The Essential Al Green offers only a partial version of Green's 1967 album, Back Up Train. The disc includes ten of the 11 songs on the original album (other reissues of the same material have had 13 songs). The music itself is very good, not up to his Hi standards, but smooth and silky soul with some strong cuts like "Back Up Train," "Stop and Check Myself," and "I'll Be Good to You." You can certainly see what Willie Mitchell saw in him and you can see what Mitchell did for him, too. The packaging is minimal for this abridged version: suffice to say there are much better ways of getting Back Up Train.
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AllMusic Review by Tim Sendra