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4.3 out of 5 stars
4.3 out of 5 stars
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on 22 November 2008
It just wouldn't be a Garbage release if it didn't come with a delay. Almost 3 years after a Best Of was announced, it finally saw the light of day earlier this year. Many fans speculated that the delay was the result of Warner putting their work in to make a comprehensive set for the fans - rumours of complete b-sides and music video collections, as well as a live CD/DVD box set began to surface. The end result can't help but leave any long-term Garbage fan under-whelmed and confused about the 3 year gap.

The bonus disc of remixes is, bar a few exceptions, a waste of a perfectly good blank CD that would have been better suited to home a selection of their 40-odd b-sides. There are occasionally some genuinely cool re-workings - namely U.N.K.L.E.'s 'The World Is Not Enough', Massive Attack's 'Milk' and Fun Lovin' Criminals 'You Look So Fine' - but the majority of the disc is pretty much your typical club trash.

You can look at the singles disc in two ways: from the perspective of a long-term fan, or as someone who liked a few songs back in the day but who never bothered buying one of their albums.

With the exception of 'Shut Your Mouth', the album focuses entirely on their US single chronology - meaning even the UK edition of the album features the U.S.-only '#1 Crush' while ignoring any of their international singles like 'The Trick Is To Keep Breathing', 'Breaking Up The Girl', 'Sex Is Not The Enemy' and 'Run Baby Run'. As it stands, the first twelve tracks on the compilation come from the era's surrounding their Garbage and Version 2.0 albums, while their last 2 albums are each represented by only 2 songs. The inclusion of some of those later titles would have helped balance the compilation out a bit and also improve the quality of the record as a whole. 'Why Do You Love Me', although their biggest hit in years (UK #7, and their first song to appear on the US Billboard Hot 100 chart since 1998), is by no means one of their better songs and is easily surpassed by the two Bleed Like Me singles excluded from the record.

But for the casual listener, the album does its job. Late 90's radio staples "Queer", "Only Happy When It Rains", "Stupid Girl", "Push It", "I Think I'm Paranoid", "Special" and "When I Grow Up" are all present. Also worth pointing out is the neat little habit Garbage had back in the day of actually releasing the best songs from their records as singles. Album closers "Milk" and "You Look So Fine" (from 1995's Garbage and 1998's Version 2.0, respectively), while they would have never reached the chart heights of "Stupid Girl" or "I Think I'm Paranoid", were none-the-less released as singles and became minor hits. The inclusion of these seldom-remembered but beautiful songs will without fail knock your jaw to the floor on first listen, much like they did mine, and convince any newcomers that this is a band worth exploring further. And, correct me if I'm wrong, that's the whole point of a Best Of? In that respect, this is a job well done.
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on 31 August 2007
OK, the packaging looks cheap (almost photocopied) and there was room for at least one more single on disc 1 (Androgony maybe, to address the selection balance a bit), but overall this is great collection of songs that generally work well together. There are highs and lows ofcourse, but this represents the variation of material across their 4 creative albums.Sound is excellent throughout, so well worth buying. The bonus new single "Hurts" is ok, but slightly over-polished, particularly after the rougher edged material from Bleed Like Me.

The remix disc is listenable but as usual they don't gel very well as an album, even though each song only appears once. Be aware too that some of these mixes are either radio edits or have apparently had intros clipped off (some of the tracks start at an obvious edit point), although in a few cases the reduction is arguably a good thing! I personally loathe the Felix remix of Androgeny (usually like his mixes), but this is the only version that makes the set (despite some track listings you may see that mention the Neptunes Mix). Things get less dancey and more creative on the slower tracks (Massive Attack's slowest take of Milk is excellent) and the Garbage Remix of "Bad Boyfriend" is really strong. The vast majority of these mixes made UK cd singles, but it's probably still worth having as a bonus disc to listen to every now and then. Overall 4 / 5.
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on 28 December 2009
This is an excellent cd and the music on it is great. Shirley Manson is a great singer. Would highly recommend it.
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VINE VOICEon 2 August 2007
Great to have most of my favourite songs on one cd, paticularly for playing in the car. An absolute bargain at the price for 2 cd's. I think the remixes are generally the more accessible ones, rather than ones that make the song unrecognisable, although I can't see myself playing it much as I'm not a big fan of remixes ( apart from the Fun Lovin Criminals "you look so fine" which is here).However, the Massive Attack remix of "milk" is new to me and I LOVE it. I do wish, however,that someone had had the imagination to include my fave track of all time " the trick is to keep breathing", which I believe was a single somewhere...Australia? I have "subhuman", the main gripe of other reviewers at its omission here. If you have not heard it, you are not missing much, its not very good, which may be why it was not on their first cd.More like sub standard. I also would have liked "androgeny" and "breaking up the girl" on the first cd rather than just the remix. There are 5 tracks from their first cd album; 5 from the second; 2 from the third; and 3 from the fourth. Thats about right as a ratio, there is no doubt the first 2 are their best. For me "version 2" is magnificent without ANY duff tracks at all. I have quite a few of their cd singles and have made a cd myself of the b sides. There are 17 different songs on it and its a pity some of the best ones could not have been put on this compilation, but then I suppose it could have been a 3 cd set ( and why not?!)
I have been waiting about a year for this cd and its most welcome despite my ( very few) niggles.
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VINE VOICEon 24 July 2007
Curious. Still scratching my head over some choices here. If it's purely a singles collection then why #1 Crush but not Supervixen or Androgeny?

What's here is pretty fine, though on a genuine 'best of' I'd certainly choose several (mostly earlier) album tracks rather than the more recent 60's girl-band-with-added-electronic-sheen pastiche singles. The new song also suffers from this failing.

If you have the earlier albums there seems no reason to go and buy this. You probably already have all the tracks you really need from 'Shirley and the Boys'. A fair primer though for anyone who likes one or two singles and wants a tidy compilation.
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on 13 February 2009
This music is individual to the point of being unique. Anybody who fails to be touched by the music of Garbage has no soul.

Get the Angelfish album. ""Mommy can't drive" is one of the best songs I have ever heard.

Shirley is Scotland's best export.
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on 26 July 2007
Well, yet again it happens . . . People expect certain things, for no other reason than that's how *they'd* do it, and when they don't get it, they become angry. Okay. Well calm down and breathe. You can't please everyone.

Reading some of the reviews below, someone complained because not enough of the latter two albums were included, despite the (comparatively) low sales of these records as opposed to Garbage and Version 2.0 (generally agreed to be their best work). Well, there's your answer. The fans, band and pundits all preferred their first two albums, so that's why there's so few of their later songs.

Secondly: yes, Tricky's remix of Milk and Subhuman were absent. But there's the original version of Milk present (they can't fit every remix onto one album) and Subhuman is practically unheard of outside the realm of extreme Garbage fans.

So Garbage's later albums weren't as good . . . but that's only because we hold them in comparison to the brilliant first two albums. On their own, the latter two albums stand competitively against any and all of the modern rock crap from the UK and US, and look pretty good. The challenge has been, I imagine, that with each album Garbage have wanted to develop and adapt theit sound, so that they don't repeat themselves. This has meant that Version 2.0 contains more electronic and pop elements than Garbage, and Beautiful Garbage contains even more yet again, this time with R&B and 80s notes, whilst Bleed Like Me was a simpler, more stripped-back album that strived to be more like modern rock. That is their sole flaw. Because every time you change your formula, you're bound to upset someone who loved the status quo. However, in order for a band to keep their integrity, they do have to evolve. It's a difficult situation, where they find themselves clinched between two alternate problems.

Anyway, regardless . . . this is still brilliant, and so I give it five stars. And I *am* a music critic (for Bent magazine).
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on 4 July 2012
I remember catching Shirley Manson live with Goodbye Mr McKenzie once and thought she sounded great then.Certainly you can tell she was a big fan of Siouxsie and definitely sounds as menacing sometimes aswell.There are some really interesting and theatrical tracks on this compilation yet at the same time sound catchy and poppy which is not easy to do so all credit to the band aswell.Overall I highly recommend this high quality cd.
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on 26 July 2007
It IS about time Garbage produced a 'best of' collection but I'm not sure this is it. It's always difficult to have every single favourite track included on a compilation but this one doesn't seem to have had much in the way of TLC in the process. Not sure if this is because the band is splitting up and can't be bothered, or if a record company git just cobbled it together. Where is the Tricky remix of Milk or Breaking up the Girl? Would also like to have seen a couple of album tracks from 3rd album Beautiful Garbage, esp, Can't Cry These Tears and Drive You Home.
Favourite tracks included here are Stupid Girl, Happy When it Rains, I Think I'm Paranoid, Special and Cherry Lips (Go Baby). To be honest i would recommend buying the first 3 albums instead of this compilation. good to hear The World is Not Enough again though, which isn't on any other Garbage album
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on 20 July 2007
I've checked on their official website and I'm very disappointed because it is not in the tracklist; its video isn't included in the DVD tracklist either!!! There's only a remix on the Limited edition. Why did they do that?
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