Picking up where EMI's first compilation, The Best of David Bowie 1969/1974, left off, The Best of David Bowie 1974/1979 is an excellent 18-track overview of what are arguably Bowie's most creative years. During these five years, he moved from the stylized "Plastic Soul" of Young Americans to the cold, synthesized Berlin collaborations with Brian Eno, turning out some classic singles along the way ("Sound and Vision," "Golden Years," "Fame," "Young Americans," "TVC 15," "D.J.," "Boys Keep Swinging," "Heroes"). Those hits, along with some strong album tracks, the disco-fied "John, I'm Only Dancing (Again)," and the rarity "It's Hard to Be a Saint in the City" are all here. Unfortunately, the compilation wasn't sequenced in chronological order -- although his range is impressive, it's even more astonishing when it's placed in the proper sequence. Nevertheless, The Best of David Bowie 1974/1979 is a good summation of those five years and a nice companion piece to its predecessor, even if the double-disc Singles set or the concise Changesbowie are better career overviews.
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AllMusic Review by Stephen Thomas Erlewine