Various Artists

In Honor: A Compilation to Beat Cancer

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If not for the rare and unreleased songs by punk icons and heavy hitters alike, the cause steering In Honor: A Compilation to Beat Cancer -- which was envisioned by Vagrant Records' own Timmy Hansel, who lost his mom to cancer in February 2004 -- is weighty enough to warrant music fans' hard-earned coin. That it benefits both the Syrentha Savio Endowment and The Sean McGrath Fund -- named for the onetime Saves the Day guitarist who lost his battle with intestinal cancer in June of the same year -- seems only fitting as many of McGrath's heroes and peers check in on this 42-track set. Admittedly there are a few inferior moments, specifically Taking Back Sunday's near-lifeless acoustic read of "You're So Last Summer" (which might warrant a name change to Taking Blecch Sunday) and some weak late-album sonic jive by the likes of Minus the Bear and Murder by Death. But Face to Face's inspired "Coming Out of Nowhere," plus wicked live offerings like Jawbreaker's "Kiss the Bottle," and the Bouncing Souls' "True Believers" right said wrongs. Rarities like Thursday's "Mass as Shadows" and Motion City Soundtrack's acoustic version of "My Favorite Accident" are only icing on the cake. With something for anyone interested in some or all of what modern punk has to offer, In Honor is an honor to get to know, warts and all.

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