Rick Wakeman

Masters

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A compilation of Wakeman's work from the 1982 to 1998. Unfortunately, some of Wakeman's best work from this period -- Country Airs, Cirque Surreal, and The Piano Album -- are not found on this compilation, presumably due to an inability to secure permissions. Any serious Wakeman fan would want those entire albums anyway, though, and this double-CD set is good value for those looking to sample Wakeman's later work without having to wade through the many lesser releases that these tracks were originally stranded on. Some of the choices might have been better -- the choice of "The Opening Line" off Silent Nights is odd when "Elgin Mansions" would have better shown off his arrangement talents, and "The Dancers" would have accurately conveyed his beery sense of humor. But other choices, like "The Chasms" (from Heritage Suite) and "Number 10" (from No Expense Spared) do capture the high points of their respective albums.

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