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Better Off La Peste

BA 11104CD BA 11104CD

Some pretty classic stuff on here, circa 1977-78. La Peste were legendary in Boston and "Better Off Dead" cemented their status across the universe forever. This compilation is well done as well, the only weird part is in the Johnny Angel liner notes where he fantasizes that he was the band's first choice to replace Peter Dayton in 1979. Dude, that "angel dust" you're smoking (no relation, I'm sure) is heavy stuff, you might to lay off for awhile... "La Peste were one of the first, one of the more abrasive and the most musically advanced of Boston's original '70s punk banks. They made one of the first great Boston punk singles, 'Better Off Dead,' well known among the 'Killed By Death' crowd. Better Off La Peste contains tons of never-before released tracks and is completely different from the horrible quality bootleg of years ago and is for the most part different from the long out of print Matador LP from the '90s. This album fits like a glove next to the Bacchus Archives East Coast reissues by The Thrills and The Rattlers, along with our mondo early LA punk reissue catalog. On songs like 'Don't Wanna Die in My Sleep Tonight' and the evergreen classic 'Better Off Dead,' the band honed a dense, edgy three-piece sound that belied the sparse instrumentation creating it. They were masters of the subtle, repeating riff and the open string drone, marking the path followed -- in different ways -- by bands like U2, The Smiths and Husker Du. La Peste songs were often filmic, and they could sway lyrically from the film noir to quickie power pop confessionals. During the years they spent in Boston, La Peste were one of the most popular and critically loved groups on the scene, and their live shows never failed to generate real excitement, a sense that this was an event you were witnessing. In that respect, they had the stuff of stardom. But like most of the others I'd put in that list of the dozen best Boston bands, their star never really ascended." -- Joe Harvard