VARIOUS ARTISTS: Hamburger Saignant 2: LP

This fourteen-song collection of French/Belgian garage punque and dark psych had me wondering when the hell the last time I even heard a compilation of new bands was, let alone owned one. Compilations follow a predictable cycle in punk rock: A brief burst of delightful usefulness —hey, listen to all these great new bands helpfully collected in one place!—followed by a swift and massive glut of inferior product and years of total abstinence. One’d tend to suspect that quick and easy band-checking-outing courtesy of today’s modern internet would’ve more or less killed the compilation’s raison d’être (see what I did there?), but, then again, comps tend to flash that little burst of cool when one least expects it, so who knows, really? Moving on to more empirical concerns, things start strongly enough, with a spate of bands who all kinda remind me of the Dogs a little bit (sorry, in my world, bands from this corner of the galaxy either have to remind me of the Dogs or the Hatepinks [a third option would be Plastic Bertrand but no one ever takes it]), cresting with a cool cover of Eater’s “Thinking of the USA” by Asphalt, then slides into a more psych-ic direction reminiscent of the buzz of fat hornets on black LSD. I tend to appreciate the punk more than the psych, but if you’re familiar with this label’s back catalog, that’s what their front catalog sounds like, too. I enjoyed myself but am troubled that my favorite track is the Eater cover. BEST SONG: “Thinking of Doing another Eater Cover” by Asphalt. BEST SONG TITLE: “I Don’t Give a Fuck (About Rock ‘n’ Roll)” by Dividers. FANTASTIC AMAZING TRIVIA FACT: “Saignant” means “bleeding.” ­–Rev. Nørb (Frantic City, franticcity.free.fr)