Top positive review
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An amazing body of work.
on 11 May 2011
The Clarke, Hicks & Nash Years collection stands out as the jewel in the crown of EMI's series of inexpensive box sets that span their catalogue from acts as diverse as the Seekers to the Edgar Broughton Band. The other sets gathered their material onto four CDs - but here we now have a massive six CD collection for the price of a Greatest Hits!
Another project from Tim Chacksfield, who is a very safe pair of hands with EMI's treasures, this package is superb value - and worth the price for the bonus material alone. The tracks have been re-mastered by Peter Mew at Abbey Road - but most were not done especially for this collection. Amazon's current track-listing shows the year of re-mastering and you probably have a fair few of these versions in your collection already.
The compilers have chosen to present the material in order of recording date, which makes for a very interesting listening experience and makes this collection unique. There is a mixture of stereo and mono tracks and it seems stereo has been used as first choice if a stereo mix exists - there are arguments for each format but including both was beyond the remit of this collection!
The booklet is very well produced and features a Q & A interview with Graham Nash himself - which many fans will want to read. There are some good photos, a UK discography from 1963 - 1968 and a track listing detailing the recording date and first release format for every track. All the material was recorded between April 1963 and October 1968 and this set includes 7 EPs, 7 LPs, singles A's & B's and many rarities as well as a bonus live concert from May 1968 issued here for the first time.
I don't know how long Amazon will hold the current very low price so I suggest ordering a copy soon - before it goes up. My pre-ordered copy was considerably more expensive but Amazon's price guarantee ensured I only paid the lower price on the day. This is a truly remarkable collection of material from a great band at the peak of their power; even if you have much of the material already you will not regret buying this set as well. It's almost a gift from EMI!