A killer vintage copy of this exceptionally well-recorded Stones album from ’69, with superb Double Plus (A++) sound from first note to last
Clear, rich and lively throughout – the Tubey Magic of the best pressings is what has them sounding the way they should
One of a select group of Rolling Stones Must Own records which we prize above all others – Sticky Fingers and Let It Bleed round out the trio
5 stars: “Basic rock & roll was not forgotten, however: ‘Street Fighting Man’… was one of their most innovative singles, and ‘Sympathy for the Devil’… was an image-defining epic.”
Good pressings are certainly not easy to come by — this kind of rich, full-bodied, musical sound is the exception, not the rule. And there’s actual space and extension up top as well, something you certainly don’t hear on most pressings. This is a fantastic album, and excellent sides like these give it the kind of sound it deserves.
Raw Rock & Roll Sound
Of course, Hot Stamper Sound still only gets you what’s on the tape. In this case, it’s some rude, crude, dirty rock & roll. That’s clearly what the Stones were going for here. In terms of audiophile appeal, Tea For The Tillerman this ain’t. Nor does it want to be!
What sets the best copies apart from the pack is a fuller, richer tonal balance, which is achieved mostly by having plenty of bass and lower midrange energy. The copies that are bass shy — most of them, that is to say — tend to bring out more of that midrangy shortcoming.(more…)
Ella’s first album to come out after Clap Hands finally makes its Hot Stamper debut, with outstanding Double Plus (A++) sound on both sides
What took us by surprise was how rich and sweet this original Verve was – so many of Ella’s early albums don’t have the smooth, natural vocals of this pressing
We absolutely love the swinging R&B organ Bill Doggett brought to these big band sessions, all backing an exceptionally well recorded First Lady of Song
“Ella Fitzgerald is in the spotlight throughout, mostly singing swing-era songs along with a couple of newer pieces… [her] voice was in its prime, and the charts are excellent.”
This copy is as quiet as we can find any domestic original Verve stereo pressing. The monos of this title — which naturally are five times more common — have that hard, honky sound that so many mono cuttings made from Ella’s stereo recordings suffer from.
Clap Hands is a notable exception to that rule, and of course any of her albums recorded in mono sound best in mono, when cut right and pressed right.
1962 was a great year for Ella. She released this album early in the year and followed it up with the Grammy winning Ella Swings Brightly with Nelson. Later in the same year Verve released Ella Swings Gently with Nelson, and it’s interesting to note that all three of these classic albums were recorded late in 1961. The woman could do no wrong! We would have to wait for her first release of 1963, Ella Sings Broadway, before she put out a clunker. But who’s fault is that? The music is fine, it’s the recording that’s bad (as far as we can tell; we have yet to hear one sound good).(more…)
Only the second Shootout Winning copy to ever hit the site and boy is it KILLER! Triple Plus (A+++) sound on both sides
About as quiet as these British copies come – Mint Minus Minus throughout
“… “tasteful, subtle and refined” – Melody Maker
This original pressing has the kind of Tubey Magical Midrange that modern records cannot 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.(more…)
This Minty looking Columbia Six Eye Demo LP has SUPERB SOUND and some of the quietest Six Eye vinyl I’ve ever heard. If you’re a fan of either Dave Brubeck or Jimmy Rushing you can’t do better than this album. The sound is as close to perfection as I can imagine.
This is an exceptionally nice original Pacific Jazz Black Label Mono LP with SUPERB SOUND. Pure Pleasure just did a 180g reissue of this album, but the real thing is THE REAL THING! This copy has the PRESENCE, the DYNAMICS and the LIFE of real jazz. I can’t think of a more fun west coast jazz session that sounds as good outside of the best Contemporary records. This one gets a top recommendation.
Shootout Winning Triple Plus (A+++) sound on both sides and the first to hit the site in many years
This UK Original Plum and Orange pressing is by far the best way to hear the album, but finding a clean one was no walk in the park
“In an era when psychedelic meanderings were the order of the day, Yes delivered a surprisingly focused and exciting record that covered lots of bases…” – All Music
I wish I could say that this was the sonic (or musical) equivalent of Fragile of The Yes Album — or even the second album, Time and a Word — but that’s simply not the case. Still, there’s a lot to like here and it’s fun to hear the band developing their style and growing into the pop-prog behemoth they would become with their third release.
What shootout winning sides such as these 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 1969
Tight, note-like, rich, full-bodied bass, with the correct amount of weight down low
Natural tonality in the midrange — with all the instruments (and effects!) having the correct timbre
Transparency and resolution, critical to hearing into the three-dimensional studio space
No doubt there’s more but we hope that should do for now. Playing the record is of course the only way to hear all of the above.(more…)
TWO EXCELLENT SIDES on this British Sunray Island pressing. SSTTA is very hard to find nowadays, but we managed to put together a big enough stack to make a shootout possible, and this copy acquited very well indeed — it was miles ahead of the typical pressing. As is usually the case with these originals, the vinyl is a bit noisier than ideal at Mint Minus Minus.
No doubt this is the best album Robert Palmer ever made. With Lowell George’s unmistakable slide guitar and members of the Meters providing backup, as well as the amazing Bernard Purdie on drums, it’s the only Robert Palmer release that consistently works all the way through as an album. The entire first side is excellent from top to bottom, with the title track being our favorite RP song of all time. (more…)
Wow, the first nice Reiner Sound on Shaded Dog to make it to our site. Why? Because the few copies we’ve run across that looked decent enough to clean and play were just too noisy to enjoy. Not many copies have survived the bad turntables of their day with all their top end and inner grooves intact, but we’re proud to say that this one has!
This former TAS List record really surprised us on two counts. First, you will not believe how DYNAMIC the recording is. Of all the classical recordings we’ve played lately I would have to say this is THE MOST DYNAMIC of them all.(more…)
A KILLER 6-Eye original stereo pressing of this wonderful recording, with Shootout Winning Triple Plus (A+++) sound on the first side and Double Plus (A++) sound on the second
Both sides are incredibly Tubey Magical as befits a Brubeck recording from 1962 produced by Teo Macero
Superb 1962 All Tube sound courtesy of the extraordinary engineering skills of Fred Plaut
4 Stars: “One of Dave Brubeck’s more adventurous albums… Highly recommended along with Brubeck’s other Time recordings.”
Need a refresher course in Tubey Magic after playing too many modern recordings or remasterings? These vintage Brubeck recordings are overflowing with it. Rich, smooth, sweet, full of ambience, dead-on correct tonality — everything that we listen for in a great record is here.
Getting The Balance Right
Clean and clear yet rich and sweet, this copy managed to find the perfect balance of these attributes so essential to the sound of vintage jazz recordings. You want to find that rare copy that keeps what is good about a Tubey Magical analog recording from The Golden Age of Jazz while managing to avoid the pitfalls so common to them: smear, lack of top end extension, opacity and blubber.(more…)
A wonderful copy that lets this music swing the way it’s supposed to! Triple Plus (A+++) sound throughout
Both sides are incredible with big, clear and present sound — Deano’s vocals are Right On The Money
With Nelson Riddle arranging, the album has plenty of swing all right — and the brass sounds amazing here
4 1/2 Stars in the All Music Guide: “…an easy swinging collection…”
If you’re a fan of the Capitol Sinatra sound you’ll love this record. It’s an exceptionally difficult title to find in anything but trashed condition. I’ve been a fan of this record for many years but this is the first copy we’ve been able to find that’s clean enough to go up on the site with White Hot Stamper grades. (more…)