B-Sides Collection | review

Harem Scarem are back with yet another release. This time around we are presented with acoustic tracks, some b-sides (well, they are b-sides to the Japanese market) and a few live songs thrown in for good measure.
They start things off with an acoustic studio version of "So Blind" and a mighty fine version I might add!I have always felt that Harem Scarem songs sound just as amazing unplugged as they do on the original release.
"Climb the Gate" and "Without You" are both acoustic live versions and they have a very stripped back feelto them! One thing I've noticed is how the vocal harmonies in these songs sound a bit flat to this ear. It does give it a very "raw" feel to the songs, which may have been the intent all along. I don't really likewhen bands "touch up" live performances in any way, so having it this way is fine with me. The next threesongs are all studio tracks, "Surrender" being a cover of the Cheap Trick classic and the other two can befound on the Canadian release "Karma Cleansing" or you can get all three songs on the "Believe SpecialEdition" CD. Have I confused you yet?

"Change Comes Around" and "Hard To Love" are both very well done.I've always liked "Hard To Love" unplugged a great deal more than the studio version for some odd reason! Ifeel the songhas more personality in the unplugged format. "Good Enough" is they only new track on thedisc! It'san acoustic-based ballad of sort, very moody and genuinely a strong song overall. The next mentionable tracks are the two live songs "Blue" and "No Justice", from what I've heard these were leftoffthe "Live At the Siren" CD that was released in Japan last year. Why they didn't just put themon that release is beyond me. The CD ends with an incredible ballad called "More Than You'll EverKnow" which wouldn't seem out of place on the "Voice Of Reason" CD. This is a outstandingballad with a very strong sing-along chorus. Overall, this is a favorable release, but there are too may studio tracks that have already been released on their other albums. It's not an essential purchase, but definitely an enjoyable disc that most Harem Scarem fans will most likely want to own.

Review by Rob
Originally posted at aor.nu

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