on 3 January 2004
This faultless celebration of dance music's most important names since Kraftwerk demonstrates the diversity and imagination that it is possible to produce within the much maligned genre.
Kicking off with three singles off their fine debut album 'Exit planet dust',this CD continues to impress with the excellent Noel Gallagher collaboration 'Setting sun', the classic 'Block rockin beats' and the otherworldy 'Private psychadelic reel' off the superb 'dig your own hole' album.
The pattern here at this point begins to prove how Tom Rowlands and Ed Simons are peerless singles artists,dance music or not.
The award winning(courtesy of Q magazine) Surrender album from 1999 is also their best,as it contains the second Gallagher featured track 'Let forever be'(a blatant nod to the beatles' 'Tomorrow never knows'),the mind-altering 'Hey boy hey girl' and the infectious 'out of control'.Their criticised follow-up,'come with us' gives us the underrated 'Star guitar' and the well meaning but overlong 'the test',featuring Richard Ashcroft from the Verve on vocal duties.The two new tracks here are no match for the earlier stuff,Wayne Coyne from The Flaming Lips proves he really can't sing on 'The golden path',but 'Get yourself high' is better,a successful effort at replicating Paul Oakenfold's starry eyed surprise single.
Overall,absolutely classic stuff from the duo who even rock muisc fans truly admired.If you don't have any of the albums mentioned above,then this is an essential purchase.
on 17 February 2015
In the decade that this career-spanning, chronological compilation covers this English electronic dance music act put out numerous records and remixes, played countless live shows and DJ sets in pubs, clubs and stadiums, and had an impressive run of hits including UK Top 10 singles with 'Setting Sun', 'Block Rockin' Beats', 'Hey Boy Hey Girl', and 'Let Forever Be'. This fairly enjoyable 13 track CD shows how the unprepossessing duo of Tom Rowlands and Ed Simons - friends who met at Manchester University - managed to do it. Firstly, they created a thumping, screeching and whirring electronica that borrowed elements from The Beatles best psychedelic song - 'Tomorrow Never Knows', and the snaring sounds heard commonly on old school hip hop. Secondly, they collaborated regularly with relatively well-known artists - like Noel Gallagher of Oasis, New Order's Bernard Sumner and The Flaming Lips - who sprinkled a little of their stardust over their work.
Yet this slightly misleadingly-titled 2003 collection has its flaws, even if it was gold-selling. It doesn't even include all of their singles. For instance, despite their relatively high chart positions 2001's 'It Began In Afrika' , and 1997's 'Elektrobank' , are omitted from the running order. This is bemusing as they are better than 'Get Yourself High', an underwhelming, self-serving collaboration with Astralwerks label-mate Canadian rapper K-OS that is 1 of Singles: 93 - 03 2 new song's, and the lightly trippy 'The Test' , on which The Verve's Richard Ashcroft offers up an unconvincing impression of The Doors' Jim Morrison.
on 25 October 2003
It seems rather odd for a "dance" band to have something as boringly conventional as a "greatest hits" album, but when the dance band in question is The Chemical Brothers, there's an embarrassment of riches to choose from.
As the title suggests, this album traces a chronological line from their arrival on the scene in 1993 with the still-stunning "Song To The Siren", through the commercial zenith of the "Dig Your Own Hole" and "Surrender" albums with the slightly formulaic rock/dance splicing of "Setting Sun" (arguably the best thing Noel Gallagher's ever done, including his work with Oasis) and the heavenly end-of-the-century track "The Private Psychedelic Reel" and the punkish Donna Summer tribute "Hey Boy Hey Girl".
It draws to a conclusion with only a dissappointing two tracks from last year's "Come With Us" (Star Guitar and The Test), arguably their most cohesive work since "Exit Planet Dust" and finishes off with two new tracks, the joyous religion-inspired Flaming Lips collaboration Golden Path and the rather less exciting Get Yourself High neither of which, while quality recordings in their own ways, add much to the Chemical sound which we haven't heard already.
All in all, this is a good story-so-far album, which may also serve as a fine introduction to the band for casual buyers.