In preparation for the Kiss and Devo Tribute show at Oade’s Hidden Camel this Friday, I will be reviewing each CD. First up is “No More Tomorrow Baby! A Tribute to Kiss”.

I have to preface this review with a couple of disclaimers: 1. I have not heard the original Kiss songs. 2. Nor have I heard a lot of other material by the bands on this compilation and 3. I will be reviewing this CD on the merit of the songs as they were performed and not by how they differed from or sounded like the originals.

There were a few problems that I had with this compilation. First, the consistency of the audio quality is all over the place. Some songs like “Cold Gin” by The Hat Madder are top notch quality. Everything about the song from an audio quality standpoint is perfect. But then, we get to The Lightning Bugs cover of “Detroit Rock City”. This song is by far the worst on this (or both) compilations. I’m no audiophile by anyone’s standards but I can’t enjoy the track if it sounds like shit.

I’ll get away from all the negativity for a second. Being that each band recorded a cover in their respective style, I have to say that there are some excellent covers to be heard. The alternative rock style take on “Sure Know Something” by the Breakups is well done. Each member puts their all into the song, as if it was their own song. The different textures of guitars including the spacey verse parts to the hard-edged noisy exit, show the versatility of that particular aspect of the band as well as the band as a whole.

The best of the hard rocking came from Young Dan Tucker, with their cover of “Psycho Circus”. Complete with explosions and a Young Dan Tucker chant at the end, they went balls-out awesome with their cover. If there is one band that represents the sex, drugs and rock and roll of the Kiss Army, it’s Young Dan Tucker.

“Goin’ Blind” by Stargrazer shows that this compilation is not just for the hard rockers. The backwards effects, ambiance, synths and all around dissonant tone of the recording make it something unique. This song should be on the Devo compilation…If only Devo wrote “Goin’ Blind” instead of Kiss.

The CD ends with The Cartridge Family’s take on “Rock and Roll All Night”. It seems that tCF have finally captured their live show craziness on record with this recording. The song starts out pretty straight and is performed well by all involved. But by the end of the song, about 20 different voices are screaming the chorus and it devolves into a wish wash of voices, guitar feedback and Cale Sauter muttering something about Black Sabbath 4. The song, as it stands, is so-so. But with everything else that is going on, it doesn’t really matter what the final product is with tCF. You get an almost 5 minute party for the ears.

This compilation has a lot going for it. There are many different styles tried here, some to a great degree of success and others are complete failures. This compilation is a great way for Lansing bands to showcase their talents and expand their catalogs. From alternative rock to hardcore punk to old fashioned Kiss-style rock and roll, I think the bands tried their best. That I will not disagree with. If you like Kiss and Lansing local music, check this out. Otherwise, it may not be for you. Maybe a track here or there but the compilation as a whole will only serve the die-hard Lansing music fans.