‘Teenage Wildlife’ sees Ash not so much wanting to call it a greatest hits package more a biography. ‘Teenage Wildlife’ traces the band’s recording career from the teenage days of the debut ‘Jack Names The Planets’ through to the likes of the last album ‘Islands’ and the track ‘BuzzKill’.
Ash has always been a top of the pops botherer and the fact that there are thirteen Top 40 singles included in this here “Biography” is a quite remarkable achievement for a guitar band. Of course, classics like ‘Girl From Mars’, ‘Gold Finger’, and ‘Oh Yeah’ are all present and correct but that’s just part of this here “Biography”.
Ash fans (ones with more than a passing interest in a track or two) will be more interested in the inclusion of nineteen-tracks of rarities, including a version of The Buzzcocks’ classic ‘Everybody’s Happy Nowadays; (featuring Coldplay’s Chris Martin) never thought I’d be typing his name and his bands name on RPM in a positive light. But, hey ho we’re a broad church and everybody is capable of redemption. The amazing cover of “that” undertones classic ‘Teenage Kicks’ (perfect for Ash not due to their geography but its a song that could have been written for the band) and the collection’s infamous title track to name a few included here.
Through the youthful wild days, and the Ivor Novello award wins, and their numerous top 20 albums. Ash keep going about their business penning great songs and great albums and always seeming to let the music do their talking. The fact that this collection comes out in various formats with cool innovative artwork, it’s no mean feat that there is a three-CD set with well over fifty songs (fifty-four to be precise) on that version compared to the (slender in comparison) Vinyl version, ‘Teenage Wildlife’ is as good as any compilation album gets and one that a lot of hard work and thought has clearly gone into.
If Ash isn’t a band you think you like but then on hearing a track or two remember you do quite like, then, this is for you. Besides, they’ve always been great live always come up with great records and alongside the albums, they released great singles and this is proof of that.
I guess being demanding and a bit greedy it might have been nice to have included stuff like the quirky ukelele version of ‘Kung Fu’ or ‘Girl From Mars’ and maybe a live track or two to showcase how good they are live. But like I said having fifty-four tracks on this release maybe I’m asking for the moon on a stick as well. I know, I’ll leave it there. To buy or not to buy? No brainer, Just buy it! You’ll be singing along in no time regardless of if your an ash virgin or someone who forgot how bloody good they are.
Available as limited Lenticular vinyl edition, double vinyl, double CD and special Lenticular 3 CD set including 18 track rarities CD