The Cardigans

Other Side of the Moon [Japan/Australia]

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A 16-track collection chock-full of B-sides and other rarities, the Cardigans' Other Side of the Moon is both a fun listen and proof that the Cardigans are odder and more subversive than chart hits like "Lovefool" might indicate. For one thing, they have a wicked sense of humor, as indicated by their cover choices. Thin Lizzy's "The Boys Are Back in Town" takes on a whole new cast when reconfigured into a slinky, disco-tinged bossa nova, and the a cappella revision of Ozzy Osbourne's "Mr. Crowley" is just weird. (Some members of the group have roots in Sweden's black metal scene, explaining their long-standing Ozzy Osbourne fixation: demos of "Iron Man" and "War Pigs" are also included, and the bizarre 16-minute "Cocktail Party Bloody Cocktail Party" is self-explanatory.) The original tracks are all quite good, with most of them as solid as any of the tunes on their proper albums. The petulant "I Figured Out" and a rocked-up alternate version of "Carnival" are particular gems. Other Side of the Moon is a handy collection for those fans who weren't obsessed enough to track the original singles down.

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