"The Style Council was established by Paul Weller, after the bitter break up of the succesful Jam. Weller want to stretch his musical tastes (this time dabbling in funk, jazz, and pop), and this CD contains the shining moments of his 10 years on the Council. The album's best track, the band's first single, "Speak Like A Child", is one of the most uplifting ditties you'll ever hear, blazoned with brass, organ, and a funky slap bass. Other gems include the successful "Long Hot Summer", with a semi-cheesy synth arrangement that is made up for in the beautiful melody of the song. "My Ever Changing Moods" is to this day one of Weller's best lyrical outings, with a hot jazz arrangement sure to get you going. "Shout to the Top" draws on strings for its anchor, and "Walls Come Tumbling Down" is a chaotic rocker with a banging piano and brass backup. "A Solid Bond In Your Heart" is another triumph, one of the best love songs the man has ever written, and you get drawn to the carribean in "Have You Ever Had it Blue?" (A much better go at this type of music than his attempt with the Jam with "The Planner's Dream Goes Wrong") "You're the Best Thing" is a nice one to chill out to, or to sing to your loved one on Valentine's Day.... And then there's my personal favorite "How She Threw It All Away", a poppy song with great brass and an amazing flute by Jacko Peake, who has a solo which blows away nearly everything ever attempted by Jethro Tull, all to the tune of a happy upbeat rouser that puts a smile on your face. The album's downers include "Waiting" and "The Lodgers" but for the most part, this is a collection worth having. A album to play at a party during the long hot summer!"
Good one but there's something a lot better...
Marvin Carlos | NYC | 04/20/2000
(3 out of 5 stars)
"I got the CD, it's pretty good in my opinion, but I'll still have to say the other SC album, Cafe Bleu, is better.My first Style Council album is Bleu, and I bought it for only one reason -- about a year and a half ago I heard the Cafe Bleu version of "Ever Changing Moods". I've heard the original version lots of times, but ever since hearing the mellow, acoustic one in Bleu, I wrote a mental note to remember looking for Cafe Bleu when I go to the US. It was out of my reach for a while, since UK-printed CDs weren't in the stores anywhere around my location. So Bleu had the version of the song I wanted, but beyond that it started me into Style council in general, with unexpected surprises like it's version of "You're the Best Thing" (the only version of that song from where I was born...), the Tracey Thorne-sung "The Paris March", "Headstart for Happiness" (although a little bit silly on the lyrics side), and "Here's One That got Away". There are some no-so-good-rather-skip-that songs there but the good stuff in there is worth buying and keeping the CD.Still, this album's a worthy buy, too, just for the good songs not found in Cafe Bleu and just for digging into some good SC stuff I hadn't heard yet. But nothing much stands out like in Bleu."
Better get one now, before they're gone...
Kevin O'Conner | 05/04/2003
(4 out of 5 stars)
"With the release of TSC's entry in Universal's 20th Century Masters - The Millennium Collection discs, The Singular Adventures... is rapidly disappearing from the shops. A shame, really, because some of the music on this first TSC hits compilation cannot be found anywhere else.Released in 1989 as the group were on their final tour, playing sets of full-on house to confused audiences everywhere, The Singular Adventures... was ambitiously billed on the cover as "Greatest Hits Vol. 1", while the single which preceded it, "Promised land", cheekily announced it as "[t]he greatest hits long-player, from Britain's most successful girl group." However, after one more single ("Long hot summer 89", which actually first saw release as the "Tom mix" on the previous year's "A Summer Quartet" EP), TSC were no more.At the time of its release, The Singular Adventures..., in addition to being the first full-length TSC compilation (three EPs were released in late 1987, and a couple of CDVs followed in 1988), would have marked the first appearances of several tracks on CD: the single mix of "You're the best thing", "Have you ever had it blue", "Money-go-round (parts 1 & 2)" (though the club mix was found on Introducing The Style Council), "My ever changing moods (12" version)", the single version of "The lodgers", and "A solid bond in your heart". However, things were not all as they appeared to be.As it turned out, while "Have you ever had it blue", "My ever changing moods", "A solid bond in your heart", and the single version of "The lodgers" appeared in all their original glory, "You're the best thing" and "Money go round" were present in NEW versions, either remixed or re-recorded with new vocals. In addition, the 12" version of "Long hot summer" was actually the above-mentioned '89 version. No mention of these is made either on the cover or in the booklet, so the consumer would have no way of knowing without actually purchasing the disc. These re-made versions alone make this disc worth having.Of course, this is a fine collection anyway. Except for "Come to Milton Keynes" (and the one-off Council Collective single "Soul deep"), all of the TSC singles are represented here, from the debut "Speak like a child" to the final "Promised land" - even "Waiting", which failed to crack the UK top 40, is included. To top it all off, The Singular Adventures... was another summertime release, perfect for a group whose music has always sounded its best on sunny spring and summer days. If you don't have this one yet, well, summertime is almost here..."
All the best from The Cappuccino Kid and his entourage
Marvin Carlos | 05/08/1998
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Swoon to "You're the Best Thing," croon to "Have You Ever Had it Blue," and groove with "A Solid Bond in Your Heart." All your favorite Style Council singles are here, plus a few you may not have expected ("Life at a Top People's Health Farm", for one--I thought I was the only person on earth who bought that album). If you're coming to the Council backwards from Oasis or Paul Weller albums, or forwards from Weller's first band, The Jam, this is a great first stop. The blend of jazzy pop and angry socialist grooves (yes, somehow they were able to combine them) is invigorating, and it's not like anything you've ever heard before. Mick Talbot's swingin' keyboards keep the pace with Weller's heartfelt vocals, and lots of friends join them along the way to keep the party going. Sample one of the few bands from the early 80s who sound just as fresh today as they did back then."
Marvin Carlos | 10/03/1999
(5 out of 5 stars)
"It baffles me how many people think of the Style Council as a dip in Paul Weller's "otherwise" brilliant musical career. I always loved the Jam, but I thought the Style Council was a timely, natural progression to more mature and soulful sound, keeping them well ahead of the pack and dodging the awful deconstruction of punk. To me the SC was an inspiring musical oasis in the overwrought synth-pop and punk musical desert of the 80's ... regardless of what Paul Weller himself thinks of it ..."