Although many would disagree, I’m a fan of anthologies, particularly tributes. Genre-crossing collections can be especially frustrating, though, since instead of the usual mix of great covers with bland by-the-numbers tracks, there’s also the addition of poorly translated songs. This is surprisingly true for Punk Goes Pop 3. Surprising because the previous collections have had their misses, but they’re usual a solid offering for what they are. But this release features a number of screamo/pseudo-hardcore artists that sometimes blatantly miss the mark.
Breathe Carolina’s cover of Jay Sean f/Lil Wayne’s “Down,” the opening track, is a prime example. No new flavor and the song is a standard dance track, something that’d fit right in with any house mix. Funny, I expected some form of punk. Artist Vs. Poet’s attempt at Lady Gaga’s “Bad Romance” is similar but picks up at the end enough to warrant multiple listens.
But the real treat of the album is Woe, Is Me’s version of Katy Perry’s “Hot N Cold.” Adding a large dose of rock with a pinch of humor, the band really make the track their own. “Bulletproof,” originally by La Roux and redone by Family Force 5, is another one to check out.
One last track to note is This Century’s version of M.I.A.’s “Paper Planes.” The good news is that they can actually annunciate, helping you understand the lyrics. The bad news is…well, now you can understand the lyrics. (P.S. Fuck M.I.A.)