Greatest Hits II by Kenny Chesney
Kenny Chesney’s 2000 Greatest Hits chronicled the East Tennessee native’s ascent to national superstardom, but arrived just before his popular image as country’s favorite sun-and-sand-loving party host really took hold. So Greatest Hits II, which surveys the last nine years, is a very different animal from its predecessor. Taken together, these 15 tracks present a more fully formed portrait of an artist who has learned to let his conflicting impulses sit together side by side—the unrepentant partier who wants the most out of life is here, right next to the melancholy nostalgist wondering whether he’s really making the most of his time on earth.
Greatest Hits II assembles that portrait at the expense of smashes like “Don’t Blink” and “Better as a Memory,” which get left out in favor of album cuts such as “Be as You Are” and the Dave Matthews duet “I’m Alive.” That makes for a fully rounded document of Kenny’s artistic persona, but one that doesn’t fulfill the straightforward promise of its title.