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A Breath Of Fresh Air: A Harvest Records Anthology 1969-1974 [Box set]

Various Artists Audio CD
3.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)

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Product details

  • Audio CD (14 May 2007)
  • Number of Discs: 3
  • Format: Box set
  • Label: EMI Records
  • ASIN: B000NA2B0E
  • Average Customer Review: 3.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 46,869 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Disc: 1
1. Evil (2004 Digital Remaster)
2. Listen, Learn, Read On (2000 Digital Remaster)
3. Druid One (2007 Digital Remaster)
4. Station Song (2006 Digital Remaster)
5. Rainmaker
6. Singing A Song In The Morning (2003 Digital Remaster)
See all 20 tracks on this disc
Disc: 2
1. There's No Vibrations, But Wait! (2004 Digital Remaster)
2. Soulful Lady
3. Entropy
4. Black Sheep Of The Family
5. Grass
6. Salisbury Plain (1999 Digital Remaster)
See all 17 tracks on this disc
Disc: 3
1. She Said (2002 - Remaster)
2. South Africa
3. Evening Over Rooftops (2004 Digital Remaster)
4. Do Ya (2005 Digital Remaster)
5. When The City Sleeps (2002 Digital Remaster)
6. The Lady Rachel (Single Edit 1972) (2003 Digital Remaster)
See all 15 tracks on this disc

Product Description


Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
76 of 79 people found the following review helpful
Format:Audio CD
Long long ago, Harvest Records issued a double vinyl set `Picnic: A Breath Of Fresh Air', (see below). And now 36 or so years later, Harvest Records/EMI present 'Breath Of Fresh Air' - the picnic being long devoured - a full three CD set and with only 3 common tracks(marked: *).

I've thought hard, stared into by my now ageing vinyl collection and I can't think that any Harvest signings from the first 5 years of the label's existence have been omitted. Therefore we are presented with a variety of musical styles which happily fell under the joint headings of underground/progressive music, circa 1970. Hence some excellent folk from the Collins sisters, Michael Chapman and Roy Harper. Proto-gothic/agiprop pops up several times from Edgar Broughton, but I'm not sure of the choice of Broughton's 'Evil' to open the whole; there are better tunes on 'Wasa Wasa'. The avant blues rock of Pete Brown (Jack Bruce's lyricist), comes up several times. Good examples of the then blossoming heavy rock of Deep Purple and Quatermass. The beautiful weirdness of The Third Ear Band, Ron Geesin, Kevin Ayers, (a personal hurray for the inclusion of 'Song From The Bottom Of A Well'). Syd Barrett on the edge of complete mental collapse. We are happily given the full danceable, whack of Babe Ruth's Tamla inspired 'Wells Fargo', with the faux Junior Wells sax break. There is Roy Wood's ELO, before they became Mr Lynn's -and to remind of where ELO came from, the Move is represented. And I'm thinking: is that Jan Akkermann track with former Yes-man Pete Banks? And then you'll find a few bands the bands time almost forgot -e.g. Forest, Spontaneous Combustion, Bombadil (hey, I have this track on a single record!). The choice of Floyd is good - for me. And there is Marc Almond!?
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25 of 26 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A missed opportunity... 14 Sep 2007
By roobarb
Format:Audio CD
The original Harvest label double sampler 'Picnic - a Breath of Fresh Air' was the first record I ever bought. It cost 29/11d (1.49 to you kids) and didn't leave my Dansette turntable for a month or more. I know every track off by heart and still play the vinyl on a regular basis 37 years after I bought it.It was a perfect snapshot of the music of the time and I aspired to buy every LP that was featured on the sampler. Many were bought - some subsequently re-sold - and a few retained. Would that I had kept them all - Record Collector magazine tells me that I could pay off my mortgage with the proceeds of the sale of a collection of the original vinyls. I have waited years for a CD re-issue to emerge. Having set the scene, you can, perhaps, imagine my disappointment with this issue which uses part of the title, part of the iconic Hipgnosis album sleeve and only a tiny amount of the original music. Nevertheless, setting aside my personal disappointment, this is a fair reflection of the 'Glory Years' of the Harvest Label, and if you missed the bus last time, get on board as soon as you can...
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
Format:Audio CD
A big omission on Amazon is that the listings don't give which Artist performs which track.

So here it is.

If I've made a mistake just add a comment and I will adjust and give you the credit!
Track listing
1. Evil - Edgar Broughton Band,
2. Listen, Learn, Read On - Deep Purple
3. Druid One - Third Ear Band
4. Station Song - Pete Brown & His Battered Ornaments,
5. Rainmaker - Michael Chapman,
6. Singing a Song in the Morning - Kevin Ayers,
7. A Foresaking - Our Captain Cried - DollyCollins,
8. Careful With That Axe, Eugene - Pink Floyd
9. Armchair Theatre - Tea & Symphony
10. Big Bear Ffolly - Bakerloo
11. Round and Round - Panama Limited Jug Band
12. Octopus - Syd Barrett,
13. The Painter - Deep Purple
14. Country Morning - Pete Brown & Piblokto!
15. Francesca - Harper, Roy
16. Bad Penny - Forest
17. Backwood Theme - Chris Spedding,
18. Real Cool World - Greatest Show on Earth
19. Breathe - Ron Geesin,
20. Taking Some Time On - Barclay James Harvest

1. There's No Vibrations, But Wait - Edgar Broughton
2. Soulful Lady - Michael Chapman,
3. Entropy - Quatermass
4. Black Sheep of the Family - Quatermass
5. Grass - Pretty Things
6. Salisbury Plain - Dolly Collins,
7. Embryo - Pink Floyd
8. You Shouldn't Have Took More Than You Gave - Dave Mason,
9. Speed King - Deep Purple
10. Magic Woman Touch - Greatest Show on Earth
11. Aeroplane Head Woman - Pete Brown & Piblokto!
12. Baby Lemonade - Syd Barrett,
13. Don't You Grieve - Roy Harper,
14. October 26 - Roy Harper,
15. Song from the Bottom of a Well - Kevin Ayers,
16. The First Leaf of Autumn - Michael Chapman,
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Superb Lookback at Harvest 21 May 2008
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
I remember buying the original 'Picnic - A Breath of Fresh Air' for 29s11d (1-50p) and playing it alongside the other excellent sampler albums such as 'Nice Enough to Eat' and 'Bumpers' from the Island label. Harvest bands were generally less mainstream than other labels and made for a very different listening experience. Many of the bands never really made it (Pink Floyd and Deep Purple and perhaps Barclay James Harvest being the main exceptions). When I saw this album I thought it would just be the CD version. I was delighted to find that nearly every track is different as well as their being many more of them. Not every track is a good one and you may need to press the skip button occasionally but what you do have is a fantastic slice of musical history from some truly innovative bands/singers etc. Well worth the money.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars A biggest band!
One of the best trailers that i have heard, however differs from the original version by the themes and extension, is a good sample of the early progressive rock, without a doubt a... Read more
Published 5 months ago by Jose Lira
3.0 out of 5 stars Gas masks on the beach
I picked this up in a sale as I like these sort of CDs devoted to an entire label which have booklets with them and which are chockfull of fax'n'info. Read more
Published 8 months ago by Richard
1.0 out of 5 stars Picnic...no
Oh Dear!...I found this CD very disappointing!...not a patch on the Picnic album ....lacks the atmosphere of the original. I am sure the sequence of tracks were important ! Read more
Published on 17 Sep 2011 by Mr. David B. Gwilliam
3.0 out of 5 stars A partial delusion
I don't know why,but in the '80s I sold this compilation,in Catania,Sicily.I've been waiting for the exact remastered re-issuing of an album that I bought in London for a very... Read more
Published on 8 Feb 2010 by Pietro Silvestri
5.0 out of 5 stars Memories of a time when music was magical.
I love these samplers. This is a 3 CD set from Harvest who were EMI's "progressive" arm. During the 1970's the label was the home for some of the top names of the genre and a... Read more
Published on 2 Oct 2007 by K. A. Lay
2.0 out of 5 stars Fresh air perhaps, but no Picnic
in 1970, Harvest released 'Picnic- a Breath of Fresh Air', a 19 track double LP, showcasing a selection of their artists, including progressive acts such as Barclay James Harvest,... Read more
Published on 20 May 2007 by Tetrahymenix
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