve been around for fifteen years and 100 releases. This comp is a cover affair, and it reflects No Idea’s roster nicely: some roots punk rock, some hardcore, some emo, and some “huh, that’s pretty good, but I don’t know what to call it.” After listening to this several times, I’ve come to this conclusion: I like the bands on No Idea much better than the stuff they cover. Highlights are as follows. Radon cover Morrissey’s “Interesting Drug.” Sean made fun of me for about ten minutes for me knowing a Morrissey song. His scuff hurt. I had no defense. Can one be a man and defend Morrissey? No. Sean and I are scheduled to fight. Radon’s awesome. I suggest you buy every 7” and their album. Asshole Parade cover the Circle Jerks’ “Red Tape.” Nice. Group Sex, the album, if you listen to it closely and take it to heart, will make your life easier: deny everything. That’s gospel. Panthro U.K. United 13 could probably take a shit on my front step, I’d pat it down, wait for it to fossilize, put it on the turntable, and call it genius. They cover The Clash’s “Safe European Home.” Purchase Panthro’s full-length, The Sound of a Gun. Small Brown Bike cover Thin Lizzy’s “Jailbreak” (replete with cop siren sounds). It really fucks with SBB’s inherent dynamic of swelling and gushing, and it’s downright weird have them hardrock it and try the solo-y bits. Palatka make Gorilla Biscuits’ “Good Intentions” even more abrasive, knuckly, and shorter. Hot Water Music cover Bruce Springsteen’s “No Surrender.” I still won’t back The Boss. Fuck him. But HWM are great. They even make my toes tap to something I’d usually pee on. Anthem Eighty Eight cover Assuck. They sound almost exactly like Assuck. Scary, fitful stuff. Rumbleseat cover, “Jackson,” by Johnny Cash and June Carter. Fuck yeah. Can’t go wrong with Johnny Cash and the dual male/female vocals are perfect. Soulful and sparse porch stomp. Clairmel cover the Lemonheads, you know the pop band on Taang!, and the lead dude Evan Dando fucked someone famous (like your mom or Courtney Love or someone). The Hoover-quality suckage of the L-heads almost overshadow my like for Clairmel during the song, but Clairmel makes it out OK.

 –todd (No Idea)