Monday, July 19, 2010

Album Review: "Now 76" - Various Artists

"It's back!!!" as the TV ad used to say. But things have changed. Once upon a time I eagerly awaited the release of Britain's longest-running and most successful chart hits compilation album. But with the British singles chart in steep decline, I inevitably greeted the latest in the series with a weary shrug instead of gleeful enthusiasm.

It's not the fault of the album's compilers as they have so little in the way of chart hits to go on - since the arrival of the download single I had hoped that this would call a halt to the pre-download trend of 'in at no.1 one week, dropped to no. 23 the next' but instead the chart has become so stagnant that you could take a break from looking at the chart for a few weeks and on your return you would still find the same songs.

So as I said they don't have too much selection of hits to choose from, but they manage to get an accurate reflection of the UK Top 40 at present - a mix of American pop, tedious r'n'b/grime, kiddie/X Factor pop and the odd dance track. Highlights are few and far between - only Robyn, Example, Scissor Sisters, K'naan, Swedish House Mafia, Train and David Guetta get the thumbs up from me, otherwise most of it just sounds like the Galaxy Radio playlist, and if you are "lucky" enough to live in a reception area for that station then you'll know that's definitely not a good thing.

If we can be reassured on one thing, it's that pop music goes in cycles, and that this musical hell shouldn't last too much longer. And for everything else, there's the music blogs: where you will discover more good music than you ever thought existed!!

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