On 80s Tribute, Vol. 1, Seattle's Tooth & Nail Records offer a dozen fresh takes on some of the 1980s most definitive classics. Stretch Arm Strong initializes the sonic reminiscence with a wildly-outlandish version of Modern English's "Melt With You," making the song their own with a feverish and powerful flurry of bass and crunchy guitar. A horn-drenched version of "Walking on Sunshine" by Ghoti Hook follows, as well as MXPX's festive-yet-reserved version of a-ha's "Take on Me." Songs you might not first expect are included, like the Deluxtone Rockets' alluring version of the Cure's "Love Song" and a violently-revamped version of Devo's "Explosions" by Frodus. Morella's Forest offer up an understated "Voices Carry" and Blenderhead's cover of the Talking Heads' "Once in a Lifetime" is a refreshing tribute to the new wave classic. Fanmail's initially-subdued version of "Every Breath You Take," after a temperate beginning, evolves into an upbeat version of the Police standard. The disc ends with a frolicking rendition of the Go-Go's "Vacation" by Flight 180 and Furthermore's hushed interpretation of R.E.M.'s "Fall on Me." This collection is a remarkably diverse and versatile start to Tooth & Nail Records' tribute to the most memorable songs of the 1980s.
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AllMusic Review by Stephen Cramer