Monday 22nd May 2006
By Philip Ellwood
It's amazing to think how long Feeder have been around. They served their early years by touring relentlessly and building up a fanbase. This all changed in 1999 with the release of their 'Yesterday Went Too Soon' album which finally crossed the group over into the mainstream. Unfortunately tragedy struck the band when original drummer Jon Lee committed suicide in 2002 leaving founding members Grant Nicholas and Taka Hirose deeply shocked. Nicholas and Hirose decided to continue the band and ex-Skunk Anansie drummer Mark Richardson joined Feeder. 'The Singles' is the definitive collection of Feeder from the last 11 years. The album's 20 tracks comprise of most of the singles released and three additional new songs have been added to the package.
'The Singles' really does illustrate the strength of Feeder in contemporary rock music. Feeder are just as convincing with rock anthems as they are with gentle rock-lite tracks. Latest single 'Lost & Found' and 'Yesterday Went Too Soon' are great examples of this contrast. 'Lost & Found' is a rock anthem in the making whereas 'Yesterday Went Too Soon' could be one of the most beautiful rock ballads committed to record. I remember the first time I heard this track and it still has the ability to make the hair on the back on my neck stand up. Highlights on the album include one of the group's earliest hits 'High', the anthemic 'Buck Rogers' and the tour-de-force 'Come Back Around'.
Aside from 'Lost & Found' the other new tracks 'Burn The Bridges' and 'Save Us' definitely deserve their place on this collection. 'Burn The Bridges' showcases Feeder's rocky side whereas 'Save Us' taps into their sensitive side. 'Save us' is due to be the next release from the group and is sure to be a huge hit. Lead singer Grant Nicholas' voice has never sounded better and I can imagine 'Save Us' being a highlight at future concerts.
It's a shame that not all of the singles are included on this collection. The most notable exclusion is the incredible 'Paper Faces'. The band have handpicked the songs that appear on this collection and perhaps they believed that some of their other songs were more worthy. This is only a minor complaint as 'The Singles' is an impressive, must-have collection of rock-perfection. Hardcore Feeder fans will probably buy this regardless of already owning all the albums but 'The Singles' would be a welcome addition to a casual Feeder listener or those who have only recently discovered the band.