Even though the title should be taken with a grain of salt -- an enormous number of these 44 songs did reach number one, but a handful only peaked at two or three -- there's no denying that For the Record is an impressive achievement. Spanning two discs and two decades, For the Record contains nearly every great song Alabama recorded, plus three new tunes. If any single album provides definitive proof as to why Alabama is the most popular country band of all time, this is it -- they make this appealingly polished, hook-heavy, radio-ready mainstream pop sound easy as pie. Alabama may have had a couple of album cuts every now and then that were quite good, but they were at their best turning out hits as a singles band, as such contemporary classics as "Tennessee River," "Mountain Music," "The Closer You Get," "Forty Hour Week (For a Livin')," "Jukebox on My Mind," and "Down Home" illustrate. Consequently, it's hard not to view For the Record, with its virtual cornucopia of hits, as the definitive Alabama collection, maybe even the definitive Alabama album.
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AllMusic Review by Stephen Thomas Erlewine
Track Listing - Disc 1
Track Listing - Disc 2