The Associates – Popera -The Singles Collection
CD Compilation, Remastered
This CD is the one to give to introduce that poor person to The Associates. 'Poor' because their lives are empty if they haven't been exposed to the world of Billy Mackenzie and Company. This is an excellent collection to start off one's obsession about this artist. It even has “Country Boy.”
That specific song may be my most favorite Associates/Mackenzie record. It is so over-the-top in its production and Pre War Munich, one would think it would be illegal to hear it or own the damn record. So yeah, one gets the 'hits' but also the oddities such “Country Boy.” His take on Blondie's “Heart of Glass” is almost exactly the same as the original, but somehow it seems more suited for Billy and his aesthetic. He's such a classic great singer, that whatever song he does, he naturally owns it.
The album is odd in its programming because it starts off the new stuff at the time of its release, and goes into the older and much more experimental music. I can see some would think the older material as being the masterpieces (and they are) but its best to go for the whole ride that is The Associates. The last of the great unique voices, Billy is someone to really miss.