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Those Were The Days Box set

4.9 out of 5 stars 17 customer reviews

Price: £59.99
Only 1 left in stock - order soon.
Dispatched from and sold by playanywhere.
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£59.99 Only 1 left in stock - order soon. Dispatched from and sold by playanywhere.

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Frequently Bought Together

  • Those Were The Days
  • +
  • BBC Sessions
  • +
  • Royal Albert Hall, London, May 2-3-4-5, 2005
Total price: £72.97
Buy the selected items together

Product details

  • Audio CD (1 Sept. 1997)
  • Number of Discs: 4
  • Format: Box set
  • Label: Polydor Group
  • ASIN: B000003TW3
  • Other Editions: Audio CD  |  MP3 Download
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (17 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 229,655 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)
  • Sample this album Artist (Sample)
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Disc 2
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Disc 3
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Disc 4
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2
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3
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4
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5
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9
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Product Description

Amazon.co.uk

Among the earliest supergroups (at least in their native Britain), Cream's titanic trio--guitar god Eric Clapton, jazz bassist and vocalist Jack Bruce, and thundering drummer Ginger Baker--was justifiably revered for its vivid[EJM1], virtuoso instrumental attack. What began as a logical excursion into heavily blues- and jazz-accented power-rock shifted, on their second and best album, Disraeli Gears, into a British variant on America's psychedelia, powerfully influenced by expatriate string-slinger Jimi Hendrix. This smartly resequenced four-CD box divides the trio's four original albums into discrete studio and live segments, the latter approximating a full concert. Granted, phantom fourth member lyricist Pete Brown doesn't fare well given lyrics that now sound merely incoherent, rather than heavy, but there are still plenty of sparks flying here, as well as a panoply of powerful, indelible riffs, starting with "Sunshine of Your Love" and continuing right through "Badge." --Sam Sutherland

Customer Reviews

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD
As a child of the early 50's, the upsurge of Eric Clapton's career were a huge part of my youth. A friend had a reel-to-reel tape of '5 Live Yardbirds' which we played to death, and on holiday with parents and a 'holiday treat' in store, I chose the 'Bluesbreakers' 'Beano' album. So at the right age for what Clapton did next, I was there, ready and waiting for Cream.
On this box set we have everything, plus a few tracks we didn't know existed back then and would have no doubt robbed grandmother to get hold of. So here you have the 'Fresh Cream' album, 'Disraeli Gears,' and an extra of the track Jack Bruce has always been so fickle about, 'Hey Lawdy Mama,' which became 'Strange Brew.' The studio tracks from the 'Wheels Of Fire' double album follow, plus the 'Anyone For Tennis' single. Something of a treasure trove fills this CD with a fantastic array of demo versions no Cream fan would want to be without; including 'The Weird Of Hermiston' and 'The Clearout,' which Jack later re-recorded for his 'Songs For A Taylor' album. 'The Clearout,' so legend has it, was the last studio song the band recorded together; and there's a 1 minute Falstaff beer commercial jingle they did for a Scandinavian TV advert as if to prove all their songs didn't have to run to the 20 minute mark!
Discs 3 & 4 are live tracks taken from 'Wheels Of Fire,' 'Live Cream,' and 'Live Cream Volume II,' and if you find these too long and tedious then you're obviously far too young to appreciate everything Cream were about - they are magnificent!
The box set itself is more like a hard backed book with 2 CD's inside either cover, and a massive booklet with to-die-for pictures and an essay by Cream/Jimi Hendrix main-man, John McDermott. The cover is the same as 'Disraeli Gears' with a different title, and anyone with an interest in this superb band and the history surrounding both them and their era of magnificence will be justly proud to own this.
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Format: Audio CD
"There was something wrong with the Cream," writes Joe Carducci in his magisterial-yet-snotty "Rock and the Pop Narcotic", "that has to do with the word mundane." Carducci's book is maybe the single best book ever written about rock music qua Rock music as a form, and his judgments are hard to quarrel with (order it now, Amazonians!). Yes, they were the "original" power trio, which is another way of saying that the Jimi Hendrix Experience were better. Yes, they brought improvisation to the masses, which was great in some ways and awful in others. Yes, they were arguably the first supergroup. So like, fab. How the world needed supergroups.
And yet, they were bloody brilliant. I was a deeply gawky teenager when I first listened to this stuff in the early 80s, a time when nobody - but nobody! - of my age group was listening to anything made before 1977, with the possible exception of the Doors. (And if you liked the Doors that meant that you were probably into D*R*U*G*S. If you liked Cream, all it meant was that you were into weird obscure bands from the 60s.) This set contains almost everything they ever recorded - complete versions of the doomy, bluesy first album, the purple-hazy second album, the gloriously sui generis third album and the oddly Beatleoid fourth album, plus all the live cuts ever officially released, with the exception of the "Goodbye" live version of "Politician" - which , to be honest, I'm not missing. Get this and the startlingly rocking "BBC Sessions" and you have all the Cream any sensible person needs.
For anyone who wasn't around at the time, Cream's reputation has been forever posthumous, and has existed in the shadow of the mighty Jimi.
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Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
It goes without saying that this is a must for Cream fans and there are already plenty of detailed reviews of Cream's musical output, so I'm just going to highlight some other aspects of this superb compilation which might matter to new buyers:

There are 2 versions of this box set - 1997 ('standard size') & 2008 (more compact). This makes a difference for two reasons - the compact version lacks some of the visuals where these have been cropped to fit the smaller format and the discs themselves overlap in the case and are less convenient (and also harder) to extract.

When it comes to the music, nearly all of Cream's original releases are here (plus extras) but, oddly, Those Were The Days doesn't include "Politician" from the Goodbye album - a shame I think, for completeness' sake and it's a great version; it could have gone on disc 3 to avoid repetition (different versions of "Lawdy Mama" feature on discs 1 & 2 and "Sunshine Of Your Love" on discs 3 & 4). "Passing The Time" is stated to be an "alternate version" but is the full length version (the Wheels Of Fire studio album version being an edit). NSU is a longer version than on the Live Cream album (by 2 mins. - some reckon it's a different performance) and "Toad" is a slightly different version from on Wheels Of Fire live, as it includes part from the next day's show (!).
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Format: Audio CD
I was delighted to find this when it was released. At last I don't have to do battle with a record deck and have many added extras not available on my vinyl collection. What a pity that the "Goodbye" version of Politician was dropped. Personally I would have preferred the original running order, having got so used to hearing things in a certain order for over 30 years. A pity too that odd snippets were cut - like Clapoton saying "Right you are then" before launching into Steppin' Out. But these are mainly minor quibbles.
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