Hi-Res Downloads

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C. Breunig (Music); P. Miller (Lab)  |  Aug 01, 2014
192kHz/24-bit FLAC/ALAC, Linn Records CKD 449 (supplied by www. linnrecords. com) Linn already has a fine Mozart Requiem under Sir Charles Mackerras [BKD 211]. But that was using a version by Robert Levin, whereas this new production from Greyfriars Kirk Edinburgh is a reconstruction of the first performance, based on a new edition of Sussmäyr’s completion of Mozart’s score.
A. Everard (Music); P. Miller (Lab)  |  Jul 09, 2018
Those of the view that audiophiles only like obscure and ‘plinky-plonky’ music, of the kind no-one would actually sit down to listen to for pleasure, are going to have a field day with the title of this one, but behind the ‘lost in translation’ is a truly lovely album. In contrast to our other squeezebox offering this month on p95 (and there’s a phrase I never thought I’d find myself writing!), this album is of tango pieces associated with guitarist Roberto Grela, and beautifully played by Louise Jallu on bandoneon together with acclaimed Japanese guitarist Hiroki Fukui. It’s a delightfully simple set, treated to a wonderfully intimate recording, combining crispness and warmth to winning effect. And boy, can these two play, with an easy rapport and that sense of firing off each other that’s the sign of true musicianship.
C. Breunig (Music); P. Miller (Lab)  |  Nov 01, 2013
This debut programme by duoW begins, not with the great Kodály unaccompanied cello sonata, but with a less familiar duo for violin and cello (his Op. 7); it ends with an arrangement of ‘The Stars And Stripes Forever’. The Servai/Léonard extravaganza Grand Duo de Concert draws upon our own National Anthem and ‘Yankee Doodle’, while the Halvorsen is based on a Handel passacaglia – their 2011 music video of this, Ghosts And Flowers, was apparently a viral hit. The two gifted string players have Masters degrees from Juilliard and they aspire to bring classical music to a younger generation.
C. Breunig (Music); P. Miller (Lab)  |  May 03, 2016
The young Paris Conservatoire trained cellist’s 2014 debut CD Play was of salon pieces. A year on – Moreau almost 21 – he tackles 18th-century concertos with a period orchestra [see also HFN Album Choice Mar ’15]. The punning title means ‘young lad’. With the finale taken at a real lick, the Haydn C major is the one well-known work here.
C. Breunig (Music); P. Miller (Lab)  |  Sep 01, 2013
The young Britten’s Piano Concerto was thought too clever by half when introduced in 1938, and he replaced the third movement in 1945 – the original is a bonus track here. The first LP version (EMI, 1957) was with Jacques Abram, pianist in Utah and NY premieres. The definitive composer-conducted 1970 Decca was with Sviatoslav Richter, no less. The far superior Violin Concerto fared rather better – although The Times’ review in 1940 found ‘little achieved from so large a display’.
J. Ford (Music); P. Miller (Lab)  |  Nov 01, 2013
96kHz/24-bit ALAC/FLAC/WAV, moscd4010 (supplied by www. naimlabel. com) It’s not uncommon that a recording identified as compromised in the Lab Report might still sound quite marvellous to these ears. Here, however, something was clearly wrong, with distortion hovering at the edge of audibility, pressuring the peaks and affecting image clarity on busier tracks like ‘Listen To Me’ and the surprising bottle-neck blues of ‘Dust My Broom’.
A. Everard (Music); P. Miller (Lab)  |  Mar 11, 2016
This album does just what it says on the tin – well, sort of. For while Elias did return to the country of her birth to rehearse and record this set, other elements were recorded in the USA and the UK, giving the whole thing a slightly ‘samba by the numbers’ feel. Yes, it’s desperately commercial, and focuses the attention on the obviously very talented pianist/vocalist. However, the over-lush strings, which swell and shimmer away in the background, and without which the sound would have lost very little, do give this set a bit too much of the ‘latin Diana Krall’ effect.
C. Breunig (Music); P. Miller (Lab)  |  Jun 01, 2015
Elizabeth Roe is a young Chicago pianist with already an impressive CV. Well worth hearing, she’s also half of a piano duet (see here). Here, she rounds out her programme with two solo ‘night pieces’ – Barber’s Nocturne ‘Homage To John Field’ and Britten’s Notturno written (1963) as a test piece for the very first Leeds Pianoforte Competition. Both main works exist in definitive recordings: John Browning’s (for whom the Barber was written) with Szell/Cleveland on Sony; and Richter’s with Britten/ECO on Decca.
A. Everard (Music); P. Miller (Lab)  |  Aug 01, 2015
94kHz/24-bit WAV, Linn Records AKD531 (supplied by www. linnrecords. com) This session came about by public demand – in between touring with her bands, Emily Barker was also playing solo acoustic shows of songs old and new, and kept being asked whether these versions of her catalogue were available to buy. As a result, she went into London’s Toerag Studios, known for its use of vintage equipment, along with producer Liam Watson, and recorded this live-to-tape, no edits set, accompanied only by her guitar and harmonica.
K. Kessler (Music); P. Miller (Lab)  |  Nov 01, 2013
96kHz/24-bit ‘Studio Master’ FLAC, Linn Records AKD 405 (supplied by www. linnrecords. com) A natural for high-res downloads, Barker and band’s fourth album is the first issued on a label they don’t own. The one that they found to be simpatico is Linn, which paradoxically has embraced digital with similar force to its analogue worship (minus the politics).
B. Willis (Music); P. Miller (Lab)  |  Apr 09, 2018
This contemplative, introspective collection by saxophonist David Haudrechy and pianist Grégoire Aguilar is what classical composers would have called ‘variations on a theme’. The key to what lies ahead is all contained in the opener, ‘Melancholia’. In the ensuing tracks, the two musicians do their best to find out how many ways they can plough the same plot of ground, but it’s a refined and delicate kind of ploughing. Lost Lake would serve well as background music for a moody French film, in which two obsessed lovers quarrel and copulate until they’ve exhausted their enthusiasm for both.
A. Everard (Music); P. Miller (Lab)  |  Aug 01, 2016
Eithne Ní Bhraonáin is back with her eighth set, apparently five years in the making, inspired by the night sky over the small Channel Island of Sark, and nearly 30 years on from her 1988 album Watermark. The good news – for her legions of fans, at least – is that Dark Sky Island sounds every bit an Enya album. The potentially bad news is that it sounds exactly like an Enya album. .
J. Ford (Music); P. Miller (Lab)  |  Sep 01, 2013
An appropriate title for this mish-mash of styles and songs, delivered perhaps too effortlessly by the venerable guitar god as he plucks well-ripened plums from his portfolio of styles. He Marley ups Taj Mahal’s ‘Further On Down The Road’ and carbon-copies Peter Tosh’s country-reggae crossover ‘Till Your Well Runs Dry’. Then he backs up to the 1930s for four tracks: a softly-softly ‘The Folks Who Live On The Hill’; a sloppy duet with Paul McCartney on ‘All of Me’; a slide-guitar moan through Lead Belly’s ‘Goodnight Irene’; and a downright dreary ‘Our Love Is Here To Stay’. There’s livelier stuff, including two original compositions, while the highlight is perhaps an unexpected cover of Gary Moore’s ‘Still Got The Blues’ with Stevie Winwood guest-grinding the Hammond organ.
J. Bamford (Music); P. Miller (Lab)  |  Feb 01, 2014
96KHZ/24-BIT ALAC/FLAC/WAV, Polydor Records 531 825-2 (supplied by www. hdtracks. com) Slowhand needs no introduction to rockers above a certain age, since it contains three of Clapton’s best-known signature songs: ‘Lay Down Sally’, ‘Wonderful Tonight’ and his perennial cover of JJ Cale’s ‘Cocaine’. Moreover the album’s other songs are far from just fillers.
J. Bamford (Music); P. Miller (Lab)  |  Jan 01, 2015
Eric Clapton is joined by an all-star cast – including Tom Petty, Mark Knopfler, bass supremo Nathan East and many others – in this tribute album honouring singer-songwriter JJ Cale. It was Cale, of course, who penned two of EC’s greatest solo hits: ‘After Midnight’ and ‘Cocaine’; and this collection of songs is named after ‘Call Me The Breeze’ which was the opening track on Cale’s 1972 debut album Naturally – it opens this set too. Sound quality varies from uninspiring (‘Rock And Roll Records’ and ‘Train To Nowhere’) to slightly better than average (‘Someday’ and ‘Songbird’). Highlights are John Mayer’s vocal performance in ‘Magnolia’ and Don White’s charming rendition of ‘Sensitive Kind’.