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The Nice - BBC Sessions: America CD (album) cover


The Nice

Symphonic Prog

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2 stars This Receiver Records 1996 issue is a bit of a mixed bag, production wise. It kicks off with an absolutely dreadful copy (4th generation cassette?) of the signature title track 'America', but picks up the sound quality from there with only a few lapses thereafter. The song 'Happy Freuds' is mislabeled as 'Happy Friends'. Another misstep was to include 'Little Arabella', which is simply a mono AM radio broadcast of the album version from "Ars Longa Vita Brevis", perhaps for the sake of completion. On the plus side, there are titles that do not appear elsewhere on official Nice releases; a fun, impromptu jam with Roy Harper on the Sonny Rollins tune 'St. Thomas', as well as three others, 'Better Than Ever', 'Sombrero King' and 'Aries', which raises this compilation's desirability to collectors of The Nice, most of whom already own umpteen live versions of the other tracks on offer here. There are decent notes, with productions credits and broadcast dates: 1967, 1968, 1969 & 1970. Overall, an interesting souvenir for fans, but not a good introduction for novices. And don't overpay, prices on this vary widely, from $8 to $35(US)!
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Posted Sunday, February 26, 2012 | Review Permalink

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