Although I already had two of these CD's plus the Afterswish collection, I thought that £30 for the six early discs in remastered format was worth a punt. Firstly, the box design is excellent - it's really solid unlike some other sets that have been issued and the artwork is effective and looks great on the CD shelves. Each of the six albums comes in its own gatefold card cover with the CD protected by an insert. While there is nothing fancy about the album covers, they are sort of replicas of the original 1980's cassette tapes (ask your dad if you haven't seen one of those - it's what we used to trade bootlegs on) and you get the track listings plus a few extra bits of info about each track. I had noted that there was some question about the sound quality on the 'Live' album and while it is clearly of its time, it's definitely a good listen and some great playing going on. The other albums sparkle and are really enjoyable, but if you have all of them on CD already, you may decide it's not worth parting with more cash.
The colour 60 page booklet is great - clearly printed on good quality paper with a history of the Ozrics during this period 'The Cassette Years' including photo's, copies of concert posters, cassette inserts and other bits. The CD's seem to run to just over an hour so you're getting about 6 hours of music plus the extras for your money.
Highly recommended for anyone just catching up with the Ozrics or those who want to enjoy these albums with the best possible sound.
£30 only for this amount of brilliance? The albums have all been remastered from their original cassettes, but don't expect them to sound like their later more professionally recorded records. But the sound is much more superior to the versions present on the web, especially Sliding Gliding Worlds which sounds fantastic. The material is not as complex and exhilarating as their later records, but still great. The packaging is great too with a 40 page booklet full of rare photos and a box made to resemble cereal packaging, which apparently is what lead to it's withdrawal when it was first released. Highly recommended for any fan of this amazing band.
If you are a Ozric fan, then this is a must for less than £30. Six very good albums in a great box set and an excellent book to go with it. I also love the way the albums are presented, just like old vinyl albums with a cardboard sleeve inside a cardboard gatefold sleeve. 5 stars for the music, and 5 stars for the presentation of the box set.
A bit of a late review,as I have only just purchased this (04/16), I was a bit reluctant to spend £30 on a CD boxset that I already have (the original withdrawn boxset),but as a big fan of the Ozrics (I have all their tape/CD releases,and much more!),and also a big fan of their early tape releases,I thought I owed it to myself to buy this remastered boxset.....
Well,am I glad I did,or do I regret shelling out £30 on 6 cds that I already own?.
HELL YEAH!,worth every penny!,why?,because Erpsongs (my all time favorite Ozric's album) sounds a world apart from the first cassette release,and also the original CD release!.The rest of the albums in this boxset are of equal quality (remember,the source wasn't too hot too begin with,mind!). So,in my opinion,re-buying these albums has been worth the £30 asking price,all the recordings sound MUCH better than the original tapes,or CD's.Even 'Live Ethereal Cereal' sounds OK!,even though it is the worst sounding of the 6 CD's.
And you also get a great 40 page full colour booklet,with loads of great info and pictures of a time that will never again (unfortunately) be seen again (the early 80's free festival circuit).
All in all,a must buy for fans of the early Ozric's material,even if you do own the original tapes,or CD boxset.
By the time I heard about the original release of this boxset it had been withdrawn. I've never quite had the cash to buy it at collectors prices. I did get all the original CDs and the packaging was awful..
So.. when I saw this re-release was available I was very excited. What you get here is all of the original tape releases remastered and put on CD. Each CD is in a mini-lp style case with a proper internal slipcase. Very impressive and the remastering is noticeably good. Comes with a great booklet and of course its all wrapped up in the now legendary 'cereal box.'
I've collected CD box sets for years and this is one of the more impressive I've seen. The thought that has gone into this makes it a full on sensory experience as opposed to just throwing on a CD. Excellent.