Blondie ‘Blondie 4(0) ever:Greatest Hits Redux/Ghosts of Download’ (Noble ID LLC)
Dear God in heaven. I never thought the day would come when I’d be writing a bad review of Blondie.
Look, as far as I’m concerned, between 1976-1981, Blondie were one of the greatest bands on the planet. Parallel Lines, their third album from 1978, is in my all time top five albums. I saw them live in 2004 and they were excellent. Yet somehow, Blondie have dropped this package that I Do Not Feel You Should Waste Your Money On.
The first part of the package is a greatest hits – except completely re-recorded. Now only a couple of years off seventy, Debbie Harry’s voice is still sounding great – and these aren’t awful remakes, but unless they’ve been denied royalties on old records, I cannot think of any reason to buy these remakes. They’re not bad, just not as good.
And then there’s the second disc, their new album Ghosts Of Download. This is their tenth studio album in total, and their fourth since reforming at the end of the nineties. Now, each of their previous three albums since reforming had some redeeming features -and ‘Maria’ was deservedly a no.1 hit. But it starts off with the naff ‘Sugar On The Side’ and it just…fails to get any better. THe nadir is their cover of Frankie Goes To Hollywood’s ‘Relax.’ Somehow, in the hands of one of the coolest women to walk the earth and one of the best bands of the last forty years it’s…awful. Considering that the original caused a stink thirty years ago, the only reason Mike Reed would be refusing to play this is because it’s such a mess.
By the time the final track came to the end I was just relieved.
Blondie 4(0) ever:Greatest Hits Redux/Ghosts of Download is out now on Noble ID LLC