It’s quite obvious that this compilation was made for an American audience. At least that’s the only way we can explain why Punk Rock Princess isn’t one of the two Something Corporate tracks featured.
But then it’s no wonder that this CD was tailor made for Yanks, as a quick glance at the tracklisting reveals that, despite having a reasonable reputation for picking out great little punk rock bands, hardly any of their roster have really broken the UK. It’s OK though, because let’s face it – the kids who love this stuff would be miserable if the mainstream stole their bands.
The sad truth though is that the back of the box reads like one of those free discs off Rock Sound magazine, and the same thought of “ah, but I’ve got all the songs I like on CD already” is sure to cross the minds of most who pick this up for a nosy in their local record store.
If anything, this compilation is likely to make people think less of Drive-Thru. Instead of being an amazing celebration of a great label with a bulging roster of incredible talent, it ends up looking like Drive-Thru are actually just quite good.
If Drive-Thru are smart, they’ll be marketing this as the perfect Christmas present for parents to buy their rebellious little punky kids for Christmas, because for young ones with a CD collection consisting of a Green Day album and a couple of Sum 41 singles, this could be a real eye-opener and a guaranteed money-maker as they realise they really want to hear more of all ten featured bands and spend all their Christmas vouchers on Finch and Something Corporate albums in the New Year.
Anyone with a secret love of American punk rock who has put off buying a New Found Glory album because they know their trendy friends will laugh at them should finally cave in to the guilty pleasure and get this compilation.
The key tracks? Both NFG tunes are ace, Best Of Me by The Starting Line is a good ‘un, Something Corporate’s I Woke Up In A Car really ought to have been at least a minor hit, Finch’s Letters To You deserved a little more than its peak position of 39 in the UK singles chart and Midtown‘s two songs are jolly good fun.
There’s a few changes that should’ve been made to this for UK release: the inclusion of Something Corporate’s only UK hit single, Punk Rock Princess; a rethink of the album title, because there are only two UK top 40 hits on this record so Greatest Hits just seems a bit wrong; and the retail price should’ve been slashed because there just isn’t much chance of the same demand for this compilation in a country that doesn’t even have the Hot Topic chain of stores.
Those things aside though, this is a good little collection, and even if the tracklisting isn’t as full of familiar names as we expected, all the songs are thoroughly enjoyable.