Whether they like it or not, the careers of many bands are defined by their debut albums. Violent Femmes are such a band.

Whether they like it or not, the careers of many bands are defined by their debut albums. Violent Femmes are such a band. The trio's 19-year-old eponymous debut is home to such classics as "Blister in the Sun," "Kiss Off," "Add It Up," and "Gone Daddy Gone." Yet for all those groups that peaked with their introductory efforts, few will ever see their debut restored, repackaged, and expanded in as magnificent a fashion as seen here. Not only do singer/guitarist Gordon Gano, bassist Brian Ritchie, and percussionist Victor DeLorenzo sound as fresh and snotty as ever, but their best work is accompanied by a fat booklet and, more important, 26 extra tracks—including live cuts, demos, and a priceless early interview—spread over two discs. A must for diehards and the curious alike.—WO

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