Goo Goo Dolls - What I Learned About Ego, Opinion, Art & Commerce 
Music Disc Reviews Audio CD
Written by Brian Kahn   
Tuesday, 29 May 2001

Goo Goo Dolls
What I Learned About Ego, Opinion, Art & Commerce
format: CD
label: Warner Bros. Records
release year: 2001
performance: 4
sound 6
reviewed by: Brian Kahn

The Goo Goo Dolls’ latest release, What I Learned About Ego, Opinion, Art & Commerce, is a 22-track compilation disc, comprised of music from their six past albums. While all of the tracks have been remixed, and some are even slightly different from their original album versions, there are no new songs, or even live or rare versions of previously released songs. This really makes me ask the question, "Does the world even need this CD?"

The disc does include new versions of songs such as "Two Days in February" and "Lucky Star" which, according to the band, are extremely popular in concert. This demonstrates the intent of this album. It appears that the reason behind the release of What I Learned . . . was not to garner new fans or top 10 singles, but rather to specifically reward the band's fans and concertgoers.

Compilation discs are often a good way for a casual fan to hear the best songs of a band all on one disc, but that’s not the intent in this case. What I Learned . . . omits the Goo Goo Dolls’ biggest hits, "Iris," "Name," "Black Balloon" and "Slide." What is left on the album is a good overview of the band's work from the past 14 years, which is likely to appeal to the band's loyal fans. Therein lies the problem –loyal Goo Goo Dolls fans probably already own the older albums and will get nothing new from this disc other than remixes of songs they already own. The major redeeming point of What I Learned . . . for diehard Goo Goo Dolls fans is the key on the disc allowing buyers to access special online materials.

Using the electronic key on the disc, the buyer can access a Goo Goo Dolls website. This site includes four cover songs previously released only as B-sides, two radio show performances and "Lazy Eye" (from the Batman and Robin motion picture soundtrack). In addition to songs, the website also features photos, videos and other band information. The "secret" multimedia link to the website is the most interesting aspect of What I Learned About Ego, Opinion, Art & Commerce.

Ultimately, I can only recommend this album to hardcore Goo Goo Dolls fans who just have to have every version of every song, and want to take the time to enjoy perusing the additional online materials.

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