Album Review by EDF
Singles are dying out, we know that. Not unless something comes along that will save singles from extinction then the extra tracks featured on these singles, otherwise known as b-side tracks, just might become a thing of the past. With collections like these, it gives groups such as the Doves an opportunity to experiment a bit and release something that is different to their regular studio albums.
After two albums and over half a dozen singles, there have recorded enough material to fill up a whole album. This collection is ideally for those who have not already bought the singles. This spans all the way back to their first single CEDAR EP, which is represented here by the opening tracks BREAK ME GENTLY and DARKER. These brooding tracks make way for the guitar jangling YOUR SHADOW LAY ACROSS MY LIFE and the instrumental MEET ME AT THE PIER. DOWN TO SEA is another brooding but atmospheric tune that makes way for the jangling instrumental CRUNCH.
Keeping up the recurrent theme of the sea is ZITHER complete with lulling sounds of waves. The mournful VALLEY and NORTHENDEN is then followed by the more upbeat HIT THE GROUND RUNNING with some mad special effect sounds included for good measure. WILLOW’S SONG and FAR FROM GRACE end this collection by which time I have come to the conclusion that while the Doves do not produce throwaway b-sides, this is a collection that fans only just might go out and buy.