Acoustic Sounds

Music Reviews: Vinyl

According to Ashley Kahn's outstanding annotation for this Rhino High Fidelity release, a few days before stepping into Phil Ramone's A&R studios to record Olé—his final session for Atlantic Records— John Coltrane had been at RVG's in Englewood Cliffs, NJ recording his first Africa/Brass session for Impulse! Kahn writes that the relatively new A&R was handling "overflow" for Atlantic, which is fortunate. It meant that Olé would be both... Read More

genre Jazz format Vinyl

Ella backed by a small jazz combo was an unusual musical setting for Ella in the studio, which makes this album recorded and released in 1961 a catalog standout. Pianist Lou Levy leads the quartet that also features guitarist Herb Ellis, bassist Joe Mondragon and on drums Stan Levey. Clap also highly regarded for its excellent sonics, recorded somewhere in Los Angeles. Since producer and Verve founder Norman Granz was also Ella's long time manager and... Read More

genre Jazz format Vinyl

When Norman Granz organized and produced in 1980 The Trumpet Summit Meets The Oscar Peterson Big 4 (Pablo 2312-114), Peterson was fifty five years old, Ray Brown was fifty two, Bobby Durham was forty three, Joe Pass was fifty one, Dizzy Gillespie was the "elder statesman" at sixty three and Freddie Hubbard was the youngster at forty two. By today's age standards none of them were "old", but jazz at that point—at least the kind of jazz these... Read More

genre Jazz format Vinyl

The past few decades have brought an array of New Order compilation albums, yet 1987’s Substance, the original New Order singles compilation, still reigns supreme. In a time when “greatest hits” releases are mostly obsolete, there are several reasons for this. One is that New Order were (are?) primarily a singles band who released their best work as five- to eight-minute 12” singles. Older fans’ nostalgia for Substance is also a factor, but most importantly, Substance... Read More

Maria Schneider is the preeminent big-band composer and leader of our time. She’s been at it for a little over 30 years, recorded nine albums in that span, and this, her 10th, Decades—a lavishly packaged, limited-edition three-LP boxed set, on the Artist Share label—is a celebration, a sort of best-of anthology tracing her evolution. It also marks the first time any of her work has been pressed on vinyl, in this case 180-gram vinyl, the lacquers cut by Chris Bellman... Read More

genre Jazz Big Band format Vinyl

In the mid-2000s, Kaiser Chiefs finally exploded onto the post-punk revival scene. After a failed attempt in the music business as Parva, they scrapped everything to forge ahead with a new musical voyage. In a musical climate dominated by American groups like The Strokes and The Killers, Kaiser Chiefs provided a strong British influence, borrowing elements from Britpop and 70s punk rock. The group’s ability to craft stadium anthems, such as “I Predict A Riot” and the... Read More

genre Funk Indie Pop format Vinyl

“Ambient is the space, the afterglow left when the centre has collapsed. It’s in the amorphous, beatless oscillations of post-rock, the multiple releases of abstract electronica which criss-cross the twenty-first-century skies like fading vapour trails. It implies an absence of subject.”David Stubbs, “Mars by 1980, The Story Of Electronic Music”, Faber & Faber, 2018, p304 Kieran Hebden (aka Four Tet) is an English electronic producer who does not necessarily make... Read More

Not since Veronica Swift's This Bitter Earth (Mack Avenue MAC1177LP) has a record cover been so at odds with what's in the grooves as this filled with funky covers Groove Note title from Vanessa Fernandez. Think of it this way: there are eleven tunes here from Childish Gambino, Prince, Lenny Kravitz, Barry White, Maurice White and a few others and the mostly celebratory funk is in the air (with a mellow stop over in Bill Withers territory), produced by a... Read More

genre R&B/Soul format Vinyl

So much of interest to write about this EP and its vinyl reissue. Back in 1995, Tracking Angle magazine writer Carl E. Baugher wrote that the Alice In Chains 1995 reunion album eponymous release (the one with the three legged dog on the cover) "..combines the range and creativity of Jar Of Flies with the slam and drama of Dirt. He also described Alice in Chains as "... the heaviest of the hard n’ heavy bands out of Seattle."I took Carl's advice and... Read More

genre Rock Grunge format Vinyl

Why didn’t “The House That ‘Trane Built” release this Alice Coltrane record when it was originally recorded in Carnegie Hall February21st, 1971? It couldn’t have been because the musicians accompanying her weren’t worthy: Pharoah Sanders, Archie Shepp, Jimmy Garrison, Cecil McBee, Ed Blackwell, Clifford Jarvis and two lesser knowns. It wasn’t because it was poorly recorded. The engineer was David Jones, best known for recording the two classic Bill Evans Trio’s... Read More

genre Jazz Avant-Garde Jazz format Vinyl

Craft Recordings releases The Sound of Music soundtrack complete for the first time, including every piece of music used in the film and even some cues that were not. (Your editor feels it necessary to write to readers not at all interested in TSOM to please read film editor Paul Seydor's essay. It is filled with fascinating details and insight into film production and criticism. Don't miss it).

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genre Broadway format Blu-Ray CD Vinyl

Yes, was a clickbait headline. Guitarist Anthony Wilson did not "meet" the rhythm section when last year they stepped into Kevin Gray's Cohearent Recording studio A/K/A "Hackensack West" to record this album live to two track tape, mixed "on the fly" as Rudy did. Wilson has been playing in Diana Krall's band for years with drummer Jeff Hamilton and bassist John Clayton, Jr.. Following this session, they were immediately back on... Read More

genre Jazz format Vinyl

There is a moment in the 1950 French film of the Orpheus legend by legendary poet and director Jean Cocteau when the hero enters the shadow world to find his dead wife by passing through a mirror. He stands before the mirror - tentative - and then as he reaches out his hands to begin his journey, they appear to pass through the mirror’s surface.It’s an indelible image that remains iconic to this day, achieved through simple analogue means, that still brings gasps to... Read More

genre Experimental Ambient format Vinyl

ORG Music continues their rollout of selections from the Westbound Records catalog that have been remastered and reissued on vinyl for the first time in several decades with a rare release from later in the label’s history, Eramus Hall’s, Your Love is My Desire (1980). Armen Boladian founded Detroit’s Westbound Records 1968 and it became a soul and funk dynamo, especially during the years following Motown’s exodus from Motor City. ORG’s series recently included the... Read More

genre Funk format Vinyl

The term “supergroup” heralds a level of heightened pressure and expectation. If bands like Cream, Blind Faith, or Emerson Lake & Palmer had instant success granted to them, Bad Company found themselves in good company. The group formed from the ashes of three of England’s beloved groups: Free, Mott The Hoople, and King Crimson. Vocalist Paul Rodgers and drummer Simon Kirke had enough of Free’s guitarist Paul Kossoff’s drug abuse and unreliability. Guitarist Mick... Read More

genre Rock format Vinyl

Afric Pepperbird by the Jan Garbarek Quartet with Terje Rypdal, Arild Andersen and Jon Christensen was an early ECM touchstone, and the beginning of five decades of cooperation between producer Manfred Eicher, engineer Jan Erik Kongshaug and the four Norwegian players. It gets its first vinyl reissue since 1976 in ECM's Luminessence series.

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genre Jazz ECM Style Jazz format Vinyl