An eight-track promotional sampler issued to preview the Afghan Whigs' Columbia label debut 1965, Historectomy serves double duty as a well-assembled and concise career overview. The disc opens with a pair of tracks from the new LP, "Somethin' Hot" and "Uptown Again"; the former is the highlight, a swaggeringly soulful number complete with an ominously lecherous vocal turn by Greg Dulli and scorching gospel backup. The remaining six tracks pick and choose favorites from the Whigs' three previous albums -- given the greatest focus is 1993's Gentlemen, represented here by the title cut, the lead single "Debonair," and the luminously sinister "What Jail Is Like"; while their Sub Pop tenure is recalled by only one song, at least it's "Conjure Me," perhaps their strongest of the era. And although the omission of other favorites is regrettable -- neither "Turn On the Water" nor the harrowing "My Curse" make the cut -- the overall quality of Historectomy indicates that Columbia would hopefully do right by the Whigs.
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AllMusic Review by Jason Ankeny