Squeeze are a great pop band who've made some lousy career moves, and this may be the lousiest. They're two years into their reunion (and three weeks after a killer show at Bank of America Pavilion), and just when fans would be expecting a full-strength album, they instead release this set of greatest-hits remakes. It was done mainly to attract some quick money from catalogue licensing, so the object is to sound as much like the original recordings as possible.
This they do. Particularly on "Another Nail in My Heart" and "Take Me I'm Yours," they uncannily copy every original sound and nuance three decades after the fact. They even switch lead singers on "Tempted" (originally handled by the non-returning Paul Carrack) with no real variation. They pull all this off because Glenn Tilbrook's choirboy voice is untouched by time, and because three of the five original members are present.
Still, only a casual fan (or a really obsessed collector) needs Spot the Difference. A few of Squeeze's greatest tracks are missing (where's "Annie Get Your Gun"?), and at times they get the sounds right but miss the underlying joy — most glaringly on "Pulling Mussels from a Shell." Better to seek out Tilbrook's most recent, barely noticed solo album, Pandemonium Ensues, which has the pop shimmer you'd expect from a proper Squeeze album.