Songs From the Penalty Box
Tooth & Nail
The fifth installment in the Penalty Box series, showcasing Tooth & Nail’s artist roster, offers a pretty convincing argument for the label’s diversity. Although most bands on here could be filed under underground West Coast punk or angular emo, such descriptions fail to do justice to the label’s multifaceted face. Sure, there are the rather straightforward punk acts here, such as the feel-good Ace Troubleshooter, the DIY post-punk Hangnail, or the generally great MxPx. But there is also electronica duo Mortal delivering its genuinely scary heavy metal take on Suicide, the sixties sleaze-punk of Havalina, the Smiths-like Fine China, and the naive pop of Bon Voyage. As a testament to Tooth & Nail’s willingness to sign whoever they like, regardless of musical genres or current fads, this sampler is nothing short of brilliant. However, there’s little new to be found on here, with only four previously unreleased tracks out of the 23 songs included. As such, it’s only marginally interesting, and the bands’ full albums will always be preferred. Still, a decent overview for nothing more than a fiver, and well worth investing in if you’re unfamiliar with the label and want an easy general introduction to it.
Tooth & Nail Records: http://www.toothandnail.com