Rolling Stone - 4/17/03, p.1084 stars out of 5
- "...Love were a cult worth joining and still sound fresh and inventive today....Ranges from hard rock freakouts...to wistful pop...to trippy mariachi..."
Love: Arthur Lee (vocals, guitar, harmonica, piano, drums, percussion);
Bryan MacLean (vocals, guitar); Jay Donnellan, John Echols (guitar); Tjay Cantrelli (flute, saxophone); Alban "Snoopy" Pfisterer (harpsichord, organ, drums); Frank Fayad (bass, background vocals); Ken Forssi (bass); Michael Stuart (drums, percussion); George Suranovich (drums, background vocals); Drachen Theaker (drums).
Additional personnel includes: Billy Strange (guitar); Hal Blaine (drums).
Producers include: Jac Holzman, Mark Abramson, Paul Rothchild, Arthur Lee, Bruce Botnick.
Compilation producer: Gary Stewart.
Principally recorded at RCA, Sunset Sound Studios, Hollywood, California and Elektra Studios, Los Angeles, California between 1966 & 1969. Includes liner notes by Dave DiMartino.
Personnel: Arthur Lee (vocals, guitar, harmonica, piano, drums, percussion); Bryan MacLean (vocals, guitar, background vocals); Jay Donnellan, John Echols, Billy Strange (guitar); James Getzoff, Robert Barene, Marshall Sosson, Arnold Belnick (violin); Norman Botnick (viola); Jesse Ehrlich (cello); Tjay Cantrelli (flute, saxophone); Roy Caton, Ollie Mitchell, Bud Brisbois (trumpet); Richard Leith (trombone); Don Randi (piano); Alban Pfisterer (harpsichord, organ, drums); Michael Stuart (drums, percussion); George Suranovich (drums, background vocals); Drachen Theaker, Hal Blaine (drums); Frank Fayad (background vocals).
Audio Remasterers: Daniel Hersch; Bill Inglot.
Liner Note Author: Dave DiMartino.
Recording information: A Makeshift Studio In A Rented Warehouse, Hollywood, CA; Elektra Sound recorders, Los Angeles, CA; RCA Victor Recording Studios, Hollywood, CA; Sunset Sound Recorders, Hollywood, CA.
Photographer: Chuck Boyd.
Arrangers: David Angel ; Arthur Lee; Bryan MacLean.
This 2003 CD is an entirely different release than the vinyl LP Best of Love that came out on Rhino in 1980. Although it does happen to include 15 of the 16 tracks from the 1980 release, the CD The Best of Love expands the program to 22 songs, adding a few tracks from Love, Forever Changes, and Four Sail (and dropping the 1966 B-side "Number Fourteen"). A Love best-of, it should be cautioned, is not the best way to appreciate a band whose first three albums are better heard in their totality, particularly Forever Changes. It's also true that for a bigger cash splash you can get the two-CD Love Story 1966-1972, which has all of these songs and more (including all of Forever Changes and some good tracks from the first two albums that miss the listing on The Best of Love, like "A Message to Pretty" and "The Castle"). Still, if you do want a one-disc Love best-of, this has a lot of good music and generally pinpoints the highlights of the group's early albums, though the Four Sail tracks and the non-LP 1968 single "Your Mind and We Belong Together"/"Laughing Stock" are in no way as good as the missing tracks from Forever Changes. The packaging and liner notes are good, too, though again it's not nearly as comprehensive as what you'll find on Love Story. [The disc was later issued in 2007 as Love's Greatest Hits.] ~ Richie Unterberger