on 18 December 2000
I must confess that I've never been a big Eagles fan but was always aware of their greatest hits which were constantly played on the radio during the 70's and 80's. So I took a bit of a gamble with this lovely boxed set. It certainly looks the business, with a informative book along with the 4 CD's. But what counts is the music, and to my surprise - there are no critisisms. The sound is clean with all the hits, some album tracks and one or two unreleleased bits. Best CD of the bunch is CD3 - The Fast Lane. This contains more of the rockier side of the band and contains my favourite Eagles song "The Last Resort". But the other CD's are just as impressive. My only gripe with this set (which means only 4 stars!) is the fact that considering a CD can hold up to 80 minutes, the first CD is only 50mins, second CD - 1 Hour, and the third 68 mins. It seems a wasted oppertunity not to have filled up the space with even more tracks. That gripe aside, this is a beautifully packaged collection, which if like me, your keen to listen to the Eagles in more detail rather than buy individual albums, then you will not be disappointed
on 14 February 2003
Even before they published their first album, the Eagles declared that they wanted to be more than a one-hit wonder; they wanted to create something lasting. They certainly have - although you don't even need this particular compilation as evidence of that fact. Maybe even more probative in that respect is their surprise reunion after their bitter 1980 break up and subsequent "14-year vacation," fittingly entitled "Hell Freezes Over." So why bother with this one?
First, because of the Millennium Concert CD; not only because you don't get that particular CD without the boxed set anyway. (OK, I admit I went to the show, loved it, and would have bought the boxed set for that reason alone. But even if you didn't see the show, it's still worth the expense.) The disc opens, as the Eagles' shows have for years, with "Hotel California" - their signature song which personally, I can't get enough variations of; so I am very happy with yet another live version, particularly as (in hindsight) this is probably the last recording with the participation of Don Felder. In addition, this CD contains the first live version of "Take It to the Limit" since the departure of Randy Meisner (with Frey, who declared during the show that the song "is now in G," taking over lead vocals), and several tracks the Eagles have never officially recorded live; although Glenn Frey may have been a bit tongue-in-cheek when he said during the concert that they didn't even remember ever *performing* those songs live before: "Victim of Love," "Please Come Home For Christmas," "Funky New Year," "Those Shoes" (one of my all-time favorites) and Tom Waits' "Ol' 55." (According to Frey, Tom Waits wasn't very happy with their cover at first "... but then he got the check. And since then, Tom and I, we're really close.") The Millennium Concert CD is also an adequate reflection of the Eagles' tour program ever since "Hell Freezes Over:" Like it or not, they have been performing the individual band members' greatest solo releases in concert alongside the band's songs for years now (and conversely, all of them are doing Eagles tracks in their solo live appearances), so it's only fair that at least some of those tunes should be included in the band's live CDs. The inclusion of at least one of Frey's songs, e.g., "Smuggler's Blues," would have been nice; but short of that, I'm happy to at least have Eagles versions of two of Henley's solo releases and of Walsh's "Funk #49" ... to me, Walsh's guitar work in "Dirty Laundry" alone is worth the bargain, not to mention Frey's and Schmit's harmony vocals in Walsh's solo track.
Second, the sound quality on this boxed set is unquestionably superior to the 1980s' CD releases of the band's individual albums - if you compare those to the vinyl versions of the same albums, there is no mistaking that those CDs were sloppily produced and a lot was lost. Not so here; credit, among others, Elliot Scheiner's sound engineering with that. Eagles fans have been waiting for years for the release of true "original recording remastered" CD versions of the band's studio albums. Barring the repurchase of each and every individual album as an eventually-released originally remastered CD, this is a pretty darn good substitute with regard to most of their songs. I also like the arrangement by themes, which shows the band's continuity - and proves that they are much more than "the people who helped invent country rock." (Witness, for example, "Desperado" on the same disc as "Sad Café," and "Get Over It" on the same disc as "One Of These Nights;" with a rather quirky intro from way back when ... when Felder had just joined the band and they were still getting along great or at least, sounded like they were - and closing on an equally quirky "Random Victims Part 3," almost 10 minutes' worth of the band's goofing off in the studio, secretly [?] recorded on Bill Szymczyk's infamous separate two-track machine.)
Would I have wished for the inclusion of more, or of different songs? Yes, but not many. "My Man," Bernie Leadon's tribute to Gram Parsons, and "Bitter Creek" (likewise by Leadon) are examples. But this compilation is entitled "Selected Works," not "Complete Retrospective" or, on the other hand, "Greatest Hits And A Little More." All in all, it's a very rounded and well-produced selection of the Eagles' work over the course of almost three decades - with a nice 40-page booklet which contains articles by Glenn Frey, David Wild ("Rolling Stone") and the Eagles' long-time producer Bill Szymczyk, and some great photos of the band, not all of which were previously published; some by legendary photographer Henry Diltz, whose work is also featured on the band's studio albums and who is probably best known for his contributions to the Crosby, Stills and Nash biography and his "Under the Covers" portrait CD-Rom of some of rock's greatest stars.
During the production of their last studio album, the Eagles sometimes jokingly called that album "the long one," because it took them all of three years to finish. But not only since then, they have shown that they really are in there for The Long Run; and this compilation is a fitting tribute to their career.
on 28 March 2001
OK, just to make it clear, I am a MASSIVE Eagles fan and this review is in no way a negative reflection on the music. The set is undoubtedly a good, retrospective collection for most fans, either those who are complete novices to the music, those who have never delved deeper than Hotel California or Greatest Hits, or for people like myself who had old, worn out tapes of all of their albums and were tempted by the remastered sound, the new live CD and the book. And what there is cannot really be faulted. However, I would agree with a previous reviewer that this is not a particularly good value buy. The book is well-produced and informative (nothing I didn't already know but nevertheless), and the box set is fitting. But I still feel that there are a few notable omissions, in particular from the earlier period: "Most of us are sad" and "Tryin'" from their debut album, "Certain kind of fool" from Desperado and "Is it true" from On The Border. OK, critics will always have their favourites. The live CD is not bad but far from worth purchasing if you have most of the other songs - a decent version of Hotel California and Ol' 55, "Please Come Home For Christmas" (probably not in most fans' collections unless they bought the superfluous Greatest Hits Volume 2 in the early 80s), a couple of familiar favourites performed in an unfamiliar way and a couple of Don Henley solo tracks to pad it out. The collection does contain a limited amount of previously unreleased material but most of this consists of studio outtakes or joke songs which, believe me, are not worth their space. So in conclusion, it IS a good collection but if you have most of the stuff already don't bother - better off to go out and buy the 6 original albums separately (all now remastered) at a snip over the box set price. A far more comprehensive and representative reflection of their work.
*** THIS REVIEW IS FOR THE 2013 REISSUE ***
Originally released as a Long Book in November 2000 - this November 2013 reissue on Elektra 8122796239 reduces that "Selected Works 1973-1999" 4CD retrospective into a manageable card slipcase and keeps the four-themed CDs, the booklet (24-pages) and best of all - the superb Bernie Grundman/Richard Davis remasters. Here are the witchy women, ornery outlaws and dry-roasted desperados...
Disc 1 "The Early Years" (49:44 minutes)
1. Take It Easy ("Eagles", 1972)
2. Hollywood Waltz ("One Of These Nights", 1975)
3. Already Gone ("On The Border", 1974)
4. Doolin'-Dalton ("Desperado", 1973)
5. Midnight Flyer ("On The Border", 1974)
6. Tequila Sunrise ("Eagles", 1972)
7. Witchy Woman ("Eagles", 1972)
8. Tran Leaves Here This Morning ("Eagles", 1972)
9. Outlaw Man ("Desperado", 1973)
10. Peaceful Easy Feeling ("Eagles", 1972)
11. James Dean ("On The Border", 1974)
12. Saturday Night ("Desperado", 1973)
13. On The Border Dean ("On The Border", 1974)
Disc 2 "The Ballads" (58:26 minutes):
1. Wasted Time Reprise
2. Wasted Time ("Hotel California", 1976)
3. I Can't Tell You Why ("The Long Run", 1979)
4. Lyin' Eyes ("One Of These Nights", 1975)
5. Pretty Maids All In A Row ("Hotel California", 1976)
6. Desperado ("Desperado", 1973)
7. Try And Love Again ("Hotel California", 1976)
14. The Best Of My Love ("On The Border", 1974)
8. New Kid In Town ("Hotel California", 1976)
9. Love Will Keep Us Alive (1 of 4 new tracks on "Hell Freezes Over", 1994)
10. Sad Café ("The Long Run", 1979)
11. Take It To The Limit ("One Of These Nights", 1975)
12. After The Thrill Is Gone ("One Of These Nights", 1975)
Disc "The Fast Lane" (69:55 minutes):
1. One Of These Nights Intro
2. One Of The Nights ("One Of These Nights", 1975)
3. Disco Strangler ("The Long Run", 1979)
4. Heartache Tonight ("The Long Run", 1979)
5. Hotel California ("Hotel California", 1976)
6. Born To Boogie (outtake from "The Long Run" sessions - previously unreleased)
7. In The City ("The Long Run", 1979)
8. Get Over It (2 of 4 new tracks on "Hell Freezes Over", 1994)
9. King Of Hollywood ("The Long Run", 1979)
10. Too Many Hands ("One Of These Nights", 1975)
11. Life In The Fast Lane ("Hotel California", 1976)
12. The Long Run ("The Long Run", 1979)
13. Long Run Leftovers (instrumental outtakes from "The Long Run" sessions)
14. The Last Resort ("Hotel California", 1976)
15. Random Victims Part 3 (outtakes from various recordings sessions)
Disc 4 "The Millennium Concert" (59:53 minutes):
1. Hotel California
2. Victim Of Love
3. Peaceful Feeling
4. Please Come Home For Christmas
5. Ol' 55
6. Take It To The Limit
7. Those Shoes
8. Funky New Year
9. Dirty Laundry
10. Funk 49
11. All She Wants To Do Is Dance
12. The Best Of My Love
Recorded live at The Staples Centre, Los Angeles, 31 December1999
When this rather dull looking 4-disc set came out in 2000 - fans were both thrilled and let down. The themes given to the first three CDs were cleverly sequenced for sure - giving the listener an EAGLES song experience that touches well know bases but also throws in some of those forgotten album gems like say "Saturday Night", "Train Leaves Here This Morning", "Try And Love Again" and "Pretty Maids All In A Row". But it doesn't take a genius to look at the total playing times of the CDs (especially Disc 1 and 2) and wonder - why so much empty space? And in 2000 - this sucker wasn't cheap either...
Fast forward thirteen years later - and it's 2013 reissue into a card slipcase (four-way foldout holder inside) whilst boasting on online price tag of just seven pound coins - represents a far better buy (and not just in terms of its more manageable and very pretty `mini' box set packaging - but in the exclusives that aren't available anywhere else). The booklet has great liner notes by DAVID WILD with interviews, period photos, a note from original Producer Bill Szymczyk and Glenn Frey. Then there's the real deal - the gorgeous Bernie Grundman/Richard F. W. Davis remasters which brings stuff like "Doolin' Dalton", "I Can't Tell You Why" and the full version of "One Of These Nights" to life - warm, clear and beautifully produced.
The live show is good rather than great and suffers from the hugeness of the event - the duelling guitars on "Hotel California" feeling like their way back in the mix and instead of being out front. The "Funky New Year" track is good and "Please Come Home For Christmas" pleasant - but it takes Joe Walsh's "Funk 49" to really liven up things.
Written by Pete Vale, Jim Capaldi and Paul Carrack - "Love Will Keep Us Alive" showed that that melody magic hadn't disappeared and in the Elevens - the Eagles now seem more comfortable with their own legend than ever.
Glenn Frey, Don Henley, Joe Walsh, Randy Meisner, Don Felder and Timothy B. Schmit - what a line-up of talent. Put this cowboy builder in your ten gallon hat real soon...
on 6 December 2014
I have loved the Eagles for a very long time. I saw them live when they opened for the Stones back in 1973 or so.
Like many long time fans, I have bought the original albums over the years in all of the obsolete formats. I decided to get a box set to satisfy my need for their best stuff as the cassettes had been sounding pretty bad lately ;-) ...
Anyway, it turns out that this CD ticks all of the boxes and is MUCH cheaper than downloading the music. I like the format that they use and the music is really clean and dynamic. Love this box set...
on 26 November 2013
It would appear that as this set was previously released at a much higher cost some of the reviews have been less than kind on the value for money.
This is clearly not relevant now at the price now on the re-release
Great music...great price
on 27 January 2014
another combination of this fantastic band well worth the purchase and so well priced cant wait to see them in june 2014
on 8 January 2014
just when i thought that I would never buy another Eagles cd this one caught my eye, for me worth it just for the live in concert recording made my day , with the others arranged in ballads etc. top class, no need to buy any other Eagle cds as it seems to cover everything
on 29 November 2013
For anyone who didn't buy this collection when it was released in a very expensive package over a decade ago it is now a bargain! You may find "The fast Lane" cd rather heavy going but you can always programme your player for the tracks you want to hear. The concert cd may be new listening to you - whilst it is not the best Eagles concert, there are some very enjoyable moments. I haven't actually seen the newly packaged offering but if it contains the comprehensive booklet then I reckon it is worth £9.99 for the live cd and booklet with the benefit of 3 other cds containing some absolute classics.
on 25 November 2013
great collection of songs and a great edition to any eagles collection broad spectrum of their most popular hits/songs and the live millenium disc thrown in so all in all great value 4cd set and also 28 page booklet to boot