If this Dutch band has failed to make an impact in America and England, it is most certainly not due their music. Over the course of 25 years, 17 CD's and innumerable concerts, this quartet has explored pop music with a distinctly continental European atmosphere and has constantly reinvented itself, sometimes even from CD to CD. Until 1996, the band evolved around the twin talents of keyboarder-wizard Robert Jan Stips, who can play circles around most everybody in this business, and singer/songwriter/guitarist/mastermind Henk Hofstede. Stips then left the band but the Nits moved on and continued developing as usual. Hoftsede's singing at times recalls Lennon and Cohen. His melodic, intelligent and melancholy, literate but never elitist songs take in very diverse subjects such as art ("A touch of Henry Moore"), bike riding in Amsterdam ("Bike in head") and childhood memories ("In the dutch mountains") and are quirky but always accessible. If you have a soft spot for XTC, Costello, Joe Jackson, Squeeze, Leonard Cohen, Nick Drake and - of course - the Beatles, you should give these guys a try. At their best - and much of it is on this double-CD -the Nits - even though they continue a certain tradition of melodic pop songs - sound just like nobody else. In fact, they will give you a perfect soundtrack for long fall and winter eveneings and nights. "Nits Hits" does a fairly good, but also pretty obvious job of collecting the hits ("Dutch mountains", "J.O.S. days", "The train", "Nescio"); more attention to the album tracks and maybe chronological sequencing could have helped understanding the idiosyncratic path of this band. I'll give it five stars nevertheless because of the quality of the songs.