Hot Tracks

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Released during a flurry of activity that defined their late-'70s heyday, Nazareth's Hot Tracks kept the band's career on a decent commercial roll. After the monster success of 1975's Hair of the Dog, there were many tours of America and Europe, as well as four releases for the Scottish band over the next two years. Perhaps A&M records was going just a bit too far by releasing Hot Tracks (a best-of collection) only two years after 1975's Greatest Hits, but the track list adjustments generate a slightly different, more varied feel that might perhaps be superior to that of the former. Among the four tracks not available on Greatest Hits, "I Want To (Do Everything For You)" -- with its reductive, hard rock boogie beat and swirling vocal harmonies -- and "Carry Out Feelings," sounding like the soft rock hook Joe Walsh spent nearly a decade trying to write, add a dynamic depth to the splendid metal set, or maybe they ruin it, it can be seen two ways really. Listeners who appreciate songwriting and musical character should enjoy this collection, possibly the best of the "best ofs," but Hair of the Dog worshipers might not enjoy the more delicate offerings included on Hot Tracks.

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