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Pop - Released January 1, 2006 | Capitol Records

Instead of recording a new batch of songs for their major-label debut, Katrina and the Waves elected to redo ten songs from their first two albums (given the criminal lack of dissemination these two fine platters apparently received, this decision made a lot of sense). All were re-recorded in an aggressive power pop style; surprisingly, most all these fine songs hold up extremely well under this approach. A few of these tunes, notably "Going Down to Liverpool" and "Walking on Sunshine," lose a bit of their original sparkle and purity as a result, but just as one cannot obliterate the taste of a great hunk of prime rib with a little sauce, so too one cannot ruin these amazing songs by adding a little extra oomph. Other tunes gain surprising virtues this way. "Red Wine and Whisky" and "Do You Want Crying" [sic] become desperately driven and urgent tuneful rockers, while "Game of Love" transforms into a rollicking party platter of the first magnitude. And "Cry for Me" and "The Sun Won't Shine" regenerate as blues-like shouting numbers of apocalyptic intensity. This great album is an essential purchase. © David Cleary /TiVo
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Punk / New Wave - Released September 1, 1997 | WM UK

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Pop - Released March 26, 2012 | Kyboside Limited, a BMG Compny

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Pop - Released June 21, 2010 | Kyboside Limited, a BMG Compny

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Pop - Released May 24, 2010 | Kyboside Limited, a BMG Compny

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Pop - Released January 1, 2006 | Capitol Records

Fourteen songs that sum up the brief mid-1980s commercial peak of this spirited power pop quartet. As one would guess from the cover art, most of the material comes off of their self-titled Capitol album, which is here complete but with its tracks re-sequenced, augmented by four cuts thrown off of Waves. Strangely enough, "Sun Street," "Sleep on My Pillow," "Is That It?," and "Tears for Me," all good songs from the latter, are here, but Kimberley Rew's "Lovely Lindsey," one of the album's highlights, is missing. That's something of a puzzlement, as the group was only on Capitol Records for two albums, after all, so it would seem to be difficult to overlook a key track -- like a 15th song would have killed the compilers. Intrinsically, there is nothing wrong with anything here, although even within the confines of this collection, there's a fall-off in quality from "Walking on Sunshine," "Going Down to Liverpool," "Do You Want Crying," and "Tears For Me," although everything here is good listening, if not all equally memorable. There are no notes, but the sound gives full play to the group's obvious virtues, especially Katrina Leskanich's lead vocals, Kimberley Rew's crunchy, melodic lead guitar (which sounds like it's in your lap), and Alex Cooper's drums. Overall, this is a decent if slightly slipshod attempt to compile the band's best work, which will do until Raven or some other enterprising foreign label takes up the task. © Bruce Eder /TiVo
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Pop - Released May 10, 2010 | Kyboside Limited, a BMG Compny

Instead of recording a new batch of songs for their major-label debut, Katrina and the Waves elected to redo ten songs from their first two albums (given the criminal lack of dissemination these two fine platters apparently received, this decision made a lot of sense). All were re-recorded in an aggressive power pop style; surprisingly, most all these fine songs hold up extremely well under this approach. A few of these tunes, notably "Going Down to Liverpool" and "Walking on Sunshine," lose a bit of their original sparkle and purity as a result, but just as one cannot obliterate the taste of a great hunk of prime rib with a little sauce, so too one cannot ruin these amazing songs by adding a little extra oomph. Other tunes gain surprising virtues this way. "Red Wine and Whisky" and "Do You Want Crying" [sic] become desperately driven and urgent tuneful rockers, while "Game of Love" transforms into a rollicking party platter of the first magnitude. And "Cry for Me" and "The Sun Won't Shine" regenerate as blues-like shouting numbers of apocalyptic intensity. This great album is an essential purchase. © David Cleary /TiVo
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Pop - Released January 1, 2004 | Kyboside Limited, a BMG Compny

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Rock - Released January 1, 1985 | CAPITOL CATALOG MKT (C92)

One of the greatest one-hit wonders of the 1980s, Katrina and the Waves were on top of the world after "Walking on Sunshine" in 1985, one of the finest pop singles of the decade. The group recorded their follow-up album in early 1986, and although it's not a disaster by any stretch, it certainly falls short of their awesome debut. Part of this, to be sure, is due to the fact that songwriter/lead guitarist Kimberly Rew takes a back seat to the other band members in the composing area. It's a bit sad, not only because Rew had true talent (such excellent songs on the debut as "Goin' Down to Liverpool," "Red Wine & Whisky" and the aforementioned "Sunshine" were his), but also because the plain fact is that lead singer Katrina Leskanich and the other members just were not really close to his level of pop songwriting. There are some fine moments, however, such as the infectious "Sun Street" and "Tears for Me." Rew's two songs, "Is That It" and "Lovely Lindsay," are mini-masterpieces, and eventually push the group and this album somewhere near the goal line. © Matthew Greenwald /TiVo
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Pop - Released July 18, 2011 | Kyboside Limited, a BMG Compny

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Pop - Released July 21, 2010 | Kyboside Limited, a BMG Compny

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Pop - Released May 17, 2010 | Kyboside Limited, a BMG Compny

After cutting their first two 12" releases on the cheap, Katrina & the Waves enjoyed some welcome success with their self-titled 1983 album (which became a hit in Canada), and the follow-up, boldly titled Katrina and the Waves 2, found them adding a dollop of studio polish to their sound. This was a good and a bad thing; the glossier production allows some of the finer details of Kimberley Rew's songwriting and guitar work to come to the surface, but the additional backing vocals, keyboards, and horns also clutter arrangements that had been lean and straightforward on their earlier recordings, and drummer Alex Cooper was asked to share percussion duties with a Linn Drum here, and as a result the music sounds stiffer and less energetic. It doesn't help that bassist Vince de la Cruz began stepping up as a songwriter on this album, and while his three contributions aren't bad, they're derivative and don't hold a candle to Rew's best stuff. But Katrina Leskanich is a significantly better controlled and more engaging lead singer here than on Katrina & the Waves' previous album, and "Cry for Me" and "The Game of Love" find Rew exploring a retro-styled pop sound that gave the recording a new twist. (Rew also found room to revel in his eccentricities on "Maniac House," and "Red Wine and Whiskey" is strong enough to rise above its over-production.) Katrina & the Waves would find out what a really slick production was like with their next album; after they signed with Capitol Records, they re-recorded highlights from their first two albums under far glossier conditions, and it's oddly quaint to compare the simple over-production of Katrina and the Waves 2 with the big-league variations of the Capitol sessions (though the bigger and horn-infused "Walking on Sunshine" was actually an improvement on the version from their first full-length LP). © Mark Deming /TiVo