Compiled by Murphy himself, Wild Birds is a well-timed collection spanning the five albums he recorded for Beggars Banquet between 1985 and 1995. Quite naturally, it begins with his biggest hit, "Cuts You Up," and includes alternative standards like "All Night Long," "Indigo Eyes," and "Deep Ocean, Vast Sea." Murphy weights the compilation toward his most recent work -- four songs are taken from 1995's Cascade, as many as from his best album, 1990's Deep -- and unfortunately shunts his underrated debut, Should the World Fail to Fall Apart. Despite this small caveat, Wild Birds is an excellent compilation; though Murphy usually focused on making conceptual statements with his albums, the individual singles released from them were remarkably infectious, especially given the sublime nature of his musical style.
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AllMusic Review by John Bush