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on 4 October 2007
There is no questioning Matt Johnson's musical genius, as anyone who listens to this boxset can attest. So why only 3 stars? Nice box. Great remasters. But a career retrospective should warm the cockles of the completist's heart, and this falls way short of the mark. The original UK cassette release of Soul Mining had 6 extra tracks - 6! - all of them weird and wonderful. They have yet to see the light of digital. And "Perfect", tacked onto the end of the US release of Soul Mining, despite Mr. Johnson's protests, should have been left on here. Then there're all the 12" versions and b-sides, compiled on limited release CD or Johnson's website, but not here. Let's not even go into live versions. The bonus CD is ok, but hardly satisfying and is no replacement for a booklet with photos, artwork, or at least some detailed liner notes. Seems Epic couldn't take a clue from the superb Eurythmics, Police, and Talking Heads boxsets. 6 stars for the music. 3 for this minimum effort release.
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