Peter Durward Harris | Leicester England | 05/08/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"The Band are famous as Bob Dylan's musicians but they also (eventually) had their own career, brilliantly represented on this collection, which includes extensive liner notes. The music they made on their own was very different to Bob's.The collection begins with a live cover of Chuck Berry's Back to Memphis, previously unreleased. Next come six tracks from The Band's debut album, Music from the Big Pink. The six tracks chosen include covers of I shall be released and Long black veil as well as four original songs, the most famous of these being The weight. The others are Tears of rage, To kingdom come and Chest fever.Five songs are taken from their eponymous second album, including their only American top thirty hit, Up on Cripple Creek. Nevertheless, the most famous track on this album is The night they drove old Dixie down. Although this is the original version - and it is brilliant - it was Joan Baez who had the hit single. The other three songs from this album are Rag Mama rag, Unfaithful servant and King harvest has surely come. Sandwiched between these tracks is a live recording of a cover of Loving you is sweeter than ever, the Four tops classic.The Band were a rebellious bunch and decided that things were getting way too serious so their next album (Stage fright) was intended to be a lightweight, fun album - however, it didn't work out that way due to line-up changes. Nevertheless, one of the tracks (The W S Walcott medicine show) is a much lighter type of song and shows what might have been. Other tracks from Stage fright included here are the title track, The shape I'm in and Daniel and the sacred harp. This completes the first CD.The second CD opens with a cover of a Motown song originally recorded by Marvin Gaye in 1964. This is followed by four tracks from their fourth album, Cahoots, then just one track (Mystery train) from Moondog matinee, a set of R+B covers. This sounds like an interesting album and I'd certainly like the chance to hear the whole album. Another live recording, Endless highway, is followed by Get up Jake, originally recorded for one of their earlier albums but not released.Three tracks from Northern lights Southern Cross and three tracks from Islands including a Christmas song complete an outstanding collection.This compilation is worth tracking down if you are interested in guitar rock music of the late sixties and early seventies. No subsequent compilation does as much justice to The Band as this one. All the original albums have been re-released on CD, so if you can't find this collection you can get all the tracks and many more besides."
Best of many "best of" sets
Peter Durward Harris | 10/24/1998
(4 out of 5 stars)
"The cream of this great group's material has been repackaged many times. To my mind, this set does the best job of capturing the meat of the classic first three records (the weight, cripple creek) & making a representative selection of the rest (like the seldom heard Knockin Lost John) . The cover tunes, which span rockabilly, blues, and motown, are well chosen and showcase these performers as players players. The set is also nicely sequenced--feels more like an album than a grab-bag. One could quible (where is "acadian driftwood?") but on the whole it should sit side by side in your collection with their great concert recording Rock of Ages."
A Fan of "The Band"
Peter Durward Harris | 06/24/2000
(4 out of 5 stars)
"These disks contain some of the best music ever written by The Band. Plus, their music brings back good memories. The only thing I don't like about this two cd set is that their most popular songs are spread out on both disks."
THE BAND! THE END!
41eerfmi | HERE,THERE AND EVERYWHERE | 07/07/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"If by any chance you hear any of these songs by way of vinyl,cassette tape, radio (digital or not)or cd,and you are not moved physically or emotionly, then check your pulse you maybe on "Dead Like Me" or "Six Feet Under". If you have passed all or none of the above criteria, then get down on this music and be prepared to hear some of the finest songs,pure americana, and say all together now, "Brothers and Sisters, The Band! The End!""