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3 New Telarc Classical SACDs

October 11th, 2008

Telarc has released 3 new classical hybrid SACDs ( compatible for listening on traditional CD players as well as SACD players.)

Paavo Jarvi/Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra
Mussorgsky: Pictures at an Exhibition, Night on Bald Mountain, Prelude to Khovanshchina

Robert Spano/Atlanta Symphony Orchestra and Chorus
Brahms: Ein Deutsches Requiem

Erich Kunzel/Cincinnati Pops Orchestra
Ravel’s Bolero:Borodin: Music from Kismet; Bizet: Suites from Carmen

More information available on the Telarc site >>

Lots of classical still coming

October 11th, 2008

For classical music fans, SACD is still getting well fed.

Here’s what’s in the pipe:

Eric Milnes conducts the Montreal Baroque for Volume 4 of Bach’s Complete Sacred Cantatas.
Format: Atma Hybrid Multichannel/Stereo SACD
October 2008

Richard Hickox conducts the London Symphony Orchestra for this recording of Carl Orff’s Carmina Burana.
Format: Chandos Hybrid Multichannel/Stereo SACD
October 2008

The Kronos Quartet are joined by the British baritone Paul Hillier and the Danish National Symphony Orchestra conducted by Thomas Dausgaard.
Format: Dacapo Hybrid Multichannel/Stereo SACD
October 2008

RQR (Remastered Quadro Recording)
Raymond Leppard conducts the English Chamber Orchestra for recordings by J.S. Bach & C.P.E. Bach while I Musici perform concertos by Vivaldi.
Format: PentaTone RQR Hybrid Multichannel/Stereo SACD
October 2008

The Storioni Trio of Van de Roer, W. Vossen & M. Vossen perform Piano Trios Nos. 1 & 2 by Brahms.
Format: PentaTone Hybrid Multichannel/Stereo SACD & Bonus DVD
October 2008

Vladimir Jurowski conducts the Russian National Orchestra for this recording of the “Hamlet” and “Romeo & Juliet” works by Tchaikovsky.
Format: PentaTone Hybrid Multichannel/Stereo SACD
October 2008

Pianist Sa Chen is joined by the Gulbenkian Orchestra Lisbon conducted by Lawrence Foster for this recording of Chopin Piano Concertos.
Format: PentaTone Hybrid Multichannel/Stereo SACD & Bonus DVD
October 2008

The duo, Gary Cooper and Rachel Podger, present Volume Six of the ongoing series of Mozart Sonatas.
Format: Channel Classics Hybrid Multichannel/Stereo SACD
October 2008

World-renowned countertenor Robin Blaze joins Paul Hillier and the Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir in this world premiere recording.
Format: Harmonia Mundi Hybrid Multichannel/Stereo SACD
October 2008

October 2008
Valery Gergiev’s Mahler cycle has been received with the highest praise – this new set raises the bar even higher and will undoubtedly appear on year-end ‘best-of ’ lists.
Format: 2 LSO Live Hybrid Multichannel/Stereo SACDs

October 2008
Pascal Rogé joins the RSO Wien conducted by Bertrand de Billy for their second Gershwin/Ravel recording.
Format: Oehms Classics Hybrid Multichannel/Stereo SACD

October 2008
Christoph Pregardien and Andreas Staier plant a bright, clearly waving flag amidst the many fine recordings of this famous song cycle.
Format: Challenge Hybrid Multichannel/Stereo SACD

Once again, Roman Kofman conducts the Beethoven Orchestra of Bonn for the 14th Symphony for this ongoing cycle of works by Shostakovich.
Format: MDG Hybrid Multichannel/Stereo SACD
November 11, 2008

Conductor Geoffrey Simon has selected the very best tracks from two sonic and artistic blockbusters for a single disc spectacular – newly remastered in SACD surround sound, and featuring some of the world’s finest trumpet virtuosos.
Format: Cala Records Hybrid Multichannel/Stereo SACD
October 2008

Mesmerizing SACD Surround Sound!
There are three major driving forces behind this project: the phenomenal musicians of the Silesian String Quartet, Stefan Sendecki, the congenial arranger/composer, and Andrzej Lipinski, the Einstein of Sound!
Format: Lipinski Records Hybrid Multichannel/Stereo SACD
October 2008

Stanislaw Drzewiecki, Tatiana Shebanova and Jaroslaw Drzewiecki – one of the greatest piano families perform triple, dual and single piano concertos.
Format: Lipinski Records Hybrid Multichannel/Stereo SACD
October 2008

The original Italian sonnets, Vivaldi’s inspiration for the music, and the phenomenal interpretation and voice of Stacy Keach contribute to its uniqueness.
Format: Lipinski Records Hybrid Multichannel/Stereo SACD
October 2008

Featured as one of the Records to Die For in the February 2007 issue of Stereophile!
Krzysztof Penderecki conducting his tremendous masterpiece during his 70th birthday gala concert in the thunderous acoustics of St. Jacek monastery in Warsaw’s Old Town.
Format: Lipinski Records Hybrid Multichannel/Stereo SACD
October 2008

One the most famous classical music masterpieces ever written, conducted by the composer himself during his 70th birthday gala concert.
Format: Lipinski Records Hybrid Multichannel/Stereo SACD
October 2008

Kazimierz Kord, a style setting conductor for a quarter of a century, of The National Philharmonic, Warsaw, conducts the most important work of F. Coppola’s and R. Polanski’s movies court composer.
Format: Lipinski Records Hybrid Multichannel/Stereo SACD
October 2008

Marshall Crenshaw’s 1982 self-titled debut album was immediately lauded as a pop masterpiece.
Format: Mobile Fidelity Ultradisc UHRâ„¢ Hybrid Stereo SACD
October 2008

Irma Issakadze demonstrates both a compelling and individualistic musical personality in an interpretation that combines completely transparent articulation, balanced polyphony and breathtaking virtuosity.
Format: 2 Oehms Classics Hybrid Multichannel/Stereo SACDs
October 2008

Bertrand de Billy conducts the Vienna Radio Symphony Orchestra.
Format: 2 Oehms Classics Hybrid Multichannel/Stereo SACDs
October 2008

Soloists, internationally renowned opera star Geraldine McGreevy and acclaimed baritone Tommi Hakala, bring their individual talents and intuitive, idiomatic style to this demonstration-quality SACD recording.
Format: Querstand Hybrid Multichannel/Stereo SACD
October 2008

Gramophone Magazine Editor’s Choice
Jonathan Nott conducts the Bamberger Symphoniker for this fiery performance.
Format: Tudor Hybrid Multichannel/Stereo SACD
October 2008

Gustav Mahler’ Symphony No.4 is the third release in the Nott/Bamberg Mahler cycle and features German soprano Mojca Erdmann.
Format: Tudor Hybrid Multichannel/Stereo SACD
October 2008

Foghat / Fool For The City coming in November !

September 16th, 2008

Another of my favorite albums is getting remastered by the able hands of Mobile Fidely, on SACD no less!

Fool For The CityFoghat’s fortunes turned around with their 1975 release Fool For the City, which was their first album to go platinum, and it introduced the band to Top 40 radio with the enduring rock favorite “Slow Ride.” Fool For The City still stands as the group’s finest achievement, and the well-crafted and ambitious set of tunes is the perfect representation of the road-tested band and of ’70s hard rock. Now available for the first time on Numbered Limited Edition Hybrid SACD From Mobile Fidelity!

• Numbered, Limited Edition Mini-LP Style Packaging
• Mastered from original 1/2″ Analog Master Tapes

Pre-orders are already being taken at the Elusive Disc !

SACD is NOT dead !

August 19th, 2008

Damn am I sick of people ringing the bell on SACD and claiming it dead! Just too many ignorant people! It’s like people claiming that an athlete MUST be on drugs because he won the gold. Shut up man, you’re gonna get a good slap up side the head for belching out such crap! An intelligent (you know, not brain dead) person doesn’t condemn if there isn’t proof to put behind it. It’s like saying it’s time to bury grandma while she’s still clearly enjoying watching Oprah on the tube. You just don’t say things like that. Ok, claiming the death of SACD is not in the same league as claiming that Usain Bolt is on something, but, you get the idea.

Here is the real situation:

Sure, SACD is not going to take over CDs, of that much we can be clear. BUT, there are still great players coming out that are either dedicated to SACD or are multiplayers that include SACD playback. Also, the number of new releases per year hasn’t changed much in the last five years.

The Players of interest

The Pioneer DV48A, DV58A (US) and DV-600AV (Europe) along with the Oppo DV-970HD and 980H are recent players that have finally made digital output of the SACD DSD signal via HDMI to a compatible receiver like the Pioneer Elite VSX-92TXH, the Sony STR-DA5300ES (TA-DA5300ES), the Denon AVR-3808 and AVR-4308 and Onkyo TX- TX-SR805, TX-SR875 and TX -SR905 or the Marantz SR60001, SR7001, SR8001, SR7002 and SR8002 receivers, and the Yamaha RX-Z11, RX-V661, RX-V761, RX-V861, RX-V1700, RX-V2700, RX-V1800 and RX-V3800.
There are also now players and receivers using iLINK that can also transfer the DSD signal to the receiver. A few years ago this just didn’t exist.
If SACD were already dead, we would not be seeing new features coming out that are specifically for SACD! Right?

Pioneer has released an SACD audio player, the PD-D6-J and NAD came out with their first SACD machine. There are loads of high end players that too, like the Esoterics, Ed Meitner / EMM Labs, the dCS Paganini, Scarlatti and Puccini and the Accuphase MDSD SA-CD Player DP-700, and loads more.
Other SACD player manufacturers include Alouette Audio, Audio Aero, Bladelius Design, Bel Canto Designs, Classé, Daisy Laser, Denon, Faroudja, Krell, Lexicon, Lindermann, Linn, Marantz, McCormack, Micromega, Musical Fidelity, Music Hall Audio, Onkyo, Opera Audio, Philips, Pioneer, Primare, Revox, Shenzhen Shanling, Sharp, Sony, Theatris, Van Den Hul and Yamaha.

Doesn’t look very dead to me!

The Discs are Still Coming

Although the majors have slacked off, the smaller labels are still rolling out new titles.
The SA-CD stats show that this year has only rolled off about 10%. RIAA stats are of course bogus as they are for SACD only (non-hybrid) discs. Most SACDs released now are Hybrid SACD and CD playback and are counted as CDs by the RIAA.
And since there are more and more users that have SACD playback capable systems and have invested in better sound, there are new users every day.

The picks at the stores are there too. Arkiv Music has 2030 classical music titles, up from 1428 a year ago, Elusive disc has 3000 titles, one year ago they had 2500, and has 4430 titles up from only 1240 a year ago! OK, there are those who say that 4400 is way to little, but at least it is still growing! That’s a long way from dead if it is still growing!

I’d say that rather call SACD as dead, we need to call it what it is, a baby growing to toddler stage. I think SACD is here to stay, and will slowly continue to grow.

So please people, let’s not bury SACD while it is still alive and kicking.

Linn Records announces 5 new SACD titles for August to November 2008

August 15th, 2008

Linn records will release 5 new classical and jazz music titles during the rest of the year.
Although LINN is primarily known for their exceptional hifi equipment, they also edit audiophile quality music under a label of the same name. Today the label is one of the world’s leading audiophile labels specialising in classical, jazz and Celtic music.

For the second half of 2008 LINN announces the coming release of 5 new titles including works by Ravel, Mozart, Tartini, Veracini and the UK jazz legend Carol Kidd.
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* COMING SOON * Pixies – Bossanova MoFi SACD (August or Sept 2008)

August 15th, 2008

Pixies - Bossanova MoFi SACDSKU: UDSACD 2035
Originally released in August 1990, most true Pixies fans consider this one of their best. So this is a welcome sight in the SACD window.

A surf-space rock album that touched upon new heights, Bossanova departed from the “unpredictable” signature sound of the Pixies and is considered their first thematic project.

According to MoFi, the disc will be a Stereo and Multichannel Hybrid SACD and the digital transfer is mastered from the Original ½” Analog Master Tapes so we can expect the traditional great sound of mofi here. The packaging will be a numbered Limited Edition Mini-LP-Style. I recently added the Rush “Parallel Lines” MoFi Gold CD to my collection and I must say that the mini LP format really adds a sense of something special.

If you don’t know this album, there is a great review on Amazon By Wheelchair Assassin .

I’ll add links when it is actually available.


Music Direct 4 – 6 weeks.*
Elusive Disc – Preorder

“Tous les matins du monde” by Jordi Savall – SACD Review

August 6th, 2008

Disc Details

Tous les matins du monde [SACD]
Works by Jean-Baptiste Lully, Marin Marais, Sainte Colombe, & François Couperin
Montserrat Figueras (soprano); Maria Cristina Kiehr (soprano); Fabio Biondi (violin); Christophe Coin (bass viol); Jérôme Hantaï (bass viol); Rolf Lislevand (theorbo); Pierre Hantaï (harpsichord)

Le Concert des Nations

Jordi Savall

Alia Vox- 9821(CD)
Reference Recording – 1991 issue of same (Auvidis)

The SACD version has a fold out cardboard cover. The original CD from 1992 is the standard jewel box with booklet. The CD version is also available as a 2002 reissue but my example is the original 1992 version.

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The Stranger on SACD Review

August 3rd, 2008

Billy Joel - The Stranger [SACD]


The Stranger was Billy Joel’s first big hit album. The Piano Man netted only one real hit, but The Stranger rang up four top 40 hits and four Grammy nominations. Phil Ramone’s assistance in this album was certainly of big importance in its success.
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Gotan Project on SACD Review

July 3rd, 2007

Gotan ProjectGotan Project in a Paris based group that has introduced something new to the nu jazz scene for the first time in a long time. It is unique because it is a groove mix like St Germain but is based on the rhythms and instrumentation of tango. Now that’s one thing, but on top of that, they do it really well. It has the burning passion and pain that is part of the Argentinian tango.

If you haven’t heard of the Gotan Project, you still may have heard them; if you’ve seen the hot argentine tango performed by Jennifer Lopez and Richard Gere in Shall We Dance, then you’ve heard the most popular cut on the album, “Santa Maria (del buen ayre)” which is also on the SACD as track 5.

I’m not going to go on and on trying to describe them because that has already been very well done by Andy Hermann at pop matters. What I do want to do here is tell you how the CD version (XLCD 148) compares to the SACD Hybride (Dual Layer) (981 878-7).

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NAD M5 CD SACD Player !

July 3rd, 2007

It’s been a long time coming, but one of my favourite hifi manufactures has finally come out with a player that plays my favourite disc format (SACD of course).

NAD is a Canadian hifi manufacturer that is world famous for making not too expensive hifi equipment that sounds great. When I say great, I mean that it isn’t just well composed, doesn’t offend, I mean it jams! And it does it right with every kind of music; which is mighty hand for me because I have a very wide range of musical tastes. Their most famous product is the NAD 3020 amplifier from the 70′s, designed by Bjørn Erik Edvardsen, who has been back in the lab there recently to bring out the NAD C320BEE (a real gem in affordable hifi).

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