Customer Reviews: The Very Best Of Fleetwood Mac (2CD)
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on October 17, 2002
The Very Best of Fleetwood Mac collection is a nice warm up for the holidays, which should please fans old and new. The retrospective, which features the classic Rumours lineup, includes all the hits (and then some) from the 1975 "white" album through 1997's reunion album The Dance.

It's refreshing to find some new elements incorporated into this release, making it more than just your standard best-of. Some of these highlights include single versions for "Rhiannon," "Over My Head," "Think About Me," and "Sisters of the Moon" -- all previously unavailable on CD. There's also a different mix of "Silver Springs," emphasizing Stevie Nicks' ad lib vocals at the end of the song. (The original 45 mix of "Silver Springs" has never been released on CD.)

Overall, the sound quality is excellent. Remastered by engineering heavyweights Bill Inglot and Dan Hersch (who handle many of the Rhino remasters), the tracks have never sounded this good, particularly the ones from Rumours and Mirage. Everything is clean and crisp, with bass and high-end levels faithfully restored. Finally, the depth to these recordings has returned -- something dreadfully missing from the shoddy CD reissues from the late-80s and early 90s.

The liner booklet is very well done, though the selection of photographs could be better. But there are some nice ones, like the one of Christine McVie playing a large bass. There is also a charming Rumours cover outtake featuring Stevie Nicks and Mick Fleetwood in an alternate pose. The liner notes are written well by David Wild, a contributing writer for Rolling Stone. Informative and concise. Selected discography, chart placements and credits are also included.

The enhanced material (on disc 1) is adequate though it may a challenge to play on your computer. (QuickTime for the studio stuff and Windows Media Player for everything else seemed to work). The behind-the-scenes footage is probably the only real interest here, as much of the other material has been available previously. The behind-the-scenes footage takes you through a beautiful Bel Aire mansion (where the band is recording a new album, 2003's Say You Will), practice sessions, and short interviews about the recording process without Christine McVie, who retired from the music business.

The other material on the CD, like "the vaults" (which has to be accessed through the Internet), is a bit disappointing, particularly the selection of performance clips. Two tracks are culled from the 1982 Mirage concert video ("The Chain," "Go Your Own Way") and one from The Dance ("Don't Stop"). The music video for "Seven Wonders" is also included. The rarest footage included here is the classic Rosebud documentary performance of "Rhiannon." (The entire Rosebud documentary will be available for the first time on DVD, when Warner Bros. issues the super deluxe edition of Rumours on January 29, 2013.)
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on October 16, 2002
I own many greatest hits CD's (including "Fleetwood Mac's Greatest Hits" from 1988), and one thing I've learned is that very few of them actually contain every single notable track one could want. There's always a few missing, be it a Top 40 single or an album track that received heavy airplay. Rhino Records was basically created for the music collector who wants the ultimate compilations, and while they still don't always manage to get everything "right", they come way closer than anyone before them ever have or ever will.

Yeah, the live acoustic version of "Big Love" from "The Dance" is here instead of the hit single version from "Tango In The Night" and "Greatest Hits" (probably because it's shorter). Conversely, the studio version of "Silver Springs" is here instead of the more popular live version from "The Dance". And there are a few songs - most notably "Rhiannon" and "Over My Head" - that are represented by single versions instead of album versions. "Over My Head" in particular has a much louder acoustic guitar and doesn't have the "fade-in" of the album version. Either way, any Fleetwood Mac collection that contains well-known but rarely anthologized songs like "The Chain", "Second Hand News", "Never Going Back Again", "Gold Dust Woman", "Monday Morning", "World Turning", "Songbird", and great but forgotten singles like "Sisters Of The Moon", "Think About Me", "Family Man", "Seven Wonders", and "Paper Doll" is one worth having. And as always, the remastered sound is spectacular and the liner notes are comprehensive, including release dates and chart peaks for all singles and the albums they came from - a Top 40 geek's dream!

Things I might've done differently - included the original version of "Big Love" instead of the live version, included one of Stevie Nicks' solo tunes done live by the Mac ("Stand Back" is a staple of Mac concerts whenver Nicks is in the band) to go with Lindsey Buckingham's "Go Insane", included full-length versions of all songs (even if it meant cutting one or two lesser known numbers), and I probably wouldn't have included anything from "Behind The Mask", but if I had to, I would've gone with "Save Me" instead of "Skies The Limit". Either way, this is a five star 2CD set by a five star band if ever there was one. Rhino has previously done great overviews for bands like Chicago, Foreigner, INXS, the Cars, and Black Sabbath (forthcoming!) and I only hope they get around to giving the same treatment to bands like the Eagles, Dire Straits, ZZ Top, and many others I can't even think of right now!
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on October 26, 2002
The Very Best of Fleetwood Mac is a good example of successful compilations are made. While only covering the Buckinham-Nicks version of the band, the two CD set offers a great range of songs from thier career. Unlike the previous greatest hits (which was only 1 disc), Very Best includes The Chain, Landslide, Gold Dust Woman, and even the obscure hit Family Man, on top of having all the other classics. The inclusion of songs like Think About Me, Love In Store, World Turning, No Questions Asked and Paper Doll proves that the set truely covers this era exstensively.

The remastering is decent and allows the listener to hear parts of the songs that were not obvious before. The drums sound much crisper and songs from Rumours, The "White Album," and "Tusk" seem much clearer.
The single version of Rhiannon, Over My Head, and Sisters of the Moon are also a plus, although they can take awhile to grow on you. If you are use to the album versions, these will seem kind of odd and unfulfilling. After a few listens however, one will notice the heavy guitar layering and texturing. These songs turn out to be quite cool.
The complilation will appeal to long-time fans because of the inclusion of bonus material on the first disc, as well as the song Go Insane from the Dance. It will appeal to more casual fans because of the extent that it covers their catalog.
Some songs that were not included are Eyes of the World, Oh Diane (which was a big hit in Europe & Japan), Big Love (the original), and Crystal. All of these would have made the compilation even stronger but like any Best Of, you can't have everything. All and all it is a nice set and I recommend it to anyone who wants a MAC ATTACK!!
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(Music: 5 Stars; Compilation: 4 Stars)
After 1988's "Greatest Hits" (too short at 1 CD) and 1992's "The Chain: Highlights" (2 CD's but mixing in too many pre-1975 tracks), we are finally getting the ultimate compliation of "classic" Fleetwood Mac (sorry, Peter Green!). All the hits and key tracks are here, including the obvious (Dreams, Go Your Own Way, Don't Stop, The Chain, Hold Me, Everywhere, Silver Springs, Tusk, Gold Dust Woman, Gypsy, etc. etc.) but also key album tracks like Never Going Back Again, Monday Morning, Love in Store, etc. All? well almost: missing are Oh Diane! and Not That Funny. Not funny indeed.
Two other quibles: why are we served with several live (from 1997, no less) versions that really don't add anything, including Big Love, a key studio song? Also, I find the sequencing less than desirable. I know it sounds cliched, but more often than not, a "boring" straight choronogical overview simply works best, and I think this would have been the case here as well. But in the end, the music is here in one place for us to enjoy, at last.
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on January 10, 2003
I purchased this CD because it contained most of the Fleetwood Mac songs I enjoyed as a young teen. However, when I listened to it, I was a little disappointed. Although all of the songs have been remastered on this album, it is not perfect. The quality of the recordings are sterile. In otherwords, they are clean with no distortions or noise, but they lost that foot taping musicality that could be found on their old record albums as well as some of their older CDs. It's a great album because of the collection of songs, but I wish that it retained the musicality and dynamics of the older recordings.
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on October 15, 2002
This latest remastered collection of Fleetwood Mac Hits is their best yet. This is a more complete collection than the Greatest Hits cd which was released in the late 80's. Basically, you've got the best songs from the self titled "Fleetwood Mac" cd to the "25 Years - The Chain" cd collection. Disc 1 includes: Monday Morning, Dreams, You Make Loving Fun, Go Your Own Way, Rhiannon, Say You Love Me, I'm So Afraid (live 1997), Silver Springs, Over My Head, Never Going Back Again, Sara, Love In Store, Tusk, Landslide, Songbird, Big Love (live, 1997) and Storms. Disc 2 includes: The Chain, Don't Stop, What Makes You Think You're The One, Gypsy, Second Hand News, Little Lies, Think About Me, Go Insane (live, 1997), Gold Dust Woman, Hold Me, Seven Wonders, World Turning, Everywhere, Sisters Of The Moon, Family Man, As Long As You Follow, No Questions Asked, Skies The Limit and Paper Doll. Originally a 60's blues band featuring Peter Green and later Bob Welch, Fleetwood Mac in the mid-seventies added two unknowns to the group in guitarist/songwriter Lindsey Buckingham and his girlfriend singer/songwriter Stevie Nicks. The two transformed the once blues band into a sensational pop/rock outfit which was one of the seventies most successful groups. The band itself had some ups and downs throughout the years and at one time called it quits, before re-uniting and releasing a live cd and video entitled "The Dance". Thankfully Fleetwood Mac is still together and is working on a new cd. This "Very Best Of" 2-cd collection also includes a nice booklet with pics and a brief history of the band. The sound quality is also superb due to remastering. If you enjoy listening to classic rock then this cd is a must have. Buy it and enjoy. Highly recommended!
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on January 28, 2003
Don't let the naysayers put you off... this is an excellent collection of Fleetwood Mac's post-1975 music (the band has existed since 1967).
Longtime Mac fans were disappointed by the lack of pre-1975 music here, but the truth is, the majority of American fans are not the least bit familiar with the band's earlier music.
Aside from perhaps "Oh Well," and "Hypnotized," which still get airplay on Classic Rock radio stations, the pre-Buckingham & Nicks material is not widely known to the audience this compilation is aimed at.
Those wishing to hear early Mac have little to complain about, as dozens of compilations exist focusing on that era of the band's career. This collection is merely meant to spotlight the achievements of the most commercially successful version of Fleetwood Mac, and to serve as an appetizer for their upcoming Spring 2003 release... and it does that quite remarkably.
The hits "Over My Head," and "Rhiannon," are included in their (arguably) more well-known radio mixes (as are the slightly lesser-known singles, "Sisters Of The Moon," and "Think About It").
The inclusion of these radio mixes is a definite plus, and I'm surprised that anyone has complained about their inclusion, when the album versions are easily obtainable, and as this release marks the first time these mixes have ever been available on CD.
The classic non-album track "Silver Springs," is available here in an alternate mix, highlighting Stevie Nicks' passionate vocals during the song's coda.
The biggest chart hits are justifiably well-represented ("Little Lies," "Dreams," "Tusk," and a slew of others), but thankfully space was also made for many of the band's other essential tracks... such as "The Chain," and "Storms."
One can always find something to grumble about with any "best of" collection... the omission of one song in favor of another, for example... but what IS included here, definitely makes up for anything that's missing.
Casual fans should be more than satisfied, as all the well-known radio favorites are present and accounted for... and the aforementioned radio mixes make this a must-have for die-hard fans.
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It is just so unreal to realize, that we often forget about certain artists in the music industry because they are older. That does seem to be the case with so many acts from the 70's. It still doesn't surprise me, but no matter what people think of music now, there will always be a special place for so much great music out there in so many people and their hearts. That just truly is the case for Fleetwood Mac. They have no doubt, seem to define what survival is absolutely all about. They have encountered substance abuse, and other hazards that would enchant the formula of mass destruction that would never lead a band back together again. The music still leads a lot more than ever.
The 2002 Very Best Of Fleetwood Mac is considered as a gem for any fan of the 70's group, or for anybody who is just started to be interested in their groove. The double-disc collection contains 36 great songs that are truly landmarked here, accept without failures including Time from 1995, and earlier records from the 1960's and 70's, but they aren't featured here. The songs are just absolutely geared into greatness. The songs range from upbeat and signature classics like Landslide and Little Lies, to absolute true masterpieces like Gypsy, Don't Stop, Hold Me, and Sara. The album highlights a whole lot, including some great songs like Tusk, and Silver Springs as well. Still, it would also lead into another chapter for Fleetwood Mac. Longtime member, Christie McVie, left the group in the 1990's after their comeback live record, The Dance. That leads into the behind the scenes of Say You Will for 2003, which none of the songs from that record are on it, for people who don't have a computer. Truthfully, Say You Will, didn't do as well as this did, largely because there was no commercial support for that record on radio.
It just surprises me that I've just rediscovered Fleetwood Mac for what they truly are. Nevertheless, they've had a fantastic journey for what they've encountered as a group. I still wish that so many people who are onterested in manufactured artists today, can try to celebrate these gems from the past. The Very Best Of Fleetwood Mac is a absolute must have.
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on October 15, 2002
This 2-CD compilation chronicals Fleetwood Mac's massive career post 1975...when Stevie Nicks and Lindsey Buckingham joined the former English blues/rock band. The first DISC is ENHANCED for computers and contains some great footage of Fleetwood Mac recording their new studio album due out SPRING 2003 with a tour to follow....the enhancement also gives you lyrics, and a link to a special website with rare live performances...
The selection of the 36 songs placed on this CD is great. You have the big hits like "Dreams," "Rhiannon," "You Make Lovin Fun," "Gypsy," "Sara," "Say You Love Me," "Hold Me," "Go Your Own Way," etc....and some great songs like Nicks' haunting "Sisters of the Moon," and Lindsey's live performance of the hit "Big Love," from 1997.
An added extra is the 1977 version of Stevie's ode to Lindsey, "Silver Springs." Many people do not have this version, but it is here. ALL of the songs have been remastered for SUPERB quality, and some of the songs are diff. versions than on the album...all of the songs are VERY full, and sound GREAT..the booklet has rare photos, and the whole thing is just GREAT....VERY recommended for any Fleetwood Mac fan, or any rock music fan.
Fleetwood Mac's massive career is all put into two CD's here. It also contains the 1997 great live versions of Lindsey Buckingham's solo hit "Go Insane," plus "I'm So Afraid." You can hear Stevie's bewitching vocals crystal clear in numbers like "Gold Dust Woman.." You have the beautiful songbird on Disc 1, Christine McVie, with songs like the haunting and classic "Songbird," the catchy "Love in Store," and her hits.
"THE CHAIN" begins Disc 1, and then goes right into the whole band on vocals with "Don't Stop."
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on April 3, 2012
Mick Fleetwood is a genius! First Mick Fleetwood started one of the greatest blues bands in the world with Peter Green on guitar & vocals. That line up i think would of been bigger then Eric Clapton would of ever been but out of nowhere Peter leaves the band & Mick Fleetwood gets a new line up that is completely different musically & sells more albums then they could of ever dreamed & you have all of that line up's collection here. Great remastered version to replace my old 1 cd greatest hits with. This 2 cd set is all stellar stuff but the sound is so much more audiophile like. Crystal clear audio quality very up front & so much better then the old one that i have replaced.There are so many songs where they play soft & it's so clear it's like your in the sound room with them. All i can say is go ahead & get it nothing sounds better.
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