Although Link Wray almost single-handedly popularized guitar distortion in rock songs (his classic "Rumble" is one of the first tracks to feature it), he very rarely ever receives the credit he so rightfully deserves. And after hearing the 20-track collection Guitar Legends, it becomes even more perplexing why Wray isn't recognized more for his contributions to rock guitar. Providing as the perfect soundtrack for every '50s-era greaser and hood (and sounding quite "punk" 20 years before the punk rock movement officially got underway), Guitar Legends includes tough Wray originals as well as covers tracks made popular by other '50s-era rock & rollers (Buddy Holly, Elvis Presley, Fats Domino, etc.). While quite a few Wray classics are included here (such as the aforementioned "Rumble," an "LP Version" of "Run Chicken Run," "Jack the Ripper," etc.), Guitar Legends is not definitive -- one of Wray's best songs, "The Swag" (best known for its inclusion in John Waters' gross-out comedy classic, Pink Flamingos), is nowhere to be found. Hence, 1993's Rumble! The Best of Link Wray remains the best Wray compilation to hit the racks.
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AllMusic Review by Greg Prato