It’s good to see that someone finally decided to make a SMACK/Claude tribute album. Surprisingly, this comes from French record label Alive and Kickin’. Honestly, SMACK unfortunately never achieved any success in France (although their “Live Desire” album was also released on French record label High Dragon Records), and I wonder if they ever did outide of their homeland Finland. Nevertheless, the impact and influence they had has been huge and invaluable, from GUNS N’ ROSES to NIRVANA among others.
Californian punk rock’n’rollers MINK DAGGERS open this tribute album with a great version of the STOOGES-esque “Some Fun”, just before The STREET WALKIN’ CHEETAHS show us that they still know how to rock hard with “Criminal.” PLASTIC TEARS‘ version of “Run Rabbit Run” sounds quite similar to the original, but at least it sounds good. LEFTOVERS offer us “Good Morning Headache” while DEAD FURIES rock to “Pass That Bottle.”
One of my favourite SMACK songs, probably their most glam rockin’ one, “Buy This Town” is done with style by HIRED GUNS, a band that was formed especially for this tribute album, with Matt (Alive and Kickin’ records boss on vocals)! Italian folk singer CHRIS covers “Trust On You” in an interesting NIKKI SUDDEN way, while EDUARDO E. MARTINEZ & THE THUNDERCLOUDS lean to the hard rock side of SMACK with “I Want Somebody.”
STREET WALKIN’ CHEETAH‘s Frank Meyer and Dino Everett offer us a semi acoustic version of “Little Sister”, creating an atmosphere reminding of The DOORS, Claude probably would have loved this version! ANITA CHELLAMAH AND TIMO KALTIO‘s version of “Mad Animal Shuffle” is an amazing acoustic blues bringing desert images to mind, great to hear the voice of The CHERRY BOMBZ again!
Swedish glam punks TRENCH DOGS teamed up with HIRED GUNS to bring us a cool sleazy cover of “Street Hog Blues.”Argentina is also on this record, with CORAZONES MUERTOS and their high energy street punk version of “Can You Dig it.” EDUARDO MARTINEZ is back with his GANG and a pretty good version of “Time Of Wine and Flowers.” Paris’ beautiful losers GUTTERCATS could only fit on here, with their stripped down version of The FISHFACES‘ “Wide Awake”, and The FLAMING SIDEBURNS also chose the acoustic road with “Zombie Shitheel.”
Whether bands decided to stick to the originals or offer more personal versions of these fantastic songs, you won’t find any bad covers on “Smacked!” Successful gamble! /Laurent C.