When Ash released their second album "1977" in 1996, the Northern Irish still embodied untroubled youth. The charm of the band, which apparently goes straight from the schoolyard to the rehearsal garage to come out a little later with a bunch of Schrammel earwigs, has naturally somewhat evaporated today. And yet band head Tim Wheeler is still an instinctive songwriter with a natural feel for strong melodies. This is illustrated by the band's first "Best Of" compilation in almost ten years. Songs from the two chart albums - "Free All Angels" from 2001 besides "1977" - together with evergreens like "Girl From Mars" or "Kung Fu" clearly predominate. But even recent pieces that have climbed less high into the charts hold the high playing class, and the youthful indie-punk sound of the trio vary harmoniously in different directions. For example the riffsatte rocker "Clones" from the 2004 album "Meltdown" and the rhythm accentuated disco rock hymn "Return Of White Rabbit" from 2009, prelude of the project to release 26 singles "from A to Z". Ash apparently turned away from regular albums. That's too bad.
Top track: Girl From Mars