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38 of 40 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Essential Listening
The Specials (or The Special AKA as they were known occasionally) were arguably the most influential band of the late 70s/early 80s. Formed in 1977, two years prior to Thatcher's government, it was the bands ability to mix diverse musical styles (ska, punk, reggae, rockabilly) and turn them into something immesely enjoyable which endeared them to their legions of fans,...
Published on 15 April 2008 by Jimbo

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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars The special bits are really special
The Specials are one of those bands that I didn't appreciate at the time. Some of these songs were recorded 30 years ago but they sound as good now as they ever did. As with a lot of best of collections, there are a few lame tracks on here, but it is still worth buying for classics like 'Gangsters', 'Man at C&A', 'Do Nothing', 'Ghost Town' and 'Friday Night/Saturday...
Published on 13 Aug 2009 by E. A. Banks


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38 of 40 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Essential Listening, 15 April 2008
By 
Jimbo "Jimbo L" (Manchester) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)   
The Specials (or The Special AKA as they were known occasionally) were arguably the most influential band of the late 70s/early 80s. Formed in 1977, two years prior to Thatcher's government, it was the bands ability to mix diverse musical styles (ska, punk, reggae, rockabilly) and turn them into something immesely enjoyable which endeared them to their legions of fans, couple this together with a message of racial harmony and anti-establishment sentiments and you are just scraping the surface of the power this band had.
The Specials were the brainchild of Jerry Dammers, who formed his own record label and managed to recruit other, like minded bands (such as Madness, The Beat, The Bodysnatchers, The Selecter) with a view to forming a 'collective' of musicians, all with something to say to the youth of Thatcher's Britain. Hence, 'Two Tone' was born.
This album puts together the obligatory singles and tracks from the first three Specials albums (Specials, More Specials and In The Studio) together with a DVD of videos for singles and footage of live performances. If, like me, you are an avid fan then this is only worth buying for the (as far as I am aware) otherwise unavailable DVD as I have all the other tracks on the digitally remastered albums, but for this price the DVD on it's own is a bargain.
If you are interested in The Specials and want to grab a cross section of their work then this is a great starting point and it does contain a number of album tracks which deserve to be heard (e.g. Nite Klub, Blank Expression, Stereotypes etc.)
All in all a fantastic cross section of The Specials' work and a great way to brush up before the hugely anticipated tour in the autumn of 2008 with all the original band members(fingers crossed that it goes ahead).
Buy It!
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The sounds of Thatchers Britain still resonates, 25 Nov 2010
Listening to the anger tinged nonchalance of Terry Hall's unique voice transports me back to a time of deep dissatisfaction, unrest and uncertainity. It also evokes memories of youthful rebellion and the sense of outrage at what the future held for a young working class Northen lad. The Specials, more than any of the other SKA/Two Tone bands of the time, signified far more than a mere revival in Mod fashion and music and, unlike a number of their milder mannered contemporaries, their appeal crossed the boundaries of the rigid teenage-tribal loyalties that populated Thatchers 80's . Punks, Skins, Soul Boys and New Romantics could all find something within their sound that resonated.Everybody loved the Specials.They took a firm Anti Racist and Political stance and spoke directly to, and clearly for, the marginalised and disenfranchised of all our communities. The kick from the brilliant sound that resulted from the fusion of white working class poetry and pumping ska has not diminished in the years that have passed since the Specials ripped a hole for themselves in the fabric of 80's music with their landmark eponymous 1979 breakthrough album. Its no surprise, given these days of austerity and unrest, that the band (sadly minus the estranged founder member and main songwriter Jerry Dammers) are in a period of resurgence.

The music is as raw,relevant and rebel rousing now as it was back in the early 80's and I would urge anyone, who may have maybe caught a recent sight and sound of the Specials but wants to find out more, to start right here with this classy collection. Five Stars.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Essential Compilation, 13 Jun 2008
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Comprising an excellent greatest hits collection with a dvd of live performances and promo videos, this compilation is essential. Unless you're a big fan or completist this package contains everything you could want from The Specials' enduring legacy. Much of their music still sounds vital and contemporary. Along with The Beat's recent 2 cd compilation, You Just Can't Beat It (and maybe The Selecter's greatest hits), you have a capsule history of the late 70s/early 80s ska revival. Recommended.
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4.0 out of 5 stars man at C+A, 14 July 2014
The only specials CD I own so can't compare it to any other compilations but this is great stuff , I knew the main hits before buying it but the rest of the songs are great too
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5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars, 13 July 2014
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Love this really good compilation of their music
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5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars, 3 July 2014
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I'd forgotten how good they were.
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5.0 out of 5 stars The specials are amazing, 31 Jan 2014
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This review is from: The Best Of The Specials (MP3 Download)
I just love every song on the album, everytime i think i have a favourite i find myself loving another pne just as much
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4.0 out of 5 stars Sooper cd, 6 Jan 2014
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A good CD.
It comes with a DVD, which I did not know about..
Bonus.
Thanks for sorting out @ quick supply
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5.0 out of 5 stars & a bonus DVD, 20 Dec 2013
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Who could ask for more? I was looking for a CD to replace my old records & this has great variety & a DVD. As I live in Australia I wasnt exposed to clips of the ska era so this is just awesome for me
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5.0 out of 5 stars Simply the Best of the Specials, 25 Sep 2013
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If you are over 45 you should have this cd in your collection, almost one hit after the other, bringing back great memories.
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