This record is every XTC single, in chronological order, on a double CD. And a worthy addition to ANYONE'S collection.
As one wanders throught this parade of fruitful excellence, one can spot not one weak track, one flaw. This is a celebration of XTC, one of the greatest bands ever, perhaps, THE greatest, yet, for some almost unbelievable reason, a commercial flop. Every second this waits on the shelf is a second lost to the laughably bad spectacle of purely commercial pop, commercial acts which are made to look almost funnily bad by XTC, Swindon's answer to Beatles; yes, I would go as far as comparing them with the Beatles, the Stones - and this contains every single song ever to grace the charts from the pens and instruments of messyrs Partridge and Moulding- a must buy!
From the scratchy and unpolished yet still excellent 'Science Friction', through absolute gems such as 'Making Plans For Nigel', 'Sgt Rock (is going to help me)' and the amazing 'Senses Working Overtime' to the subtler delights of disc two, such as 'Great Fire', 'Wonderland' and 'Dear God', this album, and indeed XTC, from Drums and Wires to Wasp Star, radiate a musical joy second to none.
The big mistake with this album would be to listen only to disc one and their greater chart successes, instead of also tapping into the second disc, which, although disturbingly devoid of chart hits, is littered with spectacular musical sucesses from start to finish.
Although the highlights, being such hits as 'Senses Working Overtime' and 'Making Plans For Nigel' demand listening time, reject the other songs at your peril, especially the feel good 'Ten Feet Tall', the uplifting 'Great Fire', the charming yet fiery 'Dear God', the melodic and brooding 'Wait 'till Your boat goes down' and the gloriously romantic 'Love on a farmboy's wages'.
All in all, a fitting tribute to the most criminally unsuccessful yet criminally good bands ever, XTC.