Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
Essential Electric Light Orchestra
Genres: Pop, Rock, Classic Rock
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Fine for ELO newbies
Candace Scott | Lake Arrowhead, CA, USA | 04/09/2004
(4 out of 5 stars)
"There are some problems with this package, especially the editing of "Roll Over Beethoven" from eight minutes to four minutes, and excluding some of ELO's best songs. But every ELO "Greatest Hits" collection misses the mark in some way, and this is no exception.I am sick of ELO being bashed as the poor man's Beatles, as sappy, as "disco-flavored violin trash," and as infantile muzak. All of these criticisms are from people who haven't bothered to listen to ELO from beginning to last and who are too obtuse to realize that Jeff Lynne is a musical genius (and no, I don't use that word lightly). Yes, his lyrics are banal, but with this type of music, who on earth cares? The lyrics to "Ob La Di, Ob La Da" are trite too, but with such catchy music, one can overlook the banality of the words.There are many stellar songs curiously omited, including ELO's most underrated (and, I think, best) song, "Nightrider." And how about "Four Little Diamonds??" The omissions alone bring the rating down to four stars I bought my first ELO single when I was 10 years old and I never looked back. If you've read this far, you're a fan like me and you will devour this set. Long live this sappy, trite, banal band... I still love 'em forever!"
Great single disc...but should have been two discs
Dr. Emil "Tom" Shuffhausen | Central Gulf Coast | 11/19/2004
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Like others, I am disappointed that Sony seems to give ELO a "leftovers" kind of treatment here with this somewhat perfunctory career overview. A second disc would have certainly been merited and could have contained many more classic "essential" cuts. But then, I suppose, we would have had just another repeat of STRANGE MAGIC, that wonderful 1995 two-disc collection of ELO's best tracks. So, once we get past the fact that many "essential" cuts are missing here and the packaging is a little skimpy, this is a fine collection of songs...all of them are superlative, save for the disastrous "edited" version of "Roll Over Beethoven." This collection certainly makes the case for ELO being one of the premier art pop bands of the 1970s and 1980s. ELO maestro Jeff Lynne is rightly considered a genius in the studio, and it's easy to see why with tracks such as the crunchy power pop of "Do Ya," the proto synth symphony "Turn to Stone," the lovely lilt of "Strange Magic," the orchestral rock of "Mr. Blue Sky," and the lush wistful ballad, "Can't Get it Out of My Head." If you must have only one single "best of" disc, this is probably the best way to go. But, also be on the lookout for outstanding bargain collections such as ELO CLASSICS and ELO SHINE ON. Of course, as mentioned, STRANGE MAGIC is superior with it's two discs and buffed up packaging. Best of all is FLASHBACK, a 3-disc set featuring numerous previously unreleased gems. (The rare AFTERGLOW is another great 3-CD set, though the sound is inferior.) Happy listening!"
The best single disc greatest ... not the best period
Brian Campbell | Chicago, Illinois | 11/15/2003
(4 out of 5 stars)
"I have always loved ELO since I was a kid and am familiar with all of the assorted boxes/2 discs/single disc greatest that are out there. Let's determine a couple of things quickly.-This is most by far now the best single disc collection by the band you could have; this makes the 1979 greatest extinct.
-The remastering is fabulous; all of these songs sound better here than on any prior collection.
-Of course, there will be many missing songs for the fanatics that they will deem "essential".The only thing I would suggest is to get the 2 disc "Strange Magic" collection which contains nearly everything. However, this is now my favorite of all the collections. This one is more hit heavy than any of the others ... tracks 1 through 10 are amazing with the way they were sequenced here. Some may dispute what I wrote here, but this essential ELO is worth having by any fan of this outstanding band. For an hours worth of pure pleasure play this straight through. Nothing but strange magic, I'll tell ya ... :)"