Sounds like … a comprehensive retrospective of Amy Grant's legendary career, ranging from '70s easy listening resembling The Carpenters and Carole King to '80s and '90s pop/rock recalling Cindy Morgan, Sara Groves, and Nichole Nordeman.
At a glance … fans don't really need this, especially if they're considering re-buying re-mastered versions of their favorite albums, but Greatest Hits does about as well as can be expected for a single disc summarizing Amy Grant's 30-year career.
They say if you've got it, flaunt it. Well, since Sparrow/EMI Records acquired Amy Grant and her legendary catalog from Word Records earlier in 2007, you didn't really expect them to sit on it, right? Far from it. Sparrow has not only re-released all of Grant's albums, but also re-mastered them to today's improved audio standards. And in the process, they've come up with this tidy collection of Greatest Hits.
Wait, didn't Grant already release a Greatest Hits in 2004? Yes, but that one focused on the latter portion of her storied career, and 1986's The Collection focused on her first decade. This one is a more comprehensive overview of her entire 30 years in music, generally succeeding in packing the essentials into one 80-minute disc. Not surprisingly, it favors her more recent hits, including the big five from her most successful album, Heart in Motion (tracks 5-9). But it's the older material (from 1977's Amy Grant to 1988's Lead Me On) that benefits the most from the re-mastered sound. "Lead Me On" has never sounded bigger or better, and there's new warmth to classics like "Father's Eyes," "Thy Word," and "El-Shaddai," nor has "Lead Me On."
Still, while most all the biggest hits are represented here, it's hard to overlook the ones that didn't make the cut. Considering the propensity to newer hits, fans can forgive omissions of No. 1 hits like "Helping Hand" and "Children of the World." Leaving out career-defining oldies like "Sing Your Praise to the Lord" and "Wise Up" might be harder to overlook. A double disc set would do more justice to Grant's career, and that already exists in separate halves.
Greatest Hits doesn't offer anything new for fans; they're better served re-buying some of their favorite albums from 20-30 years ago for the re-mastered sound. But if there's truly a need for a single-disc collection to summarize the music of Amy Grant, this is about as well as could be expected.
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