Compilation by released in 2006
Collected's tracklist:
Safe From Harm
Inertia Creeps
Butterfly Caught
Unfinished Sympathy
What Your Soul Sings
Future Proof
Five Man Army
Live With Me

Collected review

The time feels right for a Massive Attack’s Best Of

Inspired by soul, reggae, hip-hop, and punk, Massive Attack forged a unique path amidst the debris of 80s house and rave culture. Having only produced four albums in 15 years, it seems surprising that their record label have stayed with them. And yet all four albums have become genre-defying moments, from 1991's Blue Lines, which set the blueprint for Bristol's trip-hop sound, to 100th Window, which marked indie-rock's final integration into dance music. Both founding members, Robert Del Naja (aka 3D) and Grant Marshall (Daddy G), would probably argue that they aren't in fact "a dance music collective" at all. But, whatever description you want to give them, they remain one of the most fascinating and original bands of recent times, introducing the talents of artists such as Tricky, Shara Nelson, and Nicolette, and helping reinvent the personas of Horace Andy, Tracy Thorne, Elizabeth Fraser and Sinead O'Connor. With their critically acclaimed albums clocking up millions of sales worldwide, a clutch of awards and a new album due for release in early 2007, the time feels right for a Massive Attack Best Of, an apt reminder of their musical legacy to date. The album entitled Collected features all their key tracks and the new single Live With Me. This edition includes the main disc and a bonus disc featuring additional new tracks, un-released material, rarities and remixes.

The finest moments of the Bristolian trip-hop pioneers

This greatest hits collection spans a fifteen-year career that has seen the band create a dark, distinctive genre mash-up of electronica, hip-hop, dub and rock. Collected is a compilation that highlights the finest moments of the Bristolian trip-hop pioneers. The opener Safe From Harm is the soundtrack to a generation, Shara Nelson's sonorous voice is followed by the contrasting skank-hop of Karmacoma. Horace Andy delivers honey-sweet vocals on the throb-bass Angel, demanding greater amplification on all systems. Then it's the delicate vocals of Elisabeth Fraser on Teardrop, and Del Naja's creepy vocals and lyrics amidst seething pressure cooker sonics of Inertia Creeps. More familiarity with calm and comfort of Tracey Thorn's singing on Protection, giving way to the nocturnal shadowy-world of Butterfly Caught - experimental and with chilling use of cello. Shara Nelson takes us by the hand again for their finest moment, impossible to leave out - Unfinished Symphony still possesses the lightness and magic to whisk you away, taking a ride on the thermals. More tracks follow from arguably their weakest album – 100th Window. A haunting new track, Live With Me, which bares trademark luscious strings, heavily compressed slow-mo beats, and silky blues vocals courtesy of Terry Callier is a return to the band's soulful beginnings and perhaps an indication of a circle turned in the studio for their next release.

Largely familiar tunes of Collected resonate with time and era

The darlings of the UK trip-hop scene, Massive Attack have spent a decade pooling hip-hop, reggae, club-friendly beats and ecclesiastical orchestral arrangements, producing moody chill-out tracks. The band have always sought to expand on their atmospheric, dark brand of trip-hop, managing to stay one step ahead of the pack whilst many of their contemporaries have fallen by the wayside. Largely familiar tunes of Collected resonate with time and era, genre-bending and sonically accomplished. Tracks from recent album 100th Window are weaker, and 3D’s deadpan flow can grate, but these are minor criticisms of a superb collection. Today Del Naja mainly works with long time co-producer Neil Davidge and is currently getting into the idea of "sampling new wave tunes" and flirting with the concept of reinventing soul with Joy Division beats, Public Image Ltd guitars, and old soul gospel vocals. He divides time between London and Bristol, and is currently recording tracks with New York new-wave rockers. Marshall is working with new Bristol-based vocalist Yolanda, Alice Russell, and Sharon Jones, while Horace Andy and Elizabeth Fraser (Cocteau Twins) will also be brought back into the fray. There is also talk of a new collaboration with Tricky, and possibly with David Bowie.

Rate review4.73
Total votes - 229

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