An original copy of Lang’s audiophile favorite from 1992 with superb Double Plus (A++) grades on both sides – exceptionally quiet vinyl too
The sound of this rare import is rich, full-bodied, lively, and warm, with solid bass and breathy, clear vocals
Includes Lang favorites “Miss Chatelaine” and “Constant Craving” – both are guaranteed to sound better than you have ever heard them
4 stars: “… the craft of the album is impressive indeed, and few artists have reinvented themselves with as much poise and panache as lang did on Ingénue.”
If you’re a fan of Ms Lang, her classic album from 1992 surely belongs in your collection.
By 1992 records like this were only released on import vinyl and typically went out of print soon after they started their descent down the pop charts. I used to sell them back in the day and supplies were extremely limited and unpredictable. And once they were gone they were virtually never reissued. All of those factors conspire to make the cost of acquiring the mintiest pressings from overseas fairly high, and of course the main reason you have never seen the album on our site before.
Be that as it may, we have this copy available and it is not only very good sounding but the music is every bit as good as I remember it.(more…)
This early UK pressing of the band’s debut LP boasts outstanding Double Plus (A++) sound from start to finish
Here are the full-bodied mids, punchy lows, and clear, open, extended highs that let this Pretenders Classic come to life, and beat the pants off the dubby domestic pressing, and anything else you care to put up against it
One of engineer Bill Price’s better efforts behind the boards, and Chris Thomas’s production is State of the Art
5 stars: “Few rock & roll records rock as hard or with as much originality as the Pretenders’ eponymous debut album. A sleek, stylish fusion of Stonesy rock & roll, new wave pop, and pure punk aggression, Pretenders is teeming with sharp hooks and a viciously cool attitude.”
Forget the dubby domestic vinyl, these Brit pressings are the only way to go. (more…)
This outstanding Talking Heads LP boasts Double Plus (A++) sound from start to finish – exceptionally quiet vinyl too
I’d be hard-pressed to name another group from the era who put out more groundbreaking yet accessible records than the Talking Heads
Producer Brian Eno wasn’t shy about adding multiple layers of effects and processing; the texture of Eno’s synthesizers gives the music depth and character
4 1/2 stars: “…the music is becoming denser and more driving… with lyrics that match the music’s power… its better songs are as good as any Talking Heads ever did”
If you’re as big a Talking Heads fan as we are, this is a classic from 1979 that belongs in your collection.
The complete list of titles from 1979 that we’ve reviewed to date can be found here.
As huge fans of this band, it was a major thrill for us to complete a shootout for this album recently. We found that the best copies had wonderful transparency, meaty bass, Art Rockin’ energy and a refreshing overall freedom from distortion.
You’ll find Shootout Winning Triple Plus (A+++) sound or close to it on both sides of this superb pressing
Here’s the midrange magic that’s surely missing from whatever 180g reissue has been made from the tapes (or, to be clear, a modern digital master copied from who-knows-what-tapes)
This is that rare copy with top quality sound and exceptionally quiet vinyl – it plays Mint Minus to Mint Minus Minus, as quiet as they ever do
“Despite its perfunctory nature, however, True Stories is not without its charms… ‘Dream Operator’ is one of the most affecting tunes Talking Heads ever recorded; the closing-credits theme ‘City of Dreams’ is similarly touching.”
An outstanding pressing of Little Creatures with solid Double Plus (A++) sound or BETTER from start to finish – this one has the BIG BEAT sound we love
I ask you, what record from 1985 sounds better than Little Creatures?
These sides are rockin’ on tracks like Stay Up Late, Road To Nowhere, And She Was, Creatures of Love and more
Surprisingly big, punchy and open sound for this ’85 pop classic – a Top 100 album and longtime Better Records favorite
4 1/2 stars: “Ear Candy …a pop album, and an accomplished one, by a band that knew what it was doing.”
We’re huge fans of Little Creatures, and when you hear a copy like this you’ll know exactly why. Not many records from this era sound as amazingly rich as this one, not in our experience anyway.
On the better copies, the sound is punchy, smooth & so ANALOG, with an especially beefy bottom end, the kind a good Big Beat Pop Album record needs. For a good reference think Get The Knack or Parallel Lines.
Tight, punchy, surprisingly deep note-like bass absolutely makes or breaks the sound on Little Creatures. Without the proper bass foundation this funky beat-crazy Talking Heads album can’t BEGIN to do what it’s trying to do: get your feet tappin’ and your body rockin’ to the music.
The better pressings are surprisingly dynamic, with a sweet, often silky top end. The drums are very well recorded throughout — you can really hear the room around that big kit. You will also find that the higher-rez pressings give David Byrne’s vocals the presence and breathy texture they need. The overall sound will be open, spacious, and sweet — even three-dimensional.(more…)
Another in our series of Home Audio Exercises with advice on What to Listen For (WTLF) as you critically evaluate your copy of the album.
With Our Love turned out to be one of our favorite tests for side one. The picking of the rhythmic guitar in the intro told us just about everything we needed to know about smear, veiling and resolution. On most copies the instrument is simply blurry, the notes mashed together. When you’ve got a copy with its transients intact, resolving properly and clearly right there in front of you, you have the makings of a Hot Stamper side one.
My other test track for side one was Warning Signs. This is a great track for evaluating transparency and bass. On the average copy you’d never know how much ambience exists around the drums. Hint: it’s a lot.
Our favorite copies have a fair amount of WHOMP down low, giving the bass guitar that rich, beefy sound that we’re simply crazy for here at Better Records. Once you’ve heard a copy with well-defined, note-like bass, nothing less will do.
A great test track for side two is Artists Only. The guitars in the intro section are almost unbearable to listen to on most copies. I recognize that I am somewhat sensitive to harsh high frequencies, but I’m literally in pain when I listen to an overly compressed, overly midrangy copy. There’s got to be a better way!(more…)
Road to Ruin makes its Hot Stamper debut here with outstanding Double Plus (A++) sound from first note to last – exceptionally quiet vinyl too
This superb recording is huge and lively with startling dynamics and in-the-room-presence like nothing you’ve heard
4 1/2 stars: “It’s clear throughout that Tommy and Stasium definitely had the best interests of the band in mind as they aimed the sound a little closer to the mainstream, and the changes they made served to open it up in interesting ways.”
HOT STAMPERS DISCOVERED AT LAST! We’ve been trying to find a great sounding copy of this album forever, and this is the week we finally succeeded. It takes an exceptional pressing to get all the elements correct — the funky bottom end; the processed, multi-tracked vocals; the Brian Eno production weirdness and so on.
This is a brilliant album but a typically problematic record. Most copies get some things right but fail miserably in other areas. There are smeary copies that can’t deliver the punchy bottom you need, grainy copies that make the vocals painful to listen to, and plenty of copies that are just too dark or flat sounding for anyone to enjoy. Note that the first track on both sides will sound the worst. The sound gets better, though, as you get further into the album.(more…)
AMAZING SOUND ON BOTH SIDES of this White Hot Stamper LP. Side two rates A+++ and side one is not far behind at A++ – A+++. This copy murdered the typical pressings in an incredibly enjoyable shootout.We couldn’t believe how amazing this album can sound on a top copy. I’d even say that it’s a sonic step up from More Songs About Buildings and Food, Fear Of Music and Remain In Light, probably tying with Little Creatures for top Talking Heads honors.
We’re huge Talking Heads fans at Better Records, but we’ve never tried to shoot out this album before this year because the copies we had played to this point were no great shakes. Regular copies of this album are now getting priced up to $17.99 at our local stores, so we just hadn’t bothered to pick up too many until we heard a surprisingly good copy earlier this year. We started stocking up on them and we ended needing a big stack, because only a few of them were able to show us what this album can really do.(more…)