(…And 21 Other Pretty Cool Songs)
COMPILATIONS // 2008BUY ALBUM
Greatest Hit (…And 21 Other Pretty Cool Songs) is a compilation album by Dream Theater. The title alludes to their only top 10 radio hit, “Pull Me Under”. Then-drummer Mike Portnoy explained that the selection of songs were carefully made in order to appease both the newcomer and the already existing fan by offering up different versions of songs on other albums to “make the newcomer want to buy the albums from whence they came” and to “give different versions of songs already on other albums” to the current fan.
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Greatest Hit (…And 21 Other Pretty Cool Songs) features three songs from their breakthrough album Images and Words remixed by Kevin Shirley: “Pull Me Under”, “Take the Time”, and “Another Day”. It also features the song “To Live Forever”, an Awake-era re-recording of the song from the Images and Words sessions (featured as a B-side of the “Lie” single), which was previously unreleased on a full-length album. Several single edits of popular Dream Theater songs are also featured on this compilation.
The songs have been divided in two discs: the first one, dubbed “The Dark Side”, features heavy, metal-influenced songs, while the second one, entitled “The Light Side”, spotlights the band’s melodic side. The set spans the years from 1991 to 2005, therefore it doesn’t include any songs from Dream Theater’s debut album, When Dream and Day Unite, their A Change of Seasons EP (although it was released in 1995) or their 2007 release Systematic Chaos.
The album’s booklet is missing credits of “As I Am” and the songs from Octavarium as edited versions; those tracks are actually shorter than the ones from that album as secondary versions for “As I Am” (also a clean edit), “The Root of All Evil” and “Sacrificed Sons” with the first minute intro taken out, “The Answer Lies Within” has the first 15 seconds of bells ringing taken out, “I Walk Beside You” has the same length as its original album but with the clock ticking sound taken out of the first riff.
On the album cover, on the words “Greatest Hit”, some letters are printed in red, being the “s” from Greatest and the word “hit”, making the word “shit”.