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NOFX/Rancid: BYO Split Series Volume 3BYO Split Series Volume 3 (2002)
Reviewer Rating: 4
Contributed by: adamAdam
(others by this writer | submit your own)
Enthusiastic comic book readers are called “fanboys” by that industry. These aren’t just readers, they’re they type of people who will have discussions about story scenarios that wouldn’t happen within the bounds of the ongoing story lines. They have the most pointless arguments, along the lines of “Spiderman couldn’t beat Batman” and so fourth.
When BYO Records announced that the third volume of their scene-documenting split series would feature NOFX and Rancid, the readers of this site had almost the same type of conversation. The arguments came from all angles, Fat Wreck fans backing their champion, Hellcat devotees with equal furor from their side of the ring, jaded punks who had long abandoned both Epitaph bands as “too-mainstream” grumbled their disapproval, and those of us who were fans of both simply held our tongues and waited.
Any good comic writer will know that there are two ways to write a crossover. On one hand, since the confines of the normal story have been dropped anyways, there could simply be a poorly set up fight to pander to the fanboy’s speculations. On the other hand, a smart writer will pull off something clever, write a good story, and throw the readers for the loop. In the case of this split, Fat Mike and Tim Armstrong did throw their fans for a loop and decided to cover each other’s songs. That silenced many of the premature critics, since every song features the musicianship of one band combined with the song-writing skills of the other. While I would have loved to see the bands put some original material on here, their covers are pretty fun. Taking the project from that angle also removes a lot of the pressure from the bands. On the downside it makes this disc more of a novelty, but it also means you don’t go into this looking for anything prolific. Here’s how it breaks down, track by track:
NOFX - “I’m The One”
NOFX – “Olympia, WA”
NOFX – “Tenderloin”
NOFX – “Antennas”
NOFX – “Corazon De Oro”
NOFX – “Radio”
Rancid – “The Moron Brothers”
Rancid – “Stickin’ In My Eye”
Rancid – “Bob”
Rancid – “Don’t Call Me White”
Rancid – “The Brews”
Rancid – “Vanilla Sex”
Too many people expected this to an epic masterpiece that plays out their fanboy fantasies, but and that’s not what the bands set out to make here. This is one of the most fun records I’ve heard in a while and will please fans of both bands. With Fat Mike writing the liner notes and Tim Armstrong putting the art together, this is an amazing document of the current punk scene.
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