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April 01, 1986|ROBERT HILBURN | Compiled by Terry Atkinson

"Rock & Roll--The Early Years," Various artists. RCA. In rushing to meet the growing CD demand for best-selling new albums, record companies have been slow to document the roots of rock. While the sound quality is good and selection of tracks is outstanding on this '50s retrospective (the 12 numbers range from the Chords' "Sh-Boom" and Bill Haley's "Rock Around the Clock" to Carl Perkins' "Blue Suede Shoes"), the value of this CD has been greatly reduced by the ridiculously short playing time--only 29 minutes of music--in contrast to the normal 60 minutes on most Motown repackages. 1/2

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