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The Very Best of Cream Import

186 customer reviews

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Audio CD, Import, May 9, 1995
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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Unavailable in the U.S.! Import pressing of this collection from the British trio, the most comprehensive single-disc Cream compilation on the market. Despite the fact the group was mostly esteemed as a live, Blues-based extended-jams outfit that sometimes didn't know when to quit, most of the songs here are tuneful, concise studio tracks with Beatle-esque touches in the arrangements; it's hard to imagine how anybody could dismiss gems like 'White Room', 'Strange Brew' or 'Badge' as excessive. 20 tracks. Polydor.

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The groundbreaking work of this British psychedelic-blues supergroup deserves more thorough study, but this 20-song compilation provides a useful overview for newcomers. Eric Clapton, Jack Bruce, and Ginger Baker--virtuosos all--expanded the parameters of rock by incorporating a jazz sensibility into their distorted blues jams. This compilation mixes their odd original hits with a number of souped-up blues covers. The live version of Robert Johnson's "Crossroads" remains one of the greatest blues workouts a rock band has ever produced. Since Cream released only four albums, this set includesv most of the highlights, and it illustrates how Cream cast the seeds of heavy metal. -- Marc Greilsamer

1. Wrapping Paper
2. I Feel Free
3. N.S.U.
4. Sweet Wine
5. I'm So Glad
6. Spoonful
7. Strange Brew
8. Sunshine Of Your Love
9. Tales Of Brave Ulysees
10. Swlabr
11. We're Going Wrong
12. White Room
13. Sitting On Top Of The World
14. Politician
15. Those Were The Days
16. Born Under A Bad Sign
17. Deserted Cities Of The Heart
18. Crossroads
19. Anyone For Tennis
20. Badge

Product Details

  • Audio CD (May 9, 1995)
  • Original Release Date: May 9, 1995
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Import
  • Label: Chronicles/Polydor
  • ASIN: B000002GFC
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (186 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,093 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

100 of 104 people found the following review helpful By Bogar on December 2, 1999
Format: Audio CD
Here is the finest of Cream - the 60s' mythical trio which gave rock a new definition and took blues as far as it has ever been taken. Eric Clapton's virtuoso guitar, Jack Bruce's mesmerising musicianship, Ginger Baker's guru drumming - it's all in this album, all at its best! Included are epic tracks like "Sunshine of Your Love", "I Feel Free", "Spoonful", "Strange Brew", "White Room", "Badge"... a non-stop succession of the cream of Cream, the 19 best studio recordings, topped up by the legendary live rendition of "Crossroads". It is remarkable that, untypically, the producers have made an honest effort to include all the best songs in the compilation, not leaving ground for "The Vey Best, part 2". The only problem with this release is it's so good (and that includes, at least to my ears, the sound quality) it will instantly make you want to buy all of the original albums - and that might as well be a wise decision. However, if you're quite sure you only want one CD by Cream, then, undoubtedly, this is it!
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25 of 28 people found the following review helpful By nicjaytee on December 26, 1999
Format: Audio CD
How good were they?... I saw them play at a well known blues club - the Ricky Tick in Windsor (England) - several times in summer 1966. R&B was the scene at the time. A local UK group - Geno Washington & The Ram Jam Band - covered US R&B and Soul numbers and were considered the business. Cream arrived and played music that few had heard before. In the middle of one number (NSU?) the crowd got agitated and started chanting Geno... Geno... Eric Clapton turned to Jack Bruce and said something along the lines of "they're booing". They then launched into the loudest, longest and most complicated guitar solo the small crowd had ever heard. The result... stunned silence for the rest of their set and several dozen instant Cream fans.
A great, innovative group.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By chris meesey Food Czar on August 28, 2003
Format: Audio CD
In 1966, some of the best young musicians (literally, the cream) of the British music scene put together the ultimate blues supergroup. From the Yardbirds and John Mayall: guitar prodigy Eric Clapton (who was inspired to put together a trio after hearing a blues threesome album by Buddy Guy and Junior Wells); from the Graham Bond organization: Jack Bruce, bass, and Ginger Baker, drums. Over the course of three years, this amazing group absolutely redefined British blues, mixing in elements of hard rock, jazz, and even classical music. This compilation does indeed represent the very best of Cream, with one or two exceptions. Of course, all the classic rock FM staples are here: Sunshine of Your Love, Badge, Crossroads, White Room, SWLABR (translation: She Walks Like a Bearded Rainbow---did I mention Cream had a psychedelic streak???) Also, it is worth noting that even though Cream was a superb live band, only one live cut (Crossroads) is included here. Smart move, considering that in almost every case, the studio recordings are better than their live counterparts. Too bad this album is not quite perfect: "We're Going Wrong," must be counted as a good, but failed, experimental number, and "Anyone for Tennis" can be dismissed as a silly trifle. However, "Wrapping Paper," though atypical Cream, still sounds as fresh today as the album it came from. On balance, though, the album is a superb overview for the experienced and novice listener alike. After this album, the listener will want to skim through Fresh Cream, Disraeli Gears, and Wheels of Fire (you would do well to ignore Goodbye, Cream, which is a patchwork monstrosity). Trust me, you'll be all the "butter" for it!
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73 of 92 people found the following review helpful By J. Humphreville on February 24, 2000
Format: Audio CD
I am 19 years old and therefore can not say I ever saw Cream Live on stage in person. However, I can say that this band, and I speak as a musician and a classic rock dj, is the most talented rock band ever who are only challenged by that of Rush. Eric Clapton, who I feel did nothing noteworthy after 1971 shines in this band. Jack Bruce, the bassist, is underrated. He sang and wrote most of the songs. Ginger Baker. Have you ever seen a crazier drummer. He took double bass rock drumming to where it is today. Now personally, I say that every Cream song is great and should be heard. Hwever, those who have only heard the legend and are curious should pick this cd up. It has all the best. "I Feel Free", which is currently a car commercial, is a great tune. It seems simple but there is far more than meets the eye. "N.S.U." speaks for so many people with just one line: "The only time I'm happy's when I play my guitar." How about the classic tunes from the Disraeli Gears album. "Strange Brew" is an interesting venture into a new realm for the band. And are any other ten bass hits(7 notes) in music more memorable than the intro to "Sunshine Of Your Love". The dueling vocals on this tune and Baker's odd drumming make this track still amazing to this day. "Tales Of Brave Ulysses" has become a recent favorite of mine. The lyrics and the melody(which will appear later in the album as well) just work too well together. "White Room" What many consider to be Cream's masterpiece. I love the intro. Bruce's voice never sounds as good. The melody from "...Ulysses" comes back for this tune. A true CLASSIC. I love "Crossroads". It is a great tune with a great repeating riff.Read more ›
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Crossroads live?
Yes, it is. It's the edited (for time) version played on the radio.
Jul 23, 2010 by bluezimmy |  See all 2 posts
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