pulls together the Rolling Stones' biggest hits from 1971's Sticky Fingers
right through to 1989's Steel Wheels
. Although the non-chronological sequencing can be disorienting (the set kicks off with 1981's "Start Me Up", then immediately rewinds 10 years to the '71 classic "Brown Sugar"), the sheer quality and comprehensiveness of the disc proves the band was still a powerful force after the '60s ended.
The strongest material here is from the early '70s, with standouts like the gorgeous "Wild Horses", the anthemic "It's Only Rock 'N Roll", and "Bitch", one of the Stones' best-ever full-tilt rockers. As always, Mick, Keith, and company ridesome funky grooves, too, especially on the disco-flavored "Hot Stuff" and "Miss You" (with its irresistible falsetto refrain). Of course, there are also good tunes from the '80s, including the wistful "Waiting on a Friend", a strong cover of Bob & Earl's 1964 hit "Harlem Shuffle", and 1989's "Mixed Emotions" (which recalls the group's earlier sound). Only the Stones could release a Best Of collection comprised of material from the decades following their acclaimed peak years and still make it sound like a rock & roll rulebook.