Sunday, November 03, 2013

Album Review: The Songs of Tony Sly: A Tribute

Title:  The Songs of Tony Sly: A Tribute (Fat Wreck Chords, Amazon, iTunes, Interpunk, Wikipedia)
Artist:  Various Artists

In August 2012 punk rock lost one of its great voices in Tony Sly.  Sly was best known for his work in No Use for a Name and in recent years had recorded as an acoustic solo artist.  The Songs of Tony Sly: A Tribute is a 26 song compilation (33 songs including the digital bonus tracks), of artists covering songs from Sly’s catalog both with No Use for a Name and solo with all of the profits going to the Tony Sly Memorial Fund. 

The record is a veritable who’s-who of the last 25 years of punk rock including the likes of Rise Against, Bad Religion, Alkaline Trio, Frank Turner, Swingin’ Utters, NOFX, and Lagwagon just to name a few.  The record’s standout moments include Rise Against’s (with some background vocals help from Jon Snodgrass) take on “For Fiona,” The Bouncing Souls’ rendition of “Homecoming,” Teenage Bottlerocket’s version of “Via Munich,” Frank Turner’s sparse interpretation of “Keira,” Brian Fallon of The Gaslight Anthem’s haunting adaptation of “Capo 4th Fret,” the Swingin’ Utters’ take on “Not Your Savior,” The Flatliners’ “Fireball,” Jon Snodgrass and the Peasants’ “On the Outside,” and Anti-Flag’s “Toaster in the Bathtub.”  What this record does best is showcase the songwriting talents of Tony Sly through the voices of his fans and friends.  It also makes me want to delve deeper into his catalog because it’s obvious that he had a special voice and something to say.  





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