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35 of 38 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars + 1/2 stars...Their Biggest Hits
In 1999-2000, Capitol Records put out three separate volumes of the Beach Boys greatest hits. For the casual fan who didn't want to shell out for the box set GOOD VIBRATIONS, this seemed like a logical marketing decision. Volume I has the highest hit quotient and included all of their Sixties Top 10 hits (with the exception of "When I Grow Up (To Be a Man)")...
Published on March 13, 2004 by Steve Vrana

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48 of 57 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Why Use The Mono Remixes?
I guess that Capitol wanted to go the same route that Motown did and rerelease the mono sinlge mixes of the hits. Actually, in this band's case, this is not an improvement, even though Brian Wilson himself probably intended the recordings to be mono. The mono recordings are very muddy and one cannot hear the details of the songs as well as on the stereo versions. The...
Published on October 8, 1999


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35 of 38 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars + 1/2 stars...Their Biggest Hits, March 13, 2004
This review is from: Beach Boys - 20 Good Vibrations, The Greatest Hits (Volume 1) (Audio CD)
In 1999-2000, Capitol Records put out three separate volumes of the Beach Boys greatest hits. For the casual fan who didn't want to shell out for the box set GOOD VIBRATIONS, this seemed like a logical marketing decision. Volume I has the highest hit quotient and included all of their Sixties Top 10 hits (with the exception of "When I Grow Up (To Be a Man)"). The 12-page foldout booklet is a bit awkward, but it contains a terrific essay by Beach Boy author Brad Elliot, recording information on each song, and great photos (including a couple including one-time Beach Boy David Marks). If you buy all three volumes, you wind up with all thirty-four Beach Boy hits from 1962-1988. [Note: 1981's "Beach Boy Medley" is not included on any of the volumes.] And with a total of 60 tracks between the three volumes, you also get key album tracks and lesser hits. ["Catch a Wave" is the only non-hit from Volume 1, but the song charted for Jan & Dean in 1964 when they changed the lyrics and retitled it "Sidewalk Surfin'."] The only drawback to this CD is its 49:10 running time. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED
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30 of 33 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars 4 and a half! Nice selection when paired with Vol. 2, August 19, 2000
This review is from: Beach Boys - 20 Good Vibrations, The Greatest Hits (Volume 1) (Audio CD)
As a big fan of the Beach Boys' 60s catalog, I would call this CD, along with Vol. 2, a very reasonable compilation of their 60s work. It's very easy not to skip TOO many of the Beach Boys' greatest songs because many of their early LPs contain a lot of filler and overly repeated themes that might not always be tolerable by the casual listener.
This CD is classic all the way! You got your surf songs (Surfer Girl, Surfin' USA, Surfin' Safari, Catch A Wave), your car songs (Shut Down, Little Deuce Coupe, 409, Fun Fun Fun, I Get Around), then you have the near perfect studio productions from the mid-60s (California Girls, Good Vibrations, God Only Knows, Sloop John B), some more hits (Help Me Rhonda, Barbara Ann, Do You Wanna Dance), etc, etc.
You MUST get Vol. 2 or you'll miss out on so many other great songs!!!
Beware of which pressing of the CD you get. I guess you can't really tell by ordering online, but the new pressings use the original 45rpm single mixes (or mono-version-of-the-LP mixes) and before, several of these songs were in stereo. I'm sorry mono fans, but the stereo versions just sound so much clearer. (I hope someday the LPs "Today" and "Summer Days" from 1965 are remixed in stereo like "Pet Sounds" was recently, because that makes up the bulk of their 60s catalog you can't hear in stereo.)
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48 of 57 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Why Use The Mono Remixes?, October 8, 1999
By A Customer
This review is from: Beach Boys - 20 Good Vibrations, The Greatest Hits (Volume 1) (Audio CD)
I guess that Capitol wanted to go the same route that Motown did and rerelease the mono sinlge mixes of the hits. Actually, in this band's case, this is not an improvement, even though Brian Wilson himself probably intended the recordings to be mono. The mono recordings are very muddy and one cannot hear the details of the songs as well as on the stereo versions. The CD booklet is somewhat improved and the songs have been restored to chronological order. This is a nice try, but it really does not add anything to existing catalog. Capitol faces a monumental task in restoring the Beach Boys back catalogue and I'm afraid that this CD was just treading water. Endless Summer has been deleted as well as most of the original albums.
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16 of 18 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Official Soundtrack of Summer, May 19, 2003
By 
Mark Baker (Santa Clarita, CA United States) - See all my reviews
(TOP 1000 REVIEWER)    (VINE VOICE)    (HALL OF FAME REVIEWER)   
This review is from: Beach Boys - 20 Good Vibrations, The Greatest Hits (Volume 1) (Audio CD)
I am a casual Beach Boys fan. I enjoy some of their songs, but mainly their hits. When I found this CD, I was thrilled because it's the perfect way to own all the songs I like. And, if there are any major hits not on this CD, I sure don't know what they are.
This CD, volume 1 of a three disc series, collects all their well known songs. At least the ones I'm familiar with. Right from the start, I get a smile on my face as I head out on a "Surfin' Safari." The group then sings their way through songs about cars ("Little Deuce Coupe," "409," "Fun, Fun, Fun"), school ("Be True to Your School," "Barbara Ann"), and, of course, the beach and surfing and stuff like that ("Catch a Wave," "Surfer Girl," "Surfin' USA," "California Girls"). I was especially happy to find "Kokomo" on here, since I didn't know it was one of their songs.
Listening to this CD brings pictures to my mind of carefree summer vacations and "Happy Days" era high school life. I plan to keep it on regular rotation this summer and summers to come.
Anybody looking for their best known songs need look no further then this great collection.
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Good place to start for the novice Beach Boys fan, October 30, 2001
By 
Pat McCurry (Wilton, NH United States) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Beach Boys - 20 Good Vibrations, The Greatest Hits (Volume 1) (Audio CD)
Volume 1 of The Beach Boys Greatest Hits is mainly the commercial hits that made them great. It's all here: the surf songs, the hod rod songs, and a few others in different catagories. I found that the songs are not only the perfect summer songs, but also good to listen to during cold weather. I just close my eyes and pretend I am someplace sunny and warm. The 20 songs on here show off Brian Wilson's musical genius. That's hard to believe since he is deaf in one ear. This CD is for the fans of the big hits of the Beach Boys, and just about every hit on here is big: 409, Surfer Girl, Surfin Safari, etc. Even the three Pet Sounds singles (Wouldn't It Be Nice, Sloop John B., and God Only Knows) have gotten popular over time. The liner notes are also packed with so much information on the stories behind the singles. Vol. 1 is definatley a must for the ultimate and novice Beach Boys fan.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One of their best albums!!!, June 26, 2002
By 
Seneca Cowan (Stockton, CA USA) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Beach Boys - 20 Good Vibrations, The Greatest Hits (Volume 1) (Audio CD)
I definetly reccomend this CD if you are a Beach Boy fan.
This CD has all of their best songs like "Sufer Girl", "Kokomo", "I Get Around", and all their real popular ones from the 60's. I went to one of their concerts just recently, and they sang all of those songs. That just shows you how well known the selections on the CD are. It's a cheerful upbeat tempo that's real cool to listen to if you're going to the beach. It really gets you in the surfing/beach party mood! I definetly give it full ratings!
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Not as good as "Endless Summer," but still okay, November 17, 2000
By A Customer
This review is from: Beach Boys - 20 Good Vibrations, The Greatest Hits (Volume 1) (Audio CD)
If you purchase just two Beach Boys CD's, you're better off with "Endless Summer" and "Pet Sounds" rather than "Greatest Hits Vol. I & II." Those two CD's present a better picture of their music while the "Greatest Hits" CD's have sloppy sequencing.
However, "Endless Summer" is out-of-print, and if you don't like to shop for used CD's, the "Greatest Hits" will have to do. Both CD's have it's own share of essential Beach Boys tracks, which means not one particular volume stands out. Unless you're on a budget, I highly recommend buying both.
Now, as you've probably read, there is a huge debate about whether or not these tracks should be presented in mono or stereo. Here's all you need to know to make your OWN opinion: every Beach Boys track made up to an including "Pet Sounds" was mixed down to mono because 1) stereo was still a novelty in rock music and 2) Brian Wilson, the main composer/producer, preferred them that way because it gave him more control; true, he was deaf in one ear so he basically heard everything in mono, but he felt that with mono, a person would hear the music as it was mixed by the artist regardless of where the speakers were placed. However, true stereo masters were still made over the years either from remixing or using masters that still had the music separated on different channels. While they may not be Brian's preferred mixes, they do have the added fidelity and space that comes with stereo. So, it all depends on whether you like the higher fidelity and space that comes with stereo, or whether you prefer to listen to the music as finalized by the artist.
Back to this CD: for the most part it is in mono, but a few have been put out in stereo. However, one thing that is really disappointing to me is that they used the Lp versions of "Help Me Rhonda" (which is actually the wrong title; the Lp version they use spells it "Ronda") and "Be True To Your School." The same thing was also done on "Endless Summer." The production on the 45 version of "Be True To Your School" is much more elaborate and punchy, with female cheerleaders, flutes, and a bass drum; this is the version you hear on most Oldies stations, and it crushes the Lp version. The 45 version of "Help Me Rhonda" is even better and the most familiar; it's the one used on every Oldies compilation and radio station out there. The one they have here is longer, but with a harmonica, ukelele, and an awkward fade-in/fade-out climax; the 45 version is a different performance with a tighter arrangement, faster tempo, and the sharp, famous guitar break.
One more thing to consider when buying this: this CD also has "Kokomo," their last number one hit. Immensely popular, it's also reviled but just as many people, and I imagine that it will either draw tons of listeners to the CD or turn potential "Endless Summer" buyers running to the used CD store.
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14 of 16 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Nice try, but try harder, October 7, 1999
By A Customer
This review is from: Beach Boys - 20 Good Vibrations, The Greatest Hits (Volume 1) (Audio CD)
Well, they tried. The remixing on some of the songs is horrible. It sounds like the mixer just started sliding the vocal volumes in and out. I had tried to get a cd copy of Endless Summer, but no luck. This is an ok substitute, but is disappointing. The Beach Boys and their music deserve a better effort.
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16 of 19 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Good Vibrations/Bad Studio Mix, September 22, 1999
As a Beach Boys fan and experienced music producer, I can applaud the selection of commercial favorites offered in this album.
The problem with this CD is that the track mixing was performed with the skill of a deaf monkey on an acid flashback.
For instance, on all tracks in general, the Boy's voices are disproportionately louder than the music, losing not only the punch and drive of the instruments, but over-exposing the little flaws commonly found in tight vocal harmonies and removing the "grace" that hotter tracks (or reverb) usually provide.
In particular, I will point out how "Fun, Fun, Fun" just drops off before it's over, and does so in one of the best chordal variations in the song. Additionally, the ending of "Help Me Rhonda" is simply comical. As the song nears its conclusion (before the fadeout), the vocal volume goes from normal, to inaudibly low, as if someone is just pushing the mixing console sliders back and forth every two bars. Honestly, this has to be either a toddler at play or a graduate of the Jack Daniels School of Audio engineering.
So, while I am happy about the song selections, I would like to see the entire album remixed by a professional.
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19 of 23 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Obsolete, June 19, 2006
By 
Lower Frequencies (Summerfield, NC United States) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Beach Boys - 20 Good Vibrations, The Greatest Hits (Volume 1) (Audio CD)
This was a good enough compilation in its day, but it has been replaced by the far superior Sounds of Summer collection, released in 2003. This CD only gives the listener 20 songs and has a downright meager running time of 49 minutes. SoS has 30 songs and runs for over 70 minutes. The only songs found here and not on SoS are "409" and "Catch a Wave".

Add this to the fact that Sounds of Summer is frequently on sale, and there's no reason to go back to this outdated collection.
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