Any Trouble belonged to the last wave of great Stiff acts -- the wave that arrived in the early '80s and were somewhat obscured by the success of Madness
. Any Trouble
sounded nothing like Madness. Led by Clive Gregson, they did indeed sound a bit like Elvis Costello, like so many bespectacled nerdy guys with guitars did in 1980 and 1981. That Costello comparison may have haunted Gregson for a while, but Any Trouble's records for Stiff -- 1980's Where Are All the Nice Girls?
, 1981's Wheels in Motion
, plus the promotional concert album Live at the Venue
-- are strong, New Wave guitar pop in their own right: superlative pop with a slight ska beat that's irresistible thanks to its hooks and clever lyrics. This triple-disc set has those three records (the live set has been difficult to find, only seeing official release on Germany's Line in 1989), plus bonus tracks, making this a definitive portrait of the band, one that supplants all the previous worthy contenders.