A distinguished member of the Better Records Jazz Hall of Fame.
This White Hot Stamper has the best side two we have ever heard! Side two fulfills the promise of the direct to disc recording approach in a way that few — very few — direct to disc pressings do. To be honest, the typical pressing of The King James Version leaves much to be desired. As a rule two areas are especially lacking: there is a noticeable lack of presence on most copies, causing the brass to get stuck in the speakers and lose its bite; and, every bit as bad, the sound is often just plain compressed, lacking energy and life. The musicians on most copies are just not giving it their all.
But wait a minute. This is a direct disc. How can it be compressed, or lack transients? Aren’t those tape recorder problems that are supposed to be eliminated by the direct to disc recording process?
Maybe so, but there is some very strong evidence to the contrary, and this record is that evidence. Side two kills side one in the areas we described. Side one earned an A Plus grade, quite good, far better than average, but not in the same league as side two. But other side ones we’ve played have had plenty of energy and drive and jump out of the speakers sound, just not this one. It’s the pressing, not the recording.
Even though the mastering is fixed at the live event, there are many other variables which no doubt affect the sound. The album is pressed in three different countries: the United States, Japan and Germany. Many mothers were pulled from the acetates and many, many stampers made from those mothers. (more…)