Canadian singer/songwriter Bruce Cockburn's thirty-plus-year career has found him musically traversing through simple acoustic pop, synth-y '80s rock, progressive worldbeat, and straightforward rock. Through it all he has maintained a brightly clever way with words and bracingly fresh view on the world that surrounds him, and all of this is brilliantly illustrated on Rounder Records' anthology Anything Anytime Anywhere (Singles 1979-2002). His clean, rhythmic "hit" "If I Had a Rocket Launcher" acts as a bridge between the darkly romantic "Lovers in a Dangerous Time" and the heavy political vibe of "Call it Democracy," all of which carry Cockburn's trademark droll delivery and sharp pen. As an added attraction, many "greatest hits" collections tack on a few new tracks, and often these subpar songs detract from the overall album. Fortunately, on this collection, the two new songs "My Beat" and particularly the title track "Anything Anytime Anywhere" rank among the best he's written, proving that he hasn't lost any of his biting edge.
AllMusic Review by Zac Johnson