Chris Smither - Another Way To Find You (1991) Reissue 1998

Posted By: Designol
Chris Smither - Another Way To Find You (1991) Reissue 1998

Chris Smither - Another Way To Find You (1991) Reissue 1998
EAC | FLAC | Tracks (Cue&Log) ~ 322 Mb | Mp3 (CBR320) ~ 163 Mb | Scans included
Folk-Blues, Folk-Rock | Label: Hightone | # HCD8088 | Time: 00:56:57

This captures folk-blues guitarist-singer-songwriter Smither playing live in the studio for a hand-picked audience over the Christmas holidays in 1989. Smither presents 17 songs of his own derivation and others, blasting it all out in a couple of sharp sets in the time-honored folk music club tradition. His guitar work is clean and well played, and his vocals attain a sense of engagement throughout. While his interpretations of tunes by Chuck Berry, Randy Newman, Elizabeth Cotton, Willie McTell, Jimmy Reed and others are fine, the true highlights come with the originals "Lonely Time," "Don't Drag It On," "A Song for Susan," "Lonesome Georgia Brown," "I Feel the Same" and the title track.

Strawberry Alarm Clock - Strawberries Mean Love (1992)

Posted By: Designol
Strawberry Alarm Clock - Strawberries Mean Love (1992)

Strawberry Alarm Clock - Strawberries Mean Love (1992)
EAC | FLAC | Tracks (Cue&Log) ~ 389 Mb | Mp3 (CBR320) ~ 162 Mb | Scans included
Psychedelic Rock, Sunshine Pop | Label: Big Beat | # CDWIKD 56 | Time: 01:04:16

For a little more money, this 21-track CD compilation is a better deal than its American counterpart (One Way's Anthology), offering a slightly more extensive selection and extensive liner notes, and including almost all of the cuts contained on Anthology. Drawn from their four albums (with the accent, properly, on the first two), it also has a clutch of non-LP singles. "Incense and Peppermints" and the small follow-up hit, "Tomorrow," are by far the best things on here; much of the rest is trendy period pop/psychedelia, sounding at various times like a bush-league Doors, or a really spaced-out Association, with a bit of garage raunch tossed in on the B-side of "Incense" ("The Birdman of Alkatrash"). The two hits were included on Rhino's Nuggets compilations, which might be a better context in which to appreciate the group's fairly minimal contributions to psychedelia.

Doric String Quartet, RSNO, Peter Oundjian - John Adams: Naive and Sentimental Music; Absolute Jest (2018)

Posted By: Designol
Doric String Quartet, RSNO, Peter Oundjian - John Adams: Naive and Sentimental Music; Absolute Jest (2018)

John Adams: Naive and Sentimental Music; Absolute Jest (2018)
Doric String Quartet; Royal Scottish National Orchestra; Peter Oundjian, conductor

EAC | FLAC | Image (Cue&Log) ~ 322 Mb | Mp3 (CBR320) ~ 173 Mb | Artwork included
Genre: Classical | Label: Chandos | # CHSA5199 | Time: 01:11:23

As part of his final year as Music Director and following a two-season celebration of the Orchestra’s 125th anniversary, Peter Oundjian and the RSNO here present their second recording of music by John Adams, with the exceptional participation of the Doric String Quartet. Written for a large orchestra including six percussionists, keyboard sampler, and amplified steel-string guitar, Naive and Sentimental Music is a sweepingly symphonic masterpiece, full of contrasts and clashes. It reflects the dichotomy between ‘naive’ and ‘sentimental’ poetry as analysed by Friedrich Schiller in his 1795 essay Über naive und sentimentalische Dichtung, as well as the ‘bipolar’ musical life of Esa-Pekka Salonen, the dedicatee of this piece, who conducted the first performance with the Los Angeles Philharmonic in 1999. Absolute Jest is a large-scale scherzo for amplified string quartet and orchestra, heavily inspired by the music of Beethoven, which Adams has always deeply admired. The quartet of soloists, a late addition to the score, emphasises the echoes of Beethoven’s music (mainly his string quartets) and facilitates a ‘hyperspace rate’ of virtuosity, which the Doric String Quartet here perfectly demonstrates.

Steve James - American Primitive (1994)

Posted By: Designol
Steve James - American Primitive (1994)

Steve James - American Primitive (1994)
EAC | FLAC | Tracks (Cue&Log) ~ 264 Mb | Mp3 (CBR320) ~ 113 Mb | Scans included
Contemporary Blues, Folk-Blues | Label: Antone's Records | # ANT 0030 | 00:47:30

Utilizing a jug band of fellow Austinites Danny Barnes (tenor guitar and banjo) and Mark Rubin (stand-up bass and Sousaphone – both of the Bad Livers) and harpist Gary Primich on some tracks, James sounds more mature here, evidenced by six originals (the John Hurt-esque "Talco Girl" is particularly nice) and one collaboration with bassist/songwriter Sarah Brown ("My Last Good Car") and effective rather than affected vocals. Stellar guitar throughout, with an added treat: James's blues mandolin on "Midnight Blues."

Noriko Ogawa, Malaysian PO, Kees Bakels - Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov: Capriccio espagnol; Piano Concerto; Sadko, etc (2004)

Posted By: Designol
Noriko Ogawa, Malaysian PO, Kees Bakels - Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov: Capriccio espagnol; Piano Concerto; Sadko, etc (2004)

Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov: Capriccio espagnol; Piano Concerto; Sadko;
The Tale of Tsar Saltan, Suite; Russian Easter Festival Overture (2004)
Noriko Ogawa (piano); Malaysian Philharmonic Orchestra; Kees Bakels, conductor

EAC | FLAC | Image (Cue&Log) ~ 302 Mb | Mp3 (CBR320) ~ 179 Mb | Artwork included
Genre: Classical | Label: BIS | # BIS-CD-1387 | Time: 01:16:40

One major popular composer of Romantic orchestral music whose work, outside of his ubiquitous symphonic suite Scheherazade, is not terribly over-recorded is Russia's Nikolay Rimsky-Korsakov. That, and a tendency toward what for him was an "orientalist" strain in harmonic practice and orchestration, makes Rimsky-Korsakov an ideal choice for the recordings on BIS of a relatively new ensemble, the Malaysian Philharmonic Orchestra, founded in 1997 by conductor Kees Bakels. It is a testament to the skill of Bakels as an orchestra builder that he has raised such a fine musical organization in just eight years. Rimsky-Korsakov: Capriccio Espagnol is intended as a follow-up to the Malaysian Philharmonic Orchestra's recording of Scheherazade, already issued, and as an added bonus, the great Japanese pianist Noriko Ogawa joins the orchestra as guest in Rimsky-Korsakov's all-too-seldom-heard Piano Concerto in C sharp minor, Op. 30. The music, recorded at the Dewan Filharmonik Petronas Hall in Kuala Lumpur, is both very well played and recorded. The Capriccio Espagnol gets off to a great start, with Bakels the orchestra is strongly sympathetic to the piece, though careful ears can pick out some raggedy ensemble in the last section. Ogawa alone is enough to make the Piano Concerto shine, and thankfully Bakels provides comfortable and gracious support to Ogawa's magisterial artistry.

Ronnie Foster - Live: Cookin' With Blue Note At Montreux (1973) Japanese Reissue 2012

Posted By: Designol
Ronnie Foster - Live: Cookin' With Blue Note At Montreux (1973) Japanese Reissue 2012

Ronnie Foster - Live: Cookin' With Blue Note At Montreux (1973) Reissue 2012
EAC | FLAC | Image (Cue&Log) ~ 302 Mb | Mp3 (CBR320) ~ 135 Mb | Scans included
Jazz-Funk, Soul-Jazz | Label: Blue Note/Toshiba-EMI | # TOCJ-50507 | Time: 00:45:46

Ronnie Foster Live: Cookin' with Blue Note at Montreux is a live album by American jazz organist Ronnie Foster recorded at the Montreux Jazz Festival in 1973 and released on the Blue Note label.

Nils Mortensen, Stavanger SO, Ruud - Geirr Tveitt: Piano Concerto No. 5; Variations on a Folk-song from Hardanger (2004)

Posted By: Designol
Nils Mortensen, Stavanger SO, Ruud - Geirr Tveitt: Piano Concerto No. 5; Variations on a Folk-song from Hardanger (2004)

Geirr Tveitt: Piano Concerto No. 5; Variations on a Folk-song from Hardanger (2004)
Nils Mortensen (piano), Sveinung Bjelland (piano - Variations)
Stavanger Symphony Orchestra; Ole Kristian Ruud, conductor

EAC | FLAC | Image (Cue&Log) ~ 223 Mb | Mp3 (CBR320) ~ 156 Mb | Artwork included
Genre: Classical | Label: BIS | # BIS-CD-1252 | Time: 01:05:31

An ardent nationalist, Geirr Tveitt found inspiration in the folk melodies of the Hardanger fjord and promoted this little-known material in his songs and orchestral works. Tveitt's music is tinged with nostalgia and Norwegian brooding, communicated in a familiar neo-Romantic style that was considered reactionary by critics, but was easily accepted by audiences. The Piano Concerto No. 5, premiered by Tveitt in 1954, is in three movements. The piece is agreeably melodic with modal inflections, yet it has enough muscularity and harmonic bite in places to suggest the influence of Ravel and Prokofiev. Nils Mortensen executes the piano part with hard-edged brilliance, and the orchestral accompaniment is strong without overwhelming the soloist. The Variations on a Folksong from Hardanger is, loosely, a concerto for two pianos and orchestra. Less coherent than the Piano Concerto No. 5, the Variations tend to ramble, and Tveitt's self-indulgence and impulsiveness may have contributed to this piece's episodic construction. Mortensen and fellow pianist Sveinung Bjelland are a solid pair, always synchronized and audible above the orchestra. The Stavanger Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Ole Kristian Ruud, plays with sufficient vigor and color, though this moody music affords them few opportunities to shine. The sound is fairly soft in places, so volume adjustments may be necessary.

Randy Holden - Population II (1969) Expanded Remastered Reissue 2001 [Unofficial Release]

Posted By: Designol
Randy Holden - Population II (1969) Expanded Remastered Reissue 2001 [Unofficial Release]

Randy Holden - Population II (1969) Expanded Remastered Reissue 2001
EAC | FLAC | Tracks (Cue&Log) ~ 517 Mb | Mp3 (CBR320) ~ 195 Mb | Scans included
Hard Rock, Psychedelic Rock | Label: Progressive Line | # PL 523 | Time: 01:19:02

Following a very brief stint with prototype heavy metal heroes, Blue Cheer (only half of an album) Randy Holden released this solo album featuring only himself on guitar and a drummer. It's a masterpiece of thundering behemoth rhythms and a soaring wailing guitar. Holden's guitar sound is drenched in lysergic acid. His mastery of feedback rivals anything by the master Jimi Hendriz. One could even say his innovative and experimental style is in a class by itself. Unfortunately, Randy Holden never received much acclaim during his music career for reasons of bad management and associations with less talented musicians, but this single rare album, long unavailable even on vinyl is proof that many musical geniuses are so far ahead of their time that few listeners are able to appreciate their greatness. His retooling of "Fruit & Iceburgs" from his collaboration with Blue Cheer on their third LP (NEW AND IMPROVED)is a brutal musical journey into the paranoiac synesthesia of hallucinogenics far surpassing the original version. "Blue my Mind" also represents Holden's gripping ability to hypnotize the listener and absorb one into the musical landscape he creates. All in all a great album!

Minnie Riperton - Capitol Gold: The Best of Minnie Riperton (1993)

Posted By: Designol
Minnie Riperton - Capitol Gold: The Best of Minnie Riperton (1993)

Minnie Riperton - Capitol Gold: The Best of Minnie Riperton (1993)
EAC | FLAC | Image (Cue&Log) ~ 446 Mb | Mp3 (CBR320) ~ 178 Mb | Scans included
R&B, Soul, Quiet Storm, Disco | Label: Capitol | # CDP 0777 7 80516 2 6 | 01:07:24

Until 1999's Free Soul (Capitol) and 2001's exhaustive but more excellent overall Petals (The Right Stuff) came along, Capitol Gold offered the best summation of this true original's horribly undervalued solo career. As with Free Soul, Capitol Gold leaves a significant gap by excluding the best moments from Minnie Riperton's debut (Come to My Garden), an album that was released on GTR. This issue would be rectified by The Right Stuff, a subsidiary of Capitol, for Petals. Still, Capitol Gold makes for a fine substitute introduction to Riperton; it includes all of her significant singles and a good survey of album tracks that didn't receive the notice they deserved when they were originally released.

Sergio & Maddalena Vartolo - Johann Sebastian Bach: The Art of Fugue (Die Kunst der Fuge), BWV 1080 (2009) 2CDs

Posted By: Designol
Sergio & Maddalena Vartolo - Johann Sebastian Bach: The Art of Fugue (Die Kunst der Fuge), BWV 1080 (2009) 2CDs

Sergio & Maddalena Vartolo - J.S. Bach: The Art of Fugue, BWV 1080 (2009) 2CDs
EAC | FLAC | Image (Cue&Log) ~ 645 Mb | Mp3 (CBR320) ~ 236 Mb | Artwork included
Genre: Classical | Label: Naxos | # 8.570577-78 | Time: 01:42:09

Though unfinished at his death, Johann Sebastian Bach’s The Art of Fugue is both his musical last testament and a cornerstone of Western composition. At once a miracle of intellectual achievement, musical invention, technical challenges and emotional power, The Art of Fugue draws on all of Bach’s resources as a master of counterpoint. It is here performed, as the composer apparently intended, on harpsichord, by Sergio Vartolo who uses his own recently-published facsimile edition of the autograph score, and of the engraved first edition (1751/1752).

Janis Ian - Stars (1974) + Aftertones (1976) 2 CDs, Remastered Reissue 2010 [Re-Up]

Posted By: Designol
Janis Ian - Stars (1974) + Aftertones (1976) 2 CDs, Remastered Reissue 2010 [Re-Up]

Janis Ian - Stars (1974) + Aftertones (1976) 2 CDs, Remastered Reissue 2010
EAC | FLAC | Image (Cue&Log) ~ 393 Mb | Mp3 (CBR320) ~ 180 Mb (incl 5%) | Scans ~ 54 Mb
Singer/Songwriter, Soft Rock, Folk Rock | Label: Edsel | # EDSD 2044 | Time: 01:18:10

Digitally remastered two CD set containing a pair of original albums from the Folk/Rock singer/songwriter: Stars (1974) and Aftertones (1976). The two albums that bookended her hugely successful Between the Lines album, each of these releases are complimented by a bonus live track on each disc. While Stars was a critically successful release, Aftertones consolidated the worldwide success of Between the Lines, particularly in the UK and Japan.

Ronnie Foster - On the Avenue (1974) [Japanese Remastered Reissue 2013]

Posted By: Designol
Ronnie Foster - On the Avenue (1974) [Japanese Remastered Reissue 2013]

Ronnie Foster - On the Avenue (1974) [Japanese Remastered 2013]
EAC | FLAC | Image (Cue&Log) ~ 238 Mb | Mp3 (CBR320) ~ 109 Mb | Scans included
Jazz-Funk, Fusion | Label: Blue Note/Toshiba-EMI | # TOCJ-50541 | Time: 00:34:40

Though not as relentlessly funky as his classic Blue Note debut Two Headed Freap, On the Avenue remains the most accomplished record of Ronnie Foster's career, proving commercial aspirations and accoutrements can indeed co-exist alongside traditional jazz sensibilities. Produced by George Benson and featuring the great Phil Upchurch on guitar and Marvin Chapell on drums, On the Avenue favors more mellow, nuanced grooves over the blistering funk of previous Foster outings. The velvety opener "Serenade to a Rock" and the title cut both draw heavily on Stevie Wonder's classic mid-'70s recordings, with a lithe cover of the Innervisions track "Golden Lady" further underlining the influence. Foster also expands his palette to include Afro-Cuban sounds ("Big Farm Boy Goes to a Latin City") and even assumes vocal duties for the first time on LP with "To See a Smile." Best of all is his rendition of Freddie Hubbard's "First Light"; arguably Foster's purest and most potent performance to date.

Aalborg SO, Owain Arwel Hughes - Vagn Holmboe: Concertos for Piano, Clarinet, and Oboe; Beatus Parvo (2004)

Posted By: Designol
Aalborg SO, Owain Arwel Hughes - Vagn Holmboe: Concertos for Piano, Clarinet, and Oboe; Beatus Parvo (2004)

Vagn Holmboe: Concertos for Piano, Clarinet, and Oboe; Beatus Parvo (2004)
Gordon Hunt, oboe; Martin Fröst, clarinet; Noriko Ogawa, piano; Danish National Opera Choir
Aalborg Symphony Orchestra, Owain Arwel Hughes, conductor

EAC | FLAC | Image (Cue&Log) ~ 296 Mb | Mp3 (CBR320) ~ 182 Mb | Artwork included
Genre: Classical | Label: BIS | # BIS-1176 CD | Time: 01:18:06

Something of Vagn Holmboe's approach to writing concertos may be discerned in his numeration: they are not grouped according to the solo instrument (e.g., Piano Concerto No. 1), but counted merely as Concertos in the sequence of their composition, regardless of the featured instruments. This suggests that the soloist's role is somewhat altered: still central as a leading part, but frequently incorporated into the orchestral mass as a coloristic instrument among many others. The Concerto No. 1 for piano and orchestra, Op. 17 (1939), clearly demonstrates Holmboe's procedure, for the piano switches back and forth between lyrical solos and more emphatically rhythmic passages as a percussion instrument. Holmboe's Concerto No. 3 for clarinet and orchestra, Op. 21 (1940-1942), also presents interesting mixtures of the instrument's distinctive tone with other timbres, most strikingly with the brass section. The Concerto No. 7 for oboe and orchestra, Op. 37 (1944-1945), is most beguiling in the many chamber-like, concertino combinations of the oboe with other woodwinds. Pianist Noriko Ogawa, clarinetist Martin Frost, and oboist Gordon Hunt strike the right balance with conductor Owain Arwel Hughes and the Ålborg Symphony Orchestra, since all give prominence to the leading part where Holmboe indicates, but equal attention to the ever-shifting background textures.

Concertgebouw CO, Marco Boni - Schubert & Beethoven: String Quartets arrangements for string orchestra by Gustav Mahler (1998)

Posted By: Designol
Concertgebouw CO, Marco Boni - Schubert & Beethoven: String Quartets arrangements for string orchestra by Gustav Mahler (1998)

Franz Schubert: String Quartet in D minor, D 810 "Death and the Maiden"
Ludwig van Beethoven: String Quartet in F minor, Op. 95 "Serioso" (1998) Reissue 2012
based on the arrangements for string orchestra by Gustav Mahler
Concertgebouw Chamber Orchestra; Marco Boni, conductor

EAC | FLAC | Tracks (Cue&Log) ~ 311 Mb | Mp3 (CBR320) ~ 190 Mb | Scans included
Genre: Classical | Label: Arts Music | # 47514-2 | Time: 01:03:13

Transcriptions of chamber works to orchestral works have been interesting asides for composers for a long time - whether the transcription are alterations of a composer's own songs or chamber works to full orchestral size or those of other composers for which the transcriber had a particular affinity. Stokowski's transcriptions of Bach's works are probably the most familiar to audiences. The two transcriptions on this recording are the creations Gustav Mahler and his election to transcribe the quartets of Beethoven and Schubert is not surprising: Mahler 'transcribed' many of his own songs into movements or portions of movements for his own symphonies. Listening to Mahler's transcriptions of these two well known quartets - Franz Schubert's String Quartet in D Minor 'Death and the Maiden' and Ludwig van Beethoven's String Quartet in F Minor 'Serioso' - provides insight into both the orginal compositions and the orchestration concepts of Gustav Mahler. The themes of these two works would naturally appeal to Mahler's somber nature. Mahler naturally extends the tonal sound of each of these transcriptions by using the full string orchestra and in both works it is readily apparent that his compositional techniques within string sections are ever present.

B.B. King - Take It Home (1979) Japanese Reissue 2015

Posted By: Designol
B.B. King - Take It Home (1979) Japanese Reissue 2015

B.B. King - Take It Home (1979) Japanese Reissue 2015
EAC | FLAC | Image (Cue&Log) ~ 195 Mb | Mp3 (CBR320) ~ 77 Mb | Scans included
Modern Electric Blues, Soul-Blues | Label: Geffen/USM | # UICY-77475 | Time: 00:31:43

This 1979 effort finds B.B. interpreting a number of pop-blues tunes, many of them co-written by Will Jennings and co-producer Joe Sample, with King co-writing two of the songs aboard. Even with a large, contemporary backdrop (including a seven-piece horn section and female backup singers), there's still plenty of room for B.B.'s stinging guitar and stentorian vocals in the mix. Highlights include the gospel-tinged "Better Not Look Down," "Same Old Story (Same Old Song)," "Happy Birthday Blues," "The Beginning of the End" and the title track. As one of B.B.'s more pop-oriented offerings, this succeeds admirably.