Although label after label has tried to compress the "punk era" into tidy collections, those compilations are typically hamstrung by licensing restrictions and tiny budgets. Leave it to Rhino to put out a four-CD collection that actually evokes the era perfectly with artists well-known (Wire, Ramones, Buzzcocks, Patti Smith, Black Flag), obscure (Subway Sect, The Motors, Skids) and peripheral (Joe Jackson, Eddie & The Hot Rods, The Cure), all while drawing lexicon links between seemingly disparate songs like Joy Division's "Warsaw" and "Mr. Big" by The Dils. Plus, "No Thanks!" manages to include more songs by The Undertones than by The Clash (and none from the Sex Pistols). Now, that's punk.
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