Eric Clapton / Self-Titled – Good Horns, Probably Good Everything

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The sound of the horn arrangements backing practically every song on the album are key to the quality of the pressing and mastering. Blurry, smeary, leading-edge-challenged horns are the kiss of death on this album, as are grainy, gritty, transistory ones. When the horns have clarity, correct tonality, plenty of space around them and a solid, full-bodied sound, probably every other instrument in the soundscape will too.

This is not your usual Clapton album, and that’s a good thing, because most Clapton albums are full of filler. Not so here — almost every song is good, and many are superb.