Greatest Hits 1984-1987 is actually the debut for Reggie and the Full Effect, which in itself is actually a side project for Get Up Kids guy James Dewees and assorted pals from the Kansas City music scene. While Get Up Kids have written their fair share of songs about girls, Reggie tracks like "Girl, Why'd You Run Away" and "Your Girlfriends Hate Me" dump the melodramatic overtones that lace Dewees' day job, preferring sarcasm to sappiness. The love of hooks carries over, although Greatest Hits leans more toward trashy punk-pop sweetened with prominent keyboard wizardry. There's a glut of halfway-successful comedy bits here, too, ranging from entertaining recordings of idiots ("Drunk Guy Talks Chemicals to Us at the Get Up Kids Show") to glorified inside jokes that don't resonate ("My Dad - Happy Chickens (Kirksta Party to Go Mix)," "Pick Up the Phone Master P"). Musical highlights include the ragged Cars riff "Everything's Okay," as well as the aforementioned "Girl, Why'd You Run Away," which melds thickheaded metal to WEE-oo WEE-oo synths and heartfelt harmonies. Overall, a nice opportunity for Get Up Kids fans to help Dewees and his buddies blow off a little steam. Everyone else, go buy a Me First and Gimme Gimmes record.
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AllMusic Review by Johnny Loftus