Garbage – Anthology

A celebration and testament of the alt-rock veterans illustrious career so far...

Just one year on from 2021’s explosive and critically acclaimed ‘No Gods No Masters’ – an album that challenged the patriarchal political landscape, rock ‘n’ roll giants Garbage are back with a slick career-spanning 35 track collection. The band’s first ‘Best Of’ compilation in 15 years, ‘Anthology’ is a riotous and joyful ride through Garbage’s impressive, three decade career.

Garbage have always been synonymous with their undeniable brand of high-octane rock ‘n’ roll fused with electronica, metal, alt-rock and trip-hop. They have never rested on their (musical) laurels, have always defied convention and have never shied away from taking a sonic shift. 

Of course, ‘Anthology’ is an invariable treasure trove of musical gems which includes smash-hit singles and deep cuts alike. There’s tracks from the band’s seven studio albums; from their 1995’s eponymous debut and 1998’s sophomore offering ‘Version 2.0’ through to the intimate and intriguing ‘Strange Little Birds’ and the extraordinary ‘Not Your Kind Of People’.

There’s a smattering of tracks from ‘Bleed Like Me’ which includes the breathtaking ‘Why Do You Love Me’, a frenetic and impassioned confessional track that talks of how fundamentally we all feel insecure in love, as well as the anthemic ‘Sex Is Not The Enemy’ and ‘Run Baby Run’.

From the transcendent ‘Cherry Lips’ and the abrasive but awesome ‘Stupid Girl’, this collection of songs serves as a fantastic reminder of Garbage’s strengths of candid and perceptive storytelling. Classic Garbage tracks like ‘Push It’, ‘Only Happy When It Rains’ and ‘Special’ sit effortlessly alongside rarer tracks like ‘Witness To Your Love’ and ’Subhuman’.

The band’s forays into film are two of the album’s highlights with the now legendary James Bond theme song ‘The World Is Not Enough’. This effortlessly fuses soaring strings with Shirley’s seductive vocals and the distinctively edgy stylings that we know and love Garbage for, to create what is one of the best James Bond theme songs of all time.  ‘#1 Crush’ from the film Romeo And Juliet also makes an appearance. 

Fan favourites ‘The Trick Is To Keep Breathing’ and the sublime ‘Queer’ also make a much-welcomed appearance. The album’s closer ‘No Gods No Masters’ travels with a fantastic urgency driven by spiky guitar riffs and a heart stopping hook.

This is not just a deep dive into the band’s dazzling back catalogue, it’s a striking and extraordinary testament to Garbage’s enduring legacy – and of course, their longevity as a band.

9/10

Words: Emma Harrison

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