Bomp! was, in addition to being a pioneering historical-savvy rock fanzine in the 1970s, a label that put out some notable early punk singles, and (with its AIP and Voxx subsidiaries) reissued tons and tons of '60s garage/punk. In the 1980s and 1990s most of its contemporary releases were in the psych/pop/punk/garage revival mode. It is fair to say that this two-CD, 45-song compilation does not represent the label at its very best. Disc one is entirely devoted to material from Bomp! and its Voxx subsidiary, mixing vintage late-1970s cuts by the Dead Boys, Barracudas, Iggy & the Stooges, the Weirdos, the Germs, the Dils, DMZ, and the Heartbreakers with a mish-mash of more recent releases -- some from as late as the late '90s -- by the Brian Jonestown Massacre and several names that are obscure even by indie standards.
Disc two is entirely devoted to the relatively new, but similarly minded, Alive! and Total Energy subsidiaries, going all over the raw power map from the late 1960s to the late 1990s, from late-'60s psych-punk (the Deviants, the MC5, the Pink Fairies) and late-'70s punk (Swell Maps) to blues and jazz from the early 1970s Ann Arbor Blues & Jazz Festival (Sun Ra, Roosevelt Sykes) and '90s cuts by cult rockers like Davie Allan, Tav Falco, and Kim Fowley. One gets the feeling that it's serving as both a label best-of and a promo sampler for the label's overall catalog, and not entirely succeeding at either endeavor. The best rarities -- the Dils' "I Hate the Rich," the MC5's "Looking at You" single, and the Deviants' "Garbage" -- aren't as rare as they used to be. Also, the contributions by the lesser-knowns are often rather generic revivalist music -- whether indebted to punk, psych, pop, or whatever -- or tracks by significant performers that do not rate among their best work. There's some decent music here, but it's not a particularly cohesive package or engaging listen.