Tricky

A Ruff Guide

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It's not sequenced in chronological order, but that's about the only flaw with Island's 2002 compilation, A Ruff Guide. Over the course of 17 tracks, the highlights from Tricky's Island albums unspool, hitting every single and many of the great album tracks (including cuts from the Nearly God album). Although this may seem like it'd be just for the fellow travelers -- the kind of casual fan that just wants the hits -- this is actually a very useful compilation for those that followed his career closely, since Tricky's albums after his brilliant debut Maxinquaye grew more erratic with each release. Therefore, this collection works really well as a collection of the moments where Tricky flashed his brilliance on uneven albums ("Broken Homes," "Tricky Kid," "For Real," among them). Yes, Maxinquaye is the masterpiece -- one of the great, defining albums of the '90s -- but as a summary of his uneven career this is excellent.

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