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62 of 73 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Ultimate Van Halen....Almost!!!
Van Halen is not only back with its first concert tour in over six years but with a brand new 'best of' compilation entitled "The Best Of Both Worlds". This double-disc set is nearly packed to its limits covering the band's two classic eras (1978-1985 with singer David Lee Roth and 1986-1996 with Sammy Hagar). In addition to the remastered tracks, the set...
Published on July 20, 2004 by Louie Bourland

38 of 42 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Big egos and horrible sequencing ruin this VH comp; good track selection though
BEST OF BOTH WORLDS, while showcasing some undeniably powerful music, becomes, in the end, a mean spirited, classless greatest hits collection, meant at elevating Hagar over Roth every chance it gets. This anthology leaves the fans little doubt that the 1996 debacle of the Hagar firing/resignation (depending on who tells the story) and rehiring of Roth (and then...
Published on October 4, 2007 by Mike London

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13 of 16 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars WHAT WERE THEY THINKING???, August 2, 2004
This review is from: Best of Both Worlds (Audio CD)
O.K. Let's be REAL honest. Yes,this is a decent compilation. Yes you get all the greats here. Yes,it's missing a few here and there (but they are not going to put everything on there right??Because then you won't go out and buy all the other albums if you haven't already)But they WILL get you to buy the same material over and over again as this double disc clearly displays.


Every fan ran out to by Volume 1 in '96 that featured the two new David Lee Roth tracks. It would have been pefect to have a Volume 2 all these years later with Sammy back at the helm to compliment that first edition. BUT NO!!!

You want a worth wild track list for a BEST OF VOLUME 2 mix (that is keeping the tradition of VOLUME 1) Here it is:












12. FINISH WHAT YOU STARTED (or FEELS SO GOOD or CABO WABO, but this was the hit)




16. WITHOUT YOU (should at least give Gary one track!)

17. IT'S ABOUT TIME (new track)

18. UP FOR BREAKFAST (new track)

19. LEARNING TO SEE (new track)

One final message to the real VH fans,borrow this double disc from somebody just for the 3 new tracks and make your own BEST OF VOLUME 2,which is what the real VH fams deserved. Not getting ripped off for all the same material again! You probably have all the original albums,therefor been putting money in the VH boys pockets for years. ITS' ABOUT TIME you didn't!
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A pretty good career retrospective, but beware of the MP3 download, August 6, 2012
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
Although this compilation includes almost every essential Van Halen tune you would likely hear on the radio, there are some flaws. For whatever reason, the songs are not presented in chronological order, which really throws off the flow of the songs. The 3 songs recorded for this album are pretty good, but nothing too special to rave about. The inclusion of the live tracks is pretty redundant and would have served better to add 3 more different songs. The remastering however is great, especially for the Van Hagar tracks that were not remastered before(here's hoping that Warner Bros. remasters those 4 albums soon like they did for the Roth catalogue). If you are purchasing the MP3 album, please beware that Eruption and Panama intros are cut for some reason, not sure if the files are corrupted but since no previous review has mententioned it, it must be only on Amazon's MP3s. If you're new to Van Halen and want the best starting point for the right price or just a casual fan who wants all the hits you hear on the radio, this is the best bet, just beware of the download.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars VH regurgitates the old stuff AGAIN, September 13, 2005
This review is from: Best of Both Worlds (Audio CD)
Its not enough that the band came back together, but they obviously wanted to cash in once again on music created in the past. Let's review: Live Right here Right Now, Greatest Hits volume 1 and now theres a Best of volume 2 with the some of the same songs as on volume 1. There are 3 new songs, but 2 of the 3 new songs don't hold interest very well as they sound very patched together and contrived, and painfully absent of undeniable and memorable guitar and vocal hooks. This should be especially alarming as Eddie Van Halen claimed in a interview, he had 10 years worth of music while disbanded ready for release and yet these 2 new songs hardly reflect the catchy and inventive music this band has shown they are very capable of creating. One wonders if they had a better chance of staying together had they produced a whole new set of songs with Sammy. The fact that their fans renewed their interest in Van Halen's old catalog again when the band reunited and bought from it was not enough to stall the idea of volume 2 from being released, thus taking advantage of fans hope in the bands sincere return, by manipulating them to again rebuy old material. When does this become insulting to an individual where they are not feeling ripped off from a high priced concert ticket and the rehash of old music? Its still amazing to me and should be to more of their fans, that Eddie was so upset again that Sammy left and yet he unwittingly set him up to leave from the beginning of their reunion. Afterall there was hardly any newly created material to stand by and commit to from the beginning. Not nearly enough time to sacrifice and create all new material for the sake of something new and lasting. Its transparently apparent they saw dollar signs in one anothers eyes and took the easy road of quick album and tour=get rich=forget about the long term of the band performing and creating together. In a past interview, Edward went against the idea of touring without a new material back when Dave suggested they cash in on a tour. If there is a next time maybe Edward will have a little more backbone.
If you want to hear them live at their best not their greediest, I recommend, "Live Without a Net" as it is representive of the ethusiasm these guys had for making exciting music captured live. Especially if you want to hear one of the best awe inspiring guitar solos/arrangements by Eddie. This Best of release is meant to line the pockets of the band with money, they are/will not use to create/release new and inspiring music together anytime soon.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Legends Fade, but Diamonds are Forever, August 4, 2004
R. Raman (Washington, DC United States) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Best of Both Worlds (Audio CD)
BOBW is essential listening for anyone being exposed to Van Halen for the first time, about to embark on a road trip - or both. As a soundtrack to your last 20 summers, it is best heard full blast and top down.

As with any Best Of collection, there are always going to be omissions, but then that's why it's an anthology. If one of your favorite songs is missing, then you probably own the original album anyway.

That said, one fact becomes very obvious in this collection. The bombast, swagger and ground-breaking urgency of Van Halen disappeared when David Lee Roth exited the band. In its place came the corporate, safe and formulaic - albeit solid - music of Van Hagar. The sole exceptions to this complacency are "Finish What Ya Started" and "Right Now."

If the three new tracks are any indication, Van Halen is not aging very well and their best years are clearly in the past. The new material is pedestrian at best and simply bad at worst.

The Van Halen brothers also seem to reluctantly make a tacit admission that the Roth-fronted material holds up better live, as the three live tracks are Roth's signature songs. The fact that it isn't vintage live material and instead culled from the Van Hagar live album seems like a flimsy concession to themselves.

Finally, the fact that not one picture is included of Roth speaks unflattering volumes of the Van Halens' animosity and pettiness toward the co-creator of half this album.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Hmm, well, poorly organized but it is Van Halen., August 29, 2005
BTM (Jeffersonville, IN) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Best of Both Worlds (Audio CD)
I love Van Halen. They rocked in concert. I could be happier with this cd though. The three new tracks do not belong here. New releases are not greatest hits. The three live tracks don't belong here either. Aren't they on Right Here, Right Now? Those should have been put on a "bonus" disc or as free downloads on their website. Songs that could have gone in their place are "Don't Tell Me" from Balance, "little Guitars" & "Where Have All The Goods Times Gone" from Diver Down, "Little Dreamer" & "Ice Cream Man" from Van Halen, "Women In Love" from Van Halen II, "Drop Dead Legs" from 1984 or even "Humans Being" from their first "Best Of" cd. And what about Van Halen III? Perhaps they could have thrown Gary a bone with "Fire In The Hole" or a live version of some hit.

Also, as a general gripe, it aggrivates me when bands put out multiple "best of/greatest hits" albums that duplicate in whole or in part a previous "best of/greatest hits" album. This and the Best Of Van Halen Vol. I should have been organized into two separate releases. As is, it just seems like they are trying to suck up more of our money. I've given them enough of mine. Since I have all the other albums I'll just rip & burn my own greatest hits cd. I feel an urge to give this one or two stars but this cd gets three stars just for the simple fact that it is Van Halen and it is a good compilation.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Dis-jointed, but still a nice hard-rockin' tribute album, October 19, 2004
This review is from: Best of Both Worlds (Audio CD)
It seems to me that the large bulk of Van Halen vans fall into two very distinct categories: those who prefer Diamond Dave and those who prefer the Red Rocker. I fall squarely in between. I love BOTH incarnations of the band (however not the 3rd version with the old singer from Extreme). I have read many of the reviews here and find it very interesting to see those who rip on Roth and those who find fault with Sammy, a good chunk of which have totally missed the mark entirely.

Let me elaborate: David Lee Roth insists to this day he was kicked out of the band. NOT TRUE. After he scored some solo success with his mini-LP 'Crazy From The Heat' which yielded two remakes (California Girls & Just A Gigalo) his ego, which was already about to apply for state-hood went astronomical. He dumped the boys almost immediately upon fulfilling his tour obligations with the band. Does Sammy have an ego? Absolutely. Does it even begin to match Dave's? Sorry but he's got a long way to go to reach Roth and his unchecked love for himself.

A few have even brought up album sales to prove the popularity of one singer over the other. While this is a nice barometer of what the album-buying fans actually think, it doesn't erase the fact that there are a HUGE number of fans of BOTH singers. (by the way, Van Halen with Sammy outsold David Lee Roth by almost 2 to 1. Like it or not, those are the facts)

I noticed one fan categorized the songs by both singers in an interesting way, and I have to agree. While I feel Sammy is a better overall singer, Dave certainly sang on songs that had a bigger variety of musical diversity. I also read how one reviewer based both singers as songwriters...again, sorry but Dave was the lyricist and helped VERY LITTLE on any actual music writing for the band, while Sammy was already an accomplished singer, guitar player and songwriter by himself. Again, not taking anything away from Dave, but he just stood and sang and did one thing that Sammy does little of: PERFORM. Having seen both Van Halen WITH Roth and Sammy as a solo act, by FAR Dave was the bigger showman -- but sorry to say, his vocals are on the verge of ruin over years of smoking and screaming on stage. It really sucks to see such talent whittled away at a relatively young age, but Sammy's vocals actually still pack quite a punch after all these years -- and he is OLDER than Dave.

The debate over both singers will rage for a lot longer than I wish to participate, but with that said, I still enjoy listening to songs by BOTH singers. Plenty of debate will also rage over which songs were left out (Ice Cream Man -- a horrible mistake in my opinion) and why oh WHY did they include 'Eruption' without connecting it to 'You Really Got Me'??? That's like listening to 'We Will Rock You' without hearing it go into 'We Are The Champions', many fans will find this inexcuseable.

In my career in radio I have been fortunate to see and interview many of the biggest bands in rock & roll, from the Beach Boys to Sammy Hagar and yes, even David Lee Roth. My personal opinions about either singer are based on my being a fan of both of them as well as personal experience being WITH both of them one on one on several occasions. Sammy is a guy I feel I could hang around with, while Dave treated me like I was a butler who was pestering him with annoying questions instead of waiting on him hand and foot. Didn't sit well with me, but I still enjoy his music. Fans of both singers will most likely find SOMETHING to enjoy in this particular incarnation of Greatest Hits, but as always, YOUR opinions may vary.
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8 of 10 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good VH Release From Rhino - Minor Things Wrong, November 4, 2004
This review is from: Best of Both Worlds (Audio CD)
OVERVIEW: 2004 - A nice selection of Van Halen songs from Rhino. As with any compilation with a band that's been around for decades, it's tough to narrow down the best tunes and get it right for a 1 or 2 disc collection. Rhino has made some good choices here, but it's definitely lacking in several different areas. Let me also state that Van Halen rocks the old school way - and ANY Van Halen is good Van Halen... just some tunes are better than others.

WHAT YOU GET: 2 discs. 36 songs. Digitally remastered sound. 3 new tracks with Sammy Hagar on vocals. 3 live tracks (from "Right Here, Right Now"). A nice tri-fold CD case with the red/black/white designed stripes from Eddie's early guitars on the cover. 4 black & white photo's of the band (Eddie, Alex, Michael & Sammy) on the inside flap... but, strangely omitted is David Lee Roth. In fact, Roth isn't pictured at all or listed in writing (or in the credits) anywhere on this CD case. I find this strange and I want to point the finger at somebody (Rhino, or the band themselves). This is playground finger pointing and name-calling at its worst. It's simply a damn shame that Rhino didn't step forward. It's equally disappointing that Sammy & Eddie probably dictated what they wanted and no one questioned it.

THE GOOD: As stated before, ALL Van Halen is good Van Halen. VH's debut is best represented with 5 tracks here. "1984", "5150", "OU812", and "For Unlawful Carnel Knowledge" all contain 4 tracks on "Best Of Both Worlds". The new tracks ("It's About Time", "Learning To See" and "Up For Breakfast") are good Sammy songs, but by no means considered classic. The live tracks are good, but the studio versions are all ready present on the album - why not take a song that isn't here (like VH's great live rendition of The Who's "Won't Get Fooled Again")? The digitally remastered sound is crisp and the bass guitars and drums sound deep (like Alex & Michael are in the same room with you).

THE NOT SO GOOD: As I mentioned before, it's a shame David Lee Roth gets no credit here. He is part of the band's history. He's helped write some of their absolute best music. The band's feuding has taken center stage at times - and I feel like this is a huge slap in the face for one of the band's creators. There are no liner notes - no history, no song writing credits, no knowing what songs came from what albums or the year they were released. Regarding the song selection (or lack there of)... Van Halen "II" has only 2 songs on this release (where is "Bottom's Up" or "Light Up The Sky"?). "Fair Warning" has only 1 song here (where is "Mean Street", "So This Is Love?" or "Dirty Movies"?). "Diver Down" has 2 songs here (no "Secrets" or "Little Guitars"). For the most part, Rhino hit the mark with the Sammy songs, however I would have liked to have seen included here "Cabo Wabo", "Mine All Mine" and "The Seventh Seal". Missing is the song "Humans Being" (from the movie soundtrack "Twister"). Also omitted is anything from "Van Halen 3" featuring Gary Cherone... thank you Rhino! However putrid "3" was, maybe one song could have made it here for history's sake. The three 'live' songs are OK, but repetitive and other tracks could've been added in their place. Not to mention Sammy singing three Roth tunes live - Hagar written tunes would've been better choices here. The song "Finish What Ya Started" finishes abruptly... like someone just shut the machine off when burning it. I think a chronological view would have been benefitted this release - showcasing the band's early years, maturing (if you can really say that) and then changing singers. I think "Eruption" really needs to be next to "You Really Got Me". All "Best Of" compilations are hit & miss in my book. "The Best Of Both Worlds" is a good listen from Rhino, but too many minor discrepancies keep this from being a 5-star review.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Missed Opportunity becomes cheap promotion for tour, October 1, 2004
This review is from: Best of Both Worlds (Audio CD)
First let me state the obvious: This 2cd set undeniably contains some great music. Setting the DLR vs Sammy battle aside for a moment, it can't be denied that both periods in VH's history (and for Van Hagar, let's say 86-92 or so)produced some amazing hard rock/pop metal. What strikes the listener immediately is of course first and foremost Eddie's dynamite guitar playing that revolutionized hard rock yet remained indelibly VH and only VH. But what set these LA boys apart was their keen ear for melody- the TUNE. While DLR's party/get the girl/ frat rock lyrics differed from Hagar's more love/motivational style of writing, it would seem almost a natural development as the band grew older. What didn't change from 1978 to the early 90's was the band's ability to produce durable melodious tunes.

The original Van Halen was a tight 3 piece with an entertaining natural frontman with a whisky voice. Hagar came to the band with a lot of experience as singer and guitarist under his belt going back to the early 70s with Montrose. Very professional, but lacking in showmanship, swagger, humor and soul. It always seemed more forced with Sammy somehow.

Hagar's classic tenure in the band differed also from DLR's in its larger reliance on synths, a trend already being made evident on DLR's last album with the band, 1984. Personally I enjoy the textures Eddie's synth lines give the latter hits. And Van Hagar had some amazing songs! Black and Blue and Best of Both Worlds have great riffs, Dreams still has me thinking of the majestic Blue Angels, Love Comes Walking In is as good as a rocking love song gets, Why Can't This Be Love proved that VH could change singers and still evolve viably and commercially.

Another strength of the band through both periods that is not to be understated is the sensational backing vocals, anchored by Michael Anthony. At times Beatlesque in their grandeur, they were key to the VH sound in both periods. Just listen to Jamie's Cryin, Dance the Night Away, When It's Love, and a slew of others. It almost brings tears to the eyes. In fact, I personally vote When It's Love as one of the best songs of all time, any genre, any artist.

Where this compilation disappoints in a big way is the following:

1) No chronological or thematic order. The songs are all over the place, with Sammy and DLR songs alternating. On the surface an interesting idea, the eternal sparring of the singers, but in practice, a sonic failure, as opposing VH eras jar the ears. It's the difference in production, eras, voices- you name it, it just doesn't work

2) The new and newer material. The new songs really are not good, and lack melodies. Bad idea, guys. Some of the songs from the late Hagar period don't cut the mustard either and they show up at very inopportune times, ruining flow.

3) The inclusion of live VH tracks with Hagar singing DLR songs! It's just revolting, man. A cheap plug for the summer tour. And doesn't help that there is a really dumb Hagar monologue in there that is a poor imitation of DLR.

4) And lastly it should be mentioned that Finish What You Started, a rarity in its stripped-down approach during the Hagar big-sound era, jars the listener with a cut-off ending that is embarrassing in that it was allowed to go to the presses! Come on, you guys who cut this album!

All in all, a missed opportunity. Create your own best of VH from the material, I have!
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars So where is the Best of Volume 2?, August 8, 2004
This review is from: Best of Both Worlds (Audio CD)
I guess that will never happen. Anyway-Nice collection of songs-although I would have preferred they left off the 3 live Hagar-sings-Roth songs and the UP FOR BREAKFAST track is really a lame sexual word play. C'mon, you're in your 50's grow up.

The songs here are all the ones you'd expect, although I would have liked ME WISE MAGIC & HUMANS BEING included. I would have also liked to see the Roth/Hagar songs separated with all Roth on 1 cd and Hagar on the other. While we're at it-why no songs from Van Halen 3? Why no photo of Roth-era Van Halen? I mean, he was a big part of the band's history.

Overall a nice overview.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Nice compilation for none fans - fans don't buy it, August 13, 2004
This review is from: Best of Both Worlds (Audio CD)
If u are not a Van Halen fan but like to have the hits and "some more" go buy this cd. As you probably hear on the first CD the music isn't outdated, most of the music is really timeless.

I bought all records except the compilation cd's.

Some essential tracks like "mean streets" and "I'm the one" are missing.

'Regarding adding new tracks - message to fans considering to buy this '

they use compilation disks as milky cows by putting up new tracks. As with the former compilation the new tracks are even crappier than ever (the roth tracks on the former compilation were more lively). Eddie should join metallica to play depressive tunes. And all these stupid hassles with intros, they were never a progressive or harmonic rock band, what's the stupid style switch? Next time boogie woogie? Obviously, the energy's gone except the need for money. Bands: don't use/insult your fan base to buy compilation records because of 3 new crappy tracks.

Meehhh a milky cow from Holland not paying money/tribute for compilation discs. 'We're only in for the money' would be a nice title for this disc
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Best of Both Worlds
Best of Both Worlds by Van Halen (Audio CD - 2004)
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