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Contest Rules & Regulations
October 31, 2011
In the nomenclature of music compilations, the word "essential" (as opposed to "best of" or "greatest hits") has come to connote an album in which some degree of editorial judgment has been exercised, such that key album tracks may be substituted for hit singles here and there in the name of presenting an artist's strengths and not just the most popular recordings. So it is with this selection of the "essential" works of
(a band that has had its share of best-ofs and greatest-hits albums), as represented by a 16-track, 67-and-a-half-minute disc. The group's ten-year existence may be divided into its early years (1972-1976) and its later ones (1979-1982), with the first part containing somewhat more experimental and harder rocking music, and the second part featuring smoother-sounding dance-pop. The compiler here seems to prefer the first half, such that an LP track like the six-and-a-half-minute "If There Is Something," for example, trumps later U.K. Top Five singles such as "Over You" and "More Than This," which are missing.
's sole British chart-topper, a cover of
's "Jealous Guy," meanwhile, is represented by a live recording. Most of the band's big hits are featured, but the album is best recommended to the neophyte who wants to get an overall sense of what
were all about, not a fan who wants the group's most popular tracks on a single CD.
William Ruhlmann, Rovi
If There Is Something
Editions of You
In Every Dream Home a Heartache
All I Want Is You
Love Is the Drug
In the Midnight Hour
Do the Strand [Live at the Apollo in Glasgow] [Live]
Jealous Guy [Live in France] [Live]
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