Encore:Very Best Of V2


fye.000000400095504436 8/26/03 Used

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    Encore:Very Best Of V2 Rhino / Warner Music
    1. Encore:Very Best Of V2 Rhino / Warner Music
    2. Encore Very Best Of V2 Rhino / Warner Music

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Review Text In 2003, WSM followed up its imperfect but adequate 2001 collection The Very Best of Rod Stewart with Encore: The Very Best Of, Vol. 2, an 18-track compilation that gathers most of the Warner-era hits left behind from the first collection. Like that first best-of, this suffers from illogical sequencing that severely hampers its listenability, opening with Stewart's overly slick version of "Your Song" from the Two Rooms tribute, followed by the pretty good unplugged "Having a Party" (a cut from the ill-considered Human), and then his version of "So Far Away" from the 1995 Carole King tribute album. The latter is, so far, the best moment on the album, but it still doesn't guarantee a good listening experience. Given its unevenness, perhaps there wouldn't be a particularly palatable way of presenting Stewart's '80s and '90s work, but the loose reverse chronology that this collection follows is frustrating, even if ending with "I Don't Want to Talk About It," "I Was Only Joking" and "The First Cut Is the Deepest" means this concludes on an up note. However, it also means that there are at least two, (arguably three) distinct moods and eras chronicled on this collection; but none of them are presented particularly coherently and they're not necessarily compatible, either. Nevertheless, there are moments that reveal themselves as surprisingly strong: the 1988 "Lost in You" may be slick, but it has a purposeful drive, fueled by weird folk flourishes and a committed performance by Rod; although universally disparaged -- even by Stewart -- "Love Touch" is adult bubblegum that's a good guilty pleasure; "Infatuation" has a nice, cold menace running underneath the gloss; and "Baby Jane" and "Tonight I'm Yours" are two of the most effective examples of the mainstream co-opting new wave. Taken together with the previously mentioned mid-'70s highlights, these give Encore some weight and make it worthwhile, at least as a supplement to the 2001 disc. But it shares too many of the same faults as that record to make it something that can hold its own among the best Stewart compilations. ~ Stephen Thomas Erlewine

Track Listing

CD: 1

  1. 1. Your Song - 5:47
  2. 2. Having a Party - 4:15
  3. 3. Don't Come Around Here - 4:50
  4. 4. So Far Away - 4:24
  5. 5. Motown Song - 4:16
  6. 6. Broken Arrow - 4:23
  7. 7. Crazy About Her - 4:29
  8. 8. Lost in You - 4:26
  9. 9. Love Touch - 4:03
  10. 10. People Get Ready - 5:46
  11. 11. Infatuation - 4:05
  12. 12. Baby Jane - 5:45
  13. 13. Tonight I'm Yours (Don't Hurt Me) - 4:13
  14. 14. That's What Friends Are For - 4:54
  15. 15. Passion - 6:30
  16. 16. I Don't Want to Talk About It - 4:14
  17. 17. I Was Only Joking - 5:49
  18. 18. First Cut Is the Deepest - 3:21

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