We've reached the last post in a seven-part series that reviewed and rated each of the twenty-one volumes in Time-Life's Modern Rock collection as pictured above. Please feel free to offer up your own appropriate thoughts and relevant observations in the Comments section.
EMI/Capitol Music Special Markets returned to make Modern Rock: Under The Covers its final discs in the series while Sue Cummings returns for one last liner notes assignment. I love most cover versions. Unfortunately, I do not care for the overwhelming majority of cover versions on this album though it could have been a little better had some of the cover versions already featured on other volumes of Modern Rock been held for this collection. Great idea, poor execution.
Chris Nelson scored the liner notes gig for the final two albums in Time-Life's Modern Rock series while Universal Music Special Markets appears one last time as disc manufacturer on Modern Rock: Nightclubbing. Check out that tracklisting as it appears on the rear cover. I count four listed remixes, 12-inch versions, extended dance versions and long versions. How exciting! But you know how you'd buy a 12-inch single, rush home and throw it on the turntable only to find out it was the dang album version? (The first example of that sort of deception that comes to mind is the David Bowie "Let's Dance" 12-inch.) That's kind of what listening to Nightclubbing was like to some extent. I know that only four tracks promised to be something extra but with a title like Nightclubbing, one kind of expects more. But one would ultimately be disappointed as one listened to this album. As it turned out, only the King and Baltimora tracks appear in the versions promised though, the 3:44 version of Yazoo's "Situation" could also count as it is technically a remix by François Kevorkian albeit an edit of his 5:40 remix. At 3:59, Alphaville's "Dance With Me" is merely the album version; the actual Long Version aka Empire Remix is 8:14. Even stepping back, taking off my boogie shoes and listening to Modern Rock: Nightclubbing as merely the twentieth volume in the series, and I really like a dozen of the tracks on it, I can't really rate it higher than a
Vintage remixes of songs from
Modern Rock: Nightclubbing:
Modern Rock: Nightclubbing:
Which brings us to our final album, the twenty-first chapter in this weeklong saga. Of course, Warner Special Products handled the manufacturing and what not in-house - that's what huge media companies do. Before I move on to the songs herein, a question: Did anyone else notice we went backward in time over the last few discs copyright date-wise? There were two albums in Part 6 that each had copyright dates of 2002 but the final three discs in the series based on the matrix numbers all have 2001 copyright dates. What? What's that you say? I'm all about the music? Well, of course, I am. The twenty-four songs on Modern Rock: Club '80s are really good and in my unpublished book of All-Time Personal Favorites, you'll find twenty-one of them. But wait; Didn't we just have a club-themed album title? As I was listening to Disc 1, I kept thinking to myself: "Yo! I just heard this song!" Every single song gave me that feeling so, by the end of the disc, I'm thinking they simply repackaged a disc from one of the earlier volumes and I made a note to myself that read:
compare Disc 1 to all other discs in series it might be a duplicate.
And then I dived into Disc 2 and all was right again; I didn't even matter that the single version of "Perfect Way" was included instead of the album version. But then that eerie deja vu sensation came again with track 4, then track 5 and on through track 12 "Love Will Tear Us Apart" and I would have bet both of my dollars that it had already appeared on another album in the Modern Rock collection. At the end of the disc ten-minutes later, I added +2 right after Disc 1 on the note I made for myself earlier and then immediately proceeded to compare the track listings of the discs one at a time, discovering that an entire disc hadn't been duplicated yet eighteen of the tracks on Modern Rock: Club '80s had previously appeared on other volumes in the series and my mind wasn't playing tricks on me. All the songs save "Let's Dance" on Disc 1 were making their second appearance in the collection and I had mentioned "Let's Dance" just above so that's probably why it sounded familiar. Those seven tracks, 4-10, on Disc 2 had also appeared on previous albums in the series. It was nuts! Track nine on Disc 2 is "Situation" was just on Disc 2 of Modern Rock: Nightclubbing! That being said, four of the duplicated songs appear on Club '80s in slightly different versions from their prior appearance. I'll lodge the same complaint against Club '80s that I lodged against Nightclubbing - Where are all the special club versions? Throughout the entire run of Modern Rock, album versions were included more than 90% of the time but when it comes to what turned out to be the final volume in the long running collection someone opted to have the four-minute single edit of Bowie's "Let's Dance" instead of the epic 7:37 album version? Come. On. Man. That jam still holds up thirty-four years later! Let's figure this one out: I like all 24 songs but I love 21 of them and 18 of the songs were already on other Modern Rock albums but 4 of them appear in different versions and single versions were used for 4 of them instead of album versions. I should give Modern Rock: Club '80s a 2 for being 75% reused tracks but I'm all about the music and Club '80s, though redundant and repetitive and redundant in the context of the collection, as a whole is still a great listen and I should give it a 5 and yet after all the flipping and flopping, Modern Rock ends with a