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Greatest Hits

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Album Review

Those looking to score their Sunday afternoons with polished, midtempo ruminations of life and love could do much worse than this compilation of David Gray's best work. "Babylon" enjoyed much chart success in the States, and many American listeners will find Greatest Hits to be more of a primer to Gray's acoustic-fueled style than a collection of past hits. But for returning fans — particularly those who already own Shine: The Best of the Early Years, released in 2007 — Greatest Hits is a cohesive disc that paints the picture of a seasoned songwriter. Gray didn't start writing hit songs until four albums into his career; as a result, these tracks sound sophisticated and tasteful, quite possibly because they draw their maturity from years of touring, recording, and label-hopping. Also included are 14 pages of liner notes (written by Gray himself in track-by-track format) as well as two new numbers, "You're the World to Me" and "Destroyer," which bookend the CD with the sort of clean, crisp pop/rock that will always find a home on adult contemporary charts. David Gray's music doesn't quite electrify, but it rarely fails to please, making Greatest Hits a nice commercial companion to the fans-only appeal of Shine. [Greatest Hits was re-released on CD in 2015.]

Customer Reviews

Nice selections but a mere sample of his brilliance

A Greatest Hits compilation is inevitable and in this case it closes his current record deal, freeing him to perhaps go it alone as he did for “White Ladder” (although this time by choice, not force.) These 14 songs (including 2 new) are a good example of Gray’s work if you’re new to it but no doubt you know brilliant, enduring ‘Babylon.’ He has too much great material for this to do him justice. ‘Destroyer’ (new) is absolutely one of the most heartfelt songs he has ever written. This is the type of track with the most uplifting music (wicked, soulful, outstanding piano), the characteristic emotive voice, and the most poignant message. Successfully mastering this combination is difficult and rare and hence, an amazing gift, an instant favourite. ‘The World To Me’ (another new one) is superbly uptempo, instrumentally multi-layered; as usual the piano is completely sonorous. ‘The One I Love’, ‘Alibi’ & ‘Hospital Food’ are all accurately here, from not too long ago “Life In Slow Motion”--a totally brilliant album which obviously cannot be included in its entirety. ‘Please Forgive Me’ and ‘Sail Away’ (from “White Ladder”) and the lovely ‘Flame Turns Blue’ (from “Lost Songs”) are all completely appropriate. ‘Be Mine’ and ‘Caroline’ are from “A New Day At Midnight” and are interesting selections: I prefer ‘Knowhere’ and ‘Freedom’ in either of their places, while the haunting ‘The Other Side’ is spot on. The live version of ‘Shine’ is a treat, showcasing his magnificent, raw, flawless, catapulting voice. The studio albums, while great, really only give you a taste of his abilities and particularly his astounding voice. He’s truly one of the best artists that you could ever hear and see perform live. Current day singers, ‘artists’ and even bona fide artists can only hope to have an iota of his vocal, musical and songwriting abilities. He’s a treasure in the UK and is sadly underplayed in North America, although he has a loyal following here. I am surprised there aren’t some “Sell Sell Sell” tracks included, such as ‘Late Night Radio’, ‘Everytime’, and ‘What Am I Doing Wrong?’ amongst them. Again, these 14 tracks are not nearly enough but I’m definitely grateful for the new ones. Everything he has done is worthy of purchase, countless listens and regular rotation. You can have a thorough listen to his albums at

your first love

This year's love is by far one of the best songs I've ever heard. Not knowing David Gray, it was slipped into a soundtrack of sme hideous movie, the song stuck with me, I'd hum it not really knowing the worlds or much of the tune as soon as i woke up in the morning for MONTHS, time poured by, and it stayed with me. Finally shoved into another soundtrack, on full alert, it finds me again. When I hear this song, it takes me back to that first kiss with my first true love...amazing


Vraiment un excellent album, chaque chanson est un pur délice. Tout un artiste.


Born: June 13, 1968 in Sale, Manchester, England

Genre: Rock

Years Active: '90s, '00s, '10s

British singer/songwriter David Gray had already released three overlooked albums by the time White Ladder (and its international breakthrough hit, "Babylon") brought his mix of acoustic instruments and electronic samples to the mainstream. Born in Manchester in 1968, Gray relocated to Wales at the age of nine before returning home to attend the University of Liverpool. While in school, he dabbled in several punk bands and began exploring new styles of writing, eventually uncovering his own poetic...
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