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Stiff Records Box Set [Box set]

Stiff Box-Stiff Records Box Audio CD
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)

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Product Details

  • Audio CD (August 4, 1992)
  • Number of Discs: 4
  • 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: B0000032VR
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #256,810 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Disc: 1
1. So It Goes - Nick Lowe
2. Heart Of The City - Nick Lowe
3. Between The Lines - The Pink Fairies
4. Cincinatti Fatback - Roogalator
5. Styrofoam - Tyla Gang
See all 25 tracks on this disc
Disc: 2
1. I Love My Label - Nick Lowe
2. Mary Provost - Nick Lowe
3. What A Waste! - Ian Dury
4. I Just Don't Know What To Do With Myself - Elvis Costello
5. Whoops-A-Daisy - Humphrey Ocean & The Hardy Annuals
See all 25 tracks on this disc
Disc: 3
1. My Girl - Madness
2. Israelites - Desmond Dekker
3. Buena - Joe 'King' Carrasco & The Crowns
4. Stupefaction - Graham Parker
5. You'll Always Find Me In The Kitchen At Parties - Jona Lewie
See all 25 tracks on this disc
Disc: 4
1. Sign Of The Times - The Belle Stars
2. Sweet Memory - The Belle Stars
3. Language Problems - Electric Guitars
4. Breakaway - Tracey Ullman
5. Like Dust - Passion Puppets
See all 21 tracks on this disc

Editorial Reviews

Understand from the get-go that label retrospectives are spotty affairs. Rare is the label that's free of stiffs, and Stiff Records' raison d'état was to serve as a refuge for castoffs, including a fair share of flaccid acts. The off-center likes of Nick Lowe (having recently fleed the misbegotten Brinsley Schwarz), Ian Dury, Wreckless Eric, Larry Wallis, and a very young Elvis Costello found a home with Stiff in the '70s. It wasn't a punk label, though it boasted the Damned; it wasn't a ska imprint, though Madness and Desmond Dekker recorded for the company; it wasn't a power-pop or pub-rock haven, though a number of Stiff's leading lights (Dury, Lowe, Costello, Dr. Feelgood, Dave Edmunds) fell into those categories. And it wasn't terribly long-lived. This imaginatively designed four-disc overview definitely loses momentum toward the end, but there's a humble enchantment to an overwhelming percentage of tracks here from label mainstays, the semiacclaimed (Devo, Graham Parker, Lene Lovich, the Pogues), and uncelebrated (Mickey Jupp, Mick Farren, Jona Lewie). -- Steven Stolder

Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars
4.2 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars best of my life April 7, 2000
Format:Audio CD
I was in my teens when this kind of music was played on the radio , I lived in ex Yugoslavia and I was reading a lot about the new wave and all those stuff i England. I loved those groups but I never actually had a chance to listen all those recors ( I Lived in ex Yugoslavia for Gud`s sake ) , now I lived in Sweden and have money to buy records but I am not 13 , 14 , 15 years old anymore and the music doesn`t mean EVERYTHING to me. This box remaind me what music can do with your life and how it is to be 17 again . By this one , no metter how old you are , this is history.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Instantly enjoyable. September 5, 2000
By D. Mok
Format:Audio CD
Strange...I remember trying to search for this boxed set earlier in the year and coming up with nil for my efforts. Then, after accidentally finding it in a New York record store and acquiring it right away, I find it on here. Must be my mind playing tricks on me.
In any case, I'm not old enough to have lived through the era from which these songs sprung, but the appeal of the music easily traverses the generation gap. I haven't even yet explored all of this set and it's already been some of the most fun listening experiences I've had while listening to "older music": Elvis Costello, The Belle Stars, Nick Lowe, Kirsty MacColl...and personal favourite, spunky popster Rachel Sweet. Vivacious and highly entertaining. My only complaint is that the liner notes are somewhat flimsy. Though full of the kind of tongue-in-cheek humour that, apparently, Stiff Records was famous for, the result of the non-journalistic approach is that there's very little real information on the music, the history, the label, and the context, hidden by the cheeky writing and witticisms. I for one would've liked some more detached, professional journalism to inform me of the significance of this music such as in that Amplifier article I had read (which led me to look for this boxed set in the first place). So on the packaging front, much is left to be desired. But the music is uniquely appealing, a world of its own.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Action Packed August 1, 2001
By Tom
Format:Audio CD
Stiff is one of those wacky labels that always seemed to sneak by just under the pop radar.
I received this set as a gift a few years ago, and couldn't be happier about it. This collection is so full of unknown bits of whimsy and little-known cuts by more popular artist that it starts to become more of a treasure chest than a "best of."
Ian Drury of "Sex and Drugs and Rock & Roll" fame appears as vocals on several other cuts including "Kitchen at Parties." This collection is full of simmilar fun little nuggets.
So much of the "alternative" music scene that was largely contained by British borders seems to be archived here, and it's fun to tap into it. Americans (such as myself) who always thought that the band Madness was largely a one hit wonder will be surprised by the spastic "Baggy Trousers," a song I enjoyed so much I have purchased several Madness CDs since hearing it.
While Elvis Costello originally got his start on Stiff, he has only one song here - probably a god thing, as we all have a good idea what he sounds like - leaving more room for the lesser known artists of Stiff.
There is a charming wackiness to this collection and to the whole Stiff attitude. This is a great collection for exploring what the Brits were doing while we tollerated Dexy's Midnight Runners.
Oh! Special bonus: There is a fabulous (FABULOUS) cut of Desmond Dekker's "Isrealites" on disc three. This along merits purchasing this set.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Where's Ian Gomm's "Hold On"? November 22, 2011
By I. Gomm
Format:Audio CD
Where is Ian Gomm's "Hold On" on this Stiff compilation set?
It was released by Stiff Records in the USA back in 1979 on the Stiff/Epic label and was the only US Top Twenty hit that Stiff Records ever had in the USA.
A very important ommision in the Stiff Records story and a wonderful Martin Rushent produced track, even if I have to say so myself! Gomm With The Wind!
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2 of 7 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Interesting Historical Time Capsule December 5, 2006
Format:Audio CD
Look over the list of artists on the CD, the ones you recognize - go out and buy all their CD's. While STIFF was great in the late 1970's as the conveyor of UK/Euro indie music - most of the best artists moved on - what's left is an interesting time capsule of that the last 70's and very early 80's. There is reason Humphrey Ocean & the Hardy Annuals or Mick Farren are forgotten. At the time, they were loud and brash and a nice antidote to the soft rock era of the 1970's but from that emerged Costello, Nick Lowe, and hundreds of artists you can name & remember ... and of course, leaving most of these guys & women behind ... so if you're a completist collector, you'll want these tracks but for listening beyond the names you recognize? Not so much. They are pretty much out-dated minor league stuff and the sound quality is not that great here so for a lot of reasons, you're better buying artist specific CD's or a more accessible collection of pre-new wave tracks that contain the "one-hit" wonder tracks anyway.
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