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Focus Greatest Hits of Focus album cover
2.77 | 7 ratings | 2 reviews | 14% 5 stars

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Boxset/Compilation, released in 1984

Songs / Tracks Listing

Side One:
1. Focus
2. Moving Waves
3. Focus II
Side Two:
1. Tommy
2. Hocus Pocus
3. House Of The King
4. Sylvia
5. Janis

Releases information

Fame FA 41 31121

Thanks to ProgLucky for the addition
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FOCUS Greatest Hits of Focus ratings distribution

(7 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(14%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(0%)
Good, but non-essential (71%)
Collectors/fans only (14%)
Poor. Only for completionists (0%)

FOCUS Greatest Hits of Focus reviews

Showing all collaborators reviews and last reviews preview | Show all reviews/ratings

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by VianaProghead
3 stars Review Nš 624

One of the most important features of Focus is the presence of two fantastic and brilliant composers and musicians Thijs van Leer and Jan Akkerman, the two songwriters of the group. Thijs van Leer is a classical trained keyboardist and flautist and despite be more known as the founder keyboardist and flautist of Focus, he also is known because the release of many solo albums which were based on the classical music and jazz. Jan Akkerman, in addition to his great career in Focus and his extensive solo career, he's also known because of his constant experimentation of new equipment and guitars and the use of complex and innovative guitar techniques. He's considered as one of the best guitarists in the world, and even he was also be chosen, in 1973, as the best guitarist by the readers of Melody Maker.

"Greatest Hits Of Focus" is a compilation album of Focus. This is one of the several compilation albums released by the band during the career of the group during the 70's. "Greatest Hits Of Focus" has tracks that belong to that musical period of Focus and that includes tracks from their first three studio albums, "Focus Plays Focus" aka "In And Out Of Focus", "Focus II" aka "Moving Waves" and "Focus 3". That means that we are talking about tracks that belong to some of their best studio albums. We are talking about albums that belong to their best and most progressive phase. "Greatest Hits Of Focus" was released in 1984 and ha s eight tracks. "Focus (Instrumental)" is from "In And Out Of Focus". It's a revisiting of the peaceful opener track of that album "Focus (Vocal)". This track is the best and the most progressive song on that album and it's another classic gem of the band. It's an astonishing track with about ten minutes with incredible improvisations that moves constantly between guitar, keyboards and flute. This is Focus at their best and represents perfectly the progressivity and the quality of their music and how great they can be. "Moving Waves" is from "Moving Waves". This is my less favourite song on "Moving Waves". It's a sweet and gentle piano song, but not very inspired, especially in what concerns to the vocal parts. This is a melancholic song dominated by piano and the voice of Thijs van Leer. So, the final musical atmosphere of the song is a bit boring for my taste, really. "Focus II" is also from "Moving Waves". It's an interesting and melodic piece dominated by the guitar of Jan Akkerman. This is a song that continues the Focus' series, with good song writing and great musical performance by all band's members, as is usual. It has a fantastic interplay between all band's members. This is one of the best examples of their unusual style. "Tommy" is another track from "Moving Waves". It's a small excerpt of their multi-part suite "Eruption", which is divided into many several parts. "Eruption" is a real progressive masterpiece with great organ sounds, tons on drums, very melodic bass, straightforward hard rock electric guitars. There are some intensely floating Mellotron and backing vocals parts. "Tommy" is probably the most known excerpt, a logical choice for a single. "Hocus Pocus" is once more a track that belongs to "Moving Waves". This is an extraordinary track, a legendary track from the band with intensity and perfectly astonishing and, at the same time, we may also say that it has some beautiful insanity on it. It's a track that soon we heard it, soon we sing it, and that, in the end, we remain completely free from all tensions and stress after a day's work. This always was one of my favourite progressive tracks ever. "House Of The King" is from "In And Out Of Focus". This is a true legendary track. It shows the compositional abilities of Jan Akkerman and the harmony between the flute of Thijs van Leer and the acoustic guitar of Jan Akkerman. Despite be short, it has some exciting and refreshing moments. It's a classic from Focus where we can see compositional mastery, creative experimentalism and instrumental virtuosity. "Sylvia" is also from "Focus 3". It's a classic from Focus. It's a melodic song conducted by the electric guitar of Jan Akkerman and with great performances by all other band's members, in the supporting role. It's basically a flurry of sounds all meticulously connected. This is a memorable catchy song with an emotive melody where all song is built around it. "Janis" is from "Moving Waves". It's a soft track, despite be a Jan Akkerman's song. The lead is taken by the magic flute of Thijs van Leer, perfectly supported by the others band's members. This is a very simple song but the melody and harmonies are so perfect and catchy that makes of it, somehow, a memorable song. Like some other reviewers had already said, "Janis" is a song that reminds me my strongly my old beloved band, Camel.

Conclusion: "Greatest Hits Of Focus" is, without any doubt, a good compilation album of the band. Despite this compilation album had already been released in 1984, a year when Focus had already released seven studio albums and only three are represented in here. I think we can say that "Greatest Hits Of Focus" is a good compilation album of Focus, even thinking this isn't properly one of their most representative compilation albums. As we all know, the most faithful fans of Focus, their best and most progressive studio albums are their first four studio albums, "Focus Plays Focus" aka "In And Out Of Focus", "Focus II" aka "Moving Waves", "Focus 3" and "Hamburger Concerto". So, 3 stars.

Prog is my Ferrari. Jem Godfrey (Frost*)

Latest members reviews

2 stars Best Off..... I found this LP, including a thick layer of dust, at a friend's flat. I am a fan of FOCUS. I also conscribe to the idea that every prog rock or prog rock related release deserve a review. Just to make ProgArchives complete. Hence these words. There is nothing on this album w ... (read more)

Report this review (#214586) | Posted by toroddfuglesteg | Saturday, May 9, 2009 | Review Permanlink

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