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Limited double 24kt gold SACD pressing. Bob Dylan agreed to release a second "greatest hits" compilation, provided he could compile it himself, issue it as a double album, and include several older compositions which he had written but never issued. Greatest Hits Volume ll is close to perfection. There are sentimental romantic ballads ("Lay Lady Lay," "Tonight I'll Be Staying Here With You") and wordy rants ("Just Like Tom Thumb's Blues," "It's All Over Now, Baby Blue"). There are angry political rants ("Maggie's Farm," "A Hard Rain's A-Gonna Fall") and spiritually uplifting songs ("I Shall Be Released," "When I Paint My Masterpiece"). The big draw, however, are the previously unavailable tracks unique to this edition: "Watching the River Flow," "When I Paint My Masterpiece," and "Tomorrow Is A Long Time" don't appear anywhere else and "You Ain't Goin' Nowhere" and "Down In The Flood" are different takes than heard on The Basement Tapes.
This time selected and programmed by the man himself, the two-disc second installment in Dylan's Greatest Hits series comes off as much more idiosyncratic than its brother, famed songs ("Lay Lady Lay," "A Hard Rain's A-Gonna Fall") notwithstanding. An even richer cut-by-cut listen than the earlier best-of, this 1971 set masterfully casts the classics into new light and adds previously non-LP singles (the smashing "Watching the River Flow," with the Amazon.com fave line "People disagreein' just about everywhere you look / Makes you wanna stop and read a book; let's have lunch, Bob"), a then-unheard live 1963 "Tomorrow Is a Long Time," and new, stunning, off-the-cuff takes of "I Shall Be Released," "You Ain't Goin' Nowhere," and "Down in the Flood." --Rickey Wright --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.