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Fruit Tree Box Set [Box set]

Nick Drake Audio CD
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
Price: £109.71
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Amazon's Nick Drake Store


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Nick Drake


Nick Drake's avid cult following continues to grow as does the list of contemporary artists who cite the legendary singer/songwriter as an inspiration--from R.E.M., Paul Weller, Travis, Portishead, The Coral and Coldplay to David Gray, Super Furry Animals and Beth Orton. Now a new "best of" compilation, A Treasury (Island/UMe), released September 28, 2004, brings Drake's ... Read more in Amazon's Nick Drake Store

Visit Amazon's Nick Drake Store
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Product details

  • Audio CD (10 Jun 1996)
  • Number of Discs: 4
  • Format: Box set
  • Label: Hannibal
  • ASIN: B00000064P
  • Other Editions: Audio CD  |  Vinyl
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 117,004 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Disc: 1
1. Time Has Told Me
2. River Man
3. Three Hours
4. Way To Blue
5. Day Is Done
See all 10 tracks on this disc
Disc: 2
1. Introduction
2. Hazy Jane II
3. At The Chime Of A City Clock
4. One Of These Things First
5. Hazey Jane I
See all 10 tracks on this disc
Disc: 3
1. Pink Moon
2. Place To Be
3. Road
4. Which Will
5. Horn
See all 11 tracks on this disc
Disc: 4
1. Time Of No Reply
2. I Was Made To Love Magic
3. Joey
4. Clothes Of Sand
5. Man In A Shed
See all 14 tracks on this disc

Product Description


Three albums. That's all singer/songwriter Nick Drake left the world before he passed away in 1974 at the age of 26. But what a three albums they were. This four-CD box set contains all of it, including some stuff Drake didn't intend for public consumption. Of course, everything he touched--even the demos and alternate takes--is gorgeous, melancholy folk at its finest. From the haunting, baroque beauty of his debut, Five Leaves Left, through to his pop masterpiece Bryter Layter, to his last public offering, the dark and lonely Pink Moon, Drake shines. The outtake album Time of No Reply features Drake rarities and demos, including a version of "Thoughts of Mary Jane" with Richard Thompson on electric guitar. In an age when more singer/songwriters and folk artists get compared to Drake--Elliott Smith, Belle & Sebastian and Mark Eitzel, to name but three--it's enlightening to look back and hear the original. Here's your best chance. --Jason Verlinde

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
16 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Irreplaceable 5 Dec 2000
By A Customer
Format:Audio CD
First discovered Nick Drake when the Island "Introduction to.." compilation was issued, with a modest fanfare. I have never been so immediately struck by a musician and his songs. They never, ever, fade and in common with the greatest compositions, you can listen again and again and always hear them as fresh as the first time - how this happens, I just don't know, but it does. I stopped off last year in Tanworth-in-Arden (Nick's home and the site of his memorial stone - he was cremated)- it was a beautiful sunny autumn morning, and in looking at the Drake family graves (his mother and father are also buried there) I realised that the essence of Nick's art is that it was a musical embodiment of the beauty of England - an England that is now gone forever - it could not have come from anywhere else.
Recently, the BBC produced a 30 minute documentary on his life which was not as sombre as Patrick Humphries' biography (which I still enjoyed - you just can't write about Nick's life and make it upbeat, unfortunately). Gabrielle Drake (his actress sister) was interviewed and read some of the letters he had sent her from his time at Cambridge University. Incidentally, in a way, I can understand her not wanting to be interviewed for the biography - she apparently has given many interviews over the years to would-be biographers, all of which have come to nothing. This probably seemed like another one. Interestingly, the programme also featured a home recording of Molly (his mother) singing a childrens' song. The source of his unique talent was clear.
I guess the only thing I can add is that I have recommended Nick to, probably, hundreds of people - once they've listened, no one has ever been baffled as to why. If the house caught fire, God forbid, I would save this set of CDs ahead of any others. Buy it - you will NOT be disappointed.
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41 of 43 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars A missed opportunity 17 Nov 2007
No, clearly this is not about the music. I cannot imagine anyone would contemplate buying this vinyl box set without prior knowledge and ownership of Nick Drake's music. The Estate has maintained a steady stream of remasters, repackages and compilations during the past decade or so. The vinyl edition of this latest repackage aims solely to sate collector fetish.

Early publicity for this very limited box set suggested the vinyl would be high quality German pressings, newly mastered from analogue sources by the original engineers. What the box actually contains is three low grade East European 135g pressings which are presumably mastered from the 2001 digital source. The playing surfaces are nowhere near silent, which detracts considerably from the subtle, tentative performances.

The box itself is attractively packaged. All three albums feature the complete original artwork, replica labels and inner sleeves. The booklet is identical to that in the CD set, i.e. irritatingly tiny CD sized, which demonstrates a rather penny-pinching attitude.

If, as an older fan of Nick Drake's music, you already have the original Fruit Tree box, the new edition offers no advantages. Poorer quality pressings, no compilation of outtakes, and the DVD will be available separately in superior packaging. Similarly, if you have the Simply Vinyl pressings, although they were sourced from a lesser master, the pressings are at least as good as the new ones and quiet possibly better. While the recent Universal Japan vinyl pressings of the three albums individually cost almost as much as this box set, they actually represent good value for money as their high quality ensures they will be played and enjoyed.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fruit-ful 24 Mar 2007
Format:Audio CD
Nick Drake was one of those rare artists who had great talents, but too little time on this earth. When he died in his mid-twenties in 1974, Drake left behind only three albums of poignant folk pop. Three albums, and a demo/B-side collection -- sadly, that was all he created.

"Fruit Tree" collects all four albums together, in the order they were released: The first is his enchanting debut "Five Leaves Left," a wistful and startlingly polished first album. "Five Leaves First" is followed by the masterful, brooding "Bryter Layter," which many consider to be his best work of all.

His swan song was the beautiful, tormented "Pink Moon," which hints at Drake's inner turmoil, but not in a raw or obvious way. Coming after that was "Time of No Reply," a solid collection of non-album tracks. Admittedly, it's a bit of an anticlimax after the veiled emotion of "Pink Moon," but still extremely good.

It's a rare thing when am artist's entire discography is made up of beautiful songwriting and equally exquisite music. There is literally not a single bad song on the entire collection -- the worst songs on it can simply be said to be pretty good, but never bad. That in itself is a rarity.

Drake's music is of a nearly-uniform mood -- wistful, brooding, soft and melodic. Normally a repeating theme is a bad thing, but Drake managed to keep it always interesting. He has a few catchier songs, a few bland-ish ones, and a few hopeful ones. But the overall sound is of a young man with romantic sensibilities, who was also sad and fragile.

But despite his loneliness, Drake had immense writing ability. His songwriting has a simple eloquence, with poetic overtones.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
Being in a long time Nick Drake fan I was pleased to see this set released on vinyl again. It is a shame that it does not include the extra tracks that the original Island set had... Read more
Published on 2 Jan 2008 by Douglas
4.0 out of 5 stars Sounds Fine to Me
The reviews here on this seem remarkably one-sided. To my ears, and on my set-up these records sound better than my Hannibal set CD's - far warmer, and wider soundscape - and apart... Read more
Published on 27 Dec 2007 by G. ALLEN
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent 'entry level' boxset for new fans
I have been on the verge of getting into Nick Drake's work for some time - I've heard the odd track and he has been name checked by a lot of artists I admire, like Paul... Read more
Published on 18 Dec 2007 by Monkey T
1.0 out of 5 stars Don't buy - faulty batch
Aside from other potential issues with this package, be warned that the first track of Five Leaves Left has a fault on it. Read more
Published on 30 Nov 2007 by Mike the Fish
5.0 out of 5 stars The undying legacy of an enigma.
The box-set Fruit Tree came together with the realization that interest in Nick Drake's life and music was never going to fade. Read more
Published on 23 Sep 2001 by lynchola@tesco.net
5.0 out of 5 stars Just lovely
The tragedy of Nick Drake has had a curious afterlife - he is now feted and lauded, given status as an icon of the brooding young singer/poet - a status which eluded him in his... Read more
Published on 1 Dec 2000 by nick g black
5.0 out of 5 stars Wow ! Better layter than never !
I'm the kind of person who always finds out about stuff after everybody else. Office gossip is old and cold by the time it reaches my ears - 'what, you've only just found out ? Read more
Published on 30 Aug 2000
5.0 out of 5 stars A look into the mind of one of the greatest songwriters ever
Nick Drake was a very introspective writer, this set allows a glimpse into his creative and, sadly, tormented mind... Read more
Published on 1 Dec 1999
5.0 out of 5 stars A triumphant reassessment of a timeless artist.
This is a collection to which all of us are indebted, and from which none of us can escape. The definitive compendium of his work, 'Fruit Tree' provides an exhaustive survey of... Read more
Published on 19 Nov 1999 by b.hutchinson@angelfire.com
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