It starts with their lead vocalist. The man just screetches and scratches his way through nearly every song especially the hard rockers. The man hardly even tries to sing. The sond comming out of his mouth is more like a drunken yell. Now I like my share of hard rock n roll singers. David Lee Roth has personality and style, Paul Rodgers has blues and soul, Ian Gillan brought power and range in his prime. Heck even Vince Neil from Motley Crue added an edgy bluesy style with some colorful vocalizing. This lead singer(Joe Elliot??) brings nothing but an annoying yell and a half baked effort.
As for the instrumental support, it is just the same from track to track. Guitar solos devoid of any passion or soul. Both these players just try to solo as fast as possible without adding any color or tone to the notes that they are playing. The drumming is fairly steady but limited in regards to special effects and style. In addition, there seems to be a synthesized effect that is just plain annoying on most of these tracks. By the way where is the bass player in the mix? He is barely heard from in the mix of the annoying crunching guitars and the over used synthesizer. Gosh these guys mine the use of the synthesizer with the exact sound effects through nearly every song.
Now the songs do have decent structures. There are verses, a chorus(sort of that is if you count repeating the same words over and over again as a sufficient and memorable chorus), and on some occasions even a bridge. However, the little stylings that exist on great recordings by the Beatles, Stevie Wonder, and The Who and even good recordings by Van Halen and Paul Rodgers era Bad Company are just non-existent on this greatest hits compilation. And the lyrics are just so basic that they do not sound any more mature than a teenage bar band just starting to write their first songs. That is when you can decipher the words that Old Yeller is screaming!!!!!!
Out of fifteen songs on this compilation, only Live Bites and possibly Bringin' On The Heartbreak seem to be even a little memorable. Whereas ballads like Missin' You In A Heartbeat and Two Steps Behind don't offend me, they just don't compare with even similar material written by the reasonably melodic Bon Jovi.
Fans of eighties hair metal and synthesizer drivel should probably bypass this review and just buy this compilation or maybe even Hysteria. Maybe I just cannot relate to the mindset of that era. But those who appreciate music with quality songwriting, good singing and instrumental prowess should avoid this compilation and anything by this band like the plague.
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