Top 10 Punk Compilations

07 Dec

Top 10 Punk Compilations

Number 10
Tooth and Nail
Label: Upsetter Records
Released: 1978

I remember seeing this at my Uncle’s place when it first came out. It was the first L.A. or West Coast punk album I ever saw or heard. So, I’m including it for sentimental reasons. Mostly rough & melodic LA punk rock, Germs, Flesh Eaters, Middle Class and Negative Trend stand out. Classic compilation.

Rating: *** ** three out of five stars.

Number 9
Rise Above: 24 Black Flag Songs to Benefit the West Memphis Three
Label: Sanctuary Records
Released: 2002

I dig Henry’s new version of Rise Above, Chuck D’s intro brings a new level of intensity to the track. The track smokes. Henry’s dialogue before/between songs is real cool, a quick way to get acquainted with the case and still enjoy the music. Rollins really stepped up his game, this is the best I’ve heard him in years. And he did it for a great cause.

Rating: *** ** three out of five stars.

Number 8
Let Them Eat Jellybeans
Label: Alternative Tentacles
Released: 1981

Let Them Eat Jellybeans “17 Extracts From Americas Darker Side,” is one of the earliest compilations of underground music from the Bay Area, and its original release included an insert of all of the punk bands known to be playing in the U.S. and Canada at that time. The first side of the album features songs by a number of bands that formed the canon of the Frisco hardcore punk in the 1980s, while the second side features more of an art rock sound.

Rating: ** *** three out of five stars.

Number 7
Cracks in the Sidewalk
Label: New Alliance Records
Released: 1980

Contains the Black Flag track Clocked In.

Rating: *** ** Three out of five stars.

Number 6
Rodney on the ROQ
Label: Poshboy Records
Released: 1980

I originally bought this to complete my Flip Side magazine collection (a free issue inside), but was stoked to hear one of the very best songs ever written – “Bloodstains” (Agent Orange), Amoeba by the Adolescents, The Circle Jerks do Wild In The Streets, and Black Flag does No Values!!

Rating: *** ** three out of five stars.

Number 5
The Decline of Western Civilization
Label: Slash Records
Released: 1981

I remember when this was first released; I had the movie poster on my wall and the soundtrack in constant rotation on my turntable. I believe it was scheduled to open at the Nuart Theatre; I picked up their newspaper listings that came out every month, at Licorice Pizza. I had the date circled, and I was raring to go. A week before Decline was to open my Uncle Rick offered to take me. Here’s where I get bummed: my Mom tells him “No.” I wasn’t, quite yet, fifteen and she reminded me that I had to be seventeen to see it, and she mentioned a few recent police riots at the local shows. I tried to plead my case, and my Uncle promised to look after me, but still “No.” As it turns out the police were outside the theater when the movie, let out, and a small-scale riot did, indeed, ensue; to Mom was right.

Rating: *** ** three out of five stars.

Number 4
Total Noise
Label: Total Noise Records
Released: 1982

I can’t remember how or when I got this exactly. It may have been a magazine freebie; it was my first exposure to The Gonads, and Dead Generation. Stand out track: Blitz – Voice of a Generation!!

Rating: **** * four out of five stars.

Number 3
Punk and Disorderly
Label: Poshboy Records
Released: 1982

Great collection of music, I never understood why the Dead Kennedys were on here, though, maybe to help boost American sales? Anyway, great stuff. Stand out track: Blitz – Somebody’s Gonna Die!!

Rating: **** * four out of five stars.

Number 2
Someone Got Their Head Kicked In
Label: BYO Records
Released: 1982

BYO’s very first release, and classic punk album, Someone Got Their Head Kicked In is still one of the best comps around. Some of LA’s “mega stars” and some newcomers share this record; mostly melodic punk rock / HC. While the big bands like Social Distortion or the Adolescents have great tracks, some of the “smaller” bands still have some difficulties.

Rating: **** * four out of five stars.

Number 1
Public Service
Label: Smoke 7 Records
Released: 1981

Like most of my record collection back then, I picked this up at Moby Disc. I saw the ad for it in Flipside in early 1981, and it was a chance to add some more Bad Religion recordings to my collection. I don’t remember if this was first or the Bad Religion EP was, but I ended up owning both. Another reason I bought this was the Circle One tracks.

Rating: **** * four out of five stars.

Honorable Mentions: Charred Remains, and Carry On Oi!




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One Response to “Top 10 Punk Compilations”

  1. 1
    Roger Dean Says:

    Great list!

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