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Category: SACD

Thelonious Monk – Monk’s Music (1957) [Reissue 2004] {PS3 ISO + FLAC}

Thelonious Monk – Monk’s Music (1957) [Reissue 2004]
PS3 Rip | ISO | SACD DSD64 2.0 > 1-bit/2.8224 MHz | 48:06 mins | Scans included | 2,05 GB
or FLAC(converted with foobar2000 to tracks) 24bit/88,2 kHz | Scans included | 1,09 GB

Monk’s Music is often cited as one of the focal points of Thelonious Monk’s six-year affiliation (1955-1961) with the Riverside label. Although the original disc clocked in at slightly over 30 minutes, packed into that half hour are not only the introduction of a few of Monk’s signature compositions, but also some amazing interactions from the assembled ensemble. Joining Thelonious Monk (piano) during these two recording sessions are Ray Copeland (trumpet), Gigi Gryce (alto sax), Coleman Hawkins (tenor sax), John Coltrane (tenor sax), Wilbur Ware (bass), and Art Blakey (drums). The true meaning of the album’s title exists beyond just Thelonious, as the opening sacred prelude, “Abide With Me,” was written by William H. Monk. This brief piece features only the horn quartet, foreshadowing their importance throughout the album. The angular stride style featured during the chorus of “Well You Needn’t” is tackled with the same nimble authority as Monk’s completely unfettered solos. If his ability to swing and his utilization of atomic clock accuracy have ever been questioned, the answer lies no further. So utterly free and fantastic, certain passages command immediate review to be fully comprehended. Hearing Coltrane and Hawkins together is admittedly part of the charm in these sides. “Ruby, My Dear” is bathed in the smoky essence of Hawkins’ rich textures and Coltrane’s playful cat-and-mouse aggression. Blakey gently propels the rhythm, never getting in the way and sporting a serene snare groove throughout. “Off Minor” is largely led by Monk, with solos that follow into and out of the memorable chorus that sparkles with the full involvement of the horn and rhythm sections. The same is true for this definitive version of “Epistrophy” — perhaps the zenith collaborative effort between Coltrane and Monk. Additionally, Blakey is in top form, with a solo that borders on spastic precision.

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The Great Jazz Trio – July 6th, Live at Birdland, NY (2007) [2.0 & 5.0] {PS3 ISO + FLAC}

The Great Jazz Trio – July 6th, Live at Birdland, New York (2007)
PS3 Rip | SACD ISO | DST64 2.0 & 5.0 > 1-bit/2.8224 MHz | 62:34 minutes | Scans included | 3,9 GB
or FLAC 2.0 Stereo (converted with foobar2000 to tracks) 24bit/88,2 kHz | Scans included | 1,26 GB

At age 89, Hank Jones is playing as well as any point in his long, celebrated career. He is still constantly challenging himself, teaming up with younger musicians, performing and recording new materials. This disc, simply titled July 6th, is the second part of the Great Jazz Trio, contains more tunes that Jones had never recorded before.

Long-traveled jazz juggernaut led by pianist Hank Jones. His Great Jazz Trio, which was born in 1975 with Tony Williams and Ron Carter, has undergone numerous personnel changes, and the latest, 21st century iteration includes John Patitucci and Omar Hakim. Hakim is generally known as a fusion/contemporary drummer, but unexpected chemical reaction of seemingly incompatible elements has been the hallmark of the Great Jazz Trio from its beginning.

On this release, recorded in 24-channel pure DSD with a mobile recording unit and mixed and mastered in Tokyo at Sony Studios, Hank Jones’ piano playing is elegant, fresh and inventive. Patitucci aids with superb musicality, and Hakim with impeccable comping and explosive solos.

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The Great Jazz Trio – July 5th, Live at Birdland, NY (2007) [2.0 & 5.0] {PS3 ISO + FLAC}

The Great Jazz Trio – July 5th, Live at Birdland, New York (2007)
PS3 Rip | SACD ISO | DST64 2.0 & 5.0 > 1-bit/2.8224 MHz | 57:50 minutes | Scans included | 3,59 GB
or FLAC 2.0 Stereo (converted with foobar2000 to tracks) 24bit/88,2 kHz | Scans included | 1,16 GB

At age 89, Hank Jones is playing as well as any point in his long, celebrated career. He is still constantly challenging himself, teaming up with younger musicians, performing and recording new materials. This disc, simply titled July 5th, contains nine tunes that Jones had never recorded before.

Long-traveled jazz juggernaut led by pianist Hank Jones. His Great Jazz Trio, which was born in 1975 with Tony Williams and Ron Carter, has undergone numerous personnel changes, and the latest, 21st century iteration includes John Patitucci and Omar Hakim. Hakim is generally known as a fusion/contemporary drummer, but unexpected chemical reaction of seemingly incompatible elements has been the hallmark of the Great Jazz Trio from its beginning.

On this release, recorded in 24-channel pure DSD with a mobile recording unit and mixed and mastered in Tokyo at Sony Studios, Hank Jones’ piano playing is elegant, fresh and inventive. Patitucci aids with superb musicality, and Hakim with impeccable comping and explosive solos.

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The Coryells – The Coryells (2000) [Reissue 2002] {2.0 & 5.0} PS3 ISO + FLAC

The Coryells – The Coryells (2000) [Reissue 2002]
PS3 Rip | SACD ISO | DST64 2.0 & 5.0 > 1-bit/2.8224 MHz | 61:57 minutes | Scans included | 3,40 GB
or FLAC 2.0 Stereo (converted with foobar2000 to tracks) 24bit/88,2 kHz | Full Scans included | 1,25 GB

Like father, like sons, acoustic guitarist Larry Coryell and sons Julian and Murali get together for their first recorded project, and it sounds fine. Larry tends to dominate improv space, but doesn’t get in the way of his kids, who are adept in their own bluesy ways. Bassist Brain Torff and percussionist Alphonse Mouzon (no drum kit, only hand drums and tambourine) join on several selections. Murali sings in his down-home, slightly affectated manner for three cuts, quite soulfully on the Rahsaan Roland Kirk lyric re: Lester Young on “Goodbye Porkpie Hat,” on the original pop blues “Somebody’s Got to Win-Lose,” and on Al Green’s simple, funk-blues “Love & Happiness.” Julian has two features by himself, with Torff only on the easy two-beat “Something Pretty” and the nice waltz “Song for Emily.” The hippest workout between the three occurs during the bulk of Julian’s “Sink or Swim,” while up and down, cascading and tumbling, waterfall crystalline-clear guitars shine on Larry’s “Transparance.” Two tracks are unearthed from Larry’s days with the Eleventh House: the stunning “Low-Lee-Tah” is dark, moody, and ominous, with Larry playing the intricate melody first all the way through and his sons joining in with heavy embellishments and startling improvisation; “Funky Waltz” is not so much funky as the loud original, but shaded with Native American punctuations from Mouzon. Though some speedy lines crop up here and there, this is a more musical than pyrotechnical display that proves quite enjoyable throughout. A very good first step for the Coryell family’s musical bonding recorded for public display, this is definitely recommended.

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The Beach Boys – Surfin’ USA (1963) [APO Remaster 2015] {PS3 ISO + FLAC}

The Beach Boys – Surfin’ USA (1963) [APO Remaster 2015]
PS3 Rip | SACD ISO | DSD64 Stereo & Mono 2.0 > 1-bit/2.8224 MHz | 24:02 / 24:23 minutes | Scans included | 1,98 GB
or FLAC(converted with foobar2000 to tracks) 24bit/88,2 kHz | Stereo | 24:23 mins | Full Scans included | 461 MB
Genre: Rock

The real breakthrough, as Brian Wilson asserts himself in the studio as both songwriter and arranger on a set of material that was much stronger than Surfin’ Safari. Besides the hit title track and its popular drag-racing flip side (“Shut Down”), this has a lovely, heartbreaking ballad (“Lonely Sea”) and a couple of strong Brian Wilson originals (“The Noble Surfer” and “Farmer’s Daughter”). There are also a surprisingly high quotient of instrumentals (five) that demonstrate that, before session musicians took over most of the parts, the Beach Boys could play respectably gutsy surf rock as a self-contained unit. Indeed, the album as a whole is the best they would make, prior to the late ’60s, as a band that played most of their instruments, rather than as a vehicle for Brian Wilson’s ideas. The LP was a huge hit, vital to launching surf music as a national craze, and one of the few truly strong records to be recorded by a self-contained American rock band prior to the British Invasion.

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The Beach Boys – Japanese SHM-SACD Reissue Series 2014 (6x SACD, 1964-1967) {PS3 ISO + FLAC}

The Beach Boys – Japanese SHM-SACD Reissue Series 2014 (6x SACD, 1964-1967)
PS3 Rip | SACD ISO | DSD64 2.0 > 1-bit/2.8224 MHz | Full Scans included | 7,04 GB
or FLAC(converted with foobar2000 to tracks) 24bit/88,2 kHz | Scans included | 3,00 GB

The Beach Boys are an American rock band, formed in Hawthorne, California in 1961. The group’s original lineup consisted of brothers Brian, Dennis and Carl Wilson, their cousin Mike Love, and their friend Al Jardine. Emerging at the vanguard of the “California Sound”, the band’s early music gained international popularity for their distinct vocal harmonies and lyrics evoking a southern California youth culture of surfing, cars, and romance. Influenced by jazz-based vocal groups, 1950s rock and roll, and doo-wop, Brian led the band to experiment with several genres ranging from pop ballads to psychedelic and baroque while devising novel approaches to music production and arranging. While initially managed by the Wilsons’ father Murry, Brian’s creative ambitions and sophisticated songwriting abilities dominated the group’s musical direction.

Released in 1966, the Pet Sounds album and the “Good Vibrations” single featured an intricate and multi-layered sound that represented a departure from the simple surf rock of the Beach Boys’ early years. Soon after the dissolution of Smile, Brian gradually ceded control to the rest of the band, reducing his input due to mental health and substance abuse issues. Though the more democratic incarnation of the Beach Boys recorded a string of albums in various musical styles that garnered international critical success, the group struggled to reclaim their commercial momentum in America. Since the 1980s, much-publicized legal wrangling over royalties, songwriting credits and use of the band’s name transpired. Dennis drowned in 1983 and Carl died of lung cancer in 1998. After Carl’s death, many live configurations of the band fronted by Mike Love and Bruce Johnston continued to tour into the 2000s while other members pursued solo projects. For the band’s 50th anniversary, the surviving co-founders briefly reunited for a new studio album and world tour.

The Beach Boys are often touted “America’s Band”,and AllMusic stated that their “unerring ability…made them America’s first, best rock band.”The group had over eighty songs chart worldwide, thirty-six of them United States Top 40 hits (the most by an American rock band), four reaching number-one on the Billboard Hot 100 chart.The Beach Boys have sold in excess of 100 million records worldwide, making them one of the world’s best-selling bands of all time and are listed at number 12 on Rolling Stone magazine’s 2004 list of the “100 Greatest Artists of All Time”.They have received one Grammy Award for The Smile Sessions (2011). The core quintet of the three Wilsons, Love and Jardine were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1988.

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The Allman Brothers Band – At Fillmore East (1971) [Japanese Limited SHM-SACD 2010 # UIGY-9029] {PS3 ISO + FLAC}

The Allman Brothers Band – At Fillmore East (1971) [Japanese Limited SHM-SACD 2010 # UIGY-9029]
PS3 Rip | ISO | SACD DSD64 2.0 > 1-bit/2.8224 MHz | 78:40 minutes | No Scans | 3,15 GB
or FLAC(converted with foobar2000 to tracks) 24bit/88,2 kHz | No Scans | 1,58 GB

Reissue features the high-fidelity SHM-SACD format (fully compatible with standard SACD player, but it does not play on standard CD players) and the 2010 DSD remastering.

Whereas most great live rock albums are about energy, At Fillmore East is like a great live jazz session, where the pleasure comes from the musicians’ interaction and playing. The great thing about that is, the original album that brought the Allmans so much acclaim is as notable for its clever studio editing as it is for its performances. Producer Tom Dowd skillfully trimmed some of the performances down to relatively concise running time (edits later restored on the double-disc set The Fillmore Concerts), at times condensing several performances into one track. Far from being a sacrilege, this tactic helps present the Allmans in their best light, since even if the music isn’t necessarily concise (three tracks run over ten minutes, with two in the 20-minute range), it does showcase the group’s terrific instrumental interplay, letting each member (but particularly guitarist Duane and keyboardist/vocalist Gregg) shine. Even after the release of the unedited concerts, this original double album (single CD) remains the pinnacle of the Allmans and Southern rock at its most elastic, bluesy, and jazzy.

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The 3 Sounds – Introducing The 3 Sounds (1958) [Analogue Productions 2011] {PS3 ISO + FLAC}

The 3 Sounds – Introducing The 3 Sounds (1958) [APO Remaster 2011]
PS3 Rip | SACD ISO | DSD64 2.0 > 1-bit/2.8224 MHz | 67:22 minutes | No Art | 2,71 GB
or FLAC(converted with foobar2000 to tracks) 24bit/88,2 kHz | No Art included | 1,31 GB

What’s remarkable about Introducing the Three Sounds is how the trio’s lightly swinging sound arrived fully intact. From the basis of this album, it sounds as if pianist Gene Harris, bassist Andrew Simpkins, and drummer William Dowdy have been playing together for years. There’s empathetic, nearly intuitive interplay between the three musicians, and Harris’s deft style already sounds mature and entirely distinctive. There’s no question that this music is easy to listen to, but dismissing it because of that would be wrong — there’s genuine style in their light touch and in Harris’ bluesy compositions. The Three Sounds never really deviated from the sound they established on Introducing, but that’s one of the things that is so remarkable — they were fully formed on their very first album. Even if it was a peak, it wasn’t the only peak in their career. They would often match the heights of this album, but this debut remains a shining jewel in their catalog, and the way to become acquainted with their sound.

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The Cardigans – Long Gone Before Daylight (2003) [2.0 & 5.1] {PS3 ISO + FLAC}

The Cardigans – Long Gone Before Daylight (2003)
PS3 Rip | SACD ISO | DST64 2.0 & 5.1 > 1-bit/2.8224 MHz | 49:08 minutess | Scans included | 2,93 GB
or FLAC 2.0 Stereo (converted with foobar2000 to tracks) 24bit/88,2 kHz | 70:03 mins | Scans | 1026 MB

If any clue were needed to confirm a new direction for the Cardigans — that is, other than the music itself — it’s the change of hair color for vocalist Nina Persson. Previously an icy blonde that approached white (best flaunted on the cover of Life), Persson’s hair is now jet black, a color that matches her confessional mood and conflicted feelings about love on the Swedish group’s fifth studio album. Produced by Per Sunding (career-long collaborator Tore Johansson left after an initial session), Long Gone Before Daylight is understated and well-designed, a musicians’ record, one that sounds more like an MTV Unplugged session than the high-energy chamber pop of their early recordings. Unfortunately, it’s also over-produced to within an inch of its artistic life, and lacks the quality songs and exquisite productions that the group had made a hallmark. Persson composed all the lyrics, rewriting the Spector standard “He Hit Me (It Felt Like a Kiss)” into “And Then You Kissed Me” (sample lyric: “Baby you hit me/Yeah, you punched me right in the heart/And then you kissed me…and then you hit me”). Guitarist Peter Svensson took care of all the music, relying on familiar pop archetypes but forswearing the catchy hooks in favor of carefully constructed songs. Still, the Cardigans don’t have enough musical personality on their own to carry these songs; they’ve always been a surprisingly workmanlike band — their performances here are sympathetic and intricate — but they simply can’t rise above this subpar material.

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Tangerine Dream – Stratosfear (1976) [Japanese Limited SHM-SACD 2015] {PS3 ISO + FLAC}

Tangerine Dream – Stratosfear (1976) [Japanese Limited SHM-SACD 2015]
PS3 Rip | SACD ISO | DSD64 2.0 > 1-bit/2.8224 MHz | 35:11 minutes | Scans included | 1,42 GB
or FLAC(converted with foobar2000 to tracks) 24bit/88,2 kHz | Full Scans included | 625 MB
Genre: Electronic

Stratosfear, the last Tangerine Dream album by the great Baumann/Franke/Froese threesome, shows the group’s desire to advance past their stellar recent material and stake out a new musical direction while others were still attempting to come to grips with Phaedra and Rubycon. The album accomplishes its mission with the addition of guitar (six- and 12-string), grand piano, harpsichord, and mouth organ to the usual battery of moogs, Mellotrons, and e-pianos. The organic instruments take more of a textural role, embellishing the effects instead of working their own melodic conventions. Stratosfear is also the beginning of a more evocative approach for Tangerine Dream. Check the faraway harmonica sounds and assortment of synth-bubbles on “3 AM at the Border of the Marsh From Okefenokee” or the somber chords and choral presence of “The Big Sleep in Search of Hades.” The title track opener is the highlight though, beginning with a statuesque synthesizer progression before unveiling an increasingly hypnotic line of trance.

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