BEWARE if you get attached to specific versions!
Kelly Howard | 12/03/2009
(3 out of 5 stars)
I wish I could give variable #s of stars... one for most of the collection (5), one for specific songs (-347).
I swear, if I'd had any idea the legal situation for this band was going to get so snarled up, I wouldn't have gotten so attached to them back in the 70's. Trying to find a download with the same versions of the same songs is impossible, & some of the 'replacement' versions are beyond hideous, IMHO. I realize that some folks just like the sound & aren't concerned about one version or other; I'm happy for them, at least in the context of LRB, b/c the rest of us are spirally torqued. For instance, if (like me) you got utterly attached to one specific version (i.e. the hit single) of "Take It Easy On Me," even if you haven't heard it in a decade this travesty sounds like the world's worst lounge singer/karaoke reject. Major cringe factor. But, the original version of "TIEOM" does appear on "Definitive Collection." (And their naming could use some work, too...'Definitive Collection,' 'Definitive Greatest Hits...' sheesh.) The rest of the most popular "Greatest Hits" are original versions, on the "Def GH," 'tho.
And I also swear the "Cool Change" available here has better sound than the one on iTunes' "Definitive Collection," so who knows what all's going on....
I do know I've spent about half the day trying to get the right versions rather than buy all the blasted downloads from both stores and then have to weed through the resultant mess. Argh."
Best single disc compilation (now that is has been "fixed")
John O'Neill | Alpharetta, GA | 03/26/2010
(5 out of 5 stars)
"If you're making your decision on whether or not to pick up this CD based on all the 1* reviews out there, please note that Capitol fixed the "error" and now "Man on Your Mind", "Night Owls", and "Take It Easy on Me" are the versions that appeared on the original "Time Exposure" LP. The ONLY track that differs from its LP format is "Playing to Win" which rocks even harder than the original and, for me, represents the career misstep that resulted in the atypical, hard-rocking album of the same name. If they wanted to include a track from "Playing..." I would have picked a more LRB-ish one: "Piece of the Dream", "Don't Blame Me", and "Blind Eyes" come to mind.
Now that it has been "fixed", the 18-track "Greatest Hits" becomes the best single-disc compilation available getting the nod over 2002's Definitive Collection in terms of covering the hits. "Definitive" is one track longer and includes the full length version of "It's A Long Way There" but by including several '70s-era "album tracks" (Curiosity Killed The Cat, Emma, Everyday Of My Life, Home On Monday, Shut Down Turn Off) omits several singles: "Face In The Crowd" (from '86s "No Reins") and "You're Driving Me Out Of My Mind", LRB's last Top 40 hit ('83s "The Net") both of which feature strong lead vocals from John Farnham. Also missing on "Definitive" are '77s "I'll Always Call You Name" (from the debut) and "It's Not A Wonder" (from 1980s "First Under the Wire"): singles which failed to make it into the top 40. The biggest hits are present on both so it's really a matter of preference and in either case you get a generous sampling of outstanding music and performances (especially those incredible harmonies).
You also might want to seriously consider springing for the 2-disc, out of print Reminiscing: The 20th Anniversary Collection which features 22 of the 23 tracks contained on "Greatest Hits" and "Definitive" (Face in the Crowd is not included) PLUS an additional 12 songs including early album tracks like "Statue of Liberty", "Sweet Old Fashioned Man", "Days on the Road", non-LP single "Long Jumping Jeweler", and later-LRB tracks such as "Time for Us", "It's Cold Out Tonight", "Love Is A Bridge", "Son of a Famous Man", "Soul Searching", "I Dream Alone", the last five featuring Glenn Shorrock and his return to the band in the late '80s for the two MCA label releases "Monsoon" (a wonderful return to form) and "Get Lucky", neither of which are covered on "Greatest Hits" or "Definitive". Just about everything on the 2-disc set is classic LRB and with so much of LRB's catalog out of print this may be the easiest (certainly the least expensive) way to get it."