Picture: Free / The Vinyl Collection box


SDE was the first music blog to tell you about the forthcoming Free Vinyl Collection 7LP collection, so why not also be the first to bring you an image of this much anticipated set.

It’s looks fabulous; the sticker confirms that everything is remastered from the original tapes; these are all on 180g vinyl and as we suspected Free Live! is indeed the seventh LP to add to the studio albums.

Best of all, it’s still available to pre-order at that fantastic price in the UK.

The Vinyl Collection is out on 9 September 2016.

Albums in the box:

  1. Tons of Sobs
  2. Free
  3. Fire and Water
  4. Highway
  5. Free at Last
  6. Heartbreaker
  7.  Free Live! 

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This has arrived and I’ve had a chance to look at it. This set comes in a box which is of excellent quality, mayerial-wise. What lets it down is the aforementioned choice of cover picture of the band standing in front of a giant hand.
If that’s not bad enough, on the rear cover the thumbnail that accompanies the track listing for Fire & Water is actually Free Live.
To a layman for a set that costs best part of a ton and has had the gestation period of a killer whale, and from a big company such as Universal, this lack of attention to detail is as irritating as it is inexplicable.

Kevin Brown

Paul, The Free Box is now up on Universal’s site, ” U Discover”, very little info on remastering BUT when you click the “Pre-Order” button it give’s a bit more info on who has done the remastering, a guy called Andy Pearce has done the New Remasters……….(Not a name I’m familiar with) . The box is only £84 on Universal’s site so I guess Amazon may have got their initial pricing wrong as Spin CD’s also has it for £84.

Kevin Brown

Hi Keith , that was the information I was told when I bought a 3rd Vinyl Pressing of Free Live in the 80’s…………..so the Tyrannosarus Rex section was even removed way back then, I think it only exist’s on Island (First Pressing) Sunrise Label.

peter chrisp

Paul it looks as though these new editions will have a new remaster for 2016, are they exactly the same as the ones that were completed in 2001? Or i guess just an update? I noticed too the prices on Amazon UK are very very cheap and will be available 9th September @ 6 pounds & a discount to go with it. Judging by the price of the new editions it will be interesting to see if each disc will a deluxe or a single disc.

Kevin Brown

My understanding is that Island had to remove Tyrannosarus Rex track over the PA at the beginning of Free Live LP because they would have to pay royalties……………so my guess is it will probably not be on the new remasters………..

Keith Simpson

Dear Kevin . i always suspected it was a legal issue of some sort . Same as the Isley Brothers bit missing on Zep’s BBC sesions album . Thanks Kevin . Yours . Keith .


Cheers Paul – preordered as advised ;-)
Free a massively talented band whose flame didn’t burn long enough…
I have decent first pressings of these lot along with the recent Japanese SACDs … But the temptation is just too much lol fingers crossed they are analogue mastering that would be awesome. Waiting on my Half-speed Abbey Road vinyl release of Fire and Water that is due any day now.

Kevin Brown

Thanks Paul, definitely interested in the “2CD Deluxe” sets

Kevin Brown

Hi Paul,
I know it says “Remastered from the Original Tapes” but so were the 2001 Remastered CDs…………so my question is “Are these new vinyl discs just taken from the 2001 Digital transfers” as I know a lot of these Universal Vinyl Box sets just seem to use past digital transfers to make these vinyl discs which seems to miss the point somewhat when making a true Analogue Vinyl Copy. If the “Beatles”, “Nick Drake” and the “Faces” can have “True” Analogue transfers to Vinyl then surely one of the greatest bands ever (Free) deserve nothing less.The cover of the Box is very poor the “photo” is not even central to the box………and this photo is in colour so why they use a black and white photo is beyond me. I’ve ordered it but I’m ready to cancel if these discs are indeed just taken from the 2001 Digital Transfers. Is it possible Paul for you to find out this information on this vinyl set from Universal plus also are we to really to see 2CD Deluxe releases of Free in the future…………..

Keith Simpson

Paul . Do you know if Live and Heartbreaker will have the inner sleeves ? Also will the Tyrannosarus Rex playing over the PA be reinstated at the beginning of Live ? It is missing on the cd remaster . I always considered it an essential part of the atmosphere . Yours . Keith .


Pre-order pricing to date = not fantastic. Out of line unless there’s an equally fantastic tale to accompany of arduous sourcing & remastering efforts – with the fruits of said labor bearing out such efforts. Confirmation of analog remasters an encouraging start…

Simon F

Does not look like Free Live comes with it’s original back opening envelope flap judging by the record emerging from the right hand side of the sleeve?!


This is glorious for the fifth greastest group in the world…um, in my head! With that said…it’s great there is actually a box for this set! No book?! I think understand from people on this website something like that would “take too much time” and would be too hard. Right? What a crock of shit. Otherwise this looks amazing even though we can’t see the back of the box…


There’s an excellent book with the Songs Of Yesterday cd box set.

Would be good if they could replicate it in LP size.

I don’t think it will happen as previous Universal Music box sets have not.

Rob Dickinson

There was some talk of a comprehensive boxset of 19 cd’s with all sorts of gubbins on there; there’s still mention of it on Free’s website, but that was back in 2012. Apparently this is now not being released as Paul Rogers objected. I pulled this info from a forum, last updated a year ago. A lot of work would have already gone into the preparation of a 19 cd set, so never say never, but you may have to wait for the passing of Paul Rogers before it see’s the light of day.


There are Free CDs on Amazon showing as due for release in September, Looks like all the albums in this set.


Hmmm… Yes, a CD version of this would be great. Although those 2001 Island remasters are pretty decent, really.

Which begs the question: are these recent remasters?

David Burrows

Hi .. er any chance of a cd version ???

Rare Glam

Yes, me too a CD version please! The Japanese mini LP CD sets are expensive when found, what about a ‘Classic album selection’ type box a la the new Cream one for £15? There’s only otherwise ‘best ofs and archive out take box sets around. Also who chose their LP sleeve art work, all of them are uniformly like ugly blotches!

Rare Glam

OK, a bit unfair, not all of the sleeve art are like ugly blotches are, but none of them are exactly captivating!


Thanks Paul. Really looking forward to it.

That big hand behind the band on the box set cover is a bit weird!
Could they not have got a better image?

Neil Storey

Bizarre… image shows Highway as a gatefold sleeve. It wasn’t. Only the first two were.

Raymond Mitchell

The first two albums were gatefold sleeves in the UK, and the rest single sleeves. But Highway was released as a gatefold in Germany (and I think some other parts of Europe) with a colour picture of the band as the spread.