BOX SET - Martin Briley - The Mercury Years (2 CDs)

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Short run 2 CD box set from 2004 and wickedly rare. Not even on Amazon and one copy on Discogs, which is $146(track listing here, too):

So what to do w/ pricing this? Well, what I normally do - encourage you to re-sell on Ebay because I have no interest in auctions or garage sales. :-)

GREAT music, of course, is the bonus! the CDs cover his 3 albums w/ bonus trax.

"4 1/2 stars. Martin Briley didn't fit anywhere. He was a journeyman rocker, a former member of Mandrake and a session musician who played with Ian Hunter before embarking on a solo career in the early '80s. He was too quirky for the mainstream and far too mainstream for new wave. He was too arty for pop and too streamlined and slick for prog rock. By default, the only place where he seemed to belong was on album rock stations, which, along with support from MTV, helped make "The Salt in My Tears" a hit in 1983. That was taken from One Night with a Stranger, his second album for Mercury, and while he put out a Phil Ramone-produced third LP called Dangerous Moments in 1985, it disappeared, along withBriley's career as an active recording artist (he continued as a session musician and professional songwriter, working on staff at Paul McCartney's publishing house, MPL). Nevertheless, he maintained a small but loyal cult following that sustained itself over the next two decades and helped spur Hip-O Select's release of The Mercury Years in 2005. A double-disc box set containing the entirety of his three albums for the label (the first was Fear of the Unknown from 1981), plus six previously unreleased tracks, The Mercury Years is a complete recorded works that will surely satiate fans, and perhaps even win Briley a few new ones although he faces his perennial problem: he's a hard one to pigeonhole. Yes, he can write pop hits -- and has, for the likes of Celine Dion and *NSYNC, in addition to "The Salt in My Tears" -- but as a recording artist, he never quite found his niche. Which is not to say that he made unappealing or uninteresting music -- far from it, actually. With a voice that sounded like a hybrid of Phil Collins and Peter Gabriel, he fronted a sleek set of arty pop/rock that glistened on the surface but had substantial quirks underneath. These quirks were largely lyrical, as evidenced by such titles as "I Feel Like a Milkshake" and "She's So Flexible," but he was also a sharp, clever songwriter, putting in some sly left turns and detours into his pulsating, synth-driven arena rock.Briley was also undone by some of the sins of the time, chiefly the brittle, bright productions of the early and mid-'80s that can make some of these records hard to hear from beginning to end. Yet his fatal flaw, if you want to call it a flaw, is that he never delved too deeply into either weirdness or shiny pop -- perhaps he was trying to have hits, but the end result is that the records are interesting for hardcore pop fanatics and record collectors who are interested in hearing how an artist can personalize familiar sounds. Briley, who was reminiscent of his AOR peers yet never quite sounded like any of them, who made records that followed every production cliché of the '80s yet seemed quirkier than most mainstream LPs of that time, fits that bill perfectly, and while this may not be the most compelling music, it is interesting, and that may be enough for certain collectors of largely forgotten early-'80s pop/rock" - AMG