Songwriter and pianist Anne Clark has been a cult figure since the early '80s and has amassed a rather sizable catalog despite her small but rabid following. She writes nearly-Gothic love songs full of obsession and pathos, and pretty orchestral settings with clever instrumental figures and stinging piano runs and minor-key epiphanies. She's a consummate artist, playing to her strengths while trying to subtly, but surely, extend her reach, and always following her own muse, even when it takes her into dissonant territory. Most of her albums are out of print even on CD, and sell for collector's prices when they can be found. This is too bad, because Clark has assembled a solid, if quirky, and passionately honest body of work. This best-of issued by Beehive is truly that. It features 24 tracks and clocks in at over 75 minutes. Many of these are Clark's most lovely songs, such as "The Sitting Room," "All Night Party" (with Vini Reilly of Durutti Column), the "12" remix" of "Our Darkness," and "The Last Emotion," as well as instrumental themes such as "Swimming" and "An Ordinary Life".
Roden was singer with the Alan Bown Set ('60s) and Bronco ('70s) before going solo on the Island label. Only two Roden albums have ever been available on CD anywhere in the world. This CD picks the best of his six albums for Island and is the first best of on either vinyl or CD. Roden has sung/played on albums by Robert Palmer, Paul Kossoff, John Martyn, Mott the Hoople and Jim Capaldi and came from the same West Midlands music scene as Led Zeppelin. He stepped into the late Jim Morrison s shoes when remaining Doors became the Butts Band and worked with legendary New Orleans producer Allen Toussaint.
ZZ Top closed out their tenure with London Records in late 1977 with The Best of ZZ Top, a basic but terrific ten-song retrospective of highlights from their first five albums (well, four, actually, since the underwhelming Tejas is ignored).
Being the quintessential album rock band, Pink Floyd hasn't had much luck with "best-of" and "greatest-hits" compilations, like A Collection of Great Dance Songs and the bizarro follow-up, Works. Since both of those were released in the early '80s (and time travel being unavailable even to Pink Floyd), they obviously left out any tracks from the post-Roger Waters era albums. While countless hours in dorm rooms have been spent laboring over whether or not the post-Waters recordings should even be considered the "real Floyd," the later albums nonetheless stand as a further progression in the band's evolution and warrant recognition…
Buddha's Sho Nuff Groove: The Best of Harvey Mason is an excellent 12-track compilation, featuring all of the fusion musician's biggest crossover smooth jazz and lite funk hits, including "Marching on the Street," "Set It Free," "Till You Take My Love," "What's Going On," "Liquid," "Don't Doubt My Lovin'," "How Does It Feel," and the 12-inch mix of "Groovin' You." This doesn't give a full picture of his talents as a sideman and producer, but it is a concise chronicle of his solo recordings and a welcome addition to his catalog.