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on 25 April 2017
I had this on vinyl a few decades ago and thought it was about time I caught up with it on CD having been record playerless for some years. I still think side 1 (as it was then, now tracks 1-6) is great and side 2 largely not worth bothering with, at least after Long Lankin. Gaudete is fine, or at least it would be if it didn't sound like it had been recorded in a bathroom and started (and finished) with them processing from a nearby bedroom to the bathroom and back again, resulting in a lengthy fade in and out at the beginning and end of the track which goes some way to ruining it. All around my cat is their other hit and needs little further commendation. Thomas the Rhymer is Ok, although it has the feel of something which is going to build up to a great climax and somehow never does. Alison Gross is the best track on the album, simply brilliant. Little Sir Hugh has a twee nursery rhyme of a chorus separated by some innocent-sounding verses describing infanticide, very good. Cam Ye o'er from France is the second best track on the album, also wonderful. Long Lankin takes some time to get going but is still comfortably the best track on what was side 2. Gone ot America sounds a bit like a C & W ballad, inoffensive i itself but nothing to write home about. Let her go down is simply dull and I find it hard to imagine this was considered one of the best 11 tracks in their entire output. Black Jack Davy is a third rate Alison Gross while Bach goes to Limerick could be any old pub fiddle band to be honest.
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on 14 January 2007
This was pretty much the first CD that was ever bought in our house. I was about eight. I'd never heard Steeleye Span before and I thought they were simply brilliant!

The songs on the album are uniformly excellent, as they should be given the depth of Steeleye Span's talent. Tracks such as Cam Ye O'er Frae France and Gaudete evoke times gone by, whilst Alison Gross, Thomas the Rhymer and All Around My Hat are full of fun.

The album whizzes by and will have you reaching for the play button to start it off again!
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TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICEon 28 September 2011
The audio vandalism perpetrated on many of these tracks for this release has been adequately documented in previous reviews.

I just thought I would add that the version of "Gaudete" (the track I really bought it for) featured here is the 'bathroom version'. The originally released track has had so much echo added to it that it sounds like you're listening to it down a long length of pipe connected to the plug hole of a far away bathroom! Yuk. What on earth did they do that for? Also the track fades in and out at each end as if to hide raggedy starts and stops (which there weren't - they were fine). No wonder the original vinyl single (which has only minimal echo) is so sought after.

Overall, I would advise looking for another release - this is not actually "the best" Steeleye Span did.
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on 30 August 2003
A pleasant enough list of song titles (though All Around Mike Batt, as it was known - after the creator of the Wombles tried to revamp the band for the charts should not be on any 'Best of' album - it's the worst of...)
The trouble is many of the titles have been severely edited down - especially Thomas the Rhymer, which has lost 5 or so minutes and the amateurish jump cuts have a very badly recorded fiddle plastered over them. The producer and engineer deserve flogging.
Great titles like Long Lankin have lost bits too. And the two piano tracks - Let her go down and Gone to America might as well have been by any pub-folk band. Shame. This was a good opportunity...buy another compilation.
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on 15 March 2013
Quite a nice collection and I was pleased to see that there were tracks on here that are not on some of the other albums but I wouldn't quite describe it as the best of - There are some really good tracks missing that I would like to have seen included and I have always disliked 'All Around My Hat' and wouldn't have included this!
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on 15 July 2013
arrived as stated,ready for a friends birthday.,she was really pleased,as we have gone to steeleye concerts together,all around my hat is her favourite,so may I miss out on the next question,really pleased thank you.
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on 23 April 2013
What's not to like. You're not going to buy this unless you're already a fan and it has all the favourites you'd expect
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on 30 March 2013
I had this album years ago, I loved it then and love it now. Anyone who loves Folk and rock music will love this.
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on 1 January 2013
If you like Steeleye Span, then this is the disc for you. I recommend it as it covers all their major songs.
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on 21 February 2013
A very good album indeed. I bought it for one particular song, Long Lankin, but all of the tracks are good.
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