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The Beastie Boys - Ch-ch-check it out

2006-03-30 10:09

Somewhere between the death of hair-metal and the emergence of hip-hop in the mainstream, three slightly odd youngsters from New York teamed up with a hard rock producer named Rick Rubin, and the rest, as they say, is history.

Solid Gold Hits is a VERY abridged form of that history - think of it as a study guide.

Assembling fifteen hits from a twenty year career must have felt a lot like a "yeah, whatever", especially since you can get a more satisfying, 42-track Beastie Boys Anthology: The Sounds of Science (1999).

So really, Solid Gold Hits is an unadventurous retrospective. It delivers exactly what it proposes: only the solid gold hits, no frills, not even a cool booklet - only the meat and potatoes. But even so, perhaps this testifies to the Beasties' huge value. Even this very abriged offering is more than worth many other "Greatest Hits" collections out there.

The disc is available in two editions - a single disc audio edition, and a two-disc bonus DVD edition, which features all the videos as well. At the time of this writing, the double-disc is available on import only, but is probably worth the extra shillings.

Unless, of course, you don't own a Beastie Boys album yet (shame on you), in which case, the Solid Gold Hits single disc makes a pretty good initiation. Vamp to the dark sci-fi vocoder on "Intergalactic"; Throw your hands in the air on "Brass Monkey"; Do the running man on "Ch-Check it Out!"

In the end, you're going to realise that it's almost impossible to resist the Beastie Boys' infectious retro charm, wit and energy.

- Anton Marshall

Break out your oversized baseball jackets, your mirror-lense sunglasses, your sneaker boots; make complicated signs with your hands; start carrying a ghetto blaster around with you; and stuff.


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