Various - Another Year On The Streets Vol. 3 (Cover Artwork)
Staff Review


Another Year On The Streets Vol. 3 (2004)


Finally, a label gets the sampler concept right. Every single one of the 15 tracks on here is previously unreleased or off an upcoming album that isn't in stores yet. Of course, this could [and does] mean that some bands just chip in throwaway tracks. But there's usually a few gems to make the sampler's cheap price worthwhile [and there is].

The compilation's 1-2 punch of new tracks from Down To Earth Approach and Hot Rod Circuit show that this autumn is going to be the autumn of poppy-emo-punk for Vagrant. Both songs are upbeat and catchy as all hell. But with the good comes the bad, and that would be the next two tracks - an unreleased Dashboard Confessional acoustic number that goes nowhere, and a terribly recorded cover of the Psychedelic Furs' "Heaven" by Alkaline Trio. The band does a decent job of covering the song, but I'd much rather hear it sung by Danny than Matt. Matt seems to struggle on the vocals, especially with the lower notes.

The biggest highlight of the record is the new Hey Mercedes song, "Roulette Systems." This is easily the best song the band's written since "Que Shiraz" or "Stay Six" [my other personal favorites], and is chock full of rhythm changes and powerful lines like "Sometimes I feel like I'm on fire / and sometimes, well, you're water." This song alone makes this CD worth the purchase. Luckily, it's followed up by an unreleased Audio Learning Center song, "New Cavalry," the second true gem on this rarities disc.

The only real, true duds on here come right in the middle. From Autumn To Ashes' terrible butchering of Nirvana's "Territorial Pissings" is cringeworthy, and the back-to-back songs from Seconds To Go and No Motiv made me wonder where one song stopped and another started. Luckily, the rest of the disc is much more fun to listen to, and has a rather good flow.

It's nice to see a label putting this much effort into a cheapo sampler. As a bonus, the CD comes with Another Year On The Screen Vol. 2, a collection of the label's more recent music videos, as well as some live footage from Reggie and the Full Effect and No Motiv. It's a nice addition, and makes the whole package rather appealing, considering it's reasonable pricetag.

Hot Rod Circuit - Inhabit [clip]

Saves The Day - When It Isn't Like It Should Be
Moneen - Pleasantly Saying The Most Terrible Things