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Brooksie "Still in Saturday morning detention, 1984" (Hill Valley)

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1974-1979
1974-1979
Price: £13.99

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Too Much Heaven, 15 Oct. 2015
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This review is from: 1974-1979 (Audio CD)
This is a set chronicling the Bee Gees during their world-conquering imperial phase. The set runs from the 'lost' album 'Mr.Natural' that bridged the gap between their previous sound and the falsetto-wielding disco-fever sound that made them superstars, to their worldwide smash album 'Spirit's Having Flown'. The box contains 4 albums and a compilation which includes their tracks from 'Saturday Night Fever' and some of the other songs they gave to others at the time ('If I Can't Have You' / 'Our Love Don't Throw it All Away' / 'Emotion', etc) which may not have been the versions recorded at the time, but more recent versions. The set contains the fold open box, and all the CD's in retro style mini LP slipcovers. The albums feature repro's of the original LP inserts but no inner sleeves. The one gatefold LP ('Spirits Having Flown') is a gatefold slipcover here. This is a decent showcase of the most successful period in the Bee Gee's long and varied career. The one issue might be that the bonus disc could have featured more of the songs that Barry and his brothers gave to Andy ('Desire' / 'Shadow Dancing', etc), but it's possible that at least some of them are considered strictly Andy's songs, or maybe there are no regular Bee Gees versions - I don't really know. If you like the Bee Gees songs that were featured on 'Saturday Night Fever', then this set features even more from both before and after which are often just as good if not better, and at the price it's currently going for (£14) it's a bargain.


The Classic Albums Collection
The Classic Albums Collection
Price: £34.99

5.0 out of 5 stars Welcome to Xanadu, 15 Oct. 2015
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This is a set containing the complete Electric Light Orchestra studio albums (excluding the soundtrack to Xanadu - contrary to the title of this review) in little retro LP style slipcovers together with a booklet in a fold open box. The slipcovers are basic and the CD's contain no inner sleeves. The covers have an annoying white border around them both outside and inside which breaks up the inner artwork, and does not match the original album releases. No inserts or inner sleeves that came with the original LP's are present here. The albums that were gatefold as LP's are gatefold here, and while the CD's are easy to remove from the single sleeved covers they are a little tough to remove from the gatefolds.The booklet contains album by album info with notes on each (sometimes track by track) by Jeff Lynne. The CD's themselves all have bonus tracks (B-sides, single only releases, alternate takes and outtakes). This is basically ELO in a box right from '72 up to '86 when they went on extended hiatus. This is a great set for people who are downsizing their CD or record collections, or just for people who want to try out ELO. It's a real bargain at the price it's currently listed (£20) and if you pick up the Xanadu soundtrack (which contains some excellent ELO songs) you'd have pretty much everything you need.


Original Album Classics
Original Album Classics
Price: £11.99

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Once Upon a Star, 15 Oct. 2015
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This review is from: Original Album Classics (Audio CD)
This set contains all five of the classic Roller albums in mini LP style retro slipcases in an outer slipcase. None of the albums are gatefold (all of them were originally) and there's no inserts. There's no frills here at all. All the CD's have extra tracks (B-sides and single only releases). This is basically the Rollermania era Rollers in a single slipcase. If you're a fan looking to downsize, or someone looking to try them out, then this set is perfect and a bargain at the price.


The Albums
The Albums
Price: £26.71

5.0 out of 5 stars Take a Chance on This, 15 Oct. 2015
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This review is from: The Albums (Audio CD)
This is a set containing the complete Abba studio albums and an extra CD of single-only releases and B-sides in little retro LP style slipcovers together with a little booklet in a 2-piece box. The box is nice and has the name of the band embossed in metallic blue. The slipcovers are basic and the CD's contain no inner sleeves, but the print on the face of the CD's makes them look like mini records - which is a really nice touch. The booklet contains a brief bio, then a timeline of the bands career, followed by some info on the individual albums (tracks, recording dates / locations, etc). This is a no fuss comprehensive CD set of the groups entire career, and at the price I picked it up (£14) was a real bargain.


The Smiths Complete
The Smiths Complete

5.0 out of 5 stars This Charming Set, 15 Oct. 2015
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This review is from: The Smiths Complete (Audio CD)
This is the complete Smiths albums (4 studio albums, 3 compilations of B-sides and single only releases, and the live album 'Rank') all in mini LP style retro packaging in a fold open box with a little booklet. The CD's all have original inner sleeves and are gatefold where applicable. Rank even has the mini poster that originally came with the LP. The booklet contains a simple but nice overview of the bands career. This is a great set but it's getting harder to find new. If you can pick one up for a reasonable price second hand (as I did) it's well worth it.


The Albums Collection Vol. 1 (1973-1984) [CD]
The Albums Collection Vol. 1 (1973-1984) [CD]
Price: £35.00

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Don't Dance in the Dark - You'll End up Breaking Something, 15 Oct. 2015
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I won't go into too many details about the strengths of this set because others have said it much better than I could. What I will say is what you get here; Springsteen's albums released between '73 and '84 in mini LP repro sleeves (complete with inner sleeves and inserts), together in with a book in a faux leather 2-part box with stickers on it made to look like a tour suitcase or something. It's a lovely package and thoroughly recommended for both the casual and hardcore fan - especially at the price it's currently going for.

However... I have a couple of minor quibbles, neither of which affects the five star rating I'm giving this:

The first is that the book - while beautiful, is kind of a wasted opportunity. It's made to look like a scrapbook chronicling Springsteen's career complete with articles and 'stuck-in' photographs (the photographs and the fake tape used to stick them in are laminated to give them a genuine feel - a nice touch) but the articles themselves are on such small print it's very hard to read them, for some people maybe even impossible. It's a nice book but it might have benefited from a career essay at the start.

The second issue is the lack of 'Tunnel Of Love'. I know that Born in the USA seems like a logical cutoff point - his commercial career peak and roughly ten years after his debut. However, Tunnel continues the personal / professional career trajectory he'd been on since the start (and chronicles his marriage breakup), and it also rounded out his eighties output. The Springsteen that reappeared in the 90's was a slightly different one, now not trying to prove anything and more comfortable with the life of wealth he had enjoyed for some time. To me - and this is just my opinion - Tunnel is the real 'end of part 1' for Springsteen's long career, and had this set included it it would have been comprehensive. I know that there's a second set in the works, and it will inevitably be included on there, but it still feels to me like it should be here.


Original Album Series
Original Album Series
Price: £9.99

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Take On This..., 15 Oct. 2015
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This review is from: Original Album Series (Audio CD)
This set contains all A-ha's big albums from their breakthrough in the mid eighties through to the early 90's. They come in repro style slipcases made to look like the original albums together in an outer slipcase. The outer sleeve is a little tight, and for some reason they have added a coloured border around the album covers that was not present on the originals - for some it works ('Scoundrel Days' / 'Stay On These Roads') - but for others it doesn't ('Hunting High and Low'). There are no bonus tracks. This is a bargain for someone that just wants the classic A-ha albums in a simple space-saving set.


The Complete Albums Collection
The Complete Albums Collection
Price: £37.99

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Silence Doesn't Have a Sound..., 15 Oct. 2015
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I won't go into too many details here as many other reviewers have posted much more thorough reviews, but what you get in this set is all Simon & Garfunkel's albums (including the soundtrack to 'The Graduate' and their first 'Greatest Hits') in card repro album style slipcases in a larger outer card slipcase, with a booklet which contains a good career-overview essay and some album notes.

My minor nit picks are these; for some bizarre reason the albums all have a white border on the cover which was not present on the original LP's, and there are no bonus tracks. However, they are minor things and don't detract from the great value of this set.

Some people may question the inclusion of the Greatest Hits, but that album does have unique versions of one or two tracks. The inclusion of four live albums may also seem excessive, but each of them captures S & G at different phases in their career; in 1967 post career breakthrough, but before 'The Graduate' / 'Bookends' made them major stars; 1969 when they were established stars but had yet to release the seminal 'Bridge Over Troubled Water'; their massive spontaneous reunion concert in central park in 1981; and from their reunion in 2003.

This is a bargain set, and though more expensive than the other Simon & Garfunkel boxed set is more comprehensive and well worth the money. If you have money to spare you might consider picking them both up - as the other set contains a DVD of the concert in Central Park and bonus tracks. With them together you may find you have more Simon & Garfunkel than you could ever need... if that's possible.


Greatest Hits [DVD] [2004]
Greatest Hits [DVD] [2004]
Dvd ~ Culture Club

5.0 out of 5 stars Good Karma..., 15 Oct. 2015
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This review is from: Greatest Hits [DVD] [2004] (DVD)
This collection runs through Culture Club's video career from their humble beginnings through the excessive opulence of the videos for some of the tracks from 'Waking Up With the House on Fire' to their re-formation in the late 90's, and as a result almost tell the story of MTV itself. It includes the video-oddity for 'Love is Love' from the film 'Electric Dreams' which was released as a single internationally (not in the UK), but barely features the band (only George himself shows up in the video at all - and it's only footage-within-footage).

The standout extra is the live video 'A Kiss Across the Ocean' recorded at the groups peak in December 1983 at London's Hammersmith Odeon. It captures them at their world-conquering best before the trappings of fame and wealth damaged what they were. Nice to hear George opine - "This is a song that didn't get played, but it still got to number three" - referring to their latest single (still in the top ten at the time) 'Victims'. It's a great song and I have no idea if he was right about the airplay (why wouldn't they have played it - it followed up 'Karma Chameleon' and was a great song) but it really helps to root the performance to when it happened.


Original Album Classics
Original Album Classics

4.0 out of 5 stars Adam Wears White Stripes, 15 Oct. 2015
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This review is from: Original Album Classics (Audio CD)
The three studio albums recorded by Adam and the various incarnations of the Ants in simple slipcases inside an outer slipcase. All the albums are expanded to include various outtakes / B-sides. 'Dirk Wears White Sox' has the US album cover. It's a shame that with all the material featured here some of the Ants best B-sides are missing ('Beat My Guest' / 'Christian Dior'), as are the songs recorded for the film Jubilee ('Deutscher Girls' / 'Plastic Surgery'). All in all this is a good budget option to get all the Ants albums in one set.


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