With 16 albums under its belt, a band like Bad Religion needs to draw some lines in the sand when putting together compilations to keep every best-of from becoming a sprawling, multi-disc extravaganza, a task that's nicely handled by Punk Rock Songs: The Epic Years. Covering the punk veterans' major-label years, the collection covers Bad Religion's six-year stint on Epic (and, subsequently, their years without guitarist Brett Gurewitz, who left the band to run Epitaph). While a run on the majors would have the chance to snuff out a punk band's fire, Bad Religion managed to put out some of their most instantly recognizable songs while on Epic, with classics like "Infected," "Stranger Than Fiction," and "21st Century (Digital Boy)" all coming out of that fruitful period. While the band had released plenty of great material before and after its stint on Epic, Punk Rock Songs is a great introduction to the band's work, and makes for an incredibly solid compilation of essential punk listening.
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AllMusic Review by Gregory Heaney