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If there ever was a band, in my opinion, that needed a greatest hits album, it's Powderfinger. With so many fantastic tracks scattered over 5 albums, here is a showcase of the very best ones. I bought it, despite owning all their other albums and some singles as well, and I wasn't disappointed. There are two new songs on it, both of which are stunning. It's always a bit of a risk putting new songs on a greatest hits album, but as always, the boys don't disappoint. The only problem is, with 5 albums, and only very rarely a mediocre song, how did they decide what to put on Fingerprints? Well, most of the songs are singles; one is from a movie soundtrack and some are just songs that took on incredible popularity even though they are just album tracks.
It kicks off with the grandiose and strangely inspiring, "Bless My Soul", a new effort for this album. The song is catchy and rocky, with the addition of the gospel choir near the end giving it that extra kick it needed to propel it into the truly awesome. My Happiness, track 2, is taken from the 4th album Odyssey Number 5. The first album that they really broke the UK with, with My Happiness being the first single that captured the hearts of most people that know of them now. A sweet and catchy ode to a returning lover. Waiting For the Sun is an album track from Odyssey Number 5. indeed, before I heard this album, I had only ever heard this song in the context of Odyssey Number 5, which is an album that fits together like a jigsaw puzzle (much like Pink Floyds work). However, the inclusion of this album track in the greatest hits proves that these songs can function as seperate entities and stand beautifully alone. Pick You Up comes from Double Allergic. I raved about this song in my review of the aforementioned album, so I won't bore you all with it again!! Passenger (from Internationalist released in 1998) is without a doubt, one of my favourite songs of theirs. Whenever I am 'educating' one of my friends and letting them hear some Powderfinger, this is invariably the song I start with. It never fails to hook people on, in my opinion, one of the best bands we've seen in the last decade. Don't Wanna Be Left Out (also Internationalist) is not one of my favourites however. It's not a bad song, but they've done better. It's loud and aggressive and annoyingly catchy, but quite repetitive. These Days (Odyssey Number 5) is featured in the australian film Two Hands, starring Heath Ledger before he took Hollywood by storm! In the context of the film, the song is enough to reduce a grown man to tears. As a stand alone song, if you really listen to it, it provides an arena for thought and introspection. A perfect voicing of everything that's wrong with the world as we each individually see it, but it still offers hope with its melody and rawness. The Day You Come (Internationalist) is a flawless social commentary delivered over a bluesy baseline. D.A.F. (Double Allergic) is the song that broke Australia, so to speak. Excellent track. My Kind Of Scene (Odyssey Number 5) reminds me of These Days is more than one way. Firstly, it is also in a film. I'm informed it's in Mission IMpossible II, which I've never seen, so I can't really speak about that. It's also along the same lines as these days. Introspective, moody and striking. Very beautiful. This is music I like to listen to when I'm alone, walking and sad. Gives me a soundtrack for reflection. Like A Dog (Odyssey Number 5) was released as a single in 2000. It's quite hard, quite rocky and the bass line is very reminiscent of a Rage Against The Machine song I'm very familiar with (compare for yourself, it's quite interesting!!) Already Gone (Internationalist). Also, social commentary on the futility of modern living penned in a salary and petty expectations. Much of Internationalist is focussed on this worthy theme. Process This is a new song for Fingerprints. Catchy, conventional rocky, will have you shaking your head and tapping your feet. Belter (Internationalist) is a masterpiece of modern composing. The drums are mindblowing. Starting with a soft beat and then exploding into an angry cacophony which is still strangely beautiful. Living Type (Double Allergic) is music to flow to. Very pretty. A modern day love song. Thrilliology (Odyssey Number 5) is one of my favourite songs to sing along to. I just think it's so beautiful, so well written and so dramatic. The lyrics are heartfelt and well delivered and the music sets them off perfectly. A joy. Sink Low (Parables For Wooden Ears) is the only song off their first album to make it to the greatest hits. Part of me thinks Powderfinger are perhaps a little ashamed of their first album, as it is hardly ever mentioned and this is the only inclusion. However, all things said, Parables is a fantastic album in its own right and this song is testimony to that.
In short, buy this album. It's a good introduction to a mind blowing band, and unlike some of their other albums, easy to source in this country. Most record shops should have a copy stashed away somewhere. Highly recommended!!!
Never heard of them (yes i'm a sad git) good review! Spence
mental_infestation 29.11.2005 20:44
I had a few friends from school who love Powderfinger, but I never seemed to get round to downloading or buying any of their music. Maybe I'll need to check out Passenger and see what I think, and then maybe check out this greatest hits album :-)