The Waterboys (or more accurately Mike Scott and various musicians) started their career by being picked as a support band for U2, and you can see why from listening to their early material. 'A Girl Called Johnny' is miles away from something like 'Fisherman's Blues', and apart from the vocals, it's hard to imagine it's the same band.
They didn't go the stadium rock route of U2 though, and if anything their career went backwards, from near rock anthems to celtic folk rock recorded in small out of the way recording studios. Mike Scott's talent is undeniable though, writing some great songs. The one that everyone knows is 'Whole of the Moon', but there are plenty of other great songs here too.
That's the trouble though, there just isn't enough room on this CD to do them justice. A double CD would have been far better, as there are too many tracks missing that really should be here. That's the ONLY reason I think 4 stars rather than 5 though.