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Craig David: Greatest Hits (Deluxe Edition)

Craig David

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Album Review

The dwindling record sales, the rather embarrassing tabloid kiss-and-tells, and the downright unflattering Bo' Selecta! impersonations have made it easy to forget that not so long ago, Craig David was one of Britain's most credible soul talents. His fusion of 2-step and soulful R&B struck a chord with audiences both at home and across the Atlantic, his debut album became the fastest-selling ever by a male solo artist, and his failure to pick up any Brit Awards — after being nominated for six — sparked a tabloid frenzy. Greatest Hits, featuring 12 Top 40 singles, is a comprehensive roundup of David's career so far, taking in the early glory days, the backlash years, and three new tracks that suggest he isn't ready to be written off just yet. Not surprisingly, it's the contributions from the multi-platinum Born to Do It that are the strongest. Number ones "Fill Me In" and "7 Days" effortlessly blend his trademark quickfire lyrical delivery with Mark Hill's subtle acoustic soul production, while "Walking Away," arguably his best single, is a heartfelt bluesy number reminiscent of U2's "One." Falling victim to the "build them up, knock them down" mentality of the British press, second album Slicker Than Your Average was accused of pandering to U.S. audiences. However, only the futuristic, vocoderized funk of the underrated "What's Your Flava" sounded anything like a radical departure. The infectious soul-pop of "Hidden Agenda" and piano-led ballad "You Don't Miss Your Water" would quite easily have fit on his debut, while the Sting duet "Rise and Fall," which became his biggest hit for three years, was quintessentially British. But the unjust criticism seemed to knock David's confidence, and "All the Way" and "Don't Love You No More," the two rather bland singles from third album The Story Goes..., suggest David was afraid to play it anything other than far too safe. A new beefed-up look for fourth album Trust Me was reflected in its lead single, "Hot Stuff," whose muscular beats and punchy synths perfectly complemented the David Bowie "Let's Dance" sample. However, the everything-but-the-kitchen-sink production of "6 of 1 Thing" showed why its parent album barely sold a 20th of his debut. But while David is unlikely to achieve the million-selling success of his heyday, he is still capable of producing the odd killer single. New track "Insomnia," which owes more than just a nod to Ne-Yo's "Closer," is a glorious slice of dance-pop and his most club-friendly single since the genre-defining Artful Dodger collaboration "Rewind," also included here. Greatest Hits is undoubtedly an inconsistent listen, but packed with several classic singles, it should resurrect the chart fortunes of one of the decade's most talented and unique R&B singers. ~ Jon O'Brien, Rovi

Customer Reviews

awesome

yea, i think certain people (previous comment) should only comment on bjork albums being thats all they seem to like. again this is a great compilation.

Brilliant!

Craig David is one of the most underrated singers in the business, but hopefully this album will show people what a great artist he really is! as for the first person who commented on this album, check out her reviews, she slates every successful r&b album that has been released, and all she likes is bjork! keep you opinions to yourself love, no1s interested in how much you dislike a genre.

Give him a chance

My friends managed to drag me (quite reluctantly) to a Craig David concert in Southampton Guildhall this summer, without me having any of his music. I wasn't expecting much but it was an amazing experience and it made me realise how many great songs he has and surprised me how many songs I wanted to sing along to. I don't know why Craig David breeds such contempt from people (my dad loathes him just as much as all the other reviewers who only bothered doing a review to say how rubbish he is and give him 1 star), but I would definitely recommend seeing him live. This album reminds me of that great evening, so I've given it 5 stars. Don't hate on him!

Biography

Born: 05 May 1981 in Southampton, England

Genre: R&B/Soul

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

During a period of three years, Craig David transitioned from aspiring songwriter and DJ to major U.K. pop star. When his meringue-smooth, garage-tinged R&B single "Fill Me In" reached the top of the U.K. chart during the summer of 2000, the singer, only 19 years old at the time, became the youngest British male solo artist to achieve the feat. Not only that, but he also achieved mainstream U.S. acceptance and platinum sales...
Full bio
Craig David: Greatest Hits (Deluxe Edition), Craig David
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