Greatest Hits

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Chic infused a production savvy, an elegance, and a rockish, full-bodied nature that informed all of the dance essentials on this late-1979 greatest-hits set. Taking tracks from their three albums from 1977-1979 does sound a little confining, but Greatest Hits more than works and shows the strides the band effortlessly made. The group's first single, "Dance, Dance, Dance (Yowsah, Yowsah, Yowsah)," possesses the class and propulsive nature of prime dance music, with Bernard Edwards' basslines and Nile Rodgers' rhythm guitar giving the band its singular sound. Divorced from the '20s holdover kitsch of megaphones and "yowsahs," the ebullient "Everybody Dance" put them in a more contemporary setting, if not slightly ahead of the times. Greatest Hits doesn't trouble itself with getting earlier essentials from the band like "Falling in Love With You" or "Est-Ce Que C'est Chic," and squarely sets its sights on the most successful singles. The entries from C'est Chic include the moody and insistent "I Want Your Love" and the five-million-selling "Le Freak," which features the wry interplay between Edwards, Rodgers, and drummer Tony Thompson. Greatest Hits takes the sure shots from Risqué, the phenomenal "My Feet Keep Dancing" and the brilliant and sly "Good Times." In many respects this greatest-hits set, while rock-solid, also ended the Chic commercial era a few years before its time. In fact, this compilation, with its great cover and song selection, might be preferred to the subsequent overviews.