For the past three decades, No Use For A Name has put out a slew of covers, many tucked away on 7-inchess or compilations. With ‘Rarities Vol. 1 – The Covers’ they have finally put many of these tracks all in one place.
Among some of the stronger covers among the baker’s dozen which make up this collection are the ‘80s novelty hit “Turning Japanese” by the Vapots, a great interpretation of Cheap Trick’s “Dream Police” and a cover of Kiss’ piano ballad “Beth,” that is so earnest it’s hard to tell if they are being ironic or honestly feeling the emotions in the song.
There are a few uninspired takes here, especially when the band is playing songs from other punk groups, like Dag Nasty’s “I’ve Heard” or D.I.’s “Selwyn’s Got a Problem.” The covers of both The Munsters’ Theme and Laverne & Shirley’s “Making Our Dreams” also manage to come off as too kitschy and little more than filler. It’s their take on other genres where the band really manages to show off. But a few mediocre covers aside, it’s just good to have these songs in one collection.