Here's how much I know about trip-hop: Massive Attack, Portishead.
I make this point only because I'm so impressed with the song selections and liner notes of Morcheeba's best-of collection Parts Of The Process.
After just one listen and read-through I have discovered several things:
- Morcheeba consists of two brothers plus lead singer (Skye)
- They've gone through several distinct stylistic shifts
- They used to party.... a lot
- Ross Godfrey is an interesting guitar player
- Skye's smooth & creamy voice makes me feel smooth & creamy
- I need to buy some more Morcheeba
This is what a well-constructed best-of can do: get a person interested in the back catalog. I don't know what the folks at the labels think about greatest hits packages: a marketing opportunity? free money...as in cheap to produce (kinda like reality TV)? Who knows. My cynical side leans toward the latter.
Now, back to the liner notes. First, a very consice (but still interesting) bio of the group. It's funny and irreverent but does get down to who Morcheeba is. Then on to the track listing: the details of each song are augmented by a paragraph to the right explainging how the tune came about, bandmembers' thoughts, etc. Great stuff. These are things that fans care about.
So here's my message to the major labels: your customers are fans of music. Treat them with respect and you will be rewarded for your efforts.
On my way home today I'm going to stop and pick up Big Calm.
ps. My copy of "Parts" had a sticker affixed to the front with the title "The Very Best Of Morcheeba". I'm sorry but "The Very Best Of...", aside from being slightly oxymoronic, is just plain icky. It reminds me of TV adverts for 'serious' episodes of anything. "Join us for a very special E.R." Blech.
(First posted on Mark Is Cranky)