A fairly standard trawl through Lene Lovich's back pages, rounding up all the hits and near misses that punctuated her four years at Stiff Records, backed up by more choice album cuts than one might remember there being. For obvious reasons, the Stateless debut album predominates here, with the manic flurry of "Lucky Number," "Say When," and "I Think We're Alone Now" positively refusing to leave your head once you've heard them again. Moving on, the enthralling "Bird Song" reminds you what Kate Bush once seemed capable of accomplishing (at least until Hazel O'Connor came along and devalued the whole thing), while a delicious cover of Frankie Valli's "The Night" still out-dramas any other version you could name. Lovich's later years, however, still sound as unremarkable as her early releases were astonishing, with the annoying "New Toy" single, and 1982's barely memorable "It's You (Only You)"
Lene Lovich emerged in the late 1970s new wave and remained primarily a UK phenomenon. This excellent compilation draws on her two brilliant albums Stateless and Flex, both on the famous Stiff label. Packed with hits, Best Of contains all the essential tracks that made her such a cult phenomenon.
What set Lovich apart was her theatrical vocal style best demonstrated on catchy songs like Lucky Number (her first hit), the ethereal Bird Song and the torch song Too Tender (To Touch). Her outstanding material also contributed to the legend - besides the aforementioned, other classics here include the fast-paced Say When and One In A Million, the sinister Telepathy and the acerbic Home.
Other tracks of note are It's You, Only You, Writing On The Wall and her interpretation of the pop classic I Think We're Alone now, of which there is also a Japanese version. Lovich excelled as both a quirky pop singer and a torch diva. Fans of, say, Jane Siberry and Mary Margaret O'Hara will find a lot to enjoy in her music.
01. Say When (2:51) 02. Lucky Number (2:50) 03. Think We're Alone Now (2:46) 04. Bird Song (4:30) 05. It's You, Only You (Mein Schmerz) (3:38) 06. Blue Hotel (3:09) 07. New Toy (3:20) 08. What Will I Do (3:37) 09. Angels (3:08) 10. Home (3:40) 11. Big Bird (3:26) 12. Details (3:10) 13. Be Stiff (2:40) 14. Too Tender (4:06) 15. Writing On The Wall (3:10) 16. One In A Million (2:52) 17. Telepathy (2:47) 18. Monkey Talk (3:23) 19. The Night (4:33) 20. Special Star (4:40) 21. Maria (3:04) 22. Rocky Road (4:17) 23. Think We're Alone Now (Japanese Version) (2:45)