'Russian Roulette', taken from Jesse Malin's covers album 'On Your Sleeve' proves the power of classic punk with Malin injecting some racing rock fun into the fierce punk anthem. The tune is delivered with passion and aggression, recalling Malin's early days in punk group D Generation, while his music these days has a more calm rock singer/songwriter bent. The percussion is frantic and fractious and the guitars ring out with verve and gusto causing the whole tune to burst with energy and excitement. Whether it lives upto the original is perhaps a question best left unconsidered, but Malin really seems to make 'Russian Roulette' his own enough to captivate the listener, which is victory enough.
The fact that the b-side is another cover is a little disappointing; it would have been nice to hear some of Malin's own material after the covers album, but it's a sweet and touching take on the crazy Flaming Lips tune with aching guitars, tender vocals and sighing harmonies.