| The "Saving Lives Never Sounded So Good" project is based in Southern California, and their main focus is... well, saving lives. With the American Red Cross, they set up blood drives to keep California's supply at a steady level. If you're eligible to donate (http://musicsaveslives.com/donorquality.htm), head over to SoCal between March 1st and July 5th and give a pint. Not only will your blood be used to help someone in dire need of it, but you'll receive a rather awesome comp as well. The CD features several of everyone's favorite bands, and some of their most popular songs. It's a mix of awesome already-released material, new versions of songs, and B-sides, so it's pretty sweet.
The tracks range from the innovative trashcan-banging of Street Drum Corp's "Wrecks" to Plain White T's catchy "Revenge," and those are just the first two tracks. Following is "Unusual" by Stacy Clark, a sort of female version of The Postal Service. Motion City Soundtrack's "Hangman" and Mae's "Someone Else's Arms" are without a doubt hits on their own, but it adds appeal to the comp for those who don't own the bands' original albums.
I'm surprised that I hadn't heard of This Is Me Smiling before this. Judging from "A Better Way To Fall In Love," it sounds like the scene should be jumping all over them. Same with Angela's Dish, a charming Australian group that should receive instant lovin' from American fans in the very near future. After their track is one of the aforementioned B-sides, the full-band version of The Starting Line's "Lasting Impressions." This was up for download on their Purevolume for a few days, but if you weren't able to snag it there or on a P2P network, now's your chance! And take it--it's a great track. Sherwood's donation to the comp is a slightly different version of "The Summer Sends Its Love," which saw its premiere on their self-titled EP in 2004. The actual differences are best left to describe by music gods and AP Music Theory students--to ordinary ears, it's simply another version of a wonderful song.
Starting the second half of the comp is "Way Away," a lovely acoustic Yellowcard song that everyone ignored in favor of "Ocean Avenue." I don't know what was on the minds of those Top 40 deejays as they made that choice, because this is acoustic at its best. "Love Is A Fast Song" (Copeland) and "Eyelash Wishes" (The All-American Rejects) are, of course, amazing for those who are already fans and those who (for some strange reason) haven't heard of either yet. Next is "Bonjour Bonjour" by Run Doris Run, who sound like they're well on their way to following in Fall Out Boy's footsteps. After that is another acoustic bit, this one from hardcore band Bleed the Dream. Sound neat? It very much is. So is "Philadelphia in the Spring Time," a Tokyo Rose song from their Japanese release. Finally, to close the comp is an intense Matches song and the infectiously good "City Lights" by Over It. It sounds like a demo version of the song, or some other version than that on Smartpunk's comp. The harmonies are much more prevalent on this one. I think Saving Lives got the better deal.
If you haven't gotten the idea already, this is one of the best comps I've had the pleasure of listening to--and it's not entirely composed of rare tracks, or a tribute, or anything like that. It's just really good. The best part is that the price of the CD is only 45 minutes of your time. Best trade ever. Your blood will help people in need, and you'll get a superb comp in return. And if you don't live in SoCal, donate blood anyway. You can find at least one blood drive every few months somewhere in your area. Because when it all comes down to it, music is pretty neat, but it doesn't save lives--people do.
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| SAVING LIVES NEVER SOUNDED SO GOOD
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1) Street Drum Corp - Wrecks
2) Plain White Ts - Revenge
3) Stacy Clark - Unusual
4) Motion City Soundtrack - Hangman
5) Mae - Someone Else's Arms
6) This Is Me Smiling
7) Angelas Dish - The Light On
8) The Starting Line - Lasting Impressions
9) Sherwood - The Summer Sends Its Love
10) Yellowcard - Way Away
11) Copeland - Love Is A Fast Song
12) The All-American Rejects -
13) Run Doris Run - Bonjour Bonjour
14) Cartel - The Minstrel's Prayer
15) Bleed the Dream - Broken Wings
16) Tokyo Rose - Philadelphia in the
17) The Matches - My Soft and Deep
18) Over It - City Lights