The Motown Anthology

by: Diana Ross

Up until this release, consumers had a difficult task of finding a definitive compilation highlighting the post-Supremes career of Diana Ross -- mainly because there wasn't one. This double-disc set gathers 27 of the diva's finest solo sides, plus an additional 11 tracks that are making their domestic debut. As a retrospective, The Motown Anthology succeeds in gathering all of Ross' major singles. Some are available here in a previously unissued form. Such is the case for "Remember Me," "My Mistake (Was to Love You)," and "Lovin' Livin' & Givin'" -- from the Thank God It's Friday soundtrack. Those looking for chart-toppers should note that The Motown Anthology not only delivers rare material, but also all the hits that would render most other collections superfluous. The producers have also hit upon a favorable ratio of hits to rarities. After covering all the bases on the popular and familiar material, the previously unearthed nuggets -- which are spread throughout the chronologically organized set -- are a treat for both the intense as well as the casual fan. Of particular note is the leadoff track "Time and Love" -- a Laura Nyro composition which had been scheduled, and then withdrawn, as Ross' first solo single. The sound is uniformly excellent with the caveat that some of the early recordings on disc one -- "Reach Out and Touch (Somebody's Hand)" for example -- never were known for their fidelity. Likewise, the sound of mid-to-late '70s tracks such as "Love Hangover" and "The Boss" are marked improvements. Clocking in at over two and a half hours, The Motown Anthology is a tremendous value. ~ Lindsay Planer

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