This 1978 compilation offers a wide spectrum from David Crosby and Graham Nash, featuring key tracks from the duo's early- and mid-'70s studio and live titles as well as their equally engaging solo material. The dynamic Crosby & Nash pairing sprang from the initial dissolution of the Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young supergroup -- which took place before, during, and after the recording of the landmark Déjà Vu (1970). Chronologically, Crosby's If I Could Only Remember My Name (1971) offers up the trippy and languid "Laughing." The track was also issued as the B-side (b/w "Music Is Love") to the first 45 extracted from the album. Nash's Songs for Beginners (1971) was released a few months later and included "Chicago" -- a biting indictment of the fallout from the trial of the Chicago Seven. The duo put out their eponymous debut in the spring of the following year. Thematically, Graham Nash/David Crosby (1972) continued the same high caliber of songwriting and execution that had defined their entire body of work up to that point. Both Nash's folky "Southbound Train" as well as the intense rocker "Wall Song" from Crosby aptly represent the range of material on the highly recommended disc. Although arguably not the strongest piece on the LP, the up-tempo title composition from Nash's second effort, Wild Tales (1973), is included here. 1975 marked a new level of interaction from the pair as they signed a deal with ABC Records. Corralling some of the best session players around, the pair formed a backing band they referred to as "the Mighty Jitters" -- which included the formidable skills of Danny "Kootch" Kortchmar (guitars), Craig Doerge (keyboards), Leland Sklar (bass), Tim Drummond (bass), and Russell Kunkel (drums). Wind on the Water (1975) is heavily represented on this collection and rightfully so, as the disc includes some of the best material to have come from either artist in several years. The four tunes featured are "Love Work Out," "Carry Me," "Bittersweet," and the title epic, "To the Last Whale...A. Critical Mass B." They followed that up with Whistling Down the Wire (1976), which ultimately became their final collaborative effort with this incarnation. Although far from a complete washout, much of the material pales in comparison with their previous efforts. Only the single "Out of the Darkness" was chosen for this release. In 2002, the 19-track Best of Crosby & Nash: The ABC Years was issued with a much more accurate focus on the ABC Records titles.
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AllMusic Review by Lindsay Planer