This superb and superbly packaged set reviews the best of Manhattan Transfer during their most successful, commercial period from 1975 to 1987, from their initial eponymous LP through to "Brasil". During that time they switched styles almost with each album and, indeed, this compilation is scheduled according to style - R+B, pop, big band and jazz, with latin and doo-wop scattered about - rather than in chronological order. The boundaries between the sections are, however, seamless, so that it makes a great two and a half hours worth of music for all tastes.
Musical arrangements, performance and production quality were always top quality on the original records, which sounded both fresh and clean, as well as warm in the bass and I'm glad to report that the transfer to CD has not lost anything in the process.
Artistically Manhattan Transfer were the bees' knees; two girls and two boys in perfect harmony with gorgeous backing arrangements (they still are, but we hear less of them these days). All the hits and well known numbers are here; if I try to single out any I'll have to list the whole lot. Never mind Birdland, it sounds more like paradise.
The booklet that comes with the packet has a full history (up to 1987), is sumptuously illustrated and carries a lot of information on each track. The only drawback is that the cover of it is shiny black paper, so that unless you wear gloves you will leave fingerprints on it, no matter how clean and dry your fingers are.
There are cheaper, and much shorter, "Best of...M/T" albums around; this is the best and well worth the extra. I bought this back in 1993 and it's never far from the top of the pile.