With The Cribs' future in question, following one third of the Wakefield brothers enthusiasm for his new project Exclamation Pony you couldn't really ask for a better encore to their career than this.
From well-established classic indie anthems, including Another Number and Hey Scenesters! to lesser known cult favourites (City of Bugs, Direction, Be Safe) Payola is a treat from start to finish, demonstrating that even retrospectively the Wakey lads are far, far more than another run of the mill indie act riding the NME fashion wave. Hardcore fans will snap this up, regardless of whether or not they've heard it all before, but it's equally as good as an introduction to the band's career, if you don't want to delve straight into one of their five studio albums. Topped off by an enthusiast essay in the booklet and a messy scrapbook of chaotic pictures it's hard to believe that any other compilation released this year will feature the same labour of love clearly executed by The Cribs.
Additionally, it's more than worth the extra few quid to pick up the special edition two disc version to get your hands on the b-sides and difficult to find material included there. Numbers like Glandular Fever Got the Best of Me and To Jackson stand up just as well as anything on CD one, and allows you to become even more absorbed in the fantastic music the U.K.'s best cult act!