Unlike previous Jack Bruce compilations such as At His Best, Willpower, and The Collection, The Jack Bruce Collector's Edition is not drawn from Bruce's Polydor/ATCO/RSO recordings of the late '60s and '70s. Rather, it chronicles his recordings for the German CMP label in the 1980s and early '90s. This is still the Jack Bruce familiar to Cream fans, with fellow Cream members Eric Clapton sitting in on guitar on "Waiting on a Word" and "Ships in the Night" (from 1993's Somethin' Els) and Ginger Baker on drums on the Cream favorites "Sitting on Top of the World" and "NSU" (from the 1994 live album Cities of the Heart), and also including a re-recording of the Cream song "Politician." And it is the Jack Bruce of his early solo albums, with new versions of "Theme from an Imaginary Western" and "Rope Ladder to the Moon." But it is also the adventurous, jazzy singer/songwriter of 1995's Monkjack, from which the tracks "Folksong," "Time Repairs," and "Third Degree" are borrowed. So, while this collection does not contain a career-spanning set of Bruce's greatest hits, it does cover what for many fans may be a lost decade in the artist's catalog, demonstrating that during that period he was both reexamining his earlier work and creating significant new music.
AllMusic Review by William Ruhlmann