A compilation in Universal's "20th Century Masters: The Millennium Collection" series. The third in a sequence of A&M's trawling the vaults, hard on the heels of the previous two - Collection and Tears and Pavan, and crowding the release of the Strawbs new album Blue Angel - the band knew nothing about this one .... nice one, Universal.
A very good selection however of the band's "US" period, concentrating on the Hero And Heroine (3 tracks) and Ghosts (4 tracks) period, with the two hits and "Benedictus" for good measure. Think "Lemon Pie and "Starshine/Angel Wine" might have made way for eg. "River/Down By The Sea" or "New World", though, to make it a real pure hits collection and a good one to introduce people to Strawbs music. Not terribly long either really, so not terribly good value. Ah well.
CD: 069 493 157-2 (A&M Chronicles series, Feb 2003). Front cover features the Hero And Heroine back cover "white tux" picture; elsewhere in the booklet there are pictures from the Ghosts period, Grave New World period, and finally the photo which appears on the Japanese "Part Of The Union" single; all of which perfectly reflects the album's contents. Under the CD there's a white background with a tiny image - the picture of a hand coming out of a million strawberries clasping a mandolin - the picture used for the fold-out sleeve of Best Of Strawbs back in the late 70s. A good trawl through the photo archives, though nothing much new.
An article by Scott Schindler fills out the rest of the booklet, largely accurate apart from dropping a few dates, and misrepresenting Dave Cousins' post 1980 career as "budding DJ".
Compilation produced by Mike Ragogna; 96k/24-bit Mastered by Erick Labson @ Universal Mastering Studios - West-North Hollywood, CA
Production Coordination: Adam Ahrams
Editorial Assistance : Barry Korkin and Lee Lodyga
Art Direction: Vartan
Design: Hey Poser Ind.
Photo Research: Ryan Null
Photos: Front cover-Tony Evans/A&M Records Archives;
Booklet back cover & liner notes: Michael Ochs Archives;
Credits page A&M Records Archives;
CD tray: Mark Hanauer/A&M Records Archives;
Inlay: Wayne Knight Collection UMe Special Thanks to Bill Levenson and Terence P Minogue