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Is on Top
Chuck Berry
Is on Top
Genres: Pop, Rock
 
  •  Track Listings (12) - Disc #1

It's obvious that On Top's cover conception and design took less time than any one of these songs required in the recording studio, but never mind. Nine killer single sides, a 10th OK one ("Anthony Boy"), and a couple of o...  more »

      
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CD Details

All Artists: Chuck Berry
Title: Is on Top
Members Wishing: 5
Total Copies: 0
Label: Mca
Release Date: 10/25/1990
Genres: Pop, Rock
Styles: Oldies, Oldies & Retro
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaCD Credits: 1
UPCs: 076731126029, 076732925614, 076732925645

Synopsis

Amazon.com
It's obvious that On Top's cover conception and design took less time than any one of these songs required in the recording studio, but never mind. Nine killer single sides, a 10th OK one ("Anthony Boy"), and a couple of offbeat filler numbers ("Blues for Hawaiians," "Hey Pedro") must've made this one quite the prize back in the day. Not His Best, but not bad. --Rickey Wright

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CD Reviews

Without a doubt, one of rock n' roll's greatest landmarks!
08/21/1999
(5 out of 5 stars)

"Legend has it Jagger met Richards in London when he saw he had a Chuck Berry album under his arm. I'd be willing to bet my paycheck it was this one. This was Chuck's second album, spawning a couple of top 40 hits; Maybelline and Johnny B. Goode. Whatever commercial success it enjoyed at the time is insignificant when compared to the tremendous influence this recording was to later have with a whole new generation of white boys, including myself. We wore the grooves out, then tried to imitate the licks. Every dude from John Lennon to Jerry Garcia cut his teeth on this hunk of wax; it's impact has been monumental. Oh yeah, you can dance to it, too!"
History Lesson
Thomas Magnum | NJ, USA | 11/13/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)

"From Lennon to McCartney to Jagger to Richards to Wilson to Springsteen and so on, Chuck Berry has influenced either directly or indirectly just about every artist in rock music. His simple riffs have been copied by millions and his songs have been covered by just about as many. "Maybelline", "Johnny B. Goode", "Almost Grown", "Sweet Little Rock & Roller", "Around & Around" & the others are simple two & a half minute songs that convey all the sheer power and emotion of rock 'n' roll."
Good lord, what an album!
Laszlo Matyas | 11/02/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)

""Great" doesn't even begin to describe it. Same goes for "phenomenal," "amazing," and "brilliant." Indeed, Chuck Berry Is On Top defies just about any one-word encapsulation that you can think of. It's simply above all that. It's one of those rare works of art that simply exists in a league all its own. Its merits aren't really something that you discuss- you just listen to the music, and you just understand. You know what you're hearing. The very essence is coming out of your speakers. You're listening to the beating heart of rock `n' roll.

If the above paragraph sounded at all overdramatic, fawning, or pretentious, that's probably because it is. But I think you see my point. This really is one of the purest examples of rock `n' roll ever made, from its gorgeous cover (have you ever seen such a delicious hunk of teenaged utopian Americana?) to its unassailable songs. This is swinging, greasy, rollicking, dance-all-night juke joint bliss, a sizzling slab of musical mayhem that'll be rocking across the ages until the end of time. It's the blueprint for everything from the Rolling Stones to Black Sabbath to the Clash to the White Stripes, and just about anybody else that picked up a guitar after 1957.

I mean, look at that track listing! This thing has got deathless rock `n' roll anthems like "Johnny B. Goode" and "Roll Over Beethoven," in addition to rollicking slices of teenaged life on the league of "Almost Grown," "Maybelline" and "Around And Around" and innuendos as slyly delicious as "Little Queenie" and "Sweet Little Rock & Roller." And then there's the bizarrely catchy "Anthony Boy," the muted rumble of "Jo Jo Gun," and two brilliantly atmospheric throwaways entitled "Hey Pedro" and "Blues For Hawaiians." This thing has got it all! If you like rock music- or any form of music- or, for that matter, if you like sounds being made on purpose, get this."