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Lyn Stanley, Sarah McLachlan, Sonny Rollins Quintet, Billy Joel, Led Zeppelin Record Reviews

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Lyn Stanley Potions (From the 50’s) 180g 45rpm 2LP

Lyn Stanley Potions
Mastered by Bernie Grundman
Recorded and mixed by Al Schmitt
Pressed at RTI
Tracks:
1. Lullaby of Birdland
2. Cry Me A River
3. Fly Me To the Moon
4. Hey There
5. I’m Walkin’
6. You Don’t Know Me
7. In the Still of the Night
8. The Thrill Is Gone
9. A Summer Place
10.Love Potion #9
11.Teach Me Tonight
12.After the Lights Go Down Low
13.Misty
14.The Party’s Over
15.The Man I Love (bonus track)

In my review of Lyn Stanley’s first album, Lost in Romance, I said “The 1940s style picture of a forlorn lady sitting on a piano, the title “Lost In Romance”, and the beautiful full toned music of this album never in a million years says, new artist. I had never heard of her but her website says she was discovered in 2010 by world class jazz pianist Paul Smith. Well since then I have had the privilege to meet this delightful lady and to hear her sing live. Having heard some of the songs on her new LP at audio shows played from the original lacquers it was with some excitement that I awaited to hear the LPs on my own system.

Let me say in no way was I disappointed. I truly loved her selection of songs. As the title suggests the songs chosen were composed in the 1950s. The selection of songs are drawn from a broad palette of jazz, popular hits, blues, country, R&B and doo-wop, and one very special Gershwin classic in a bonus track. The album was produced by world renowned jazz pianist/composer Kenny Werner. Returning to the elements that made her first album so successful she again hires Al Schmitt, this time as both the recording and mixing engineer along with Bernie Grundman for mastering the album.

The album contains fifteen tracks, twelve of the tracks are recorded in pure analog fashion from musicians through vocals, mixing and mastering. The sound is simply stunning. Let me say that one more time in case you didn’t hear me the first time; this is one good sounding LP! I love “Lullaby of Birdland.” You can hear every nuance of her vocals and the instruments. Superb phrasing. I enjoyed every song on these two LPs. Thank you Lyn for such great music that is also recorded so beautifully.

 

Sarah McLachlan Mirrorball 200g 45rpm 3LP

Sarah McLaughlin Mirrorball
Plated and Pressed at Analogue Productions/QRP
Mastered by Bernie Grundman
Tracks:
LP 1 – Side A:
Building A Mystery
Hold On
Good Enough
LP 1 – Side B:
I Will Remember You
Adia
LP 2 – Side C:
I Love You
Do What You Have To Do
LP 2 – Side D:
The Path of Thorns (Terms)
Fear
Possession
LP 3 – Side E:
Sweet Surrender
Ice Cream
LP 3 – Side F:
Towards Ecstasy
Angel

Mirrorball is a 1999 live album by Sarah McLachlan. I know people have different opinions about live albums, but I have to admit most of the time I just love them. They have an energy and an emotional involvement that is so important to music.

The live LP was a commercial success, entering top 3 on both Billboard 200 and Canadian Albums Chart. The live performance of “I Will Remember You” won the Grammy Award for Best Female Pop Vocal Performance and just one listen will tell you why; what a great song and performance.

I really enjoyed this LP; I know I’m a little late to the game when it comes to Sarah McLachlan music, but this is very nice indeed. Kudos need to go out to the Analogue Productions bunch as well for this wonderful 45rpm pressing. If you already like this music get this one. If you don’t know this LP listen to some of it on a streaming service and then if you like it, these three 45rpm LPs are a great way to own it.

The Sonny Rollins Quintet, Rollins Plays for Bird 200g LP (Mono)

Rollins Plays For Bird
1st 1000 Copies are a Numbered, Limited Edition
Pressed at Quality Record Pressings
Plated by Gary Salstrom
Cut from the analogue masters by Kevin Gray
Musicians:
Sonny Rollins, tenor saxophone
Kenny Dorham, trumpet
Wade Legge, piano
George Morrow, bass
Max Roach, drums
Tracks:
1. Medley: I Remember You / My Melancholy Baby /   Old Folks / They Can’t Take That Away From Me / Just Friends / My Little Suede Shoes / Star Eyes
2. I’ve Grown Accustomed to Your Face
3. Kids Know

WOW! I love this album; the music is simply awesome. I love the songs, the arrangements, and most of all the way it’s played. This Prestige re-master on the Analogue Productions label, has quickly become my favorite Sonny Rollins album and I have a few I love. It is simply wonderful by any way you measure a great album!

On this LP we have jazz tenor saxophonist, Sonny Rollins and his Quintet of Wade Legge on piano, George Morrow on bass, Max Roach on drums and finally Kenny Dorhan on trumpet. They are paying a tribute set of standards synonymous with the great alto saxophonist, Charlie Parker, who died on March 12, 1955 at the young age of 34.

The album was recorded on October 5, 1956, at Rudy Van Gelder’s Studio where some of the greatest jazz recordings in history were committed to tape. This Analogue Productions release of Rollins Plays for Bird was cut from the analogue master tapes and mastered by engineer Kevin Gray and pressed on 200-gram vinyl by Quality Record Pressings.

Please don’t let the fact that it is mono or the fact it was recorded in 1956 scare you away. The sound and the music is as good as Jazz gets!

 

Billy Joel River of Dreams 180g LP

Billy-Joel-River-of-Dreams
Friday Music 180g LP
Tracks:
Side One:
1. No Man’s Land
2. the Great Wall of China
3. Blonde Over Blue
4. A Minor Variation
5. Shades of Grey
Side Two:
1. All About Soul
2. Lullabye (Goodnight, My Angel)
3. The River of Dreams
4. Two Thousand Years
5. Famous Last Words

Let me start by confessing I’m not a Billy Joel fan, but back in 1993 we were still listening to FM radio. One day I heard the title song to this album, “The River of Dreams.” I drove down to the record store and bought my first Billy Joel recording, but they only had it on CD. Every once in a while for the last 21 years I have looked at used record stores and online to see if I could get this album on vinyl. Then to my surprise it show up on line brand new on Acoustic Sounds website. I immediately ordered it.

River of Dreams was Billy Joel’s last studio album and one of his most successful albums. Released in 1993, he was at the top of the charts as a number one album and a number one single with “The River of Dreams.” Like me this Doo-Wop influenced recording reached a new audiences for Joel while not offending his faithful. Twenty-one year later, these tunes are still as good as ever and I want to thank Friday Music for bringing River of Dreams to us on vinyl. This release was mastered by Joe Reagoso & Pressed at RTI.

I wish I could say that the recording is as good as the music but sadly it sounds no better than the red book CD. Maybe on my system it sound just a touch better because my vinyl setup is so much better, but in the end I had rather listen to this recording up stairs on my video/digital system with the Teresonic Magus speakers and a sub-woofer. Sorry, but I can’t recommend you spend extra money to own this recording on vinyl instead of digital. (Thought I was seeing things, Jack. -Pub.)

Led Zeppelin Led Zeppelin IV Deluxe Edition 180g 2LP

Led-Zeppelin-IV-Deluxe-Edit
Remastered by Jimmy Page from the Original Master Tapes! Pressed at Pallas in Germany

    Deluxe Edition Features Original Album On 180g Vinyl PLUS Companion LP On 180g Vinyl
    Newly Remastered by Jimmy Page from the Original Master Tapes
    Pressed at Pallas in Germany
    Housed in tri-fold sleeve with original artwork and newly created negative artwork for companion audio

Tracks:
Side One:
Black Dog
Rock And Roll
The Battle of Evermore
Stairway To Heaven
Side Two:
Misty Mountain Hop
Four Sticks
Going To California
When The Levee Breaks
Companion LP:
Side One:
Black Dog (Basic Track With Guitar Overdubs)
Rock And Roll (Alternate Mix)
The Battle Of Evermore (Mandolin/Guitar Mix From Headley Grange)
Stairway To Heaven (Sunset Sound Mix)
Side Two:
Misty Mountain Hop (Alternate Mix)
Four Sticks (Alternate Mix)
Going To California (Mandolin/Guitar Mix)
When The Levee Breaks (Alternate UK Mix)

I loved this album in high school, in college, and I still get in the mood for it from time to time. So when I saw this deluxe addition I thought this should be fun and it is. I especially found the companion LP very interesting and entertaining.

The main LP has a lot more slam, definition and a significantly bigger soundstage than I have heard before on any release of this album. At the same time compared to a release from high school years it seemed harder and a little brighter. In the end I preferred the more homogenous sound of the older LP, but I could certainly understand where some would prefer this newer release.

If you’re a collector this is surely a version of this LP you should have, but when I just want to listen to Led Zeppelin IV, I’ll stay with my old standby.

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2 Responses to Lyn Stanley, Sarah McLachlan, Sonny Rollins Quintet, Billy Joel, Led Zeppelin Record Reviews


  1. Lyn Stanley says:

    Hello Jack Roberts!!

    So many thanks for this wonderful review! I am very glad to read you liked my new album and grateful for your feedback Jack! With Al and Bernie plus Frank Sinatra’s microphone (and Nat King Cole), I couldn’t go too wrong. Kenny and I sincerely appreciate your support of the team and my work!

    Kindest regards,

    Lyn Stanley

  2. Ms. Stanley,

    Thank you for your kind comment! We at California Audio Show were thrilled by your presence at the Genesis Advanced Technologies exhibit in Aspen Room; it was one of the highlights of this year’s show. We hope to be graced by your presence again in 2015!

    Sincerely,

    Constantine Soo

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