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4.7 out of 5 stars88
4.7 out of 5 stars
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on 21 May 2002
You may remember 'Letter from America' as a novelty chart hit, but to judge the Proclaimers solely on the strength of that would be like judging Van Morrison on 'Brown Eyed Girl' - great, but only the tip of the iceberg. And this iceberg bears a lot further comparison. These brothers Reid may appear to be at the other end of the musical spectrum from their namesakes in the Jesus and Mary Chain - reverent where they're irreverent, light where they're dark, optimistic where they're cynical. But consider this: both have stuck to their musical and philosophical guns as doggedly and determinedly as the other. It may not sound like rebellion, but overtly Christian singer-songwriters who espouse socio-political issues with such fire and passion are hardly thick on the ground, are they? There has to be room in your ears for tunes of the strength of 'Cap in hand', 'Make my heart fly', 'Joyful Kilmarnock Blues', and the sweeping, moving, aching sweetness of 'Sunshine on Leith'. Okay, so it might be music you listen to more on your own than in company - but don't tell me you don't have a few discs like that which you really, really love. And you will really, really love this one, if you can bring yourself to audition it. Do yourself a favour.
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on 24 September 2005
I went to see the Proclaimers live 2 years ago in Falkirk (and i'm English!) and they sound exactly the same as theirs albums. As previous reviewers have said, there are some great songs on this "Best of....". We all know "500 miles" and "Letter From America", but there is still songs on here that put the hairs up on the back of your neck. So who cares if they sound quite similar...............don't fix what isn't broken. It's a pity that Scotland didn't export these much beter than they did! Excellant band and not ashamed to keep that "Scottish twang" in their songs.
I live back in England now and if they ever come my way I would have no hesitation to go see them again. So I will just have to "make do" with their album..............not that i'm complaining!!
Go buy it, it's brill!!
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on 28 September 2002
OK, so how can an album by The Proclaimers possibly be full of surprises? It's true, as Amazon's reviewer says, that the Reid brothers' musical style was apparently born fully formed and timeless but for those many people who only knew the hits, there's a lot to discover here. My French wife had never heard of The Proclaimers at all (La Pauvre) but when she came in on "I'm on My Way" she started dancing round the room in seconds.
I admit to buying this album as being the quickest means of finding CD copies of five or six vinyl 45"s. That's no bad reason for buying the album as it happens - anyone who once owned "Letter to America", "Sunshine on Leith", "I'm Gonna Be", etc. on vinyl is unlikely to want to forgo them on CD. However once you start listening to the less famous songs, you may well want to run out and buy the original albums as well: go for it - there are only four, choose quality over quantity every time.
This is a rich, well-balanced selection of highly unusual music - strong melodies, lyrics that run the gamut all the way from jolly to poignant, deeply personal to sing-along party time and it deserves the widest possible audience. BUT remember you may well find yourself buying the other four CDs the same day this Best of selection arrives, you have been warned! Oh, and a special mention: the sleeve notes are first class too!
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on 16 September 2005
I love the Proclaimers, and fully sign up to their passion, commitment and loyalty to Scotland. This CD contains plenty of great moments - everything from "Sunshine on Leith", the early tracks "Letter from America", "Make My Heart Fly", "Throw the R Away" were genuinely innovative and excellent songs. "King of the Road" is one of those rare things - a cover that's better than the original.
The remaining tracks just kind of drifted by, though - not that they were terrible, but didn't make such a strong impression as those mentioned above. I don't believe Craig and Charlie have ever made a dreadful record, but they set the bar very high with "Sunshine on Leith" and didn't always make it over the bar in later years.
My fantasy Proclaimers compilation then would be: all of the Sunshine on Leith album, the above early acoustic tracks and "King of the Road". You can't fault their integrity, artistry and commitment one bit, though.
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VINE VOICEon 4 August 2006
One of the best CDs ever for beating the blues. Just infectious tunes that carry you along - the Proclaimers have never been fashionable but they're extremely good at what they do.
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on 11 October 2004
Sometimes you listen to music and the feeling you get from it is just sheer joy. This is what this album did to me. I admit, I did not know much Proclaimers stuff apart from the Letter From America and 500 Miles, both of which had been played to death on the radio. But listening to this cannot fail to move you in some way. I found myself (without realising it) wearing a huge grin as the album played and at it's conclusion I just felt a little bit better about the world and everything in it.
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on 2 September 2002
I was just a youngun during the Proclaimers haydays! Originally a skeptic of Letter From America, I love the track now upon reflection!, The Proclaimers' music (including their 80's material) has an ageless quality that can hold it's own in today's pop world! The best tracks are perhaps the most commerical in my opinion, Letter From America, I'm Gonna Be (500 miles), I'm On My Way & King Of The Road. Perhaps their music has not developed but one feels that it has evolved from it's primitive state! The tracks incoporate a subtle blend of celtic roots with rock, country and particularly with I'm on My Way (which I discovered upon purchasing the Shrek soundtrack!)50's rock and roll that wouldn't have been out of place in Elvis' time! If you are either a hardcore Proclaimers fan or someone in search of something a bit different, check this album out!
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on 9 May 2009
As a fan of the Scottish twins' laidback folk-tinged pop in the late 80s and early 90s, I snapped this up when I discovered it on Amazon. Although 'Letter from America', '(I'm Gonna be) 500 Miles', 'Sunshine on Leith', and 'King of the Road' are all present, correct, and as good as they were the first time around; I was disappointed with the remainder of this album. 'I want to be a Christian is a bold statement and 'Throwing the R Away' is fun, however the album descends into mediocrity after you've heard the hits.
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on 20 January 2014
I would certainly walk five hundred miles to hear these Scots brothers' simple but heartfelt lyrics, gloriously catchy tunes and heavenly harmonies.
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on 16 July 2012
i,ve never really known much about the Proclaimers apart fron the obvious hits, and i,ve regarded them as geeky.This changed when i saw them on a recent BBC programme from a Celtic festival in Stornoway... What a solid performance, they,re lacking a bit of charisma, but the songs, most of which are on this c.d. were performed with a lot of energy with a solid backing band. The songs are well crafted lyrically, musically catchy, and this collection is well worth a punt
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