Dark Horse Years 1976-1992

Dark Horse Years 1976-1992

5.0 4
by George Harrison

This nicely assembled box set spans more than a decade and a half in the career of the so-called Quiet Beatle, focusing on a period in which he was happy just to turn out engaging pop songs. The six albums contained here (one a double-disc offering) have all been out of print for ages, making for a good bit of warmth in reacquaintance,…  See more details below


This nicely assembled box set spans more than a decade and a half in the career of the so-called Quiet Beatle, focusing on a period in which he was happy just to turn out engaging pop songs. The six albums contained here (one a double-disc offering) have all been out of print for ages, making for a good bit of warmth in reacquaintance, particularly earlier outings like Thirty Three & 1/3, best known for Harrison's sly legal-system stab "This Song" and here outfitted with a bonus track, the poignant "Tears of the World." While some of the bonus tracks appended to the various albums are demos for extant album songs -- such as the stripped-down "Here Comes the Moon," added to Harrison's self-titled '79 offering -- others are long-hidden obscurities, like the two additions to Cloud Nine, taken from the film Shanghai Surprise. The double-disc album, Live in Japan, originally released in '92, is a hybrid SACD, while the other discs were remastered for clearer sound. The set is rounded out by an otherwise unavailable 89-minute DVD that collects some of Harrison's whimsical early video clips, including the mini-films for "Crackerbox Palace" and "Faster," as well as a four-song snippet from a Japanese tour, highlighted by a sparkling version of "Taxman." The DVD is housed in a casebound, 24-page booklet featuring extensive liner notes by David Fricke; new photographs, illustrations, and press clippings; and a short history of Dark Horse Records. Additionally, each of the individual discs includes song-by-song explanations culled from Harrison's book, I Me Mine, making Dark Horse a clear winner for fans of all stripes.

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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Stephen Thomas Erlewine
George Harrison's albums for Dark Horse drifted out of print in the late '90s as his contract with Warner Brothers expired. Over the half-decade, they fetched high prices on the collector's market, as any relatively rare Beatles-related item does, and the demand for these records -- along with the Traveling Wilburys albums, which were part of Harrison's Dark Horse/Warner contract -- never diminished. At the time of his death in November 2001, the albums were being prepared for reissue, but his passing delayed them for a few more years, and it wasn't until February 2004 that the albums -- Thirty Three & 1/3 (1976), George Harrison (1979), Somewhere In England (1981), Gone Troppo (1982), Cloud Nine (1987), and Live in Japan (1992) -- were reissued, both individually and as part of the lavish box set Dark Horse Years 1976-1992. All five of the studio albums have been remastered and are graced with a bonus track or two, while the double-live set has been reissued as a hybrid SACD with a 5.1 surround mix (a nice gesture, but it does raise the question of why wasn't the entire set released as hybrid SACD, the way the 2002 Rolling Stones and 2003 Bob Dylan reissues were). In addition, the box set contains an exclusive booklet and a DVD containing video highlights of the Dark Horse years. It seems like the box would be the definitive word on Harrison's latter-day career, and it very nearly is, but it comes short in a couple of ways. First, there is the aforementioned puzzling decision to release only one SACD in the set, which only highlights the fact that the rest of the discs are standard CDs (which do have very good remastering). Second, the bonus tracks are underwhelming. With the exception of Cloud Nine, which has two songs from the Shanghai Surprise soundtrack, there's only one bonus track per disc, and with the exception of Thirty Three & 1/3, which has the fine "Tears of the World," a demo of a song that's on the album. Harrison has a lot of unreleased material in the vault -- Somewhere In England is notorious for being reworked on Warner's request, so at the very least the excised songs could have been featured on this reissue -- so it's a disappointment that there's not more bonus material here. Third, the DVD isn't nearly as complete as it should have been, containing a ten-minute "Dark Horse Feature," some selections from the Live in Japan video, and the Shanghai Surprise movie, plus seven promotional videos, all prefaced with interview excerpts from Harrison. While the featurette would have been much more interesting if it was expanded to a full documentary, the real disappointment is that this doesn't contain all of Harrison's promotional music videos, with such gems as the lovely "Blow Away" missing in action (some may also wish that the videos had been mixed for 5.1 sound as well). Considering the steep price of the box set, it's hard not to think that this DVD could have been a little bit more thorough. That said, the box set is very well made: the art direction is lovely, the sound is terrific, and the hardcover minibook is beautiful, with good notes from David Fricke. All of this makes it an essential purchase for Harrison fans, who have already accepted the uneven quality of the albums and want them in their collection anyway.

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Product Details

Release Date:


Disc 1

  1. Woman Don't You Cry for Me
  2. Dear One
  3. Beautiful Girl
  4. This Song
  5. See Youself
  6. It's What You Value
  7. True Love
  8. Pure Smokey
  9. Crackerbox Palace
  10. Learning How to Love You
  11. Tears of the World

Disc 2

  1. Love Comes to Everyone
  2. Not Guilty
  3. Here Comes the Moon
  4. Soft-Hearted Hana
  5. Blow Away
  6. Faster
  7. Dark Sweet Lady
  8. Your Love Is Forever
  9. Soft Touch
  10. If You Believe
  11. Here Comes the Moon

Disc 3

  1. Blood from a Clone
  2. Unconsciousness Rules
  3. Life Itself
  4. All Those Years Ago
  5. Baltimore Oriole
  6. Teardrops
  7. That Which I Have Lost
  8. Writing's on the Wall
  9. Hong Kong Blues
  10. Save the World
  11. Save the World

Disc 4

  1. Wake Up My Love
  2. That's the Way It Goes
  3. I Really Love You
  4. Greece
  5. Gone Troppo
  6. Mystical One
  7. Unknown Delight
  8. Baby Don't Run Away
  9. Dream Away
  10. Circles
  11. Mystical One

Disc 5

  1. Want to Tell You
  2. Old Brown Shoe
  3. Taxman
  4. Give Me Love (Give Me Peace on Earth)
  5. If I Needed Someone
  6. Something
  7. What Is Life
  8. Dark Horse
  9. Piggies
  10. Got My Mind Set on You

Disc 6

  1. Cloud 9
  2. Here Comes the Sun
  3. My Sweet Lord
  4. All Those Years Ago
  5. Cheer Down
  6. Devil's Radio
  7. Isn't It a Pity
  8. While My Guitar Gently Weeps
  9. Roll Over Beethoven

Disc 7

  1. Cloud 9
  2. That's What It Takes
  3. Fish on the Sand
  4. Just for Today
  5. This Is Love
  6. When We Was Fab
  7. Devil's Radio
  8. Someplace Else
  9. Wreck of the Hesperus
  10. Breath Away from Heaven
  11. Got My Mind Set on You
  12. Shanghai Surprise
  13. Zig Zag

Disc 8

  1. Dark Horse Feature
  2. This Song
  3. Crackerbox Palace
  4. Faster
  5. Set on You
  6. Set on You
  7. When We Was Fab
  8. This Is Love
  9. Taxman
  10. Cloud 9
  11. Devil's Radio
  12. Cheer Down
  13. Shanghai Surprise
  14. Someplace Else
  15. Hottest Gong in Town

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Album Credits

Performance Credits

George Harrison   Primary Artist,Synthesizer,Bass,Guitar,Mandolin,Percussion,Keyboards,Marimbas,Vocals,Background Vocals,Musician,Jaltarang
Joe Brown   Mandolin,Background Vocals
Elton John   Piano
Bobby King   Background Vocals
Kooper   Synthesizer,Keyboards,Musician
Jeff Lynne   Bass,Guitar,Keyboards
Billy Preston   Organ,Synthesizer,Piano,Keyboards,Background Vocals
Ringo Starr   Drums,Musician
Syreeta   Background Vocals
Steve Winwood   Harmonium,Background Vocals,Polymoog,Mini Moog,Musician
Gary Wright   Piano,Keyboards,oberheim,Musician
Tom Scott   Flute,Horn,Saxophone,Lyricon,Musician
David Foster   Clavinet,fender rhodes
Gary Brooker   Synthesizer,Keyboards,Musician
Andy Fairweather Low   Guitar,Background Vocals,Musician
Herbie Flowers   Bass,Tuba,Musician
Jon Lord   Synthesizer
Jim Keltner   Percussion,Drums,Musician
Vicki Brown   Background Vocals
Eric Clapton   Guitar,Background Vocals,Musician
Ray Cooper   Synthesizer,Percussion,Drums,Glockenspiel,Keyboards,Marimbas,fender rhodes,Musician
Nathan East   Bass,Background Vocals,Musician
Steve Ferrone   Drums,Musician
William "Bill" Greene   Bass (Vocal),Background Vocals
Jim Horn   Baritone Saxophone,Tenor Saxophone
Alan Jones   Bass
Katie Kissoon   Vocals,Musician
Neil Larsen   Synthesizer,Piano,Keyboards,Mini Moog,Musician
Chuck Leavell   Keyboards,Background Vocals,Musician
Dave Mattacks   Drums,Musician
Mike Moran   Synthesizer,Piano,Keyboards,Synthesizer Bass,Musician
Del Newman   Musician
Andy Newmark   Drums,Musician
Tessa Niles   Vocals,Musician
Greg Phillinganes   Keyboards,Background Vocals,Musician
Emil Richards   Marimbas
Sarah Ricor   Background Vocals
Radina Sloan   Background Vocals
Henry Spinetti   Drums
Richard Tee   Organ,Piano,fender rhodes
Willie Weeks   Bass,Musician
Gayle Levant   Harp,Musician
Bobby Kok   Cello
Alla Rakha   Tabla,Musician
Alvin Taylor   Drums
Emily Richards   Marimbas,Musician
Pico Pena   Background Vocals

Technical Credits

Chuck Berry   Composer
Hoagy Carmichael   Composer
George Harrison   Composer,Producer
Jeff Lynne   Composer,Producer
Gary Wright   Composer
Johnny Harris   Engineer
Hank Cicalo   Engineer
John Collins   Contributor,Drum Technician
Ray Cooper   Producer,Contributor
David Costa   Art Direction
Richard Dodd   Engineer
John Etchells   Engineer
John Harris   Engineer
Lee Herschberg   Engineer
Phil McDonald   Producer,Engineer,Remixing
Del Newman   Horn Arrangements,String Arrangements
Cole Porter   Composer
Alan Rogan   Guitar Techician
Kumar Shankar   Engineer
Legs Larry Smith   Art Direction
Russ Titelman   Producer
Nelson Wilbury   Producer
Spike Wilbury   Producer
David Fricke   Liner Notes
Brian Grimwood   Illustrations
Jan Steward   Illustrations
Rudy Clark   Composer
Leroy Swearingen   Composer
Lee Dickson   Guitar Techician
Julie Macdonald   Sound Man
Laura Elkus Gross   Director
Olivia Harrison   Liner Notes
Jack Katz   Logo Adaptation
Drew Lorimer   Artwork,Redesign
Stuart Cary Welch   Illustrations

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The Dark Horse Years 1976-1992 5 out of 5 based on 1 ratings. 4 reviews.
Walterama 3 months ago
Guest More than 1 year ago
Aloha everyone! I got the box set today!! and I just wanted to say a big THANKS to the people who put it together - it totally rocks! I've been a Beatles fan for awhile, and this is my new prized possession. Not only does it include all 6 of the original Harrison Albums from the Dark Horse Years (now re-mastered and with previously unreleased tracks!) but there are also a bunch of new pics here that I've never seen anywhere before AND lots of bonus/previously unreleased music!! I rate this package very highly... it really is something special, and you all need to go get it now!! Enjoy.... Pete
Guest More than 1 year ago
This is the BEST Boxed Set I have ever seen... The DVD is amazing, the never before released photos are great, and the un-released tracks ROCK! I got mine as a gift, coupled with the Beatles 1st US Visit! Best Gift EVER!!
Guest More than 1 year ago
There's a trend in box sets today that packages an artists' entire recorded works (the Doors, Led Zeppelin, Paul Simon, Simon & Garfunkel, Jerry Garcia), or recorded works on a particular label (certain jazz giants have received this treatment such as Wes Montgomery and Miles Davis). 'The Dark Horse Years: 1976 - 1992' does a fine job of giving George Harrison fans all his albums on the Dark Horse label, nicely remastered, and the bonus DVD is a treat too. Indeed the set is short on the bonus tracks - I still have to resort to my 45 RPM of "Got My Mind Set on You" to hear "Lay His Head", plus having to seek out 'the Best of Dark Horse' from the early '90s to hear "Cockamamie Business" and the studio version of "Cheer Down". But focusing on what is in the 'DHY 76 - 92' box, albums 33 1/3, George Harrison, Somewhere in England, Gone Troppo, Cloud Nine, Live in Japan -- ranging from so-so to very good albums, they now reside neatly in a classy box, bestowing a level of importance that was George Harrison's later solo years.