"Compilation Reviews"

Sponsored In Part By

Try Me?


PolyGram Records
Covering a broad range of electronic music from today's top groups, this 16-song compilation hits on acts even the electronic music-impaired have heard of -- The Orb, The Chemical Brothers, Portishead, and Everything But the Girl. A great sampler of the full range of electronic music.

- Geoff Wilbur


The Philadelphia Spirit Experiment-Glistening Trails Records
This is the compilation disc available from http://rombox.com. (Try http://rombox.com/vol7.) Some highlights include: the fun blues romp of that recurring track, "Three Cool Cats," Catching Flies' gritty cover of "Stepping Stone," Carl Gardner's Stray Cattish "Good Rocking Tonight," and the reggae edge with a '50s- style rocker feel on "Don't Worry..." Also of note were the variety of ambient tracks from Snake Handling Immortal Tongue Speakers, ranging from the background-to-Chris Isaak-ish "The Ride" to a folky, Texas-style country rockin' twanger, "blackmt.wav." Gray Matters' "Pooney Cat" is offbeat diva music. Surveyor's "2109" is progressive-based, somewhat spacy, medium hard guitar rock, while their "Bright Eyes" consists of '80s pop/rock guitar bursts with progressive rock-influenced vocals. The Jongleurs' "U Move Me" is a jazzy, meandering number. Spagg serves up a raw, rough, uptempo, punkish number (4summer.wav). And Stop That Noise (gotta.wav) is aggressive, rough-edged alternative. Great variety. The most broadly appealing Philadelphia Spirit Experiment recording I've heard to date, with many, many styles of music represented here.

- Geoff Wilbur


Judas Priest is undoubtedly one of the LEGENDS OF METAL, and the timing of this release could not be better, as the "new" Priest is recording, even as we speak. As a rule, I steer clear of most "tribute" albums, as they usually contain bland covers of bland hits we've all grown tired of anyway. There are a couple of those here -- Helloween's version of "Electric Eye" and Fates Warning's "Saints in Hell." The remainder of this album kicks ass! Check out Testament's thrashing of "Rapid Fire" or Nevermore's "Love Bites"... RIPPIN'! 6 more tracks by the likes of Kreator, Mercyful Fate, Iced Earth, and Overkill -- these "legendary" tracks still sound fresh and are sure to please Priest fans everywhere.

- Shane Copher


Nettwerk/Subconscious Communications
A compilation devoted to bands from Subconscious Communications, which is a record label, recording studio, analog synthesizer collection, publisher, film score, and remix team from Vancouver, BC which was founded by the late Dwayne Goettel of Skinny Puppy and acts sort of as a tribute to him, for he appears on 6 of the 12 tracks. Bands featured include aDuck, Download, Kone, Doubting Thomas, Tear Garden, and more, plus an unreleased Skinny Puppy track called "Melt." A total industrial-techno-electro-ambient experience.

- Al Slavicsky


Robert Williams, Box 153, Elrama, PA 15038
Out of his own pocketbook, Robert Williams compiles a release which is very diverse, ranging from the industrial sounds of Yamamoto and Noir, Shiticide, and Bete Noire, to the death sounds of Sockeye, Beer Muscles, The Cranks, and Boy In Love. Excellent cross-section of today's underground music world with 27 different bands for 90 minutes. There's something for everybody.

- Al Slavicsky


TVT Soundtrax
ANother compilation devoted to the all time classic video game series and movies. Very similar to the soundtrack to the movie; contains tons of techno, metal, and industrial music, which highlights some of the best underground music in the world today. Highlights include a devastating remix of Sepultura's "Chaos B.C.," which borderlines between industrial and metal, Geezer Butler's G/Z/R's "Outworld," which combines heavy guitars and industrial- techno riffs together, plus more. Extreme.

- Al Slavicsky

LOST HIGHWAY soundtrack

Nothing Records
The Trent Reznor produced soundtrack for the David Lynch directed movie. Trent literally soundscapes various music from pop icons David Bowie, Smashing Pumpkins, Nine Inch Nails, and Lou Reed and sequences them between neo-classical/ambient music from eclectic/avant garde artists Barry Adamson, Angelo Badalamenti, Antionio Carlos Jobim, and Rammstein. Blending the sound into one direction, the mode is haunting via the transformation of the beat, and it starts with David Bowie's "I'm Deranged" and ends with it. An adventurous sonic journey down the lost highway.

- Al Slavicsky


Nettwerk Records
Volume one of what is going to be a growing series to highlight various remixing teams and new talent to the world. This in extremely enjoyable, for you hear some material which you may have heard before, such as Underworld's "Pearl's Girl" and The Chemical Brothers' "Loops of Fury," but the highlight of this compilation is the remixes of Garbage's "Queer," which is much different than the version that appears on their album, and the haunting remix of Sarah McLachlan's "Possession." Can't wait for Volume 2.

- Al Slavicsky


Death Wish Office/Nuclear Blast America, Inc.
A collection of various Gothic, romantic, industrial, and electro from all over the world. Some of the bands featured include Deep Red, Diene Lakaien, Apoptygma Berzerk, Distain!, La Floa Malita, Silke Bischoff, and more. The more intense tracks are the Chinese Detectives' cover of Yazhoo's "Situation" and Born to Bliss' "Arabia (Desert Mix)," which is much more melodic and tighter than the original mix. 18 bands; 18 tracks.

- Al Slavicsky


Alias Records
This is a compilation of various artists which are currently on Alias Records. Bands include Chug, Archers of Loaf, knapsack, Bilthe, Trunk Federation, Small, Yo La Tengo, and Picasso Trigger. This is a great view of what is happening in the indie rock world today. It also includes a catalog for the label with details and information about each band. Worth checking out.

- Al Slavicsky


Justice Records
A great tribute devoted to the legendary C&W superstar Willie Nelson. These are not your run of the mill, everyday covers by some under-musicians. It contains covers by the man in black, Johnny Cash; the bad girls of rock, L7; the wild modern day rockabilly king, The Reverend Horton Heat; the classic old school punk godz from LA, X' the humorous sound of The Presidents of the United States of America; Jerry Cantrell from Soundgarden; the coutnry outlaw, Waylon Jennings; Dead Kennedys frontman Jello Biafra with Life After Life; a classic duet with Kelley Deal of the Breeders and Kris Kristofferson; plus tunes from Tenderoin, Supersuckers, Mark Langton, Best Kissers in the World, Gas Huefer, Steel Pole Bathtub, and Jesse Dayton. Also includes an interview with Johnny Cash and Willie Nelson before track one.

- Al Slavicsky

Next Page

Back to the Summer '97 Index