Island 982 295-0.
Various artists type compilations are two a penny, and invariably include material that's appeared on countless compilations beforehand. This one, however is different. It draws on material from 1967 to 1972 and includes most of the "progressive" artists on Island's roster. Thus you get well-known names such as Free, Traffic and Jethro Tull as well as lesser-known names like Clouds and Fotheringay.
Mott The Hoople fans will immediately be drawn the disc 3, for it includes the rare "Bumpers" version of Thunderbuck Ram which, at the time of writing (2006), is unavailable elsewhere. This features Verden Allen's organ high in the mix - it was left off the regular Mad Shadows version.
Interest will also be shown in the three Spooky Tooth tracks, which feature Luther Grosvenor on guitar - he would, of course, become Ariel Bender on joining Mott. His guitar work here is quite tasty - fans may wonder why he appeared to lose it (especially on the Hoople album, which had to be arranged around keyboards as a result).
Finally there is Traffic's Low Spark of the High Heeled Boys, which many in the Mott camp thought to be about Mott (and not in a flattering way either).
Mott fans, therefore, may find this an essential purchase but more casual fans who remember the 70's (and the 60's) will find plenty to like here as well.