Punk Goes 80's is a cute idea for a comp. Not very punk, not very original, but very cute and fun. Pop-punk stalwarts Fearless Records round up their stable of bands and some compatriots to do covers of '80s pop hits. The bands who take liberties with their source material come off the best: Relient K's quirky version of the Bangles' "Manic Monday," which somehow becomes a tribute to Quiet Riot, Halifax's emo-tastic reworking of Paula Abdul's "Straight Up," and Jamison Parker's techno destruction and rebuild of Tears for Fears' "Everybody Wants to Rule the World." Elsewhere the songs are about what you would imagine, with earnest remakes of tunes like Alphaville's "Forever Young" (by So They Say), Modern English's "I Melt With You" (by Sugarcult), and Simple Minds' "Don't You Forget About Me" (by Rufio) that don't add anything to the originals but will appeal to fans of the bands doing the covering. Extra points for the CD cover's dead-on parody of a tacky '80s collection.
AllMusic Review by Tim Sendra