Still, it's amazing U2 could fill two discs this go-round, since there were half as many albums to choose from as there were for the 1980-to-1990 best-and-rest-of twofer, and a quarter as many moments worth getting stuck in or on. Here, the grandest discovery and joy come from hearing concept albums, such as they were, torn apart and reassembled as a gathering of rootless singles on disc one. It's far better when "Mysterious Ways" gives way to a "Beautiful Day," instead of Bono tryin' to throw his arms around the world, and it's a blast when "Hold Me, Thrill Me" is followed by a new mix of "Discotheque," the greatest U2 single that wasn't.
Odd that the band would include the William Orbit remix of "Electrical Storm," the new single, on the first disc; it fits better on the inessential second, a compendium of redos intended for the clubs, most of which went out of business in 1998. Better to hear the Edge's edgy guitar -- strings like razors, played with bloodied fingers -- than imagine it, which is all the remixes can offer; turns out it was precisely what the band couldn't leave behind.