Featuring live versions of the country star's biggest early hits, all of his recent chart-topping singles, and three new, soon to be classic, Toby tracks. As a collection these songs represent 33 combined weeks at #1 on the Billboard Country Chart and they define Toby Keith as an artist.
At his best, as exemplified by his 1999 megahit "How Do You Like Me Now?!" Keith is simple and direct in the tradition of Hank Williams Jr.
--aware of his limitations, able to thrive within them. "Courtesy of the Red, White and Blue (The Angry American)" struck a chord, though it differed little from the fist-shaking morale-boosters of previous wars. On the downside, Keith's formulaic tendencies can become tiresome, as it did on "My List," a generic celebration of life's mundane treasures. Sales notwithstanding, "Beer for My Horses" was no artistic landmark for Keith or duet partner Willie Nelson
. By contrast, he and daughter Krystal have fun with the 1963 Inez and Charlie Foxx R&B hit "Mockingbird" (first revived by James Taylor and Carly Simon). "Go With Her" injects a different spin into the time-honored breakup song, wittiness absent on the gimmicky "Stays in Mexico." Raucous live performances of "You Ain't Much Fun" and his debut hit, "Should've Been a Cowboy," reflect his ability to rouse the faithful into the obligatory singalong. --Rich Kienzle