various artists "how soon is now ? the songs of the smiths" (sorepoint)

in which a dozen kerrang!-friendly alternative-indie-grunge-sport-rock types cover the songs of the greatest band ever. but not only is this far from the carnage you would anticipate, (you can imagine all the bands on it are at their happiest donning hoodies, black tracksuit bottoms and going skateboarding round barbican, rather than hanging round muncipal cemeteries foppishly devouring all things joycean) but it is really rather good, and not just from "name" home bankers like million dead or hundred reasons.

much as i love matinee recordings (and i so do), and even acknowledging the glorious trilogy of songs by pipas, lovejoy and the would-be-goods on their recent morrissey / marr tribute, i have to say this is possibly the best smiths covers album so far... just compare garrison's "panic" with the guild league's version, for example, or hear the real menace in lomax's "handsome devil". a wicked surprise.