The Stranglers were never easily categorised. Punk? New Wave? Goth? Christ knows, even 26 years after the latest track on this compo!
The best thing about this compo is that it didn't answer those questions on its' release in 1982 & doesn't know. The Stranglers weren't mavericks, they were just a flipping towering talent that never fitted neatly into anybody's pigeon-holes.
And after a quarter of a century, this is still the only compo you really want. Some of their Epic stuff was good(Skin Deep,European Female,Always The Sun), but it doesn't match the energy, verve or flair of every track on this little lot.
It does concentrate on the singles, apart from Walk On By, initially an album freebie, La Folie, released against their wishes, hence the move from Liberty/EMI, and Hanging Around. But as Walk on By is seriously deviant compared to what Bacharach & David expected when they wrote it in 1963, as La Folie is the musical equivalent of Eric Cantona's Seagulls & Trawlers in its' subtle contempt for pop-pickers, and as Hanging Around is one of the great anthemic 6 mins of the last 10,000 years,who cares they weren't ever featured on TOTP!