October 25, 2010
Sony Music Distribution
Pop/Rock, Arena Rock, Prog-Rock, Hard Rock, Contemporary Pop/Rock, Art Rock, Album Rock

Album Review

Epic/Legacy's double-disc set The Essential Kansas pretty much fulfills the promise of its title. Although it doesn't delve into the group's latter-day recordings for MCA and other labels, that's not a problem because most listeners -- whether they're fairweather or dedicated fans -- will want to concentrate on the group's peak in the '70s, which is precisely what this does. Over the course of 26 tracks, all the hits and album-oriented radio staples are featured, usually in their full-length album versions, plus a number of fan favorites and key album tracks that help draw a full picture of what the group did. The remastered and expanded single-disc The Best of Kansas remains the best bet for the casual fan, since it has all the big hits on one disc, but anybody seeking to dig deeper than the hits and radio favorites -- without actually hearing the original albums -- should turn here, since its selection and sound is better than the three-disc box.
Stephen Thomas Erlewine, Rovi

Track Listing

  1. Carry on Wayward Son
  2. Song for America
  3. The Wall
  4. Lonely Street
  5. Journey from Mariabronn
  6. Child of Innocence
  7. Mysteries and Mayhem
  8. The Pinnacle
  9. Bringing It Back
  10. Down the Road
  11. What's on My Mind
  12. Death of Mother Nature Suite
  13. Point of Know Return
  14. Cheyenne Anthem
  15. Fight Fire with Fire
  16. Dust in the Wind
  17. Hold On
  18. No One Together
  19. Play the Game Tonight
  20. Closet Chronicles
  21. Sparks of the Tempest
  22. Portrait (He Knew)
  23. On the Other Side
  24. People of the South Wind
  25. A Glimpse of Home
  26. Magnum Opus [Live]
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