Bought a new bellydancing tape yesterday, in an attempt to keep up with my exercise routine. Watching the tape has certainly improved my dancing ( in clubs) by a bit, and since dancing and swimming is the only exercise I really enjoy, then the tapes fit the bill. Also picked up the Re-Covered in Nails NIN tribute - used, thank goodness. I really only got it because En Esch and Guenter and covering Terrible Lies and I knew they'd do a good job...I already had RIB's Sin cover. (upon listening to the disc, i found the version I had was different) I felt silly picking the damn thing up though, as Cleo's reputation for putting out too many crappy tribute album precedes them by several miles. Guilty pleasure I guess.
What I've noticed on these albums, is Cleo will put the most well known and best artists at the beginning of the disc to hook you, then as the CD goes on the acts gets progressively weaker. Like they're fooling anyone. Razed IN Black is on just about every disc they put out these days...because they are the one good thing the record label still has going for them. And, while I am glad that RIB is getting so much exposure this way, I think that RIB's reputation would be better served by allowing them to put out more original music instead of bombarding them an endless stream of covers.
How many metallica tributes do we really need? Or tributes for NIN? And now they're doing a tribute to Manson??? I start drawing the line when they have no where left to reach for tributes when they start covering existing artists inside the genre. They are getting so cannibalistic. I've also seen them reuse the same tracks on various CDs. I have 3 compilations of theirs, and on each one there is the same Die Krupps track...not even one of the better tracks either.
So anyway, I listen to the disc and Mike laughs because I said that some of the songs were very close to being almost good. but, that's the best way to describe it. Some songs were musically lacking a certain punch, but the biggest problem I saw was the vocals. Trent's music is inherently a tortured, emotional medium and needs to be recognized as such. Most of the vocalists totally missed the feeling necessary to carry the song. I'm sorry, but when you are singing HURT, you need to at least do the song the service of sounding PAINED at the very least....the typical unemotional creaky vocals don't cut it.
It was disappointing as some bands were very close to doing a decent job. There were a couple other tracks that weren't as well done as RIB or Slick Idiot, but were GOOD. There were also a couple that sunk within the first few bars. I supoose that this will wind up a review soon....
What I wish Cleo would do is if ANYTHING, put out more comps like Unquiet Grave, or Dark Noise. I have almost all those discs, and for the most part have been pleased with the group as a whole. They would also do well to sign some of these unknown unsigned bands that wind up on such discs to get some new blood flowing in what seems to be the rotting corpse of a tribute machine. They don't seem to know where they want to go with the record label these days...and that's kinda sad as they used to be the premier home of so many goth bands. I'm hard pressed to come up with the names of any bands signed to them beyond RIB, and Spahn Ranch...and Electric Hellfire Club. If there are any more, Cleo would do well to advertise that "yes, we still have actual musicians on our record label" instead of relying on their backcatalogue to put together CDs and commissioning musicians who are busy with their own work to remix and cover everyone else.