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If you head over to Discogs (an internet based way of buying and selling all sorts of singles and albums) you will discover that you can get a copy of the excellent compilation LP Your Favourite New Band by The Hives for as little as 20p (plus postage)….that is, if you want it on CD. Vinyl junkies will have to shell out £20.

The Hives burst out of Sweden just after the turn of the century thanks to the media deciding guitar music was briefly fashionable again. The band had already released two albums, four singles and four LPs to almost near universal failure – even in their native land where they were a cult more than a commercial success – until Alan McGhee decided to sprinkle his magic fairy dust on the band and proclaim them as the biggest thing he’d heard since the last biggest thing he’d heard.

Taking the best tracks from the previously recorded material, McGhee issued the cheekily and brilliantly named compilation on his own Poptones label which, up until that point had failed to set the heather alight. It was released in the last quarter of 2001 without too much fanfare and managed to find its way into many ‘best of’ rundowns among critics and commentators, particularly those ever-increasing numbers who were beginning to gain audiences via the world-wide web. Three singles were re-released during 2002, all of which hit the UK charts, and it wasn’t too long before the band were the subject of a bidding war among the major labels.

The Hives inked a lucrative deal with Univeral, since when they have all but disappeared from the charts except in Sweden where they have picked up all sorts of gold discs and awards.

I haven’t paid all that much attention to the band for a long time, but I am more than happy to admit that when the mood for some raw, frantic, tuneful pop music crosses my mind that I’ll give the compilation LP a listen – 12 cracking bits of music in just over 28 minutes. It’s great fun:-

mp3 : The Hives – Hate To Say I Told You So
mp3 : The Hives – Die, All Right!
mp3 : The Hives – A.K.A. I-D-I-O-T

Enjoy