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Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
4.7 out of 5 stars
Format: Audio CD|Change
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on 1 April 2017
I was a teenager when the Monkees exploded on to our TV screens and into the record charts in the 1960s, and like others of my age I was struck not only by their zaniness but also by their ability to make good pop records - something overlooked by sniffy critics. This compilation showcases the band's talent for music-making and shows us just what poor judges their critics were.
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on 1 March 2017
What you see on the proverbial "tin" - you get, There is, however an interesting evolution within their musicianship and early "ditties" end up with some high quality songs. I recommend this set as a good part of any serious music collection.
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on 23 April 2017
Nice sounding mixes. Good idea to reproduce the origional sleeves. Print quality could be beter though. No booklet or notes but thats not a problem for the price. A great collection of tracks with extra ones added to each CD.
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on 30 April 2017
Very good collection. Some golden oldies and some oddities.
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on 26 March 2017
Can't go wrong with this set
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on 6 June 2011
First of all, I was a big Monkees fan. In 1966, aged 12, I bought the single I'm A Believer two weeks before I owned my first record player! I then bought each of the first five Monkees albums as soon as they were released and loved them all. I subscribed to Monkees Monthly magazine and corresponded with an American penpal found through that magazine, swapping letters with her about all things Monkee! They were not the coolest band in the world to my musically snobbish friends, but I loved them. I was cool as well, into the Beatles, Stones, Beach Boys, Kinks, Small Faces etc. but, in the latter half of the sixties, no band had a place in my heart like Davey, Mike, Micky and Peter. In the early seventies, after Led Zeppelin had bludgeoned their way into my life, I finally threw out my childhood and flogged the lot for peanuts. Having still retained most of my vinyl albums, I now regret that decision but, two days ago, those fine albums once again were in my possession, courtesy of this budget priced box set from Rhino.
Now, as any music fan of a certain age will realise, buying an album based to a large degree on nostalgia is risky. The magical sounds of childhood and teenage years can sound dated and disappointing decades later. However, already being the owner of The Definitive Monkees compilation, I wasn't buying this set wholly on a whim but I did wonder whether some of the lesser known songs would stand the test of time. I'm therefore happy to report that, from the opening bars of their debut through to the closing notes of their final album as a four piece, the magic is very much intact. Whereas classic Beatles and Stones have been played incessantly on the radio, TV and in my own home and car for years, a lot of the songs on these five albums have not been heard by me since 1970. I was amazed, therefore, to be singing along and remembering a lot of the words immediately. Even the bonus tracks, which generally I am not a lover of, add to the enjoyment and quality of each album. The group's progression from "do as we're told" puppets who didn't play their instruments to proper band with a good deal of artistic control is palpable when listening to Headquarters and the final two albums. Yes, you can spot obvious influences left, right and centre and they were always at least two steps behind the Beatles, but the quality is there consistently throughout all five of these albums. The CD sound quality is also excellent.
For those Monkees diehards like myself, this set is an essential purchase and fantastic value for money. For any music fan who is interested in listening to a piece of genuine sixties musical history and some bloody good songs, this set is also highly recommended.
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on 7 October 2012
Yes....it's the 5 listed Monkees albums, as originally released, with bonus tracks at the end of each album. Each disc is tucked in a sturdy paper sleeve, depicting the original cover art from the 1966-1968 LP's. All 5 are then inserted into paper open-ended "box". The sound is terrific...and this is a great bargain, keepsake, and gift. One of the coolest Monkees items ever. The Monkees should be in the rock and roll hall of fame...astoundingly great listening. You should treat yourself to this special item. Highest Recommendation! (In the interest of completeness, it is duly noted that the nifty packaging has a modest downside...paper sleeves here and elsewhere make disc removal a bit of a task due to tight fit in the sleeves. Still, this collection is a must-have. Get it before it's gone.).
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on 24 May 2010
This is a great value product. The box set contains the monkees first five albums and if we are honest the essential albums from the period where there were all 4 original members in the group. Afterwards things fell apart despite attempts at reconciliation and further album releases. We have here the essential original albums from the classic 1966-68 period. Labelled at the time as fake (because of use of session musicians-other bands did this too and the monkees were not 100% in control!) or bubblebum it is extraordinary how the Monkees music has remained fresh and vital whilst much from the same period sounds dated. Much has already been written about how the Monkees (or their management) were able to secure songs from many top songwriting partnerships whilst later on also adding some considerable songs themselves eg Going Down, Randy Scouse Git. The appeal of the monkees lies in some great and distinctive vocals from predominantly Micky Dolenz, whilst being ably backed up by Davy Jones, Michael Nesmith and Peter Tork. The songs vary in style from garage, psychedelia and country. Notably the band's great sense of humour and comedy shines through too, making sure the music is never too serious or indulgent. It is striking how there is little excess to tracks and very rarely does any song outstay its welcome.
A few words about the packaging. Each album comes in a mini lp replica sleeve. This is a replica of the American sleeve (from Colgems) not the Britsh version (RCA Victor). I have the original British releases on vinyl. Essentially the sleeves and tracklisting are the same though so this is nothing to worry about. Personally I love the idea of the lp sleeves being replicated for discs. Be aware though that the quality of the printing does not match for example the recently released Beatles in mono discs which are also housed in lp replica sleeves. However, this should not put you off because at the price this set is being offered, Rhino music have put out a very good product indeed and I commend them thoroughly.
The sound quality is also excellent. The monkees music was remastered several years ago to a very high standard. I am not clear whether it ha sbeen remastered again but if so it is impossible to tell and it does not say on the packaging. The music is exceptionally clear and dynamic for the period in which is was recorded. Go out and buy this product. It might also be worth checking out the other artists who have been selected for these rhino original albums re-issues.
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on 17 June 2010
I love the Monkees. I was around in the 60s when they were rivalling the Beatles for popularity and sales. I never bought into all that 'they don't play their own instruments' nonsense. Everybody used session musicians, and the Monkees played loads of live gigs in which they demonstrated that they were actually a really great garage band. Mike Nesmith was (and is) a very, very good songwriter and, with Messrs Tork, Dolenz and Jones, they created some of the very best pop songs of the era. 'I Wanna Be Free,' 'I'm a Believer,' 'Last Train to Clarksville' and many more true pop gems. But then they also produced some of the best psychedelic singles of the late 60s, including 'Alternate Title,' 'Pleasant Valley Sunday' and the magisterial and strange 'Tapioca Tundra.' The five albums included here abound with lesser-known gems too, like 'This Just Doesn't Seem to Be My Day,' 'You Just May Be the One' and 'Door Into Summer.' This set consists of the first five Monkees albums, three of which were released in that magical musical year, 1967. A surprise when I received this in the post was that what you get here is not just the original albums, but the recently re-mastered albums with all the bonus tracks. This makes the set even more of a bargain. Since some of these albums have been hard (and expensive) to get hold of in recent years, this is an amazing opportunity to pick up a colourful slice of pop history, fun and yes, some damn fine music. So, what are you waiting for? Go for it!
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The good news is that this set of The Monkees Original Albums are released for the price of a single CD and all of the tracks have been re-mastered.

There are additional tracks so that even if you have a couple of the CDs already the additional tracks, remastered sound and the price make this a good buy* .
On the other hand if you have then on vinyl and they are worn out or scratched then you really are on to a winner.

(* and not only a good bye to your hard earned cash)

So if you already have a couple on CD already it may not be worth getting the full set with the extra re-mastering.

The 5 CD set is housed in a simple cardboard sleeve with the original LP covers reproduced.
So a magnifying glass will be needed to read those sleeves!

I for one, really like them because they are neat and are easy to store and it's the music that counts isn't it?
But Amazon have not, at the time of writing given us the track listings.
So here they are.

Interesting facts.
When the Monkees selected Harry Nilsson's 'Cuddly Toy' (the track not his Teddy! It mean't that Harry could leave the bank where he worked and take up full time song writing and performing.
After the first two LPs the Monkees took control of their own music and the group released their own songs and took control.
Neil Diamond and Neil Sedaka provided tunes for the fabulous foursome.

The Monkees were corporate America's answer to the Beatles.
Davy Jones appeared on Coronation Street as Ena Sharples' grandson and because he had the name david Jones prevented David Bowie from using his own name. (I wonder what became of David Bowie??_)

The 5 C DS on this set are
The Monkees 1966
More Of The Monkees 1967
Headquarters 1967
Pisces, Aquarius, Capricorn & Jones, Ltd. 1967
The Birds, The Bees & The Monkees 1968

The Monkees 1966
1. (Theme From) The Monkees
2. Saturday's Child
3. I Wanna Be Free
4. Tomorrow's Gonna Be Another Day
5. Papa Gene's Blues
6. Take A Giant Step
7. Last Train To Clarksville
8. This Just Doesn't Seem To Be My Day
9. Let's Dance On
10. I'll Be True To You
11. Sweet Young Thing
12. Gonna Buy Me A Dog

More Of The Monkees 1967
1. She
2. When Love Comes Knockin' (At Your Door)
3. Mary, Mary
4. Hold On Girl
5. Your Auntie Grizelda
6. (I'm Not Your) Steppin' Stone
7. Look Out (Here Comes Tomorrow)
8. The Kind O Girl I Could Love
9. The Day We Fall In Love
10. Sometime In The Morning
11. Laugh
12. I'm A Believer

1. You Told Me
2. I'll Spend My Life With You
3. Forget That Girl
4. Band 6
5. You Just May Be The One
6. Shades Of Gray
7. I Can't Get Her Off My Mind
8. For Pete's Sake
9. Mr. Webster
10. Sunny Girlfriend
11. Zilch
12. No Time
13. Early Morning Blues And Greens
14. Randy Scouse Git
Pisces, Aquarius, Capricorn & Jones, Ltd.
1. Salesman
2. She Hangs Out
3. The Door Into Summer
4. Love Is Only Sleeping
5. Cuddly Toy
6. Words
7. Hard To Believe
8. What Am I Doing Hangin' 'Round?
9. Peter Percival Patterson's Pet Pig Porky
10. Pleasant Valley 11. Daily Nightly
12. Don't Call On Me
13. Star Collector

The Birds, The Bees & The Monkees
1. Dream World
2. Auntie's Municipal Court
3. We Were Made For Each Other
4. Tapioca Tundra 5. Daydream Believer
6. Writing Wrongs
7. I'll Be Back Up On My Feet
8. The Poster
9. PO Box 9847
10. Magnolia Simms
11. Valleri .
12. Zor And Zam
13. South Cave Blues
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