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Best of Both Worlds (Dig)

Hard Rock & Metal and Rock album by Van Halen

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Great Tunes, Bad Compilation

  • Apr 23, 2010
"Hot For Teacher," "Right Now," "Panama," and "Dance The Night Away" are just a few of the thirty-plus tunes on Van Halen's quasi-greatest hits package, "The Best Of Both Worlds."

Every song on this two-disc set (excepting the three new tunes and the live tracks) are some of the best rockers (and a couple of ballads) that you'll ever hear. The problem with this compilation is the sequencing that so many have already mentioned and the inclusion of Hagar-fronted live versions of classic David Lee Roth tunes. For hardcore fans of David Lee, this is a sacrilegious act.

Still, if you can look beyond these missteps, you'll be guaranteed a very good collection of Van Halen/Hagar tracks.

Whether you're a fan of Van Halen or Van Hagar, both are represented very well as far as music is concerned, but the liner notes leave David Lee Roth deep in the background as far as photos are concerned. Also missing is Gary Cherone, but I doubt many fans really miss his time in the group.

If you're a casual fan, this is the album to get. Loyal fans of the band or of Roth or Hagar might want to skip this collection and stick with their old albums. The new songs are passable at best, so you won't be missing anything.

Recommended primarily to the casual listener, especially those who are only familiar with Van Halen's radio releases.

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Kendall Fontenot ()
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Despite looking extremely cool, I have to admit that I'm a dork. I grew up on the outskirts of the small town of Oberlin, LA. I have since relocated to the Lake Charles, LA area.I love my home state … more
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One shouldn't have too much difficulty imagining a two-disc Van Halen compilation entitledThe Best of Both Worlds. The first disc will showcase theDavid Lee Roth-fronted version of the band that reenergized hard rock with its titanic 1978 debut and peaked commercially with 1984's, uh,1984. Disc two will take up where David Lee was left off--from 1986 on, whenSammy Hagar(and, briefly, Hagar-sound-alike Gary Cherone) took over the mike. Well, unfortunately, that's not the anthology assembled this time out. Rather than sequence the selections chronologically and, in the process, display the band's evolution (or devolution, depending on where one stands in the great Roth/Hagar debate), the band has opted for a more eccentric sequencing strategy. After the opener "Eruption" confirms the sass and chops of the young VH, three fairly uninspired new tracks featuring a back-in-the-fold (for now?) Hagar interrupt the flow. Unfortunately, the flow never really recovers, as Roth and Hagar tracks leapfrog one another through the next 29 selections. Three live Hagar takes on songs from the Roth era finish things off in confusing fashion. Obviously, there's plenty of powerful music here, but do fans really need a lesson in what happens when worlds collide? And didn't David Lee earn at least one photo in the package?--Steven Stolder
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Label: Warner Bros.
Artist: Van Halen
Release Date: July 20, 2004

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