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Van Morrison – Astral Weeks
Mastered from the original analog master tapes by Kevin Grey at AcousTech Mastering and pressed on 180-gram vinyl. "…it obsoletes the original in almost every way…When you hear the new reissue, even if you've heard the original 100 times since it first came out, which would easily be me, you will almost jump out of your seat when you hear these familiar elements move from the shadows to the foreground…Astral Weeks, one of the great records of the rock era, is destined to become one of the great reissues of the post-CD/analog revival era." Music = 11/11, Sound = 10/11 – Michael Fremer, www.musicangle.com 1968's Astral Weeks remains not only Morrison's masterpiece but one of the greatest records ever made. A haunting, deeply personal collection of impressionistic folk-styled epics recorded by an all-star jazz backing unit including bassist Richard Davis and drummer Connie Kay, its poetic complexity earned critical raves but made only a minimal commercial impact.
Van Morrison – Blowin’ Your Mind
AllMusic Review by William Ruhlmann Although Van Morrison's first solo album is remembered for containing the immortal pop hit "Brown Eyed Girl," Blowin' Your Mind! is actually a dry run for his masterpiece, Astral Weeks. Songs like "Who Drove the Red Sports Car" look to that song cycle, even as "Midnight Special" nods to Morrison's R&B past. But it's the agonizing "T.B. Sheets" -- all nine-plus minutes of it -- that dominates this record and belies its trendy title and pop association. "T.B. Sheets" takes the blues and reinvents it as noble tragedy and humiliating mortality. It's where Van Morrison emerges as an artist. [Blowin' Your Mind! was superseded in 1991 by Bang Masters, which contains all of its tracks except "He Ain't Give You None," presented in an alternate take, plus Morrison's other recordings for Bang.]
Van Morrison – Pay The Devil
Pay the Devil is a new country set from the legenday Van Morrison. It is comprised of 15 tracks; three of these are originals and 12 are covers of some of Morrison's favourite classic country songs, including "Your Cheatin' Heart," "Things Have Gone to Pieces" and "Big Blue Diamonds." In 1962, Ray Charles, one of Morrison's biggest influences recorded the monumental Modern Sounds In country & Western Music. At the time the genre jump seemed risky, but Charles proved that a great artist could make it work if he worked with great songs. Morrison, who has successfully recorded jazz, rock, R&B, blues, Celtic, skiffle and more, proves that theory to be valid. His distinctive voice melds seamlessly with these classics written by songwriting masters such as Hank Williams, Webb Pierce, Merle Kilgore, Rodney Crowell and Leon Payne.
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Van Morrison – Tupelo Honey
Tupelo Honey is typical of Van Morrison's early work in both sound and stucture; after dispensing with the requisite hit - here, the buoyant, R&B inflected "Wild Night" - he truly gets down to business, settling into a luminously pastoral drift typified by the nostalgic "Old Old Woodstock." At the heart of the record are a pair of stunning love songs, "You're My Woman" and the hymn-like title cut, one of Morrison's most enduring and transcendent compositions.
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Van Morrison His Band and the Street Choir
Mastered from the original analog master tapes by Kevin Grey at AcousTech Mastering and pressed on 180-gram vinyl. Equal parts blue-eyed soul shouter and wild-eyed poet-sorcerer, Van Morrison is among popular music's true innovators,
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Varese – Ameriques / Milhaud – L’homme et son desir / Honegger – Pacific 231
Those who plan the contents of a recorded album sometimes deliberately choose material of sharp contrasts. More often, a central theme is sought. However, unity of intention provides the optimum condition for music offered on a recording, even though arrived at by severely opposed techniques and aesthetics, and even when the relationship is subtle, as is the case with the three compositions included in this album.
Vinyl : Check
This record creates new possibilities of inspecting and adjusting record players. Most tests (except for frequency response) can also be carried out without measuring instruments, just by listening, and are therefore particularly well-suited for the ambitious music listener who wants to know how well his system deals with demanding signals under realistic conditions, and whether there is a need for repairs or improvements. Thanks to Albrecht Krieger for his ideas and advice.
Vivaldi : The Four Seasons
That the work can be beautifully performed without resorting to venturesome experiments is shown by the PCPO and soloist Daniel Gaede, who focus on authenticity and straightforwardness in their reading, without pledging themselves to a scholastic performance practice as preached by some Baroque gurus. The colourful constant change from good-humoured playing together to 'contesting' with one another is filled with the sheer joy of music-making that is free of mannerisms and whims. These performers demonstrate just how smoothly a four-wheeled Baroque motor can run: it purrs, sings, murmurs, accelerates and slackens without juddering in the least. This recording’s forte is found in the light-hearted simplicity and naturalness of the playing and the finely balanced analogue sound recording.
Warne Marsh – Jazz of Two Cities
Warne Marsh and Ted Brown playing tenor saxes are joined by Ronnie Ball on piano, Ben Tucker on bass and Jeff Morton on drums on this Classic Imperial Series reissue. The original full-track mono master tape was used on Classic's all-tube mono cutting system (including mono tape head, cutting hear and cutter head) at Bernie Grundman Mastering with Bernie Grundman doing the set-up and cutting.
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Warren Zevon – Warren Zevon s/t
At the time Warren Zevon cut his first self titled album in 1976, he was not considered an average member of "LA's Mellow Mafia." Zevon's music was full of blood, bile, and mean spirited irony, and the glossy surfaces of Jackson Browne's production failed to disguise the bitter heart of the songs on Warren Zevon. But for all their darkness, Zevon's songs also possessed a steely intelligence, a winning wit, and an unusually sophisticated melodic sense. Warren Zevon may not have been the songwriter's debut but it was the album that confirmed he was a major talent, and it remains a black-hearted pop delight.