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Ozric Tentacles - Vitamin Enhanced CD (album) cover


Ozric Tentacles

Psychedelic/Space Rock

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4 stars You've only got this if you are very lucky... Ozric decided to produce a box set of their first 6 albums on CD, previously only available on cassette, and decided to (a) give them a natty cover, and (b) nock them out at 30.00 the set (in the UK), which was good value even then, for over 6 hours of music. However, Kellogs (of the Corn Flakes fame) apparently objected to the box cover - which bore a more than passing ressemblance, and as a result the boxes were withdrawn after only 1 week on release. The contents - 6 individually boxed CDs immediately became available - at 10.00 each... so not only did you loose the natty cover, you also had to pay twice as much!

This aside, the set was a ful collection of all the older material, and contains some real gems not available elsewhere. However, the sound recordings can be a bit patchy, and the Live Etherial Cereal disc really does sound 'Live', ie a bit murky. However, the spirit and enthusiasm of these early recordings always shines through, and for a collector, you really have got to have that box cover.

(A selection of the studio tracks ended up on Afterswish)


Report this review (#5478)
Posted Monday, April 26, 2004 | Review Permalink
5 stars Six CD box set that consisted of CD reissues of their early cassette-era releases. With the exception of songs that appeared on the "Afterswish" compilation, many of these songs from these early cassettes were the first time they appeared on CD. The albums are: "Erpsongs" / "Tantric Obstacles" / "Live Ethereal Cereal" / "There is Nothing" / "Sliding Gliding Worlds" / "The Bits Between the Bits".

The box set poked fun a Kellogg's cereal box, and as a matter of fact Kellogg's threatened the band with a lawsuit, but it was already discontinued by the time they threatened with the lawsuit, and each of the six discs were sold separately after the box set was discontinued.

Being very familiar with this era of the OZRICS, many of these albums, especially "Erpsongs" suffered from rather amateurish production and bad editing, but even these early releases demonstrates how the OZRICS became one of the finest modern space rock bands out there. Of course these early releases might not be the best place for OZRIC newcomers, but for the serious fan, these are essential, and if you got the "Vitamin Enhanced (Box Set)", you got yourself a collector's item!

Report this review (#5479)
Posted Thursday, May 6, 2004 | Review Permalink
2 stars To review a box set ... hmm

There are box sets and then there are box sets ... some have hidden extras, bonus tracks, detialed band histories, new insights, band family trees, back stage photos etc: OK for this set that would be a Zero then.

Well. you'll have read the separate reviews for the albums so you will know all about the dodgy recordings & raw feel of the content. So putting all that aside .......

It's a great box, no really it is: classic Ozric & a bit contraversial all in one

It's getting hard to find. Very rare. Teh "woodgrain" of the Ozric world (if that analogy is lost on oyu check out the acaeum). And there's the rub: this is THE Ozric box set. Ain't no others. No sirreee.

This one has collector written all over it. I've got all the earlies on tape (a couple bought at the time of release - the others were lost & bought second hand), and yet this box set has the sort of nagging quality when it comes up that onyl Mrs Doyle in Father Ted could equal: go-wan go-wan go-wan go-wan go-wan go-wan go-wan go-wan you know you want to: in Horslips terms a fortunate cup of tea

a stonking (5) star collectible fans only release: a very good 2 stars

Report this review (#239490)
Posted Tuesday, September 15, 2009 | Review Permalink
siLLy puPPy
PSIKE, JRF/Canterbury, P Metal, Eclectic
4 stars OZRIC TENTACLES spent the majority of the 80s playing small festivals and venues before they would find their first album 'Pungent Effulgent' on the Dovetail Records label which would lead them into on their way to find themselves as one of the most interesting underground psychedelic space rock bands of the 90s.

During this time the band released six recordings but only on cassette and were only sold at live venues making it quite difficult for anyone who wasn't there at the time to track down. Dovetail solved that problem by releasing all of those homemade albums on CD in the box set compilation VITAMIN ENHANCED in 1994.

As if the originals themselves weren't hard enough to find, the original pressing for VITAMIN ENHANCED was limited to a mere 5000 copies which sold out quickly as the band amassed more popular appeal. Not helping the matter was the fact of legal issues from Kellogg's who complained that the artwork resembled their brand of Corn Flakes packaging.

Because of all that, the plans for a repressing were scrapped but finally in 2013, in honor of the band's 30th anniversary, the Snapper Music label remastered the entire six albums which saw a release in January of 2014. Also included is a generous booklet filled with history and artwork from those early days. The CDs included are wrapped up in cardboard sleeves with their original artwork all snug together in a nice tripped out box.

While most of the early albums aren't exactly essential with only 'Live Essential Cereal' and 'Bits Between The Bits' receiving a four star status from yours truly, this is an impressive packaging design and an excellent way to get all the early albums in a one-stop shop in totally remastered form, thus a 4 star box set which includes mostly 3 star albums but the remastered versions add a little more star heft to my rating.

This box set includes: CD 1: Erpsongs (1984) CD 2: Tantric Obstacles (1985) CD 3: Live Ethereal Cereal (1986) CD 4: There Is Nothing (1987) CD 5: Sliding Gliding Worlds (1988) CD 6: Bits Between the Bits (1989)

Report this review (#1870226)
Posted Sunday, January 28, 2018 | Review Permalink
5 stars This is a 6CD compilation of the six self-published cassette releases which put Ozric Tentacles on the musical map back in the 1980s. Originally issued as a limited edition by DoveTail in 1994, the set would see a rerelease by MadFish, somewhat remastered, and has now had a further remastering and new issue through KScope, in a book-style presentation reminiscent of the form factor they have used for collections like Travelling the Great Circle.

The cassette albums could be rough around the edges - especially the first two - but they represent a part of the band's musical journey any fan will want to hear, and the CD presentations (especially in their remastered forms) do a fine job of teasing out the finer qualities of the material and overcoming the limitations of their original presentation. Serious fans of the group will want this anyway; those who want an instant six-hour trip into their foundational work could do much worse than starting out here.

Report this review (#2870527)
Posted Saturday, December 24, 2022 | Review Permalink

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