Friday, May 1, 2009


Pink Floyd - One Of These Days

Different Grades for Condition of Vinyl Records -- powered by

Audiophile Audition Review

I want to thank John over at for the exclusive rights to reprint this great review!

AUDIOPHILE AUDITION focuses on recordings of interest to audiophiles and collectors, with an accent on surround sound for music, and on all hi-res disc formats. Over 100SACD, DVD Video/Audio and standard CD reviews are published during each month, and our archives go back to January 2001.

Muddy Waters – I’m Ready – CBS/ Pure Pleasure Records PPAN JZ34928 – 1978 ****1/2:

Artists: Muddy Waters, guitar and vocals; Johnny Winter: guitar; Big Walter Horton, harmonica; Jerry Portnoy, harmonica; Pine Top Perkins, piano; Jimmy Rogers, guitar; Bob Margolin, bass; Willie “Big Eyes” Smith, drums

At the end of his storied career, the great Chicago blues man, Muddy Waters, had one last period of resurgence. He made a trilogy of albums produced by Johnny Winter-Hard Again, I’m Ready, and King Bee. Winters’ formula was fairly straight forward-surround Muddy with his touring band and add some special guests to light his fire-while recording a mixture of hit singles with new material. Then let Muddy cut loose and burn down some electric Chicago blues. It was a winning combination and you can sense the joy that Muddy felt in his bantering between songs. His last hurrah was a barnburner.

Pure Pleasure has picked the middle session of the trilogy-I’m Ready- as ripe for audiophile remastering in 180 gram vinyl. Ray Staff has done a brilliant job remastering this album as the electric guitars bent notes sizzle and Muddy’s strutting vocals growl with passion. Guests Big Walter Horton and Jimmy Rogers spur Waters to new heights. Pianist Pine Top Perkins, still going strong today in his 90s, was cooking 30 years ago, and Johnny Winter must have had a blast playing slide guitar on Who Do You Trust. Screamin’ and Cryin’ and I’m Your Hoochie Coochie Man were vintage Waters and still cooked even at the end of the fabled Mr. Waters’ career.

Newer material such as Who Do You Trust and 33 Years clearly inspired Muddy and make a nice segue from classics like Rock Me, and Good Morning Little School Girl. Muddy Waters passed away five years after I’m Ready and just two years post King Bee. Born in 1915, the inimitable Muddy Waters was a monster blues man till the end. Thanks to Pure Pleasure Records, are YOU ready for I’m Ready?

TrackList: Side 1: I’m Ready, 33 years, Who Do You Trust, Copper Brown
Side 2: I’m Your Hoochie Coochie Man, Mamie, Rock Me, Screamin’ and Cryin’, Good Morning Little School Girl

Nat King Cole – Penthouse Serenade – Capitol / Pure Pleasure Audiophile Mono LP – PPAN T332 – 1952 & 1955 ****1/2:

(Nat King Cole, piano and vocals on Side 2, Tracks 5-10; John Collins, guitar; Charlie Harris, bass; Bunny Shawker and Lee Young, drums; Jack Costanzo, bongos and conga)

Nat King Cole, after abandoning his piano trio to concentrate on his burgeoning vocal career returned to the studio a year later in 1952 for Capitol Records to record an eight song 10 inch LP with a quartet, adding guitarist John Collins to his new group. The result was Penthouse Serenade, and it was a lovely mix of standards taken at light leisurely stroll with Cole’s light sparkling touch. When the 12 inch LP came on the scene in the mid 50s Cole went back to the studio to add four more tracks (this time with Lee Young on the drum stand taking over for Bunny Shawker). The now full-length LP was to be Cole’s first full-length LP.

Fast-forward to 1998 and the established CD format with room for still more tracks to flesh out (and sell to a new market), and Capitol’s marketing department had the acumen to add still more tracks to Cole’s penthouse experience. An alternate take of I Surrender Dear was found from 1955 and six more songs were found from 1952, which included the great bongo player Jack Costanzo. Four of these tracks had previously been unreleased. The only aberration to the mood that Capitol set was that the six new additions to Penthouse Serenade were vocals. As we all know, Cole was a master singer and to most of his fans it’s the vocals with his inimitable voice that bring him his present day fame. The two sets of additions to Penthouse Serenade add twenty-eight minutes and bring the total to fifty-one minutes, now a proper CD length.

One can’t fault Pure Pleasure, the English audiophile LP experts, from issuing the complete group of sessions, as Capitol had done in the late 90s. Their remastering is pristine due to the expertise of Steve Hoffman and Kevin Gray. For audiophiles it’s a nice bonus to have the alternate take of I Surrender Dear and the vocal tracks to be issued for the first time on vinyl. Nat’s voice has never sounded so sweet and distinctive as on audiophile 180-gram vinyl. Cole’s voice on a quality turntable in audiophile sound is a real treat!

Side 1:
Penthouse Serenade (When We’re Alone)
Somebody Loves Me
Once in a Blue Mood
Don’t Blame Me
Little Girl
Polka Dots and Moonbeams
Down By the Old Mill Stream
If I Should Love You

Side 2:
Rose Room
I Surrender Dear (take 2)
It Could Happen to You
I Surrender Dear (take 1)
Too Marvelous for Words
Walkin’ My Baby Back Home
Too Young
That’s My Girl
It’s Only a Paper Moon

It’s Only a Paper Moon

Sarah Vaughan – Sarah Sings Soulfully- Roulette / Pure Pleasure Analogue LP - PPAN SR-52116 – (1963) ****:

(Sarah Vaughan, vocals; Gerald Wilson, arranger and conductor; Sextet members including Ernie Freeman, organ; Carmell Jones, trumpet; Teddy Edwards, tenor sax)

Backed by a West Coast all-star sextet with arrangements by the brilliant (now in his 90s!) bandleader and arranger, Gerald Wilson, Sarah Vaughan recorded her last Roulette record for the inimitable Teddy Reig in 1963. She then went back to Mercury Records.

Sarah Sings Soulfully consists primarily of pop songs of the day - A Taste of Honey, What Kind of Fool Am I, The Good Life, Gravy Waltz. Vaughan stretches out the lyrics and Wilson provides easygoing backing-whether it be organ and tambourine for Sermonette, or the impeccable front line of Carmell Jones and Teddy Edwards.

Sassy caresses the lyrics as though she is singing late night for friends in a cabaret setting. Only Shirley Horn compares in languid interpretation of ballads. Pure Pleasure has done their usual commendable job in audiophile remastering. Pure warm stereophonic sonics make Blakey’s Moanin’ snap to attention while Monk’s Round Midnight has a late night moodiness.

This early 60s time period was Sarah Vaughan in her prime and Sarah Sings Soulfully would be a welcome addition to vinyl lovers of jazz vocals. You won’t find Sassy in any better sounding splendor.

Side A:
A Taste of Honey
What Kind of Fool Am I?
I Guess I’ll Hang Out My Tears to Dry
In Love In Vain
Gravy Waltz

Side B:
The Good Life
‘Round Midnight
Easy Street
Baby, Won’t You Please Come Home
Midnight Sun

All above reviews -- Jeff Krow

New Album Cover Art

Official Cover Art of Black Eyed Peas' New Album 'The E.N.D.'

Black Eyed Peas' upcoming fifth studio album "The E.N.D." has finally got an official cover art. Posted by on his Dipdive blog, the artwork arrives as a headshot of a person with the name of the Hip-Hop group and the title of their new effort attached on his forehead.


Few Against Many Cover Art

The latest Swedish all-star collaboration THE FEW AGAINST MANY, featuring ex-Scar Symmetry singer Christian Älvestam, Pär Johansson of Satariel and Demiurg fame, Patrik Gardberg (Torchbearer), Jani Stefanovic (Miseration, Solution .45, etc) and Anders Edlund (Incapacity, Angel Blake, etc) have revealed the album cover artwork and tracklisting for the debut album “SOT."


Budos Band to Release The Budos Band EP on June 23 (digital and vinyl only)

From the vaults of Daptone Records comes a collection of unreleased tracks from the infamous Budos Band. Recorded after The Budos Band I sessions, but before those for the second full-length, this EP is a fascinating glimpse into the group's evolution as musicians and recording artists.


And this from the creative loafing blog:

CL and Criminal Records team up for vinyl release

by Chad Radford image creatcrc

It’s time once again for the highly coveted annual Creative Loafing music issue. This year we’re offering up an honest-to-goodness old fashioned 12-inch vinyl LP compilation that features cuts from several of our favorite local artists.

Dubbed The Mixt A Vol. 1, the record includes 10 songs from the likes of Predator, Grip Playaz, the Balkans, the N.E.C., A. Leon Craft, Anna Kramer & the Lost Cause, Mums F.P., Stanza, Carnivores and Zoroaster featuring Brent Hinds from Mastodon.

The record is strictly limited to 500 copies that will be available at not one, but two record release shows. The first show happens at Eyedrum on Thurs., May 7. The $10 cover gets you into the show as well as a copy of the record. The N.E.C., Grip Playaz, the Balkans and A.Leon Craft are all scheduled to perform. Doors open at 7 p.m. Music starts at 8 p.m.

The second record release party goes down at Criminal Records on the afternoon of Sun., May 10. The Carnivores, Stanza, Mums F.P. and Predator are on the bill. There is no cover charge to attend the show. LPs will be on sale at the store for $10 and the music starts at 3:30 p.m.

In addition to the 10 songs on the LP, dozens of bonus tracks will be included in a free online download that includes songs by Abby Go Go, All Night Drug Prowling Wolves, Batata Doce, the 4th Ward Afro-Klezmer Orchestra, the Coathangers, Danny!, Pill and many more.

Go to for more info.



Streetlight Manifesto, Darkest Hour albums to see vinyl release

Victory Records has announced plans to issue two fan favorite albums on vinyl. The first is Darkest Hour’s critically acclaimed 2003 album, Hidden Hands of a Sadist Nation and the second is Streetlight Manifesto’s Everything Goes Numb also released in 2003.

According to a Vinyl Collective report, the Darkest Hour LP will be pressed on a limited 300 copies of “dark putty” vinyl while Streetlight’s record will be pressed 500 copies on white vinyl. Normal colours will have wider printing and available at Hot Topic and other retailers.