Pretty flat and lifeless. You would never understand why audiophiles rave about this recording by listening to the Classic Records pressing.
We played it up against our best, and as expected it was nothing to write home about. Since Rudy has remastered and ruined practically all the Blue Note CDs by now, you will have your work cut out for you if you want to find a good sounding version of Midnight Blue. This sure ain’t one.
Of course we would be more than happy to get you an amazing sounding copy — it’s what we do — but the price will be five to ten times (or more) what the Classic costs. In our opinion it’s money well spent, as you will see in our review below.
Since the Classic conveys very little of what the musicians were up to whilst recording the album, our advice is to cross it off your list of records of interest. It’s thirty bucks down the drain.(more…)
Woodface easily meets the definition of a Desert Island Disc. I’ve played it hundreds of times and enjoy it more with each play, which insures that on my desert island I’ll never get sick of it. To my way of thinking it contains some of the most original, melodic, hook-laden, sophisticated popular music recorded in the last twenty years. Astonishingly (to me, anyway) it didn’t even chart here in the states, a sad commentary about the state of the music biz, a state that only seems to worsen as the decades roll on.
My guess is this is still a fairly good Classic Records jazz album. Years ago we wrote the following:
“This is actually one of the best Classic Jazz albums they released back in the ’90s. Both the music and sound are excellent. Jacquet is one of the creators of the big soulful tenor sax sound. I don’t know of anyone who does it better.”
We can’t be sure that we would still feel the same way. My guess is that this is still a good record if you can get one for the 30 bucks we used to charge.
160 gram Simply Vinyl pressing of this EXCELLENT LP. This is the early, BLUESY Mac, about as far from Rumours as you can get. The sound here is excellent — dark and smooth like a good British Blues album should be. Simply Vinyl did a superb job here.
Correction: an unnamed mastering engineer at the label that owns the tape did a superb job. Simply Vinyl isn’t in the business of mastering or remastering ANYTHING. They leave that up to the pros at the record labels.
Sometimes those guys screw it up and sometimes they get it right.
One of the better Simply Vinyl recuts. We haven’t played a copy of it in years, but back in the day we liked it, so let’s call it a “B” with the caveat that the older the review, the more likely we are to have changed our minds. Not sure if we would still agree with what we wrote back in the ’90s when this record came out, but here it is anyway.
“This 180 gram LP comes recommended, with very good English sound (smooth, rich) for this early Richard Thompson folk music, with the wonderful Sandy Denny on vocals. Happily, not your standard audiophile fare.”
A 5 Star Rave Review in the All Music Guide!(more…)
When we did a shootout for this record way back in October of 2007 we took the opportunity to play the Classic Records 200 gram pressing. Maybe we got a bad one, who knows, but that record did not sound remotely as good as the real thing (6 eye or 360, both can be quite good). The piano sounded thin and hard, which was quite unexpected given the fact that we used to consider the Classic LP one of their few winners and actually recommended it.
As we said in our shootout: “We dropped the needle on the Classic reissue to see how it stacked up against a serious pressing. Suffice it to say, the real Time Out magic isn’t going to be found on any heavy vinyl reissue!”
Tonally correct, which is one thing you can’t say for most of the Zeps in this series, that’s for sure. Those of you with crappy domestic copies, crappy imported reissues and crappy CDs, which is pretty much all there is of this recording, will not know what you’re missing.
Compare this title to some of the better Classic Zep releases and I expect you will notice that hearing into the midrange is a more difficult proposition on these songs, with reduced ambience and space around the voices and instruments.
In other words, like most Heavy Vinyl, it’s OPAQUE and AIRLESS.
“A top top jazz title! This is one of our favorite Classic Records LPs from the old days when we were selling Heavy Vinyl. We haven’t played this record in a long time but we liked it very much when it was in print in the ’90s.”
We can’t be sure that we would still feel the same way. My guess is that this is still a fairly good record if you can get one for the 30 bucks we used to charge.
There are certainly some incredible sounding pressings of this album out there, but who has the resources it takes to find them? Most of the original Blue Notes we come across these days turn out to have mediocre sound, and many of them have severely damaged inner grooves. Even the mintiest looking copies often turn out to be too noisy for most audiophiles, Blue Note vinyl being what it is.
This is of course why the hacks at Classic Records did so well for themselves [until they went under] hawking remastered versions of classic albums pressed on new, quieter vinyl.
The problem is that most of their stuff just doesn’t sound all that hot, this album included. We’ve played it; it’s decent, but any Hot Stamper will show you just how much music you are missing.
If you want to hear this album with amazing fidelity but don’t want to spend the time, money and energy collecting, cleaning, and playing mostly mediocre copies until you luck into a good quiet one, a Hot Stamper pressing is the only way to go.