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Various Artists | Chartbusters USA Vols. 1, 2 & 3 (Ace)
Just a cursory butchers at the track list drew me in. I know people as cool as you don't buy sixties hits compilations and the even cooler CwaS doesn't get in a flap about releases of this kind but this not so little Ace Records series is so special someone must say something. There are loads of reasons why you should check 'em out but for now here's seven:
1. You hit upon an interesting hits collection with that certain track you always craved or that obscure track from your sweet childhood that you once owned on vinyl and lost you can't remember when. Suddenly it's yours but heck; the sound is tin pot thin. It never sounded like this. All these eighty-eight songs have the authentic, detailed Big Fat Sound.
2. Whether you are an economy minded Ikea monkey or spiffy new VW Beetle sport coupe driving, Memphis owning swinger, cool design counts. These three volumes have covers featuring cute little collages of sixties images which enhance your colourful habitat and enable you to cruise through the Coffee Table Test.
3. Among the elite eighty-eight you will find the songs you are too embarrassed to own, your secret loves, your secret happiness. Guantanamera!
4. The one-hit wonders are all present and most correct without their superfluous dross. A Classical Gas!
5. Many great songs, some of them very big hits, were American airwaves favourites but are new, exciting goodies for us to devour. Unknown Pleasures!
6. A generous eighty-eight songs so no need to despair over a handful of duds. Never Mind The Bollocks.
7. Put simply, you will own many of the greatest records ever made.
(A free copy to the reader who can write in with another seven good reasons to buy 'Chartbusters USA'.)

Stephen Ridley
CWAS #12 - Summer 2003

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