by John Franck
Once again, you gotta hand it to the record companies. They manage to find astonishingly inventive ways to rip off consumers. In the tradition of such commercial farces as The Very Best of Sting & The Police(!) comes what appears to be a new Perry Farrell solo release unimpressively titled Rev. But wait a minute, when did Farrell actually make a solo record, you may ask? Well, he hasnt really. What we have here is a "best of" Janes Addiction-Porno for Pyros double combo piece with two new tracks thrown in for good measure.
So why is this album being released under the Perry Farrell moniker? Perhaps a marketing consideration? Wait a minute I think I get it. Farrell having recently signed to Virgin, Rev appears to be some sort of contractual obligation to Warner Bros.
Corporate manipulation aside, the Janes material is awe-inspiring. Bummer is, it comes on the heels of last years Kettle Whistle; J.A. finds itself sadly underrepresented here. Worthy of mention is the 12-inch remix of "Been Caught Stealing" and a cover of the Grateful Deads "Ripple." As for the newies, there is the title track, "Rev" (credited to Farrell), which features both Tom Morello of Rage Against the Machine and the barely breathing Chili Pepper, John Frusciante, on guitar. An interesting anomaly, "Rev" never quite caches steam. Its adequate. Theres also a Farrell drum n bass reworking of Led Zeppelins "Whole Lotta Love" which is kinda silly. As for the Porno for Pyros tracks, they cover all the basics, including "Cursed Male," "Pets" and a cover of "Satellite of Love."
What becomes painfully apparent here is how well the Janes Addiction material has stood up over time and just how ordinary the Pyros material sounds in comparison. As we usher in another millennium, one cannot overemphasize the legacy that Janes left behind. As demonstrated by three glorious studio albums and a reunion tour two years ago, its a void that has yet to be filled.
So whens the next reunion, boys?