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Smiths Complete Box set

59 customer reviews

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Vinyl, Box set, October 24, 2011
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$340.00 $265.52

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Editorial Reviews

Remastered 8 x 180g vinyl box. Includes five single albums and three doubles. Rhino UK. 2011.


Product Details

  • Vinyl (October 24, 2011)
  • Number of Discs: 8
  • Format: Box set
  • Note on Boxed Sets: During shipping, discs in boxed sets occasionally become dislodged without damage. Please examine and play these discs. If you are not completely satisfied, we'll refund or replace your purchase.
  • Label: Rhino Records
  • ASIN: B005DKLPRE
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (59 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #154,723 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

82 of 87 people found the following review helpful By OMG! It's got a plug! on October 18, 2011
Format: Audio CD
This is a very welcome release by Rhino that collects together all of the albums released by The Smiths during (or just after) their relatively short life span. Containing the four studio albums, three compilations and a live album, the music, for most people, needs little or no introduction. This box set really does remind the listener how timeless their music was and how totally unique and original the Morrissey & Marr songwriting partnership was. Also, they were that rarest of bands that released stunning albums and equally stunning singles. And their fanbase never had to wait too long for new music - they were forever releasing non-album singles between albums and this is partly why the 'Hatful of Hollow' and 'The World Won't Listen' compilations were released while the band were still active.

If the truth be told, there isn't too much discernible difference between these remasters and the CD re-issues of the 1990s that I own. But it is an improvement, particularly on their eponymous debut, and there is generally (but not always) more space and definition between the instruments. Overall the frequency range is higher but sound quality is in no way compromised to favour a loud mix as can sometimes be the case with remasters.

All eight CD covers are exact mini replicas of the original vinyl releases, right down to the stickers and the inlay sleeves. Four of them have gatefold sleeves just like the originals and even the artwork on the CDs themselves is identical to that found on the original vinyl LPs. Housed in a sturdy cardboard case and accompanied by a booklet (albeit very brief for a career encompassing collection), the attention to detail is exceptional.
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38 of 39 people found the following review helpful By Malamute Dad on January 7, 2012
Format: Audio CD
Just a short review to state that sonically, this CD box set is amazing. I own the original Rough Trade releases and this box set is far, far superior. Cymbals are crisp, bass is tight and Morrisseys voice is just right. Thumbs up to Johnny Marr!

Also, fyi, Amazon.co.uk sells this for 30.47 pounds. The VAT tax (approximately 17%) will be deducted for shipments to North America. So final cost is approximately $41 plus shipping. I always scope amazon.co.uk before purchasing as prices are frequently much cheaper, even having to pay for shipping

For about $5 per disc, this is a bargain
Cheers
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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Lypo Suck on March 20, 2012
Format: Audio CD
This CD box set is a thing of beauty. It was lovingly put together and the mini-LP replica style packaging looks gorgeous and stylish.

But how is the sound? A lot of attention was put into making these remasters sound as natural, clear, and detailed as possible and the results are, for the most part, riveting. While these remasters are a bit louder, they're not excessively so: they're definitely not brickwalled, distorted, or victims of over-compression.

The debut: of the 8 remasters included here, this one offers the most audibly noticeable improvement. The debut has long suffered from timid, brittle, gutless sound, which dragged down an otherwise incredible album. This remaster has remedied that. The sound of this album will always be on the bright side (that's just how it was recorded), but this remaster improves the sound in a very noticeable way. It now sounds fuller, livelier, punchier, and much more detailed. This remaster is now my go-to version. Purists may cry foul at the inclusion of "This Charming Man" (replicating the US tracking order, as opposed to the original UK), but who cares, it's a great song. What's important is that we're finally hearing this album the way it was intended to be heard, and this one sounds better than all the other versions out there.

Hatful of Hollow: the original UK/Rough Trade pressing of this album already sounded perfect, and in this case, the remaster misses the mark. The BBC recordings are the most aversely affected by this, suffering from excessive low frequency boost, giving the songs a bassy, throbbing, rumbly sound that detracts from Johnny Marr's detailed guitar work.
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Format: Audio CD
I'm clearly hearing something different than some of the other reviewers here--while these remastered editions of the band's studio, compilation and live albums are hardly brickwalled they are louder than the previous CD editions. For example "How Soon Is Now?" from "Hatful" here when compared to the original U.S. CD sounds like the drums and bass have been goosed by comparison. Is closer to how the original mastertapes sound? I don't know but it was a bit startling at first. By comparison there were other tracks on "Hatful" that were quieter and weren't mastered quite as hot as "How Soon Is Now".

There are a handful of one-off tracks that didn't make the set and it might have been nice to include these on a bonus disc (hence the "mostly complete" in my subtitle of the review).

Over all the mastering here is a bit brighter than I had hoped as well but the trade off is that the clarity on these remasters are greater improved and they don't sound as dull as some of the original CD pressings by comparison. You loose something in the process of a more compressed remaster-- the dynamic range isn't as wide here--all you have to do is compare the goosed bass and drums on "How Soon Is Now" or any other track on the album against the original CD or the original vinyl to realize this. If that's not going to bother you, THIS is the version for you.

The packaging as others have mentioned is nice--the CD's look like replicas of the original vinyl labels (adapted, of course for CD), the "mini-LP" packaging is pretty darn close to what I've seen for the original vinyl pressings from the UK of these releases.

The boxed set also has a eight page booklet with notes about the band and info about the individual albums.
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