Buckcherry – The Best Of

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Review by Ian Savage

‘BA-DA! BA-DA! “Aahhhhhhhhh-yeeeaaahhh!!!”‘ Having unleashed something of a modern classic onto rock dancefloors in the form of ‘Crazy Bitch’ in 2006 (a full seven years after they first irritated censors with ode to cocaine ‘Lit Up’), Buckcherry‘s brand of swaggering, sleazy rock ‘n’ roll has long marked them out as potential successors to the likes of G’n’R and New York Dolls. There’s still plenty of rock fans unaware of the band’s work outside of the obvious big singles, mind, so the trend for releasing a ‘best of’ after only a few albums (and ahead of a world tour with nothing new to promote) can be seen to make commercial sense here, cynical as the move inevitably appears.

If nothing else, ‘The Best Of Buckcherry’ emphasises that they have a lot more in the canon than a few tunes to soundtrack a drunken Saturday night. Their late-2000s era albums are slightly under-represented in favour of the 1999 debut and breakthrough 15, but it’s none the worse for that – as is surely expected with a ‘best of’, there are tracks which anyone who’s spent more than a few nights in rock clubs over the past decade will recognise alongside some gems which will have passed many by. Buckcherry have the songwriting chops to pull at the heartstrings as well as kick firmly in the groin, and this collection demonstrates that admirably.

The decision to run the tracks chronologically is an unusual one, with the lighter-waving ballads from Buckcherry and 15 conspicuously clustered together at the beginning of the album, huddled against later harder-hitting material like ‘Rescue Me’ and ‘Gluttony’ – there certainly isn’t enough difference in production quality to necessitate such an obvious approach, so one is left to assume it’s been done at best to demonstrate the band’s evolution and at worst out of a lackadaisical approach to album structure.

This release is probably most likely to be of use to rock fans only fleetingly familiar with Buckcherry’s output – if you already own the debut and breakthrough albums your money would be better spent on fully absorbing one of the later LPs, and if you’re an established fan there’s nothing hear that you won’t have heard already. At least they haven’t pulled the time-honoured trick of making hardcore fans buy a bunch of material they already own with the carrot of one or two ‘previously unavailable’ tunes; this ‘Best of’ really is made for the casual fan, and if you fit into that category it’s well worthwhile.

Buckcherry - Best Of7 out of 10

Track listing: 

  1. Lit Up
  2. For The Movies
  3. Ridin’
  4. Sorry
  5. Next To You
  6. Everything
  7. Crazy Bitch
  8. Rescue Me
  9. Rose
  10. All Night Long
  11. Gluttony
  12. Nothing Left But The Tears