This STUNNING pressing offers Shootout Winning Triple Plus (A+++) sound or close to it from start to finish
Gil Evans wrote the superb orchestral arrangements and Rudy Van Gelder captured them on lovely analog tape – what’s not to like?
We’ve really been digging these Creed Taylor productions for years now – it may not be serious jazz, but it’s no less interesting and captivating for it
“His landmark 1965 collaboration with Gil Evans, Guitar Forms rivals anything the arranger did with Miles Davis. Indeed, the track “Lotus Land” has a bolero form very reminiscent of Sketches of Spain. Throughout, Burrell takes thoughtful, concise, and utterly musical solos, and even switches to acoustic classical guitar on “Prelude #2” and “Loie.””
For us audiophiles both the sound and the music here are wonderful. If you’re looking to demonstrate just how good 1965 All Tube Analog sound can be, this killer copy will do the trick.
This pressing is super spacious, sweet, and positively dripping with ambience. Talk about Tubey Magic, the liquidity of the sound here is positively uncanny. This is vintage analog at its best, so full-bodied and relaxed you’ll wonder how it ever came to be that anyone seriously contemplated trying to improve it. (more…)
Cheganca finally makes its Hot Stamper debut here with Shootout Winning Triple Plus (A+++) sound or very close to it throughout
Spacious, sweet and positively dripping with ambience – both the sound and the bossa-nova-meets-exotica music are nothing but ear candy on the right system
Creed Taylor (the CTI man) produced and Val Valentin engineered – what’s not to like?
Cheganca would be a welcome addition to any bossa nova fan’s collection. The fat, swinging sound of this surprisingly small combo is a marvel even by modern standards. Alongside organ giants like Jimmy Smith or today’s Joey DeFrancesco, Wanderley will go down in history as one of the instrument’s champions.”
This superb collaboration debuts with STUNNING Shootout Winning Triple Plus (A+++) sound from start to finish and ’60s vinyl that’s about as quiet as any we can find
Smooth, full-bodied and Tubey Magical, the brilliant Ray Hall engineered this Demo Disc using an All Tube chain back in 1963, and it’s glorious to hear that sound reproduced on modern hi-rez equipment
4 stars: ” Getz relies mostly upon native Brazilians for his backing. Thus, the soft-focused grooves are considerably more attuned to what was actually coming out of Brazil at the time… Two bona fide giants, Antonio Carlos Jobim and Luiz Bonfá (who gets co-billing), provide the guitars and all of the material, and Maria Toledo contributes an occasional throaty vocal.”
With a shootout winning Triple Plus (A+++) side two and a Double Plus (A++) side one, this early stereo pressing is a knockout – exceptionally quiet vinyl too
Ella is rich, Tubey Magical and breathy – this is the way she should sound, and that makes this copy a true Demo Disc
To get the vocals AND the brass to sound right on the same copy is the trick, and these two sides pulled it off
4 1/2 Stars: “…this 1963 LP was the first time (other than a couple songs) that Ella Fitzgerald and Count Basie recorded together. The match-up was so logical that it would be repeated many times over the next 20 years.”
Take it from an Ella fan, you can’t go wrong with this one. The sound is rich and full-bodied, in the proud tradition of a classic vintage jazz vocal album with big band backup. You could easily demonstrate your stereo with a record this good, but what you would really be demonstrating is music that the listener probably isn’t familiar with, and that’s the best reason to put on an old record.
The space is HUGE and the sound so rich. Prodigious amounts of Tubey Magic as well, which is key to the best sounding copies. The sound needs weight, warmth and tubes or you might as well be playing a CD.(more…)
Stunning sound on this early Verve Mono LP with both sides rating a Triple Plus (A+++) and playing reasonably quietly
As Good As It Gets – no modern pressing can hope to put Ella and Louis right in the room with you the way this one from 1956 can
One of the greatest duet albums of all time, if not THE GREATEST – a Desert Island Disc to beat them all
4 1/2 stars: “Ella and Louis is an inspired collaboration, masterminded by producer Norman Granz… Gentle and sincere, this is deserving of a place in every home.”
Click and pop counters might want to give this one a miss. It’s not as quiet as a modern pressing would be, but it’s as quiet as this title can be found on vintage ’50s Verve vinyl. If you have a top quality, heavily tweaked front end and a quiet cartridge, you might be good to go, but if you are picky about your surfaces, we recommend you give this one a miss.
Those of you looking for a cheaper, quieter alternative to spending hundreds of dollars on one of our Hot Stampers should look into the original Speakers Corner pressing or the CD, both of which we’ve played and both of which are quite good.(more…)
A superb pressing of Ella’s wonderful 1967 release with nearly Triple Plus (A++ to A+++) sound from start to finish – just shy of our Shootout Winner
This one is doing everything right– it’s bigger, bolder, richer and more clean, clear and open than nearly almost everything else we played
Superb engineering from the man behind so many great sounding Verve records, Val Valentin
4 stars: “Whoever decided to put pianist Marty Paich and Ella Fitzgerald together in the studio in 1966 deserves a bit of credit for the great music on Whisper Not. Together, Fitzgerald and Paich deliver a dozen beautifully sung, carefully arranged standards.”
Clear piano notes, first and foremost. Any smear or loss of speed (a problem with hi-fi equipment since the beginning of time) detracts from the fun.
Next, the tonality of the best copies is rich and solid; accept nothing less.
And, finally, the proper reproduction of the percussion instruments is critically important to the energy and drive of the music. The better you hear them — without losing the weight and richness of the piano — the more you will enjoy your copy of the record.
No two copies will reproduce all these elements equally well. On high quality equipment with the volume turned up good and loud the winners are easily separated from the losers.(more…)
Witherspoon’s wonderful 1967 release makes its Hot Stamper debut with Shootout Winning Triple Plus (A+++) sound from first note to last
Spacious and transparent, this copy has the three-dimensional soundstaging and natural vocal reproduction that makes these kinds of records such a joy to play (and in the process a record this good makes a mockery of the veiled, lifeless, ambience-free sound of the modern Heavy Vinyl reissue)
4 stars: “The Blues Is Now is arguably the finest of these [late ’60s Verve] recordings, and Witherspoon’s voice is in top form and hugely expressive. A late-night blues classic, this is Witherspoon at his most relaxed and assured and is a joy to listen to.”
Some records never justified the time and money required to find Hot Stamper pressings of them in order to make it worth our while to do them again. This is one such album, and the link above will take you to many more.
This outstanding copy of Simply Sweets boasts solid Double Plus (A++) sound on both sides and relatively quiet vinyl too
The sound of this superb jazz quintet is big, lively, open and clear with Tubey Magical richness
The legendary engineer Val Valentin put this one on tape, brilliantly – he’s the man behind some of our All Time Pablo favorites
“Trumpeter Harry ‘Sweets’ Edison and tenor saxophonist Eddie “Lockjaw” Davis always made a potent pair. They both possessed immediately identifiable sounds, were veterans of Count Basie’s Orchestra and never had any difficulty swinging.” — Allmusic
Both sides of this outstanding pressing are big, rich, tubey and clear. Few other copies in our shootout held this kind of sound.
Titles such as this one are the reason we put so much time and money into hunting down and auditioning every Pablo jazz record we can get our hands on — because some of them sound like this one. Who else was recording jazz this good in the late ’70s and well into the ’80s?
And don’t say Concord. There are maybe five great sounding records on that label. Pablo has ten or twenty times that many, and that’s a conservative estimate. We owe a tremendous debt of gratitude to Norman Granz for starting the Pablo label and keeping the quality as high as he did.(more…)