... this Best of, along with Vol. I, represent the greatest of what the band has to offer. I own all of the original albums, yet keep coming back to the Best Of's. This is a great place to begin, then if you just gotta have more, delve into the back catalogue... there are a few more gems not represented in this collection. But hey, it's the Smiths... almost everything they released was fabulous. This set is pure gold, opening with my favorite Smiths single, "Boy With the Thorn in His Side." It combines all the elements that made the group special... Marr's spot-on rhythmic strumming, tasteful string swells, a gorgeous and yearning vocal turn from Morrisey, and melody that instantly hooks you. And look... my 2nd favorite Smiths single is also here... "Bigmouth Strikes Again!" The drumming and guitar work will take your breath away. This is a band working with tremendous drive and sense of purpose. My favorite non-single LP track is "Reel Around the Fountain," and its joys may be a little harder to define, but every time I hear it, I sink into a trance and hang onto every note. The key is somewhere in Morrisey's voice... he sounds frozen by emotion, overwhelmed and utterly sincere. Then a totally different vocal approach on "Headmaster's Ritual"... the way he spits out the words, "spineless swine, cemented minds" is classic. "Ask" is another wonderful single... a departure for the band and not one of Marr's favorites, but touched by magic. "Last Night I Dreamt" is the Smiths at their most over-the-top dramatic, but the grandeur of the track makes it work, as if Cecile B. DeMille were cutting a pop record! I won't analyze the rest, but only in interest of space and time... buy this album now!