Various Artists

Super Hits, Vol. 2 [Atlantic]

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The first two-thirds of this record pick up right where Volume 1 left off, offering up a generous helping of soul music of the highest quality. Aretha Franklin's "Baby, I Love You" and "Chain of Fools" are the cornerstones of this portion, but songs like the Rascals' breezy "Groovin'" and Otis Redding's sublime, still-haunting "(Sittin On) The Dock of the Bay" are indicative of the strength of the rest of the material therein. What makes this collection weaker than the first, then, is that after these first eight tunes, it seems to lose its focus, concluding with songs by a group of artists entirely disparate from each other and the rest of the music on the album. Sure, songs like Sonny and Cher's "The Beat Goes On" and Buffalo Springfield's "For What It's Worth" are excellent compositions, but here they feel out of place and are a hindrance to an otherwise great album.

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