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A Collection (Remastered)

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Album Review

Within the first page of the liner notes to the first Third Eye Blind compilation, 2006's modestly titled A Collection, it's revealed that TEB's lead singer/songwriter, Stephan Jenkins, is a Berkeley lit grad who has drawn heavy inspiration from Lou Reed, Camper Van Beethoven, and Jane's Addiction — three late-'80s college rock staples who never have been name-dropped in association with Jenkins, who nevertheless makes the case for their influence not only within James Hunter's liners for A Collection, but within Jenkins' own track-by-track commentary on the album, too. Musically, Third Eye Blind always seemed far removed from this kind of rock underground; they had a streak of hits in the late '90s that were textbook post-grunge, building on the angst of early-'90s alt-rock, but giving it stronger pop hooks and polishing it up for a mass audience. Certainly, the millions who bought the band's 1997 eponymous debut did so because of the nagging chorus of "Semi-Charmed Life" or the bittersweet pull of their AAA ballad "How's It Going to Be" — above anything else, they liked how the records sounded, not whether they were a response song to Reed's "Walk on the Wild Side" or not. And "Semi-Charmed Life" is indeed a response to "Walk on the Wild Side," which is one of many revelations that Jenkins spills in the liner notes, where he emphasizes the literary meaning and intent of the songs (for instance, of "Slow Motion" he says, "there's some Richard III" in there). For those who didn't pay close attention to Third Eye Blind, such gravely serious aspirations may come as a bit of a surprise, but upon reflection they make some sense — after all, apart from the incandescent hook of their best song, "Never Let You Go," and the chorus of "Semi-Charmed Life," there never was a sense of fun about Third Eye Blind. They always sounded sober and somber, and A Collection proves that impression was no illusion — in fact, it illustrates how Jenkins' self-conscious aspirations to profundity gave the band's music a stultifying serious undercurrent. Early on in the group's career, they had enough hooks and polish that this ambition was easy to swallow — frankly, the hooks on the hits, not just the aforementioned songs but also "Graduate" and "Jumper," were slick enough that the songs went down smoothly. Even if this collection is not sequenced in chronological order, it does chart that shift in the band's sound. At 19 tracks, A Collection is almost too accurate of a portrait of Third Eye Blind.

Customer Reviews

BEST BAND EVER - 21 songs don't tell the whole story.

I saw these guys open for U2 several years ago ('97), when they were just beginning to get heavy airplay. Much to my surprise, they were freakin' awesome. That prompted me to buy their first album. Not a bad song on the album. Same with their last two releases, Blue and Out of the Vein. Maybe its just me, but this band is very special. Of the 8000 songs I have in iTunes, Third Eye Blind is the most played band, and they haven't released an album in 3+ years. Their music stands the test of time. They are not one of those bands who only has 2-3 good songs per album. In my opinion, almost every song is great. Every song in this collection is good, but if you truly like there music, check out their albums, and better yet, see them live. Now how about some videos?

Smart pop

First of all, I'd like to say that I don't have this exact CD of greatest hits. I do however have all three albums by Third Eye Blind, and I've listened to them since they came out. The track choices are very nice, especially the inclusion of songs like "Motorcycle Driveby" and "Wounded" which never got much airplay. However, I have no idea why they're listed like this. It seems to be arranged in order of popularity, from most popular to least. I have to say that's a terrible way to arrange a Greatest Hits CD. I'd prefer it were arranged in chronological order. The reason this isn't getting five stars is really for the release of nothing new. How about the recently-released B-Sides "Persephone" or "Carnival Barker"? Or a new track? Or something live? The only "new" things here are the remixes of tracks already on the album, and they hardly sound any different from the original takes. Still, 21 3eb songs for $12 is a good deal if you don't own the CDs. Now, when is the new album coming out!?

First Review

This is a great collection of songs from one of the most talented post-grunge bands out there. When some bands create compilations, they are occasionally poorly-organized and are missing some key tracks. Third Eye Blind's hits album here, however, includes every radio hit the band has released, as well as some tracks that weren't played on the radio as much, but all still show this band's supreme artistic talent. This is a must-buy for any Third Eye Blind fan as well as any other post-grunge or alternative rock enthusiast. A greatest hits album like this needs recognition, and purchasing it would likely be recommended by any rocker.


Genre: Alternative

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

Although often lumped into the post-grunge category, Third Eye Blind sported a brighter sound than many of their late-'90s peers, taking as much influence from classic pop/rock traditions as the angst-ridden music that dominated the decade. The group scored its first hit in 1997, when the debut single "Semi-Charmed Life" cracked the Top 10. Third Eye Blind built upon that success throughout the following three years, releasing a number of singles (three of which cracked the Top 10) while touring...
Full Bio
A Collection (Remastered), Third Eye Blind
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Customer Ratings