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10cc - 100CC Greatest Hits of 10CC CD (album) cover

100CC GREATEST HITS OF 10CC

10cc

 

Prog Related

2.57 | 6 ratings

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Easy Livin
Special Collaborator
Honorary Collaborator / Retired Admin
3 stars Cashing in early

This 1975 LP compilation (the first for the band) gathers together songs which predate 10CC's most accomplished period around "The Original soundtrack" and "How dare you". The "Greatest hits" title is there both premature and misleading. It does however represent a fair summary of the band's singles chart achievements with producer Jonathan King.

It is premature because the five singles presented on side one were indeed hits but they do not include "I'm not in love", "I'm Mandy, fly me", etc. It is misleading because the second side is devoted to 6 lesser known songs not previously released on album. Rather than include other songs released as unsuccessful singles, King opts to plunder the B-sides and album discards.

The five singles are unquestionably classics of clever pop. Each is a finely crafted, instantly catchy and totally familiar piece of pop history. While labelling them as pop prog is an optimistic step too far, they do have structures which extend beyond the norm of the three minute single. Musically, the band draw in influences from THE BEATLES and THE BEACH BOYS and fuse them with rock based backbeats.

The tracks on the second side are more eclectic. "Waterfall" benefits immensely from the relatively simple verse and chorus on which it is based, with only the backwards instrumental section hinting at the band's penchant for indulgence. This fine ballad could well have been a successful single in its own right. "4% of something.." sets a cynical lyric relating to Jonathan King's hold on the band (".. is better than 10% of nothing") to a simplistic retro pop rock beat.

"Gismo my way" is an instrumental track designed to show of the potential of the new instrument (called a Gismo) the band had acquired. The instrument (or perhaps more accurately device) would go on to be cited as part of the reason for the break- up of the band when Godley and Creme left to pursue its potential. In reality, the sounds here are prosaic and largely familiar. The final three tracks are more obviously B- side material. Even King's detailed sleeve notes simply say that the final two songs "speak for themselves".

While this album was an unambiguous effort by since discredited producer Jonathan King to cash in on the band's phenomenal success, for those such as myself who found their early albums to be over indulgent, it was a convenient way to obtain the cream of their crop. The album is important for devotees of the band in view of the rarities on the second side.

Easy Livin | 3/5 |

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