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[Off The Record]
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Eddy Grant
THE GREATEST HITS
(EAST/WEST)

Eddy Grant was a major player in 1980s dance music, a Jamaican pop vocalist living in Great Britain, where overseas dance-music styles found their surest club-kid fans. He fares well with this collection, in which all of his reggae-flavored Afro-pop hits are included. Did you like the percussive ecstasy of "Walking on Sunshine"? Dance the slide to the incandescent "Electric Avenue," with its burn-rubber motorcycle intro? Identify with "Living on the Frontline," with its slickly crooned overtones of Big Youth jams? Smile at the twangy-guitar ostentation of his version of "Baby Come Back"? Swoon for the racy quickness of "Romancing the Stone," with its metallic and Eurodisco orchestration? Then youíll be pleased by the range of this collection.

A greatest-hits album should also spotlight a few songs that should have been hits but werenít. Here that role is taken by "Killer on the Rampage," which mixes a red-clay soul guitar lick with Grantís pop melodicism, and by "Hello Africa," as sweet, lithe, and cutely rhythmic as the Nigerian juju music it adapts to the uses of Grantís big teddy-bear baritone.

BY MICHAEL FREEDBERG

Issue Date: November 22 - 29, 2001

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