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These Were the Days Box set, Best of

4.7 out of 5 stars 32 customer reviews

Price: CDN$ 115.30
Only 1 left in stock.
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (Sept. 23 1997)
  • Number of Discs: 4
  • Format: Box set, Best of
  • Label: Universal Music Group
  • ASIN: B000003TW3
  • Other Editions: Audio CD
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars 32 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #79,466 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)
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Disc: 1
1. Wrapping Paper
2. I Feel Free
3. N.S.U.
4. Sleepy Time Time
5. Dreaming
See all 24 tracks on this disc
Disc: 2
1. White Room
2. Sitting On Top Of The World
3. Passing The Time
4. As You Said
5. Pressed Rat And Warthog
See all 22 tracks on this disc
Disc: 3
1. N.S.U.
2. Sleepy Time Time
3. Rollin' And Tumblin'
4. Crossroads
5. Spoonful
See all 8 tracks on this disc
Disc: 4
1. White Room
2. Politician
3. I'm So Glad
4. Sitting on Top Of The World
5. Stepping Out
See all 9 tracks on this disc

Product Description

Product Description

63 tracks, EVERY studio recording they waxed (all newly remastered) with a host of rarities, plus 2 CDs of live material, much of it rare or unreleased. Inside the Disraeli Gears -style day-glo box is a 48-page full-color booklet containing notes and rare photos.

Cream was the first of three supergroups spawned by the Yardbirds' three stellar axmen (they preceded the original Jeff Beck Group by a year and Jimmy Page's Led Zeppelin by two). The trio of guitarist Eric Clapton, bassist Jack Bruce, and drummer extraordinaire (and band founder) Ginger Baker earned a reputation for fiery live performances rife with improvised blues-based jams (epitomized by Willie Dixon's "Spoonful") that could last half an hour. Two of this set's four discs are devoted to live Cream, showcasing prowess and interplay so powerful as to overshadow its occasional lapses into self-indulgence. Clapton admirers more familiar with his latter-day laid-back persona may be shocked at the incendiary musician showcased on these live cuts. Cream progressed over the course of its three and a half studio records (included here in their entirety). Electric blues evolution was their forte, but they also captured sounds that were moody and acoustic-tinged ("As You Said," "Passing the Time"), music-hall-influenced ("Mother's Lament," "Wrapping Paper"), and progressively poetic ("Deserted Cities of the Heart," "Pressed Rat and Warthog"). --Jerry McCulley

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Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD
This is a 4 CD boxset that contains all the tracks from the 6 Cream albums (with one slight difference), Fresh Cream, Disraeli Gears, Wheels Of Fire, Goodbye, Live Cream and Live Vol 2. It also has 8 extra studio tracks. It comes in one of those 5 by 10 inch folding cases with a nice booklet inside. (The picture shown here is elongated to make the cover look square).
All the studio tracks have been put together on the first 2 CD's and the live tracks have been grouped together on the other two CD's. For the studio tracks, they have been kept in the same order as they appeared on the original albums.
The first album, Fresh Cream, was released in the early days of stereo, when records were released in both mono and stereo versions. There were rumors that mixing the mono and stereo records and record players could damage the album or your needle. In the early days of stereo, there was a lot of experimentation. The stereo separation on Fresh Cream was severe. Certain vocals or instruments are all on one side. The original stereo sound was faithfully duplicated on the CD. With today's sound systems, the stereo separation just sounds wierd. But, the songs are excellent.
The additional 8 studio tracks are of little value. Some of them, like Wrapping Paper, are not very good. There is a Falstaff beer commercial that is interesting to hear once (Jefferson Airplane had Levi's commercials). If you already own the 6 Cream albums, these additional studio tracks aren't enough to justify buying this boxset. But, it you already own all 6 Cream albums, you are probably such a Cream fanatic, you will buy this boxset anyway.
The live tracks are put in a new order. The versions of Toad and NSU are longer than the original versions that appeared on the LP's.
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Format: Audio CD
Cream. These guys have become known as gods of rock over the years, and with good reason. Their music puts that of this or any other decade to shame. Ginger Baker, Jack Bruce, and Eric Clapton were musical geniuses, and it was about time they put all of their albums together in one place. The Cream Box Set has finally arrived. Read on for my review.
-Every last one of Cream's studio albums can be found in this compilation.
-You will also find rare tracks unavailable elsewhere in this box set.
-In addition to the studio albums, you get a good deal of live material.
-You save money by purchasing this set. If you were to buy all of Cream's albums separately, you would end up spending more than you would for this box set. The price looks steep at first glance, but in actuality, it's a great deal.
-I have only a single complaint with this set - the band's BBC session recordings can't be found here.
One of the greatest rock and roll bands of all time has put together all of their master works, and at long last, you can get all of these works together in one convenient set. Sure, the set isn't quite perfect, but it doesn't have to be - the quality of the band's music more than makes up for it. If you're a rock and roll fan, and this set isn't in your collection, what the hell are you waiting for?
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Format: Audio CD
This is a very good boxed set, especially for those who don't have any Cream CD's, as it has all the albums, plus a little bit more. The reason it doesn't have a whole lot of unreleased tracks is that the Atlantic tape library burned down in the early 70's, and that included all the acts who recorded for the label up until 1969, and so all that remains for a lot of Atlantic/Atco bands (including Cream) are just mixed-down master tapes for LP's and singles. Any unreleased cuts from, say, "Wheels Of Fire" or other live shows recorded for the live albums are gone.
The "Disraeli Gears" rehearsals are fascinating, though, but it would have been equally wonderful to have some outtakes from the "Fresh Cream" sessions (which are out on bootleg, and have excellent sound quality). I have to say, the live version of "N.S.U." on here is no match for the version found on "Live Cream", and it sounds like some of the live cuts from "Goodbye" that appear here have different mixes. I like how the live tracks all seem to flow together, like one whole show.
For some of the live cuts that aren't on here, like "We're Going Wrong", check out the "Fresh Live Cream" video, as it's excellent. A mono vinyl pressing of "Fresh Cream" is also well worth looking for, as it's a little thicker sounding, and a lot less echoey than the stereo mix that we all know and grind our teeth at.
So, all in all, the boxed set is very good, but don't expect a whole lot of surprises, though it's not without a few of them.
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Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Eric Clapton's first "super group" as they called it in those days - arguably THE first super group, which was loosely defined as a band with members drawn from other established groups – and who were usually seen as the "stars" of those groups. , Later on, often as not, super groups were as much a record label creation.

But Cream was different, as they pioneered the form. A trio (fairly radical at the time - rock groups typically had 4-6 members), they came out of the Graham Bond Organisation, John Mayall's Blues Breakers, and of course the Yardbirds where Clapton got his start. The percussionist Ginger Baker and Clapton had developed a friendship while the latter played briefly for Graham Bond (as had Jack Bruce, who also played for Mayall, briefly with Clapton). Confused? Sorry. Anyway, Cream’s chemistry was brilliant, despite the trio having different music backgrounds: Baker's was jazz, Bruce had classical training (cello, piano) and EC was (trying to be) a blues purist. Jazz is mostly based on and is a virtuoso form of blues, and often has classical elements (many jazz artists are classically trained), so the synergy within the trio is not unexpected.

This set has 63 selections representing all their studio work from their first four official releases, and most of the important live performances, some of which was previously released on Wheels of Fire, Goodbye, and Live Vols. 1 & 2. The first two albums were entirely studio creations - quite different from each other in terms of sound: the first - Fresh Cream was recorded in England in 1966, released January 1967, and very bluesy, while Disraeli Gears, recorded mostly in New York in 1967, was more psychedelic, although still very much blues-based.
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