Various - England The Album 2006
I must admit that I'm not a huge football fan - never played it, never really watched it, I've tried a few times but me and football just don't get along. But even my head sometimes gets turned by the World Cup in that weird way that it just sucks you in. But all that flag-waving, belief systems, crossing of fingers and "sticking it to the Mr Fritz the German" just leaves me cold. I just hate the falseness of all it, how we suddenly "get behind our brave boys", those "pull a face to prove you like football" competitions and the barely disguised jingoism. All of the things that go to make this compilation, unfortunately.
Anyway, it feels better to have got that off my chest. To be honest, the track listing to this isn't that much dissimilar to this, an album that was released and reviewed by John for the Euro2004 tournament. A few songs have been removed and a few extra ones added, but in essence, it is the same album. It opens optimistically with We Are The Champions, brim full of patriotic pride in Three Lions, and then nose-dives into Vindaloo. Come on England is just a shocker, containing all the things I hate about a football song - a weak cover version of something infinitely better in its original form (in this case, Come on Eileen), crap football puns, and sampled football commentators (which I blame World in Motion for). It is just crap in a bucket, and not even a particularly nice bucket.
However, Hurry Up England by Sham 69 got me laughing (going down the pub replaced by "We're gonna win the cup!"). But then Tubthumping, which correct me if I'm wrong, is about drinking isn't it? Things then do get a bit random from here on, with Republica screeching like a banshee, the sickly and awful All Together Now, and Elvis, which really leave me scratching my head as to what its doing on here. And don't get me started on Perry Como.
Back to business though with Back Home, Ant & Dec with their song from last time round, and Young Stanley and Koopa, two pieces of musical excrement that might as well be the same song. All the "classical" pieces are bunged on the end, the patriotic pieces to wave your flags to, and then Always Look on the Bright Side of Life to bung on when we get knocked out.
This CD is OK I suppose, if you want something to stick on at a World Cup party or before a game, but you and I both know that as soon as England get knocked out this will get shoved in a cupboard never to be played again. So do yourself a favour, and don't buy it. You'll thank me one day.