Best collection of ELP for the money!
THE NORB | Akron, OH USA | 03/22/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)
"The box set is a bit much for even the person who is more than a casual fan and all the single disc Best Of's that have come out just don't seem to cut it. This collection was released around the same time as the Yestory and Zepellin Remasters 2cd collections and are remastered and compiled by the same people. One can argue about personal favorites that are ommitted, but really all the key tracks from their heyday are here. They are also compiled in chronological order, which usually is the best way to go as far as compilations go. The 2 disc format allows for extra tracks not found on the single disc collections without overdoing it for the casual fan or person just getting into them."
ELP beginners should start here.....
Grigory's Girl | NYC | 03/01/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)
"If you're just thinking of diving into ELP, you may want to search this compliation out. It's better than many of the "best of" collections out there (which are usually only a single CD), but it's not as expansive as The Return of the Manticore box set. Still, this compliation is pretty damn good. It has songs that are not on the box set that should have been there. It has the classic tunes like Lucky Man and From the Beginning, and most importantly, it has the full length versions of several ELP epics. The full length version of Tarkus, Karn Evil 9, and Pirates are included here. It also has the vastly underrated epic Take a Pebble from their 1st album. The studio version of Take a Pebble is wonderful, vastly superior to the live version included on the box set. It also has the 2nd half of the original live recording of Pictures at an Exhibition. I wish they included the whole thing, but it's still pretty good that they included the entire 2nd half. Other gems are The Endless Enigma, the live version of Toccata (better than the studio version), the original single I Believe in Father Christmas (not on the box set), the studio version of Karn Evil 9, and the excellent instrumental Canario from Love Beach (which, also, is not on the box set). They did include an edited version of Fanfare for the Common Man, which is really unforgiveable. The original is a great jam, one of ELP's best. The original jam is included in its entirety on The Return of the Manticore.
If you're just starting out on ELP, you should pick this one up. It also has some great liner notes. The Atlantic Years and The Return of the Manticore are the best compliations out there, but this one is cheaper and includes many underrated gems. Search for it if you can."