It’s still a weird record, despite the many poppy hooks, and the smooth, glossy feel about the production.
Lugubrious, sometimes annoying, this is true outsider music in its most genial manner. A record like this has no place in the pantheon of cool, which somehow endears me to it, even if there are moments that are pretty unbearable. At times listening to Greatest Hits is very much like conversing with a middle aged fella whilst having a pint at the golf club. It’s still a weird record, despite the many poppy hooks, and the smooth, glossy feel about the production. I can imagine a fair number of people hating it - especially things like the sub-Kool & the Gang-isms found on Craziness or the “wackiness” of Addicted to Porn – mostly because it doesn’t have to seem to have any vibe or reference point outside the ideas aired or the instruments played. There are also a number of slow tracks which veer away just at the last moment from that fathomless pit known as The Mawkish Ballad, though, (to mis-quote the Duke of Wellington), it’s a damned close run thing.
Still you have things that could be from the Robyn Hitchcock songbook (such as Cosmic Cheese or Gravity Dream), which is never a bad thing. And one or two other tracks are daft or different enough to win anyone over, such as Waiting On You or Broken In Two.