Other Sellers on Amazon
Basher: The Best of Nick Lowe
|New from||Used from|
Frequently bought together
Customers who viewed this item also viewed
Customers who bought this item also bought
Having apprenticed with '60s band Kippington Lodge and '70s pub-rock pioneers Brinsley Schwarz, Nick Lowe became a shining beacon of traditional pop values--wit, concision, unbanishable tunes--amidst the punk furor of the late '70s. This collection is a generous 25-song single-CD selection from eight albums and a few stray singles spanning almost a decade. It may be too generous--the inclusion of a number of so-so songs and failed experiments hampers its playability. But there are still well over a dozen gems here, including his sole hit, the sparkling, textbook classic-pop masochist's anthem "Cruel to Be Kind;" the ominous voodoo breakdown "Cracking Up;" and the delightfully perverse "Marie Provost," a sumptuous power-pop tune affixed to the horrific tale of a silent-film actress who dies alone and is eaten by her starving dog. There are also at least two songs exploring Lowe's strange obsession with backstage guest lists (first single "So It Goes" and the stately "Little Hitler"), the best version of the pub-rock classic "Switchboard Susan" (containing every conceivable phone/sex double entendre), and a number of crisp rockers abetted by Rockpile, the brilliant band that, credited or not, played on much of members Lowe and Dave Edmunds's best work. --Ken Barnes
Top customer reviews
There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later.
Alas, from that classic period, this is all that remains domestically available. "Basher" (a nickname he earned for his production methods, famously described by Elvis Costello as "a fader in one hand and a vodka bottle in the other") is 25 songs from 8 albums, the first 14 from "Jesus of Cool/Pure Pop For Now People" and "Labour Of Lust." His best known song, "Cruel to be Kind" is here in all its pure pop glory, along with such proto-punk material like "I Love The Sound of Breaking Glass" from the Stiff record days. There's the perversely witty "Marie Provost" ("she was a winner that became the doggie's dinner") and "Cracking Up" as well.
After that, each album gets a slim pick or two (The Rose of England manages four) and only one solitary track from Rockpile's "Seconds of Pleasure" (and not even "Teacher Teacher!"). There's some cool pubrock/rockabilly like "Half a Boy and Half a Man" (should have been a hit!) and "7 Nights to Rock" which belies the depth of later albums. This leaves off a great deal of interesting songs ("Stick it Where The Sun Don't Shine" and "The Beast in Me" would have made my list) and stops when Lowe left Columbia for "Party of One." Lowe is one of those heritage artists who deserves a double "Essentials" collection, and his golden albums should be available to all.
Which leads to my final comments: Why is Lowe yet to be even nominated for The Rock and Roll Hall of fame? He is the architect of a lot of the sound we came to identify as a decade, even to where Huey Lewis is a producer on "I Knew The Bride" (and once covered it) and such luminaries as John Hiatt and Paul Carrack make appearances. The other is that this album is a 1989 master of songs that you can't get anywhere else. Lowe deserves better.
Amazon wants me answer the question; who would I recommend this to? If you like it consider buying it. If you don't like it then I don't recommend buying it. You can't fling it like a Frisbee like the original "record" this was released on.
One thing I CAN do NOW though that I COULDN’T do then is copy and paste