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The Light at the End of the Tunnel

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The Damned 22/2/1988

Review

Anyone expecting a fully organized compilation from this double-disc effort will be sorely disappointed; while the years for release dates are mentioned, the sources for many of the releases aren't, leaving neophytes to the Damned a bit high and dry. Happily, an appreciative and detailed essay from one Herb Fenstein (more likely Chiswick label boss Roger Armstrong writing under a pseudonym, as he did in the liner notes to the CD version of Machine Gun Etiquette) helps. Even without the chronological organization, Light is still a great overview of the first ten years of the band's career, especially given the sheer amount of labels that they'd been on over the years (at least five, if not more!). The selection is, for the most part, quite on the money; while those who feel the group fell off dramatically with the Phantasmagoria and Anything albums will think them over-represented, it's still definitely the Damned at their best from track to track. Early punk breakouts like "Neat Neat Neat" and "New Rose" as well as turn-of-the-'80s standards such as "Plan 9 Channel 7," "Smash It Up," and "I Just Can't Be Happy Today" make a case for the band's early days. The Black Album is mostly ignored, but the sidelong "Curtain Call" thankfully is included, giving Vanian his well-deserved showcase. Later numbers like "Ignite," "Lovely Money," "Grimly Fiendish," and the smash single "Eloise" demonstrate that far from fading away, the Damned just found other ways to make their mark. Add to this a slew of rarities -- the studio cover of the Beatles' "Help!," "Rabid (Over You)," "Disco Man," and some alternate mixes of other numbers -- and Light remains the best place for those new to the Damned to start. Comprehensive and perfectly entertaining all at once. ~ Ned Raggett
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  1. # Track Artist Length
  2. 1 I Feel Alright [Cover] The Damned 4:24
  3. 2 Anything The Damned 4:40
  4. 3 Lovely Money The Damned 5:20
  5. 4 Thanks for the Night [Rat Mix] The Damned 3:55
  6. 5 Plan 9 Channel 7 The Damned 5:4
  7. 6 Grimly Fiendish [Remix][The Bad Trip Mix] The Damned 5:8
  8. 7 Stranger on the Town The Damned 5:12
  9. 8 Neat, Neat, Neat [Live Classics] The Damned 2:40
  10. 9 Alone Again Or The Damned 3:28
  11. 10 Is It a Dream? [Live Classics] The Damned 3:18
  12. 11 Smash It Up, Pt. 1-2 The Damned 4:49
  13. 12 Psychomania The Damned 4:2
  14. 13 Curtain Call The Damned 17:11
  15. 1 Ignite The Damned 4:51
  16. 2 Help! [Cover] The Damned 1:38
  17. 3 Rabid (Over You) [CD Mix] The Damned 3:33
  18. 4 I Just Can't Be Happy Today The Damned 3:37
  19. 5 Problem Child The Damned 2:11
  20. 6 Nasty [Live Classics] The Damned 2:47
  21. 7 Disco Man [Live Classics] The Damned 3:14
  22. 8 New Rose [Live Classics] The Damned 2:41
  23. 9 Love Song [Live Classics] The Damned 2:3
  24. 10 Feel the Pain [Live Classics] The Damned 3:33
  25. 11 The History of the World, Pt. 1 The Damned 3:50
  26. 12 In Dulce Decorum The Damned 4:32
  27. 13 Trojans The Damned 4:45
  28. 14 Eloise [Cover] The Damned 5:7
  29. 15 The Shadow of Love The Damned 6:31

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