RELEASE
1974
LABEL
Polydor
GENRES
Pop/Rock, Soft Rock, Prog-Rock, Psychedelic Pop, Psychedelic, British Invasion, Baroque Pop, Album Rock, Contemporary Pop/Rock, British Psychedelia, Art Rock

Album Review

It might surprise those coming in late to their story that the original double-LP version of this album from 1974 was the first compilation devoted to the Moody Blues' work. That's seven years after their switch from R&B-based British Invasion rock & roll to psychedelic music, and ten years into their overall history, an awfully long time for a successful band to avoid the compilation route. That fact alone speaks volumes for how healthy their album sales were -- only the group's decision to take a hiatus seems to have prompted the assembling of this collection. The Moody Blues had actually had enough hits and charting singles between England and America since 1967 so that a good best-of could have been assembled, but the makers went far beyond that, encompassing LP tracks that had become favorites on FM radio between 1967 and 1973 and also ignoring the actual release order of anything here. So instead of a tour through their history, listeners get a kind of collage of most of their best work, the songs nicely representative of the various members' most important contributions to the group's work. That said, however, it should also be pointed out that so much of the band's music is connected, conceptually and thematically, with the surrounding songs on their albums that inevitably the listener will feel rushed through some of this history; additionally, there is one excellent number left off for every three that are included. The CD reissue was impressive sonically for its recompiled and remastered tape sources, and the new annotation by digital producer John Tracy was a good bonus feature. To some degree, this collection has been supplanted by the more fully programmed double-CD Gold collection from 2005. Unless all you're looking for is an overview of the group's classic years, in which case one can add a half-star to the rating of This Is the Moody Blues.
Bruce Eder, Rovi

Track Listing

  1. Question
  2. The Actor
  3. The Word (Poem)
  4. Eyes of a Child
  5. Dear Diary
  6. Legend of a Mind
  7. In the Beginning
  8. Lovely to See You
  9. Never Comes the Day
  10. Isn't Life Strange
  11. The Dream (Poem)
  12. Have You Heard?, Pt. 1
  13. The Voyage
  14. Have You Heard?, Pt. 2
  15. Ride My See Saw
  16. Tuesday Afternoon (Forever Afternoon)
  17. And the Tide Rushes In
  18. New Horizons
  19. A Simple Game
  20. Watching and Waiting
  21. I'm Just a Singer (In a Rock and Roll Band)
  22. For My Lady
  23. The Story in Your Eyes
  24. Melancholy Man
  25. Nights in White Satin
  26. Late Lament