Top critical review
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Great set for casual collector, Not great for a serious collector.
on 10 June 2015
On the face of it this is a good release. There are five original Donovan albums and some bonus tracks. And if you only want the original albums and really don't want ALL the bonus tracks and bits and bobs from previous issues then this is a fine set. Basically it is a great release for a casual collector of Donovan, but not so good if you are serious about getting as much as you can by Donovan.
And a good set if you are on a tight budget and cannot afford to buy the original CD issues of these same re masters with more tracks.
But if you have collected the albums before with the 2005 re masters don't bother re buying again here because there is nothing new and in fact you get less.
If you want to seriously collect music by Donovan I would not bother with this release. Go get the original individual albums on the 2005 re masters, you get more tracks.
Going back to the good points. Disc one has two albums together on one disc. But no bonus tracks. Sunshine superman sees the US version of the album, not the British version. (although it is the intended version by Donovan himself) Mellow Yellow album follows on the same disc.
Disc two has two more albums that followed the last two. Hurdy Gurdy Man and Barabajagal. Once again both on the same disc but only two bonus tracks. One track, Jennifer Juniper (Italian version) is the only thing on this release that hasn't been issued before,
Disc Three has the whole of a double album called A gift from a flower to a garden. Disc four has 23 bonus tracks that have all appeared before on the original individual albums of the same re masters back in 2005.
The front of the CD box suggests that these are His studio Recordings 1966-69. Admittedly it doesn't claim to be all the recordings, but there are a number of tracks that were released the first time these re masters came out that are not here. They are missing.
The release of Sunshine Superman back in 2005 included some bonus tracks that are here on disc four but it also contained two more recordings of Good Trip, and House of Jansch.
The release of Mellow Yellow in 2005 included some bonus tracks that are here on disc four but it also contained four more recordings, these were, Sidewalk the Observation, Writer in the sun, Hampstead Incident and Museum.
The release of Hurdy Gurdy Man in 2005 included some bonus tracks that are all here on disc four and it also contains the 1968 re recorded versions of Colours and Catch the Wind that appeared on the 1969 issue of the Greatest Hits.
The release of Barabajagal in 2005 included bonus tracks that are here on disc four but it also included seven more bonus tracks not included here. They were, Runaway, Sweet Beverley, Marjorie Margarine, Little white flower, Good morning Mr wind, Palais Girl and Lord of the |Universe. A lot of missing tracks they could have included in this set.
The whole package on this release then is five albums and some bonus tracks on four CD discs in a traditional double CD like case.
Good value for the money yes and good if you just want the original albums. Not good if you want to get as much as you can of Donovan recordings. There are tracks missing.
Also note that the albums Sunshine Superman and Mellow Yellow are in Mono not stereo. This was true the first time around as well. There has been a brilliant Stereo version of the album Sunshine Superman that has been released before and it is worth looking out for as well as the individual 2005 're masters instead of this issue.