Boasting contributions from U2, Kiss, Tom Waits, and Metallica, star power alone set the bar pretty high for this set—maybe too high, as it is sadly weighted down by lackluster performances.

Boasting contributions from U2, Kiss, Tom Waits, and Metallica, star power alone set the bar pretty high for this set—maybe too high, as it is sadly weighted down by lackluster performances. As expected, there's a number of carbon copies. Some —like the Offspring's "I Wanna Be Sedated" and Rancid's "Sheena Is a Punk Rocker"—succeed on energy alone; others, like the Pretenders' take on "Something to Believe In," are rather blasé. About half of those making the tracks their own achieve positive results: The Chili Peppers are victorious, gently funking up "Havana Affair," while Eddie Vedder & Zeke deliver a high point in "I Believe in Miracles." U2 ("Beat on the Brat"), Rob Zombie ("Blitzkrieg Bop"), and Garbage ("I Just Wanna Have Something to Do") perfectly walk the line between putting too much and too little of themselves in the track. Funny enough, it's little-known L.A. act Rooney and a solo, hidden track from Chili Pepper John Frusciante that are among the most satisfying (see story, page nine).—WO

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