's greatest hit, "Don't Dream It's Over," cemented them firmly into the collective American consciousness as a mere highlight of a John Hughes
soundtrack or momentary inhabitants of the mid-'80s college rock ghetto. Though they rose to highest U.S. acclaim with that song and its follow-up, "Something So Strong," Crowded House
charted consistently in their homeland of Australia and were widely popular outside of the States for the second half of their initial run. Songs like "Better Be Home Soon" and "Weather with You" charted massively in the U.K., Canada, and New Zealand, but never brought the group more than a cult following stateside. Including a variety of singles and highlights from albums Woodface
, Temple of Low Men
, and their self-titled debut, Essential
provides a comprehensive overview of Crowded House
's wistful songwriting style and bouncy pop productions, all of which predated the rise of alternative, but didn't quite fit any mainstream mold.