Besides being for a good cause, and besides the wealth of unreleased or rare material, Because We Care: A Benefit for the Children's Hospital of Orange County might be worth purchasing just for its cover art, which depicts a vintage teddy bear wearing a pair of headphones, with a wrapped-up boo boo on his paw. Awwww. Fortunately, Because We Care backs up the bear with solid contributions from a host of SoCal bands. It's nothing special, but for fans of pop and ska-inflected punk, there's quite a bit here to like. Rufio turns in an unreleased acoustic take from their album Perhaps, I Suppose's "In My Eyes," there's a demo of Limbeck's "I Think It's Lame to Hold Your Breath," and a fun, very melodic version of "Doctor My Eyes," from Gameface. Elsewhere, there's some Weezerish rock (Ozma), energetic third wave ska revival (Suburban Legends), and Thrice's scruffy, emo-punkified run-through, "Eleanor Rigby," that must be heard to be believed. Buy this comp for the unreleased gems, because you care, or just buy it for the bear.
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AllMusic Review by Johnny Loftus