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Fleetwood Mac 1969-1972 [VINYL] Box set, Limited Edition

5.0 out of 5 stars 3 customer reviews

Price: £69.22 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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£69.22 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details Only 6 left in stock (more on the way). Dispatched from and sold by Amazon. Gift-wrap available.

Product details

  • Vinyl (19 Aug. 2013)
  • Limited Edition edition
  • Number of Discs: 5
  • Format: Box set, Limited Edition
  • Label: Rhino
  • ASIN: B00DB624CC
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 134,887 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Track Listings

Disc: 1

  1. Coming Your Way
  2. Closing My Eyes
  3. Fighting For Madge
  4. When You Say
  5. Show Biz Blues
  6. Underway
  7. One Sunny Day

Disc: 2

  1. Although The Sun Is Shining
  2. Rattlesnake Shake
  3. Without You
  4. Searching For Madge
  5. My Dream
  6. Like Crying
  7. Before The Beginning

Disc: 3

  1. This Is A Rock
  2. Station Man
  3. Blood On The Floor
  4. Hi Ho Silver
  5. Jewel Eyed Judy

Disc: 4

  1. Buddy's Song
  2. Earl Gray
  3. One Together
  4. Tell Me All The Things You Do
  5. Mission Bell

Disc: 5

  1. Woman Of A 1000 Years
  2. Morning Rain
  3. What A Shame
  4. Future Games

Disc: 6

  1. Sands Of Time
  2. Sometimes
  3. Lay It All Down
  4. Show Me A Smile

Disc: 7

  1. Child Of Mine
  2. The Ghost
  3. Homeward Bound
  4. Sunny Side Of Heaven

Disc: 8

  1. Bare Trees
  2. Sentimental Lady
  3. Danny's Chant
  4. Spare Me A Little Of Your Love
  5. Dust
  6. Thoughts On A Grey Day

Disc: 9

  1. Oh Well - Pt. 1

Disc: 10

  1. Oh Well - Pt. 2

Product Description

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Exactly as described and delivered in very good time
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Absolutley Superb, music at its best
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 4.3 out of 5 stars 12 reviews
15 of 16 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Good job, quality vinyl, but too bad it's digitized music, not analog. 25 Feb. 2014
By Soundman - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Vinyl Verified Purchase
All of the records sound more detailed...... but they also sound like low-res digital.
First off, I have an pro-audio sound system. I've been a sound engineer since 1977.

I wish they had done it full analog (it has the "digital highs" sound, harsh and "ragged").
Why the HELL are record companies destroying a fine analog format with digital??
There's already Blu-Ray, there's already DVD-Audio, there's already SACD...... if I wanted to buy digital music I'd buy one of those formats!!

And although "clearer" on these releases the music is not as "warm", highs are a little harsh (the sign of digital).
Yes, it's sounds good, but not like analog. I have played them against my original pressings.
Not only does it NOT state anywhere that these were made from original analog tapes (as with most of the company's other releases)..... or from tapes of any kind!! And these DO sound like they are from a CD.

I get listening fatigue very fast when I listen to low-res digitized music, and during the play of Bare Trees (only the second LP that I had played thus far) I started feeling listening fatigue. That NEVER happens to me when it's analog music.
I am usually good when listening to 96kHz (especially higher). They didn't even format at 96kHz apparently. Or... they simply upsampled from 44.1kHz.

I put on my original pressings of Future Games and Bare Trees and didn't feel the listening fatigue even though I had just listened to these two from the new release.
8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Classic Rock band born in the Blues but the real headline is "Danny Kirwan finally gets his day" 22 Sept. 2013
By Johnnie Neptune - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Vinyl
Thank you Rhino - this is a fascinating choice for a box set of Fleetwood Mac vinyl reissues. Why? Because these 4 albums are as diverse as they are excellent and from the period of time when FM were a very big deal in their Homeland but just gaining traction in North America. Only to have that traction derailed by the departure of their Founder!

Documenting the beginning of what was to become many transitions in personnel for the Mac, the music reflects how each of the 3 original songwriters influenced the band. Born in the blues, has there ever been as strange a journey as Fleetwood Mac's, named after the drummer and bass player neither of who feature as songwriters but remain the only constants of a soon to be 50 year history? Furthermore, two of the most underrated songwriters in band history are featured - Bob Welch and Danny Kirwan. It is Kirwan who ultimately features most prominently in this box and who in my mind is the star of the 4 LPs combined. And long overdue as I believe Kirwan was the carrier of the torch that kept the band alive after the departure of Peter Green, original visionary and leader for the Mac.

It is easy to write a long review about this set because I love the music and it is so beautifully done! Congratulations to Rhino records for making this finally happen. `Then Play On' has been one of the most neglected gems of Classic Rock in terms of reissue/bonus track treatment and finally sees the light of day in two forms. The vinyl version is included in this box with the LP being the original UK track listing with the concurrent single "Oh Well" (Parts 1 and 2) supplied as a '45 packaged into the `TPO' gatefold cover. On this basis alone, this box set is commendable.

Reissue logistics:
For those well, or better acquainted with the music but wanting to know about reissue quality I can say with confidence that my set sounds fantastic, warm but clear sound and high pressing quality. I was sorry to read that another reviewer had problems with pressing. Mine are mostly pristine - my copy of `Kiln House' is slightly off center but not enough to affect play. As a result, I can recommend the sonics of this reissue quite highly.

Then Play On - original UK track listing with "Oh Well" as a bonus 45.
Kiln House - original track listing with an insert I don't recall being in my Canadian release bought at the time.
Future Games and Bare Trees - as per original releases, no bonus tracks nor variations.
No booklet or additional notes.

A Historical Introduction:

Fleetwood Mac was born in the blues from another band after guitarist Peter Green took over for Eric Clapton in John Mayall's `Bluesbreakers'. No small task filling in for "Clapton is God", Greenie quickly became known as `The Green God' after the album `A Hard Road' proved a most worthy successor to the classic `Beano' Bluesbrakers album that Clapton famously made before departing to form Cream.

Bestowed this title like an English Blues Prodigal Son, it never fit comfortably for Peter Green, despite his immense talent. A young Mick Fleetwood had a brief stint in the Bluesbreakers but was fired for reasons that seemed to revolve around excess socializing from what I understand. But he was there at the right time to record some music with Peter Green and Bluesbreaker bassist John McVie, purportedly on session time given to Green for his birthday if memory serves! The foundation of the Once and Future Mac was formed in these sessions.

Green ultimately decided to leave and join Fleetwood in forming a new band they would call `Fleetwood Mac' after the drummer and bass player, McVie. However the latter had some initial hesitation to leave the good gig that was The Bluesbreakers. So the Mac's first bassist was actually Bob Brunning! McVie did of course sign on and the band was on its way to record with label `Blue Horizon' and producer Mike Vernon. `Peter Green's Fleetwood Mac', also known as the `dustbin album' was released in 1968.

Not comfortable with the spotlight, Green insisted that another guitarist be hired and this produced the entrance of Jeremy Spencer. Another sign that he didn't like the attention was that he convinced their first label to shorten the name from "Peter Green's Fleetwood Mac" to simply "Fleetwood Mac". Then he began a band which history knows mostly for the album documenting personal turmoil that sold 40 million copies to become one of the top 10 albums of All Time.

On to the box...

The choice to cover the sequential albums from `TPO' through to `Bare Trees' is interesting and I like it. I also hope that Rhino will see fit to bestow this excellent reissue treatment to the 3 LPs that follow `Bare Trees' to complete the journey of the band that took place before the arrival of Lindsey Buckingham and Stevie Nicks which lead to the mega success that most people associate with the Mac. Especially appealing would be the wonderful `Mystery to Me'. In the meantime, it is easy to get behind this box for what is a sensible historical choice to capture the big transitions that took place between 1969 and 1972.

LP 1: `Then Play On' - the best of the lost gems in the Mac's Crown

Simply put, this is one of the crown jewels of Classic Rock IMHO and shows the powerful musical leadership of band founder Peter Green. It also highlights relative newcomer Danny Kirwan who joined the band barely a year previously at age 18. Two Kirwan songs from the original UK release were cut when `TPO' was put out in the US (`Without You' and `One Sunny Day', placed on a North American compilation `English Rose' instead. Then barely 3 months later, the US version was revised to add `Oh Well' which had become their first US hit. This meant 2 more Kirwan compositions (`When You Say' and `My Dream') being cut. 4 Kirwan songs have been restored to this `TPO' reissue that better represent the balance between the 2 guitarists. An even more complete story can be found on the newly reissued CD of `Then Play On' with more bonus tracks - that is a story for another review. One of my two favorite Kirwan songs is on this album - "Like Crying" - stunning in its simplicity and feeling.

Green's compositions are powerful and broad in their sound. Haunting (`Closing My Eyes', `Before the Beginning'), bluesy (`Show Biz Blues'), rocking boogie (`Rattlesnake Shake') and melodic (`Underway') Green was arguably at the peak of his game as a songwriter. And if there is any doubt, just add in the mysterious hit single `Oh Well' that starts out as a howling rocker and morphs into a classical music tinged instrumental extended completion.

However, the Mac had 3 composing guitarists so `TPO' is most unusual for the almost total absence of Jeremy Spencer. Kirwan was clearly a musical brother for Peter Green but Spencer was there from the beginning. My understanding is that Green didn't want all the spotlight and didn't like the name `Peter Green's Fleetwood Mac' so he advocated for another guitarist/composer at the band's inception and Spencer, an Elmore James loving slide guitarist was brought on board. However with Kirwan's addition, Spencer soon appeared mostly on his own songs and the longer jams in concert and for `TPO', he plays only some piano on "Oh Well" according to Mick Fleetwood in one of his autobiographies. There were plans to release a companion EP (extended play) with `TPO' called `The Milton Schlitz Show' with 4 Spencer compositions and a cover song but this never saw the light of day until a CD release years later called `The Vaudeville Years'. It would have been historically interesting and more accurate if this had been included on the new Rhino CD reissue but musically, the bonus track choices that have been made are vastly superior. In effect then, Spencer is the odd man out with respect to `TPO'. But what makes this even more interesting is what transpired between this album and the next...

LP 2: Kiln House - `The Green God' departs

This album has NEVER sounded better to my ears. Chris Bellman at Bernie Grundman Mastering deserves huge credit for his work. This was my very first Mac album. A strange introduction in many ways but I entered without any expectation for what a Greenless Mac would sound like. It must have been a big shock for fans of Peter Green's Mac as the musical change is drastic.

What this box highlights here is that a huge transition occurred where Jeremy Spencer, virtually invisible to `TPO' is suddenly back up front with Kirwan and their (pretty opposite) styles work surprisingly well, even if out of necessity for the loss of the band's leader/founder. The album starts with a Spencer `homage' in "This is the Rock". When I first heard this, I was kind of dumbfounded. I wondered if the record store guru (TP) who recommended this to me was perhaps playing a trick? I very much like the song now but in my youth when looking for `cool' music I was uncertain, yet I waited for the next track. What I heard was a melodic Kirwan/Spencer masterpiece (their first collaboration) that builds in intensity to become one of my all-time favourite Mac songs - the fabulous `Station Man'. This song was one of the few older Mac tunes covered when Buckingham and Nicks joined the band and it makes senses as musically, this song is very aligned with the later Mac's melodic approach. However, the original studio version here is the best with Spencer and Kirwan blending beautifully, if surprisingly. If any track were to be considered the lost treasure in the Mac's history, this would get my vote hands down. Should be right up there with `Albatross', `Oh Well', `Rhiannon', `Go Your Own Way' and any other Mac gem you want to name.

Then another Spencer tribute, "Blood on the Floor" Or is it a parody? I believe the former as I interpret his delivery as coming from a place of admiration. But as it also comes from a place of dark lyrics that are in contrast to the country-ish musical flavor, who knows what was going on when he wrote this? In retrospect, I have come to appreciate all of Spencer's contributions on `KH' more than I did at the time I first heard them. The option of an EP was not an issue with Green's departure so this was not `Mainstream Mac', not songs that could be left out on the periphery. And if you knew the band history, perhaps Spencer's contributions would have been predictable. But who knew that Green would be the first to leave?

The first side closes with a Spencer sung cover of `Hi Ho Silver', a suitably raunchy Mac version and then a very radio friendly Kirwan composition, `Jewel Eyed Judy' that I remember getting airplay in my section of the World in Ontario, Canada. Too bad it has become yet another forgotten Kirwan classic because like the composter himself, this song deserved better. To my knowledge it has never been featured on a significant Mac compilation. Most unfortunate as it is a great, great song and titled after a very important Mac supporter in Judy Wong. She would later introduce the band to Bob Welch, another forgotten key member who kept the Mac flame going with Christine McVie after all the bands original songwriters departed. But more on that to come.

Side two continues in much the same fashion with 2 more Kirwan compositions, very strong, in the instrumental "Earl Gray" and the wah-wah driven "Tell Me All The Things You Do". At this point, he is definitely the musical leader of the band. Spencer supports with 3 more tribute style songs. The most impressive begins Side Two with "Buddy's Song" credited to Ella Holly (Buddy's Mom). However, Spencer would ultimately leave the band during the `KH' tour to join the religious group, `Children of God'.. The Mac would be down another founding member!

Other important changes were present too, even if less credited and prescient for the band. Christine Perfect, married to John McVie, played piano and added background vocals on the album as well as providing the cover art. They were destined to do more than just survive as their next album would prove.

LP 3 - Future Games: Enter Bob Welch and make it official for Christine McVie

This LP sees Kirwan fully stepping into the role of musical leader with the departure of Jeremy Spencer. It also sees the formal addition of 2 new members - Christine McVie and Bob Welch. As noted, Christine McVie was a vital, if non-credited element of the previous album so was spiritually already a member. Welch has the distinction of being the first American to join the Mac. It is a very consistent album which I appreciate more and more with time. Its subtleties give it a really lasting melodic quality that I enjoy more now than when it was released.

The album leads off with Kirwan's mellow, melodic `Woman of a Thousand Years'. So wonderfully mellow you would never have any idea of the internal anguish that would later emerge for its writer. Christine's bluesy pop `Morning Rain' provides the first female lead on a Mac song. Definitely a portent of future success, this song works beautifully within the Mac sound. So far, so great, even if very different once again. If nothing else, you could count on the Mac to adapt and change musically. This was definitely not your father's English blues band...

The next song is a short instrumental jam that works mostly as a bridge to the album's title song, "Future Games', a composition by newcomer Welch. According to Wikipedia, that instrumental was `requested' by the record company as they felt they could not release an album with only 7 songs! Famously featured in the movie `Almost Famous', this song is a perfect primer to the Welch style - fluid, elusive and hypnotic groove come to mind. Melodic and spooky at the same time. Future Welch songs like `Hypnotized' and `Bermuda Triangle' would have that feel, as did `The Ghost' on their next LP. The song just gets better with time for this listener, bravo Bob!

Side two opens with a pair of Kirwan compositions, clearly the leader of the band now. And he delivers. `Sands of Time' contains the kind of instrumental build on the opening theme that Kirwan was becoming more adept at. A very, very fine guitarist who got lost in the shadow of Peter Green but deserves much more recognition. `Sometimes' has a bit of an old fashioned feel that he had also employed previously and would return to on his later solo discs.

Welch returns with the most straight out rocker on the album in `Lay It All Down', clearing the musical palette nicely and setting up a classic Christine McVie mellow closer with `Show Me A Smile', foreshadowing such beautiful, later CMcV tunes as `Why', `Songbird' and `Over and Over'. Thus closes another transitional Mac album. In retrospect, this makes complete sense for a band named after its rhythm section that (really) did not compose the music. Imagine though what it must have been like for the Reprise label having signed the Peter Green lead band - quite a departure with a lot of commercial uncertainty. Fortunes improved somewhat for the next album - until the curse of the Mac guitarists struck once again!

LP 4 - Bare Trees: It all comes beautifully together, only to fall apart...

The strongest Kirwan lead album is this one, the final LP of this box. `Bare Trees' remains a favorite listen to this day and stands strong as an album and also for containing the best version of the Welch song `Sentimental Lady' that he later re-recorded with the assistance of Lindsey Buckingham to sell more copies. But the truest version is this one, warm, intimate and a sincerity that both anchors this album and stands as one of the most enduring early Mac singles.

Launching strongly with the Kirwan rocker `Child of Mine', the band was tight and back to the kind of song that would grab the listener and not let go. Green had shown that he could do this easily with songs like `Rattlesnake Shake' and `Show Biz Blues'. Kirwan was now clearly capable of this kind of range, adding to his already beautiful, melodic style. Welch's `The Ghost' keeps up the momentum, albeit with a more haunting melody and fluid vocal that was becoming his signature.

Less satisfying for me is Christine's `Homeward Bound' though it is not bad, merely a bit derivative. It does have a solid feel that sustains the beat though guitar is lacking, instead relying on piano and organ to support the vocals. A welcome, Allman Brothers like guitar solo comes in toward the end with some acoustic guitar to close it out. A bit more work, it could have been stronger but does work as a bridge. And the link is a simple, lovely Kirwan instrumental `Sunny Side of Heaven'. With a `Midnight Cowboy' feel to it, it is the kind of song that Kirwan could seemingly toss in easily, he was so melodically talented. But the Mac had become very adept at this kind of instrumental and this is a terrific side one closer.

If further proof were needed of Kirwan's compositional leadership, side two provides it in spades with the LP's title track. `Bare Trees' is a jazzy pop song with signature Kirwan melodies supported by the rock solid rhythm section that the band was named for. I could listen to as long a selection of Kirwan tunes as I could Peter Green's but sadly, like his mentor, Kirwan was tormented by inner demons that would cause his ultimate firing from the band, despite his musical leadership. But you would never ever know it from the strength of his songs on this album. Next up is what became the album's hit song - Welch's `Sentimental Lady'. The sincerity of this version shines through to this day and helped it become an unlikely hit for this band that really was pretty far removed from the musical fashion of 1972. It says everything about the quality of the song that it WAS a hit single. And there was no question, this version of the Mac could use the hit single. Staying afloat was the challenge and that would not become any easier with the tour that supported this album.

`Danny's Chant', a wordless vocal/wah-wah extravaganza followed providing another example of Kirwan's versatility as both composer and guitarist. Too much fun? Nope, just another great example of his talent anchored by one of the best, if unheralded rhythm sections in Classic Rock. Christine's `Spare Me a Little of Your Love' employs her occasional R&B type style and fits in well, if unspectacularly. It would be a concert staple in the early Buckingham-Nicks days of 1975 until that Mac found its own, more popular footing.

The album closes in a decidedly odd way, though thematically well thought out. Kirwan's melancholic, lovely `Dust' sets a somber tone followed by a spoken poem by "Mrs. Scarrot" called `Thoughts on a Grey Day'. Bare Trees indeed. Ahhhh - a wonderful album with a loose theme of sorts, comes to a close.

A final word:
Sadly, Danny Kirwan's inner demons manifested (reportedly) an alcohol fueled outbreak before a concert on the BT tour that saw him smash is beloved Les Paul against a wall and walk out on the band, only to sit in the lighting/sound section and heckle his band forced to perform as a 4 piece without his participation. It was apparently not a difficult decision for the rest of the band to sack him afterwards. An altogether too sad end for one of the greatest talents to fuel Fleetwood Mac in their history. The Curse of the Mac Guitarists continued and this Rhino box set comes to a close. But what remains are 4 very solid albums that highlight what a great band Fleetwood Mac has always been and the resilience that kept them in the game until they achieved Mega Stardom. For me though, I will always cherish these albums and a BIG thanks to Rhino for the fantastic job they have done to bring them back to life!
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars (Almost) Great Stuff 1 Sept. 2013
By Mike Butler - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Vinyl Verified Purchase
This is a wet dream release for me. 4 of my favorite lps. The sound and play is flawless. Comparing these vinyls to the original UK vinyls, one can't help but be impressed. There is now is viable choice between spending mega bucks on pristine copies of the original UK vinyls or purchasing this cost effective alternative. My only real bitch are the streaks, sleeve marks and other visual vinyl imperfections that are obvious right out of the box. A VG+ grade under a strong light, even after a good cleaning. Reading other forums , I am not the only one that has noticed this. However the platters lie flat as a pancake and as mentioned before play like a dream. Nice, understated, effective job by Chris Bellman on the sound, nice packaging. All in all a great value ($58 from Oldies). This should be in heavy rotation in any music lovers home.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great music on quality vinyl 1 Sept. 2013
By swansong - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Vinyl Verified Purchase
These four albums are all really solid releases from this great band.
The vinyl pressings are dead quiet and sound terrific.
The mastering has been done with great care and blow the originals I own away.
The covers are heavy cardboard; true to the originals, and look beautiful.
Yes; 180 gram vinyl would have been nice, but the records really do sound great.
I'm very pleased with this set, and hope they release the rest of the catalog from Reprise.
If you listen to vinyl, and know these titles, then this box set is a must own.
Highly recommended indeed.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Kudos to Chris Bellman 22 Aug. 2013
By J. S. Alemparte - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Vinyl
Wonderful 4 LP box set of the greatest era of FM. Chris Bellman has done a wonderful job on this set. Keeping true to the original sounds of these clasic records while maitining a very subtle "dusting off" approach which brings out certain subtle nuances not heard before. Highly Recommended!
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