By Will Hermes
Updated February 07, 2003 at 05:00 AM EST

Tired of rebuying Costello’s repeatedly repackaged back catalog or pretending to love his new records? Here are some fresh takes on the classics by a dozen-plus indie-rock newbies, who negotiate even his trickiest changes with aplomb. Aside from a surprisingly convincing Brutal Youth number (the Damnations’ atmospheric ”Still Too Soon to Know”), it’s all primo ’70s-’80s stuff, with nods to the undersung Get Happy (Okkervil River’s radically bipolar ”Riot Act”) and King of America (twin versions of the love-during-wartime ballad ”Sleep of the Just”). A reminder that Costello still has the richest songbook of his generation. THEIR AIM IS TRUE ”(the angels wanna wear my) Red Shoes” by alt-country dreamers Hem and ”Alison” by cranky romantic Vic Chesnutt and friends make overfamiliar tracks just familiar enough.