It was on this album that all of the Seekers' varied attributes – including Judith Durham's powerful vocals, the increasingly virtuoso-level playing (especially on the acoustic 12-string) and singing of Bruce Woodley, Athol Guy, and Keith Potger, and Woodley's burgeoning songwriting talent – kicked in at their peak at the same time. The album opens with the title track, a Woodley original that's one of the best folk-style recordings to come out of the British Invasion and also one of the Seekers' (and Durham's) greatest performances, hers and the others' voices, coupled with their acoustic guitars, evoking the sound of bells chiming.
Recorded in 1966, Robert Shaw's Grammy Award-winning performance of Handel's Messiah marks an important turning-point in this work's interpretation, clearly moving away from the ponderous, overly reverential style of early twentieth century renditions and pointing toward the leaner versions of the 1970s onwards, which follow Baroque-period practices. (…) Evenly divided between two discs, this recording of Messiah is complete, and it is preferred over RCA's 1992 excerpt album The Great Choruses from Messiah.
Superb… Szell shows the utmost sensitivity to every facet of the music… His interpretation is backed by flawless playing by the Cleveland Orchestra. – The Gramophone
Swedish trombonist Eje Thelin and French tenor saxophonist Barney Wilen were two of the top European jazz musicians for several decades before their deaths in the 1990s. They first joined forces briefly in Thelin's quartet in 1963. Based in bop and earlier forms of jazz, Thelin and Wilen were open to freer improvising and music from other countries. In 1966 they joined forces, and two sessions are included on the 1966 With Barney Wilen CD. The first one features a quintet with pianist Lars Sjösten, bassist Erik Lundborg, and drummer Rune Carlsson that is joined by eight brass, bass clarinet, and flute for four inventive Thelin originals. While those performances are excellent, it is the other five numbers (which include second versions of a pair of Thelin's tunes plus "It Could Happen to You" and "Dear Old Stockholm") that are of greatest interest. The playing by the pianoless quartet (comprised of Thelin, Wilen, Carlsson, and bassist Palle Danielsson) is looser and freer with plenty of fireworks occurring in the often intuitive music. This set is easily recommended, particularly to listeners who are not aware that talented Europeans had been playing creative jazz for decades.