This exllent collection encapsulates Lou's career until 1980
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Whoever compiled this collection clearly enjoys Lou Reed. Rock 'n' Roll Diary offers a series of snap shots of Lou's career, taking in both the Velvet Underground and 70's solo work with a sensitive mixture of live and studio recordings. The Velvets material samples each of the band's album releases and reflects the different moods and styles they adopted. Listen for yourself when you play the blistering hot 'I Heard Her Call My Name' followed by the poignant 'Pale Blue Eyes.' The choice of 70's solo material is no less representative, ranging from the haunting 'Berlin' to the jazz-inspired 'Temporary Thing' and the magnificent 'Street Hassle.' This album is one of the best compilations of Lou Reed's work of this period available, great for those who have only just discovered Lou and want to know more as well as serving as a retrospective for dedicated fans. For track selection it's probably only beaten by the three-disc set 'Between Thought and Expression.'"
Sorely Lacking "Best of" compilation
Michael Gross | Burke, VA | 03/22/2005
(2 out of 5 stars)
"This is really an awful "Best of" compilation. Historically, Lou has always had an aversion to his mid-70's persona/music output. Even today, when interviewers try to steer their line of questioning towards the mid-70's, he intentionally shuts down. This CD suffers the same fate.
Nothing from his debut LP, "Lou Reed," nothing from his best-selling LP, "Sally Can't Dance," nothing from the EXCELLENT "Coney Island Baby," only ONE track from both his best known LP, "Transformer," and his masterpiece, "Berlin," and the song he chose on Berlin (the title track) is arguably the WORST on the LP! The "Street Hassle" LP (his "Godfather of Punk" LP) is also ignored, though the LIVE version of that title track (from Take No Prisoners LP) is included.
It is impossible for a single CD of Lou Reed to contain EVERY important track in his catalog, but SO MUCH is missing here, that it is pretty much inexcusable.
If you are looking for anything short of his Box Set, "Between Thought & Expression," then your best bet is to go for "The Wild Side: Best of Lou Reed.""