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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A LIFE IN SONG, 23 Dec. 2011
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This review is from: Collected (Audio CD)
Iain (Ian) has written, participated and sang the songbook of my life over the last 40 plus years. His ability to be the master of song interpretation is displayed in all its glory over the 3 CD, 57 track opus collection.
No bonus tracks of nothing previously unavailable, just an ensemble of quality that should be the benchmark for any aspiring singer/songwriter.
Do I have any gripes? - Well it would have been nice to see his 1988 album for Windham Hill comprising the songs of Jules Shear included. Heck even the few tracks recorded for Deram by The Pyramid. Still when that 7 CD Boxset comes out, as he suggests in his notes, all the additional can be included.
Till then I will gladly play these albums as an enhancement to the Matthews'collection that already swells the CD and Vinyl racks in my home.
His UK tours are few and far between these days, as he has settled into the next phase of his life in the Netherlands. His occasional partnership with Ad Vanderveen is a musical marriage tour de force that I can say I'm fortunate to have seen.
His interest and love of jazz has been catered for by the Searing Quartet. the track titled 'Randolph Scott' from their joint album is a mild example of how the boy from Scunthorpe ( who supports Manchester Utd.) has superbly covered all the musical bases in his distinguished career.
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15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Pure Joy, 8 Oct. 2011
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Marc Laveaux (Montreal, Canada) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Collected (Audio CD)
I did not need this collection, I have more than 50 albums of Matthews and I have been a fan since 1973. I bought it by curiosity and because, for a short period of time, it was cheap. I figured before its release how it was going to be divided and I speculated on the selection of songs. I was right on the concept and wrong on many songs. Therefore, it is with great pleasure that I played the 3 discs. It makes me return to the original albums and rediscover how Iain Matthews is a treasure for those who know him. In his liner notes for the project, Matthews wishes for a seven CD box set with a seventy pages booklet and a sticker endorsement by Keith Richards. I would buy that too.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Many Hours of Fine Entertainment,, 18 Jan. 2015
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Morten Vindberg (Denmark) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Collected (Audio CD)
I originally became interested in Iain Matthews because of his history with Fairport Convention, where he was a member on the first three albums.

It was especially his two early Vertige albums I listened to quite a lot with great tracks like "Reno Nevada", "Morgan The Pirate", "Thro 'My Eyes," "Close The Door Lightly When You Go" and "Tigers Will Survive ". On "If You Saw Thro 'My Eyes" was Matthews was supported by several Fairport friends and his duet with Sandy Denny on "Thro' My Eyes" is fantastic.

Later, I lost a little interest in Matthews and his nice but not particularly remarkable vocal.

When I came across this comprehensive 3 CD retrospective collection, I thought it could be interesting to dig a little in what Matthews had achieved since the 1970s.

The first two CDs concentrate on Matthews' solo releases, while the third CD contains examples of what Matthews recorded in other contexts; e.g. groups Fairport Convention, Plainsong and Matthews Southern Comport. It's all presented in chronological order.

On disc 1 you will find numbers from the aforementioned Vertigo albums (Matthews' second and third solo album) - I would have exchanged "Da Do Ron Ron" with "Morgan the Pirate", but otherwise these songs are well-chosen. The CD follows Matthews throughout the 1970's with 21 tracks: only the last "Like Dominoes" from 1990 falls outside that decade. "Like Dominoes" is actually one of the best tracks on this CD - a nice pop rocker. Otherwise, there are several quite forgettable tracks and only "Seven Bridges Road" and "Old Man at the Mill" caused excitement.

Judging from CD 2, it seems as if Matthews in the 1990s, had got new inspiration, for besides the fact that his voice over time has matured and has become markedly more personal, his songwriting also seems very inspired. Especially songs from the 1990 album "Pure and Crooked" stand out; besides "Like Dominoes", these are "A Hardly Innocent Mind" and "Rains of '62".

From 1993 album "Skeleton Keys" comes the delicate "God's Empty Chair" and Matthews 1994 cover of Tim Buckley's "Morning Glory" works fine too.

There are also great songs from the 1996 album "Good Looked Down" - especially the title track. Generally I find CD 2 much more consistent than the first CD.

Consistent you can hardly call CD 3, with its time-span of 40 years; in turn, this CD is very entertaining and even if you might have liked a little more profiled production on some of the songs the tracks from the groups Plainsong, Matthews Southern Comfort and the other musical contexts Matthews has been involved in, in most cases are very good.

With no less than 57 tracks, it's not a collection, where you easily get an overview, and it is a release that allows for fine entertainment for many hours.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Shake it, 22 Sept. 2013
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This review is from: Collected (Audio CD)
Didn't think I would like the later output but they were rather good , but when you have a collected or best of or whatever you call it you would expect a big hit no matter where the hit was to be on there , one star missing for not having shake it on here although some might think it a weak song it should have been on here but still a great three disc.
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0 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars HE HAS NEVER MADE A BAD RECORD FROM MATTHEWS SOUTHERN COMFORT TO PLAINSONG WITH SOME ..., 18 Aug. 2014
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This review is from: Collected (Audio CD)
HE HAS NEVER MADE A BAD RECORD FROM MATTHEWS SOUTHERN COMFORT TO PLAINSONG WITH SOME BRILLIANT SOLO RECORDS,SINGER,SONGWRITER WHAT A TALENT
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Collected by Ian Matthews (Audio CD - 2011)
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