Various Artists

Punk-O-Rama 9

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The ninth volume of this longstanding compilation series is a comprehensive cross-section of the artists on Epitaph and its associated labels Hellcat and Rhymesayers. Kicking off with Bad Religion's fold-returning "Social Suicide," the set breaks up the emocore chokehold of nameplates like From First to Last, Matchbook Romance, and Scatter the Ashes with hip-hop from Atmosphere ("The Keys to Life vs. 15 Minutes of Fame") and the rousing punk revivalism of Rancid and Dropkick Murphys. (The latter's fun, bawdy duet "The Dirty Glass" is a collection highlight.) Scatter the Ashes and Refused offer technical, visceral takes on the post-hardcore aesthetic, while solid contributions from Nekromantix, Tiger Army, and HorrorPops point uninitiated cherries toward the psychobilly funhouse. The majority of Punk-O-Rama, Vol. 9 is culled from current releases; however, there is an unreleased live track from Death By Stereo, as well as Hot Water Music's "Seein' Diamonds," a melodic Jawbreaker-type number seeing its first domestic issue. Fans of Dillinger Escape Plan vocalist Greg Puciato who may have missed Error, his industrial dalliance with Brett Gurewitz and assorted pals, will enjoy the wack KMFDM smack of "Burn in Hell," and Eyedea & Abilities' "Now" helps close the set with rapid raps and cut-up OutKast-ian rhythms. [Punk-O-Rama, Vol. 9 also packed a DVD with video content from many of its musical contributors, as well as acts like Randy and Converge.]

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