2003, the year of Madonna and Britney at the VMA’s, everyone collecting Yugioh cards, and David Blaine living in a perspex box. We were fully in our Busted era, with the release of their 2nd album ‘A Present for Everyone’, and getting our hair mascara out to give us that iconic James hair stripe. Fast forward 20 years, and Busted’s Greatest hits have crash landed upon us; and Great Scott – this album has healed our inner child!
The newly released album consists of two halves – or two albums. One powerful stand alone album or half of the special edition are the tracks from 2002-2004 brought up to date, stylised to be how Matt James and Charlie would have recorded them today – heavier, softer, edgier and more Busted then before. The second half, something of pure genius, collaborations of Busted’s greatest hits featuring artists who either inspire them musically, or who have played a pivotal part in their journey.
Highlights from the ‘hits’ side of life include ‘Loser Kid 2.0’, a song that in 2002 gave every single fan who struggled with not fitting hope and unity, and made us all feel that being a Loser was a strength. ‘3am’ is another track in which 2023’s stylising has enhanced. True to Charlie Simpsons rock roots the famous 3am scream has evolved in the last 20 years.
Obviously, throughout the last 20 years Busted have always reiterated that no matter the destination, the journey together has been incredible – and their latest song which fans got to hear whilst the lads are touring ‘Good One’ may be new, but it has the familiar feel along with lyrics that dive into celebrating a 20 year friendship.
The true treat on this release are the collaborations. Artists such as McFly, The Vamps, James Arthur, Hanson, Deaf Havanna, and Wheatus, all join forces and have created the best celebration album of all time.
Opening Busted’s Greatest Hits – The Collaborations is ‘Year 3000 2.0’ featuring global mega stars The Jonas Brothers. Nick Joe and Kevin join Busted for a second time, to sing the song that helped kick start their careers. After 17 years of Busted and Jonas Brothers fans debating whether the lyrics are “outsold Kelly Clarkson” or “outsold Michael Jackson”, we have a solid version with both bands outselling Michael Jackson in 977 years.
‘Loser Kid 2.0’ featuring Simple Plan brings a whole new dimension to a song that brings safety to many.
One of the biggest suprises and treats on this album is 3am 2.0 featuring James Arthur. At the start of the year The Masked Singer featured a certain Rhino, with fans of both Busted and James Arthur debating the identity of the future winner, the gritty and earthy tone confusing all. When unmasked, the pair both took the comparison as the highest form of flattery, and now unearthed is a masterpiece. What is incredible with this song is how both Busted and James Arthur blend together, but both artist and band have moments to show the true vocal power.
Another stroke of magic happens in the form of Bowling for Soup – a band who have the similar vibe of creating tongue in cheek lyrics with fun pop punk chords, who are celebrating 30 years together next year. BFS join Busted for the classic song off Busted’s 2002 self titled album – ‘She Wants to be Me’. Reddick adds his own touch to the British classic.
Busteds Greatest Hits had to feature the bands close friends Wheatus, who remake “Who’s David 2.0”. Brendan Brown shows that he is not just a ‘Teenage Dirtbag’ or ‘some guy who lives next door’.
Every collaboration on this album is just as exciting, from a re-ignition of McBusted for ‘Thunderbirds’ as McFly take the wheel, The Vamps who are notably huge fans of Busted for ‘What I Go To School For’, right up to collaborating with up and coming pop rock starlet Charlotte Sands. Even Dashboard Confessional have made us fall in love all over again with crowd favourite ‘Everything I Knew’, and lighting the album on fire are Deaf Havana featuring on ‘Sleeping With the Light On’. Punk rock royalty All Time Low and Neck Deep amp ‘Crashed the Wedding’ and ‘Meet You There’ up too.
If this wasn’t enough of a nostalgia trip, everyone’s other favourite trio of American brothers who broke into the music world as children and teenagers, Hanson joined Matt James and Charlie for an updated version of ‘Mmmbop’ – taking the song from the 90’s to 2023. Hanson have matured and the classic sounds fresh and breath taking, mixed with Charlie’s gravely rock vocals, Matt’s ability to add fun into every note and most impressive James’ vocals perfectly slot in with Hanson, giving depth and youth once more.
This may be Busted’s Greatest Hits album, but the feel throughout the whole 25 track album is this is a celebration of more then chart topping hits. It’s a celebration of 3 exceptionally talented individuals who together create music that will stand beyond 977 years, and they still after all this time are able to bring the biggest names in music and fans along for the ride. The only downside to this album is Britney Spears missed a chance to feature on ‘Britney’.