Compilations are undeniably tough nuts to crack because, naturally, each band contributes only one track. This gives the powers that be the unenviable task of choosing which songs should represent each artist. Pick the work that the public most easily associates with each artist and you’re lambasted for creating a Now That’s Music! collection. Pick obscure, oft-neglected and unreleased material and you end up with a record only super-fans with too much disposable income will purchase. It’s a fine, uncompromising line.
Kemado has chosen an interesting roster (including Black Mountain, Fucking Champs, Diamond Nights, and Parchman Farm) and an even more curious sample of works for Invaders. For example, High on Fire contributes the radio-edit version of “Devilution,” from its 2005 release, Blessed Black Wings. I understand that CDs offer a limited space, but can’t we make room for Matt Pike’s solo, for Satan’s sake? Appearances by Witch, Wolfmother and Pelican are well deserved, albeit uninspired — they’re all unadulterated album cuts (eight of the eighteen tracks here have been released on the bands’ full-lengths). Big Business’s contribution is a muddy live track that was previously unreleased for good reason, and Dungen‘s flute-infused jamming fails to break up the metal monotony. Saviours‘ thrash-fest “Circle of Servants Bodies” commences the album, but it’s the heaviest, thrashiest, most punishing track on the collection, lending merit to a bait-and-switch lawsuit against Kemado.
Whatever country these bands are invading, I hope it’s one with an easily toppled autocrat and pervasive discontent among its inhabitants. Oh, wait, that doesn’t necessarily spell easy victory, it turns out.
Label: http://www.kemado.com/Streaming audio: http://www.myspace.com/invaderscomp