Audiophile: Vinyl, July 2019

hfnalbum.pngStevie Ray Vaughan And Double Trouble
Texas Flood
Mobile Fidelity UD-1S 2-005 (two 45rpm One-Step LPs)

Following the Marvin Gaye One-Step release, which introduced MoFi's new vinyl formula, is Vaughan's oft-reissued 1983 breakthrough LP, the album that introduced the world to an incendiary blues guitarist who managed to please both the purists and the mainstream. Indeed, so powerful was Texas Flood that its glorious mix of gutsy roadhouse blues and exquisite instrumentals, the latter recalling Hendrix's more pensive moments, is credited with reviving the then-moribund blues genre. This edition contains the original track listing spread over four sides, and the biggest shock is not the magnificence of the now-familiar music so much as how phenomenal is the sound of an album recorded in only three days. KK


Ted Hawkins
The Next Hundred Years
Acoustic Sounds APB124 (200g vinyl)

This rich-sounding LP will make you shake your fist at the gods: cult hero Hawkins died, aged just 58, on 1st January 1995, mere months after this album's release and the promise of a new chapter to his patchy career. Older readers will recall him being championed by English DJ Andy Kershaw when roots music was all the rage, Hawkins producing an amalgam of soul, blues, R&B, folk and gospel, appealing to fans across all genres. With hindsight, this is slicker if less intimate than his earlier LPs, but it's still a dream if you love textured vocals. Appropriately and ironically, the closer is a poignant version of Creedence Clearwater Revival's 'Long As I Can See The Light'. KK


Simon And Garfunkel
Parsley, Sage, Rosemary And Thyme
Mobile Fidelity MFSL1-484 (180g vinyl)

In March, the SACD was my digital Album Choice, and this LP edition would have done the same for vinyl had it not arrived at the same time as the Stevie Ray box set above. Suffice it to say, this is warmer and more open than the SACD (if marginally – so those not equipped for vinyl can relax). Nearly as involving as its One-Step sibling, should MoFi do the same to this by applying One-Step's 45rpm treatment and the new formula vinyl, you will probably never hear better-sounding versions of 'Homeward Bound', 'The Dangling Conversation' or the title song. And 'A Simple Desultory Philippic' still embarrasses any listener with an aversion to pretence. KK


Sun Ra And His Astro Infinity Arkestra
Pathways To Unknown Worlds
Modern Harmonic MH-8084 (yellow vinyl)

It doesn't get more avant-garde than Sun Ra, so stop reading now if you abhor dissonance, lack of order or anything else that's the aural equivalent of a Mogens Bale painting. Dating from 1975, this is as extreme and experimental as any music being performed today, so if you're not a devotee, it will only be of interest because of the bizarre nature of the sounds in the grooves. These are free jazz improvisations from one of his most highly-regarded trios, and fans will relish the full version of 'Extension Out'. Perhaps Vocalion will release it on SACD so we can hear it in

four-channel sound? KK