Garth Brooks - The Ultimate Hits
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The Ultimate Hits (Pearl/Big Machine, 2007)

Garth Brooks

Reviewed by Michael Sudhalter

Garth Brooks may have taken a break from retirement to do a series of shows in Kansas City, but he hasn't added much to his established hits with this two-CD, one-DVD release.

Of the 34 songs on the album, only 4 are new. There's the current single, "More Than Memory," a departure from Brooks's more traditional "Lost Sessions" album. The mid-tempo song is both catchy and melancholy simultaneously.

"Midnight Sun," written by Brooks, Richie Brown and newcomer Jerrod Niemann, is a pleasant barroom shuffle and one of the most traditional-sounding things Brooks has ever recorded.

Brooks moves into familiar rock/pop territory when he duets on a subpar effort with Huey Lewis on Lewis's hit "Workin' For A Livin'," but he's in top form on the bonus track, "Leave A Light On," a power ballad that suits his voice.

Brooks squeezed most of his key hits on to the album, but he left out early hits like "Not Counting You" off his self-titled debut and "Somewhere Other Than The Night" from "The Chase."

Fans expecting new material from the 33-song DVD will be disappointed. There are videos for all of the songs, save for "Leave a Light On," but most of them are from concert footage of previous Brooks's DVD releases.

CDs by Garth Brooks

Gunslinger, 2016 Man Against Machine, 2014 Blame It All On My Roots - Five Decades of Influences, 2013 The Ultimate Hits, 2007

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