VARIOUS ARTISTS: Shielded by Death: Vol 1: Busted at the Lit: CD

The title hints at what’s inside – an almost Killed by Death-flavored comp., but instead of cherry picking obscure bands that released a raging track or two then slipped back into oblivion, this comp focuses on original punk rock from Eastern Connecticut and Western Massachusetts, 1977-1985. Along with the other comp. that Dionysus recently released, The Bosse Sound, it shows the quality of compiler’s archival hindsight vision. The fat’s cut off, and what you get is twenty-seven tracks full of amplified desperation by no-name bands, all of which probably only played poorly attended gigs. The irony is obvious. This is some killer stuff that lays shame to crap-on-a-stick like the new Vandals, and these songs and bands will probably continue to slip under the radar, almost twenty years after the fact. Cools tracks by all, but my favorites by The Regular Joes, Foreign Objects, the Pajama Slave Dancers, and Chronic Disorder.

 –todd (Dionysus)