The Killed By Death series is the mother of all DIY punk comp series.
Not only are there oodles of volumes, there are oodles of people putting compilations on the market under that name! When you buy a Killed By Death comp you have no idea whether you are hearing dug up classics, or contemporary music served up as forgotten treats.
But one thing is for sure: Killed By Death #1 is the comp that started it all, and has been reissued in many forms, with different tracks. One version had a string of Beastie Boys tracks on it back when they were HC.
This is the first time I have even seen a Killed By Death comp on CD. The music is timeless, and the tracks are great, so what's to lose?
- Mad - I Hate Music 1978 The Mad were considered Dead Boys wannabees when they first surfaced in NYC, but with a name that came from a brand of dope being sold in the hallowed Ave. B area, they had instant cred. I Hate Music used saxophones better than Fear ever did, and is responsible for one of the best 'alienate everyone' slogans ever created: "I hate music, I love noise."
- Hollywood Squares - Hillside Strangler 1978 After my copy of this 7inch disappeared, I had to wait a long time before hearing this blood raising track again on this comp. I think the Hollywood Squares Hillside Strangler is way better than the completely different song of the same name by Child Molesters.
- Slugs - Problem Child 1980 Rik Rivits played guitar for the Slugs around the same time he sang in Corpse Grinders (with Killer Kane from the NY Dolls). The Slugs released 2 singles: Problem Child b-w Never Should of Told you, and I'm in Love with you again b-w Suspicion. The band consisted of Mark Gotkin-Drums, Kenny Lewitt-Guitar, Lenny Lazer-Bass / Vocals, Rick Rivets-Lead Guitar and Ray Gilbert-Lead Vocals. The song is power pop.
- Vox Pop - Cab Driver This song has sick guitars that leave the melody broken on the ground. Vox Pop included members of 45 Grave, Wierdos and the Bags. Would fit in a mix tape with noise bands.
- Controllers - (The Original) Neutron Bomb Originally released on a 7inch (the 'What! EP') with a Bags track and The Eyes Don't Talk To Me. Controllers were pissed at The Wierdos for stealing the idea and releasing their 'Neutron Bomb' single, so they started calling their track (The Original) Neutron Bomb.
- Dogs - Slash Your Face 1978 Driving with guitar and bass following each other, the bassist plays like Frank Dehler of Boston punk band Unnatural Axe (that is a good thing!). The guitar reminds me of Greg Ginn in early Black Flag.
- Gasoline - Killer Man 1977 As far as what made it to this shore, France was represented in the punk days by Gasoline, Metal Urbain, and Stinky Toys. Gasoline sound a lot like Metal Urbain on this track.
- Kraut - Matinee NYC band talking about having sex at the drive-in. Part of the loud fast rules scene spearheaded by The Stimulators, who had a young Harley Flanagan (later Cro-Mags) playing drums like a madman.
- Child Molestors - (I'm the) Hillside Strangler 1978 Very raw recording that sounds like a live board tape, this song nonetheless has become a classic.
- Cold Cock - I Wanna Be Rich Starts off sounding like Beatles Helter Skelter, then becomes The Saints I'm Stranded before assuming its own identity as a working class punk sing along tune.
- Authorities - Radiation Masturbation He the kind of OC melodic sound that put many of Mytic's skate punk bands on the map. If you lived in SF, Mad Parade would come to mind, if you lived in NYC, The Misfits.
- Authorities - I Hate Cops I have always love this song, especially during the period during 1984 that I thought Ill Repute was the finest Oxnard (NardCore) band in the world. I Hate Cops evokes pure joy. It is fast, and has real fun lyrics you will sing along with.
- Nuns - Decadent Jew (live) 1977 A live recording of this SF band. The only band to use keyboards on the comp. In this case that means an over amplified electric piano banged out one key at a time, sounding like a warning signal at a train crossing.
- Users - Sick of You 1978 From the English label Raw Records. Damaged Goods did a Raw compilation. Sick of You is a killer track one way or another.
- Vicious Visions - I Beat You A Swedish band. This song is considered a bonus track and does not appear on all versions of this comp. it is a good track, worth checking for on the version you want to buy!