Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
The Best of Talking Heads
Genres: Alternative Rock, Pop, Rock, Classic Rock
Formed in NYC in the mid-'70s by David Byrne, Chris Franz, Tina Weymouth, and ex-Modern Lover Jerry Harrison, the Talking Heads evolved out of their now-legendary humble beginnings at CBGB's to become one of the most adven... more »
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Formed in NYC in the mid-'70s by David Byrne, Chris Franz, Tina Weymouth, and ex-Modern Lover Jerry Harrison, the Talking Heads evolved out of their now-legendary humble beginnings at CBGB's to become one of the most adventurous and influential bands ever. Inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2002, the Heads' visionary, polyrhythmic sound daringly combined funk and punk, African beats, avant-garde minimalism, and pure pop. From their 1977 debut through their Brian Eno-produced classics to their '88 farewell, Naked, they both pushed artistic boundaries and delivered indelible radio hits like "Once In A Lifetime" and "Burning Down The House."
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One song short of perfect
Tim Brough | Springfield, PA United States | 08/24/2004
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Talking Heads interest seems to be rebounding lately, with the four disc box set earlier this year, the long awaited release of the out of print "The Name Of This Band is Talking Heads" live CD, plus plans for reissuing remastered versions of the band's back catalog sometime in 2005. I'm excited about that. After all, the "Talking Heads '77" "Psycho Killer" was one of the first of the NYC/CBGB's gang to chart a single, and "Take Me To The River" snuck into the Top 40, introducing Talking Heads to the "Saturday Night Live" AND "American Bandstand" crowd.
The influence of Talking Heads simply cannot be understated. These four art school neurotics developed a style that mixed the nervous energy of punk ("Psycho Killer") with bubblegum pop ("Uh Oh, Love Comes to Town") and waspy soul. The ironically titled "Fear Of Music" album saw the creative resources gel for remarkable power ("Life During Wartime"), the soulful enough to get Simply Red to cover it "Heaven", and Eno's arty injections making him a key element in the band's sound ("Memories Can't Wait") and an invisible fifth member. But it was Eno's forceful presence and Byrne's artistic restlessness that, by their still remarkable "Remain In Light," Talking Heads were turning the whole insular art rock world on its ear with polyrythmic productions (both the single and ground breaking video for "Once In A Lifetime") that remains influential even now.
Once they got a big dose of artiness out of the way, Talking Heads released their breeziest album to date, "Speaking In Tongues." It gave the Heads their lone American Top 10 in "Burning Down The House." By then, David Byrne was beginning to overshadow the band (Tom Tom Club side project being the exception) and it was getting obvious that the Heads were becoming volatile. Still, there was one more great album in the loose and poppy "Little Creatures," then the odd film, "True Stories," before the burn really hit.
Byrne was looking at the band as creative sidemen by now (this was when TIME magazine had given him a cover story as a "Rock and Roll Renaissance Man"). The next album, "Naked," was as far from the band's New York roots as the South American music Byrne was then exploring could get. Even long term fans began to wonder what was going on, and the singles from "Naked" pretty much failed to connect. Rather quietly, the band went on hiatus. But in retrospect, "Naked's" initial offering "Nothing But Flowers" is a wickedly funny song that laments losing the war with progress to cornfields that "used to be a 7/11."
You'll find plenty to like about this single disc set, even if you're only marginally aware of the Talking Heads' impact. Their video output from "Remain In Light" on was as cutting edge as the genre went at the time. Which leads me to quibble number one: the terrific and funny vid for "True Stories'" "Love For Sale," which found the band being turned into candy bars and other consumer durables, made that song into a near hit. It's omission levels my rating by a star, as it could've easily replaced "Blind." (While I am sure there will plenty that complain about no tracks from "Stop Making Sense," I'm OK with that.)
And that leads me to quibble number two: Where's the DVD? "Storytelling Giant" deserves better than to be imprisoned in the pricey box set. With the ambitious reissue program in the works, it just begs for a stand alone position on the shelves. But as a single disc CD, this Talking Heads retrospective is pretty close to perfect."
Almost A Complete Collection Of Hits!
highway_star | Hallandale, Florida United States | 09/06/2004
(4 out of 5 stars)
"This latest "The Best Of The Talking Heads" is a good collection for the casual fan, but for a better retrospective of the band the two cd collection "Sand In The Vaseline" (also remastered) is a better choice. This single disc collection does lack the hit "I Zimbra" which definately should have been included. The Talking Heads most popular hits (less "I Zimbra") such as "Psycho Killer", "Life During Wartime", "Take Me To The River", "Burning Down The House" and "Once In A Lifetime" are all included as well as "Love Building On Fire", "Uh-Oh, Love Comes To Town", "Found A Job" plus ten more tracks. The remastering is excellent with increased bass, midrange and extended output. If you enjoy seventies new wave such as Blondie, The Ramones, The Damned to name a few then you'll enjoy this collection."
Exceptional best-of set
JGM | NC, USA | 10/09/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Of course you know all these songs, and of course there are many more great cuts deeper on the original albums, but for a single-disc review of a band with over 10 years' worth of releases, this 18-track set is hard to beat. The group went through several striking stylistic changes over its lifetime, but that variation actually helps this disc hold together as an album as well as a set of songs.
This would make a great introduction for a younger fan of the current crop of danceable art rock bands (Of Montreal, The Killers, Decemberists) or a casual fan looking to supplant an old LP collection."