The catch to this compilation – which is a strength of coherence but also its weakness – is its format. The discs, rather than benefiting from careful curating, simply compile 42 of the band’s singles in chronological order, running the from the groups first release “Zoot Suit” (as the High Numbers) through the new-for-this-collection “Be Lucky”. The format makes for a cogent narrative, but even so it leads to some strange choices. The set, while heavy on the Who’s Next/Lifehouse era, skips the still-radio-friendly “Long Live Rock”, possibly because its lack of chart success and odd timing in the sequence (released as a single well after its recording). Also missing are the excellent early cuts “A Legal Matter” and “I Can’t Reach You”.
That’s a shame, because “I Can’t Reach You” is indeed one of those “deep cuts” that should have been a bigger hit, considering how many Who fans name it as a personal favorite.