Rolling Stone - p.58
"[With] several early-Seventies nuggets -- including the Chuck Berry-style blazer 'Get Out of Denver,' Seger's burnt-road-dog growl in the Allman Brothers cover 'Midnight Rider' and the brassed-up locomotion of 'Long Song Comin'..."
Photographer: Thomas Weschler.
Longtime Bob Seger fans are united by one desire: to have his earliest recordings reissued. Usually, this means his earliest singles for Cameo and Hideout, but the sentiment also pertains to his first seven records that have remained out of print for years, with some -- like the superb Back in '72 -- never seeing a CD reissue. All this means that the 2009 appearance of Early Seger, Vol. 1 caused great excitement, especially since Seger chose Hideout as the imprint for this self-released compilation of highlights and outtakes. "Early" doesn't mean the '60s, and it doesn't necessarily mean the '70s, either: three of the four previously unreleased tunes here date from the mid-'80s, and Seger has only released three albums since these were cut (including 1986's Like a Rock). This isn't necessarily a deal breaker because the songs are largely quite strong, particularly those cherry-picked from the out of print albums: it's hard to complain with anything that gets his brilliant Chuck Berry homage "Get Out of Denver," clever interpretation of "Midnight Rider," and wickedly funny "U.M.C. (Upper Middle Class)" back in circulation. Seger bolsters "Long Song Comin'" with some new overdubs, and the unreleased cuts are also subjected to some new studio tinkering, which doesn't hurt these strong unheard items, particularly the ballad "Days When the Rain Would Come" and the "Roll Me Away" cousin "Wildfire."