In the 90s, with the growing popularity of alternative music, southern California seemed home to another sub-genre of alternative. A short-lived phenomenon known as ska. A lot of the bands that picked up on it were underground, as the sound was hard to gain popularity with. However, some were able to make it big on the horn-laced reggae. Mainstream giants included Reel Big Fish, Sublime, and the Mighty Mighty Bosstones, just to name a few. The Christian music realm picked up on it too, with bands like Five Iron Frenzy, The Insyderz, and a band that ended up being one of Tooth & Nail's best and most well-known artists: The Orange County Supertones.
With six full-length albums under their belt, there's no shortage of great songs to pick from for The Ultimate Collection. And the songs that were chosen do make for an elite track list. All the songs the Supertones are best known for are present, like "Supertones Strike Back" (the best choice for the opening track), "Away From You," and "Jury Duty." And songs were taken from their debut The Adventures of the Orange County Supertones all the way up to "LP number 5," Hi-Fi Revival. However, it leaves the avid Supertones fan wondering why nothing was taken from their last studio album, The Revenge of the O.C. Supertones. If nothing else, I expected to at least hear "We Shall Overcome" here. But alas, it is not so. Nor is there anything from their worship album, Faith of a Child. Sure it was kind of a different album for the band, but I think an ultimate collection would be more complete with something from that album as well.
When it comes down to it, the only bad thing about this compilation is the short length. Sure, having two discs is nice, but if Tooth & Nail is going to call this "The Ultimate Collection" (which is part of a series of EMI CMG artist releases), I think more songs from the band is necessary - especially when so many great songs were left out in the first place. If you're a late-blooming Supertones fan (such as myself), picking up this collection wouldn't be a bad idea. For those who already have every Supertones album, you might just want to pass this by.- Review date: 3/7/08, written by Scott Fryberger
Record Label: Tooth & Nail Records
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