As Bruce McCullough once said in Kids in the Hall, “Greatest Hits albums are for housewives and little girls.” For rock purists, this mostly holds true. After all, for any band post-Rubber Soul , the proper album is the true unit of artistic measure, and every good fan knows that deeper cuts are often a band’s best material.
But we all have a few, and sometimes for good reason, be it bonus tracks, a remaster treatment, or occasionally a band who notoriously spread their hits out two at a time over numerous filler-laden albums. Some greatest hits albums become so ubiquitous that they become staples of a band’s catalogue. There’s bad examples of this — Bob Marley’s Legend and The Grateful Dead’s Skeletons From the Closet are near-reviled by their hardcore fanbases. I own both for the same reason I own the far-superior Chronicle: highschool. It’s like you get them handed to you on the first day of your junior year.
And Chronicle figures heavily in the soundtrack of my high school days. It’s an album I immediately associate with the early days of being cut loose on the road, tooling around town with friends. It’s also very complete, squeezing 74 minutes of 20 songs we all know onto one disc. How much saturation has Chronicle achieved? I don’t think I’ve every seen a true Creedence album in any of my friend’s collections through the years, but I know 30 people who own their greatest hits.
In terms of bang for the buck, one of the better 17 bucks I’ve spent.