Tom Jones – A-tom-ic Jones

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  • Tom Jones’ sophomore release makes its Hot Stamper debut here with STUNNING Triple Plus (A+++) sound from start to finish
  • Punchy, dynamic, transparent, spacious and musical throughout – you won’t believe how big and bold the sound is on this Parrot original pressing
  • The over-the-top production for the theme song to Thunderball may be a bit much (although we love it for what it is), but the rest of the album is classic Tom Jones
  • This is what vintage ’60s analog is all about, that smooth, relaxed sound that never calls attention to itself and just lets the music flow
  • “From tender ballads sung in understated style like ‘Where Do You Belong’ to all out rockers like ‘This and That,’ Jones voice and charisma shine effortlessly…”

This vintage Parrot Label Stereo pressing has the kind of Tubey Magical Midrange that modern records rarely even BEGIN to reproduce. Folks, that sound is gone and it sure isn’t showing signs of coming back. If you love hearing INTO a recording, actually being able to “see” the performers, and feeling as if you are sitting in the studio with the band, this is the record for you. It’s what vintage all analog recordings are known for — this sound.

If you exclusively play modern repressings of vintage recordings, I can say without fear of contradiction that you have never heard this kind of sound on vinyl. Old records have it — not often, and certainly not always — but maybe one out of a hundred new records do, and those are some pretty long odds.

What the best sides of A-tom-ic Jones have to offer is not hard to hear:

  • The biggest, most immediate staging in the largest acoustic space
  • The most Tubey Magic, without which you have almost nothing. CDs give you clean and clear. Only the best vintage vinyl pressings offer the kind of Tubey Magic that was on the tapes in 1966
  • Tight, note-like, rich, full-bodied bass, with the correct amount of weight down low
  • Natural tonality in the midrange — with all the instruments having the correct timbre
  • Transparency and resolution, critical to hearing into the three-dimensional space of the studio

No doubt there’s more but we hope that should do for now. Playing the record is the only way to hear all of the qualities we discuss above, and playing the best pressings against a pile of other copies under rigorously controlled conditions is the only way to find a pressing that sounds as good as this one does.

What We’re Listening For on A-tom-ic Jones

  • Energy for starters. What could be more important than the life of the music?
  • The Big Sound comes next — wall to wall, lots of depth, huge space, three-dimensionality, all that sort of thing.
  • Then transient information — fast, clear, sharp attacks, not the smear and thickness common to most LPs.
  • Tight, note-like bass with clear fingering — which ties in with good transient information, as well as the issue of frequency extension further down.
  • Next: transparency — the quality that allows you to hear deep into the soundfield, showing you the space and air around all the players.
  • Then: presence and immediacy. The vocals aren’t “back there” somewhere, way behind the speakers. They’re front and center where any recording engineer worth his salt would have put them.
  • Extend the top and bottom and voila, you have The Real Thing — an honest to goodness Hot Stamper.

TRACK LISTING

Side One

Thunderball
True Love Comes Only Once In A Lifetime
Key To My Heart
These Things You Don’t Forget
Dr. Love
I’ll Never Let You Go

Side Two

Promise Her Anything
A Little You
In A Woman’s Eyes
More
Face Of A Loser
Where Do You Belong

Amazon 5 Star Rave Review

Tom Jones’ third album A-Tom-Ic Jones still finds the singer working more late 50’s early 60’s style rock music and not the country-western hits and big band era ballads that dominated his recordings into the ’70s. Here, most of the songs are originals, including “ThunderBall,” a trans-atlantic Top 40 hit that served as theme song to the fourth James Bond movie.

From tender ballads sung in understated style, like “Where Do You Belong,” to all-out rockers like “This and That,” Jones’s voice and charisma shine effortlessly. This is the last of the “old era” Tom Jones albums before his music moved towards more adult, less teen-oriented sounds.

-Tom, May 29, 2003

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