Thursday, October 28, 2010

The Stranglers - The Collection 1977-1982

This fantastic and definitive compilation of The Stranglers covers their essential jams from 1977-1982 (before they turned into a cheesy new wave group), and is rock 'n roll at its finest. They always had a modicum of eccentricity to their otherwise stringent approach to punk rock, always branching out to new horizons of sound, never sitting on one singular genre for too long. This compendium always manages to get my adrenaline pumping; its exorbitant and compelling in the best of ways. The addition of the prominent keyboard in their work adds greatly to the mighty draconian guitar ensemble of Hugh Cornwell, Hans Wärmling, and Jean-Jacques Burnel (on bass) as well as the tight drumming by Jet Black. It's essentially pop music with a rock attitude; its a furiously unique blend. Their cover of "Walk on By" is a million times better than the original, and breaks your heart and has you rocking out simultaneously, which can't be said for many songs. "Waltzin' Black" sounds like Halloween music from outer space, which leads into two of my favorites on The Collection, "Something Better Change" and then "Nice 'N Sleazy." The latter few tracks from La Folie are slower and more melodic, but memorable and a great way to close this wonderful anthology. "Never a frown, with golden brown." Classic.

Rating: 10/10


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