I can remember those days – the tail end of college and my first job right after graduation – overseeing Roadrunner Records’ “alternative” label. The radio was always tuned to 106.3 from Eatontown, New Jersey and The Connells were a staple of the rotation between ’90 and ’91. I even had the chance to see and meet them when one of my label’s bands opened up for them at The Fast Lane in Asbury Park – very nice, kind people all. Plus, the album Ring was instrumental in helping me get through a very rough break up period in early ’94. So The Connells’ music, indeed, holds a very special place in my heart and mind.
Happy to say that although TVT Records is long-defunct, the suddenly-rising-to-the-fore Concord Bicycle Musical Group has now gained the band’s back catalog and the old albums (including the classics Boylan Heights, One Simple Word and Ring) are now available again in the digital format. And the band, after a break, is back and on the road, which – and it doesn’t matter what year it is – everyone should see as they’re quite good live. But for now, the first offering under this new deal is a solid compilation, Stone Cold Yesterday – The Best Of The Connells.
The nice thing about some “best of”‘s are that they’re done correctly – this is one of those. Simply put, it has a nice selection from each album The Connells released and includes all of my own personal favorites. From the emotionally-charged and poignant “’74 – ’75” and the catchy-as-hell “Slackjawed” (both from Ring), “Stone Cold Yesterday” and “One Simple Word” from One Simple Word and “Something To Say” from Fun & Games – these are all songs that still give me a chill of good memories in a happier time.
In many ways, that’s what a greatest hits album is – a reminder of a better period – whether it’s personal or of a band’s heyday, it serves as a snapshot as to why you liked a particular performer or group. And on this 16-track compilation, it succeeds to refresh the idea that The Connells were and are a simply great band.
Stone Cold Yesterday – The Best Of The Connells is available now