Artist: Yo-Yo Ma and FriendsTitle: Songs of Joy and Peace
Music: 7.0Recording: 9.0Space: 9.0
Depth: 9.0Dynamics: 9.0Total: 8.6
Comments
I am not totally enthralled by the music - it can become little cloy: All 'Peace, Hope and Glory' if you get my drift, but oh boy, the recording! Wow - holographic - just take listen to 'You Couldn't be Cuter' to get a measure of how good the engineering is on this CD . . without sounding over engineered. And there's a slew of heavyweight musicians doing great performances. Awesome.
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yo-Yo_Ma

Artist: Yo-Yo MaTitle: Yo-Yo Ma Plays Ennio Morricone
Music: 7.0Recording: 7.0Space: 7.0
Depth: 7.0Dynamics: 7.0Total: 7.0
Comments
This CD dates back from 2004, and consists of mostly movie theme scores. Certainly Morricone's music is beautiful, and as usual Yo-yo Ma's playing is fantastic, but I do feel the recording could have been better - to my ears at least, it seems to lack the space and delicacy that I would expect from an orchestral CD. However, this is still a great CD!
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ennio_Morricone http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yo_yo_ma

Artist: YesTitle: Relayer
Music: 3.0Recording: 4.0Space: 3.0
Depth: 3.0Dynamics: 5.0Total: 3.6
Comments
One for the bottom of the CD pile, just above 'Accellerate'. Inaccessible wall of noise. Whoever decided this crap was worthy of release needs their nuts in a vice. Someone please start tightening . . .
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yes_(band)

Artist: YesTitle: Fragile
Music: 9.0Recording: 7.0Space: 6.0
Depth: 6.0Dynamics: 7.0Total: 7.0
Comments
A great 1970's recording that in many respects set the benchmark forever for prog-rock. This was sophisticated music that was not to everyone's taste's. John Howe's acoustic guitar is masterful as is Jon Anderson's handling of the vocals. Remastered and reissued. Essential listening.
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yes_(band)

Artist: YesTitle: Close to the Edge
Music: 8.0Recording: 7.0Space: 6.0
Depth: 7.0Dynamics: 8.0Total: 7.2
Comments
In many respects, and with 20/20 hindsight, this album marked Yes' zenith in the prog rock firmament. The material is superbly arranged, and as was typical of their 1970's output, very dense and layered. The recording is good, but no doubt severely limited in terms of soundstaging by the available studio equipment at the time. My favourite track is the first one 'Close to the Edge' and the last track 'Siberian Khatru'. A truly wonderful, uplifting album.
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yes_(band)

Artist: Various - movie sound tracksTitle: The French Kiss
Music: 7.0Recording: 5.0Space: 5.0
Depth: 4.0Dynamics: 6.0Total: 5.4
Comments
Some great tracks . . . murdered by excesses of compression and remixing to satisfy the demands of the film industry who are always in it only for a quick buck. As a result, my recommendation is you don't waste your time with it.
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/French_Kiss_(film)

Artist: VariousTitle: Raincoat
Music: 8.0Recording: 8.0Space: 7.0
Depth: 7.0Dynamics: 8.0Total: 7.6
Comments
A compilation 2 CD set of mainly jazz, pop and blues tunes with a rain theme. All the recordings are good and there are some real gems - Dianne Schuur 'My one and only love' stands out as does 'Aint no Sunshine' by Grover Washington
Link:

Artist: Tom JonesTitle: Praise and Blame
Music: 8.0Recording: 6.0Space: 5.0
Depth: 5.0Dynamics: 7.0Total: 6.2
Comments
Unfortunately, I only heard this on MP3, and the sound is awful. However, after a lifetime of singing about boozing, womanizing and whatnot, the Welsh crooner still has what it takes to deliver the goods. Great album, Mr. Jones!
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tom_Jones_(singer)

Artist: Tim BuckleyTitle: Happy Sad
Music: 7.0Recording: 7.0Space: 7.0
Depth: 7.0Dynamics: 7.0Total: 7.0
Comments
This great album was released in 1969. Buckley senior passed on the gift of his soaring vocals to his son Jeff, and this album showcases some of that DNA. Sadly, after being clean for quite some time, Buckley overdosed on heroin and expired. What a sordid waste. Can you imagine a different outcome, with perhaps a father and son making an appearance together on the same album? Holy crap, now wouldn't that have been something!
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tim_Buckley

Artist: The PoliceTitle: Ghost in the Machine
Music: 8.0Recording: 7.0Space: 6.0
Depth: 6.0Dynamics: 8.0Total: 7.0
Comments
The Police were arguably the most accomplished punk band of the late 70's and early 80's. Stings song writing skills coupled to Copland's drumming and Summer's guitar playing hit a nerve. Every Little Thing . . . was a smash hit (pun intended), and rightly so. But my favourites are Invisible Sun, Demolition Man, and Rehumanize Yourself, with the expletive adding a delightful touch. Essential listening.
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Police

Artist: The DoorsTitle: The Very Best of the Doors
Music: 7.0Recording: 8.0Space: 7.0
Depth: 7.0Dynamics: 8.0Total: 7.4
Comments
Riders On the Storm, Love Me Two Times, Baby Light My Fire, Break on Through . . . I was about 10 or 11 years old when these were big hits, and don't remember them, instead discovering them in the mid 1970's. Raw, gritty and with just enough imperfection in the performances and the recording to make them supremely authentic. RIP JM. Essential listening.
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Doors

Artist: The Choir of New College, Oxford, conducted by Howard HigginbottomTitle: Agnus Dei: Music of Inner Harmony
Music: 9.0Recording: 8.0Space: 8.0
Depth: 8.0Dynamics: 8.0Total: 8.2
Comments
Stunning recording and heavenly music. One to take in when you are in a relaxed and thoughtful frame of mind. One of best vocal recordings of the last 20 years or so, setting the benchmark for choral music.
Link: http://www.newcollegechoir.com/crd/crd3443.htm

Artist: The Berlin Philharmonic conducted by Herbert von KarajanTitle: Holst's 'The Planets'
Music: 9.0Recording: 8.0Space: 7.0
Depth: 7.0Dynamics: 9.0Total: 8.0
Comments
This is a fantastic CD. 'Mars the Bringer of War' is my standout favourite. The way the piece starts off, quietly, menacingly, slowly building, oozing evil and terror, and then climaxes in an awe inspring, bone jarring crescendo that leaves chills down your spine. Other tracks are equally well arranged and the whole CD is a 'must listen'. Da Da Da Dum . . . Da Da Da Dum . . . Awesome!
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gustav_Holst

Artist: Taj MahalTitle: Music Fuh Ya'
Music: 8.0Recording: 7.0Space: 6.0
Depth: 6.0Dynamics: 7.0Total: 6.8
Comments
A very old recording dating from 1977. Taj Mahal has been playing the Blues, World Music and a whole lot of other stuff for nearly 50 years. This is a great album, though the recording is not up to modern standards.
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Taj_Mahal_(musician)

Artist: SupertrampTitle: The Very Best of Supertramp
Music: 8.0Recording: 7.0Space: 7.0
Depth: 7.0Dynamics: 7.0Total: 7.2
Comments
Supertramp, that great outfit from the 70's and 80's. I remember waiting until payday (I earned squat) to rush out and buy 'Even In the Quietest Moments'. Always topical, the music reflected the times wonderfully, was easily accessible and well recorded. Of course, the arty farty crowd dismissed ST as mindless pop, but most of us knew better. They were damn good and their music was great.
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Supertramp

Artist: Stephen Kovacevich with the LSO conducted by Sir Colin DavisTitle: Beethoven Piano Converto No. 5, Piano Sonata No. 30
Music: 9.0Recording: 8.0Space: 8.0
Depth: 8.0Dynamics: 7.0Total: 8.0
Comments
This piano concerto is a favourite amongst listeners, and this recording is one of the best in my view. I cannot put this CD on without quicky having to turn it up, sit down and just listen. Essential listening.
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ludwig_van_Beethoven http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stephen_Kovacevich

Artist: SantanaTitle: Supernatural
Music: 6.0Recording: 7.0Space: 6.0
Depth: 6.0Dynamics: 7.0Total: 6.4
Comments
The Santana of the late 1960's and 1970's is long gone and the guitar licks just fail to excite anymore. Its just the same old same old. A pity.
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Carlos_Santana

Artist: Ryan AdamsTitle: 29
Music: 8.0Recording: 7.0Space: 7.0
Depth: 7.0Dynamics: 8.0Total: 7.4
Comments
Ryan Adams - one of the most underated artists around. This album is quite dark and reflective and Adams' songwriting and performing skills come through superbly. The recording is very good, with plenty of space and great dynamics.
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ryan_Adams

Artist: Ry CooderTitle: Chavez Ravine
Music: 9.0Recording: 9.0Space: 7.0
Depth: 8.0Dynamics: 8.0Total: 8.2
Comments
Cooder at his best. Through the songs, this album traces the arc of misguided anti-pinko b.s., bigotry and racism, exploitation and plain misinformation from the right wing that permeated late 1950's and early 1960's American politics. Gritty, funny, but also poignant. The first track on the CD gets into agroove about 3/4's of the way through that is just incredible - utterly natural and raw, just like it should sound. A classic.
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ry_Cooder

Artist: Rufus WainwrightTitle: Rufus Wainwright
Music: 7.0Recording: 7.0Space: 7.0
Depth: 7.0Dynamics: 8.0Total: 7.2
Comments
A nice collection of songs from another Canadian artist, although judging from the sombre mugshot of him on the album sleeve you'd never guess.
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rufus_Wainwright

Artist: Royal PhilharmonicTitle: Berlioz
Music: 9.0Recording: 9.0Space: 8.0
Depth: 7.0Dynamics: 8.0Total: 8.2
Comments
This is a wonderful recording (SACD) of some of Berloiz's most popular works. The recording is very natural, and on some tracks if you listen carefully, you can pick up the faint rumble of traffic in the background. Very realistic. Inspiring.
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Berlioz

Artist: Robert Plant and Alison KraussTitle: Raising Sand
Music: 8.0Recording: 9.0Space: 7.0
Depth: 7.0Dynamics: 7.0Total: 7.6
Comments
This is a collaboration between rock musician Plant and folk Godess Krauss that on paper should not work. But it does, and the music is strangley gentle, restrained and euphoric. Clearly the country producer (T Bone Burnett) came to town to teach everyone a thing or two about how to make a great CD . . No doubt a classic in years to come.
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Raising_Sand

Artist: Robert CrayTitle: Some Rainy Morning
Music: 7.0Recording: 7.0Space: 7.0
Depth: 6.0Dynamics: 8.0Total: 7.0
Comments
A solid album from R&B man Robert Cray. The musicianship is faultless and the guitar licks solid, raw and in your face. Great.
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Robert_Cray

Artist: REMTitle: Life's Rich Pagent
Music: 8.0Recording: 8.0Space: 7.0
Depth: 7.0Dynamics: 7.0Total: 7.4
Comments
Released in 1986, this great Album was another in a long line of hits for REM. It contains great tracks, well recorded and full of fun. Excellent album!
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/R.E.M.

Artist: REMTitle: Accelerate
Music: 4.0Recording: 3.0Space: 4.0
Depth: 3.0Dynamics: 3.0Total: 3.4
Comments
This album received a slew of positive reviews, with Time Magazine doing its usual artless fawning to try and hook in generation X readers. I can tell you I listened to it once and the only accelleration around was as I binned it. A wall of overly compressed sound (noise) with no artistic merit whatsoever. After producing some of the most memorable pop albums over the last 20 years, shame on you REM! Shame on you! Thoroughly disappointing. Absolute crap. Period.
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/R.E.M.

Artist: Ravi Shankar & Philiip GlassTitle: Passages
Music: 8.0Recording: 8.0Space: 8.0
Depth: 7.0Dynamics: 7.0Total: 7.7
Comments
Glass' orchestral scores combine with Shankar's sitar in an evocative mix of Western and Eastern music sensibilities that take the listener on a journey to a distant place. Beautifully recorded.
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ravi_Shankar http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Philip_Glass

Artist: Ravi ShankarTitle: Garland of Ragas
Music: 8.0Recording: 8.0Space: 8.0
Depth: 8.0Dynamics: 7.0Total: 7.8
Comments
Two of the Indian sitar maestro's wonderful works. My favourite is Raga Mala with the London Philharmonic under the baton of Zubin Mehta. Great recordings. Fabulous.
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ravi_Shankar

Artist: Randy Crawford and Joe SampleTitle: No Regrets
Music: 8.0Recording: 7.0Space: 8.0
Depth: 7.0Dynamics: 8.0Total: 7.6
Comments
A good recording of some great standards. Randy Crawford has a great voice, but never seemed to attract the attention she deserved, but this project with Joe Sample sees her at her best. Highly recommended.
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Randy_Crawford

Artist: RadioheadTitle: OK Computer
Music: 6.0Recording: 8.0Space: 7.0
Depth: 7.0Dynamics: 7.0Total: 7.0
Comments
Let me break with the rest of the planet here, including the Prime Minister of England (yes, he is a big fan): I am not a Radiohead fan. No doubt they are fine musicians but I just cannot get into their music. Apologies Thom and crew. Maybe I'll grow into it a little later in life . . .
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Radiohead

Artist: Pratum IntegrumTitle: Teleman in Minor
Music: 9.0Recording: 9.0Space: 9.0
Depth: 8.0Dynamics: 8.0Total: 8.6
Comments
An absolutely fabulous SACD. Pratum Integrum on the Caro Mitis label are a relatively young Russian orchestra who specialize in using historical instruments and arrangements. The musicianship is outstanding, and the recording is handled by Dutch engineers using specialist microphones and pre-amps - and the technology shows. I've always liked Teleman (I just love baroque!), and this CD is a first class showcase of his misic. Essential listening.
Link: http://pratum.ru/eng/ http://www.caromitis.com/eng/performers/pratum.html http://en.wikipedi

Artist: Pratum IntegrumTitle: Telemanin Major
Music: 9.0Recording: 9.0Space: 9.0
Depth: 9.0Dynamics: 9.0Total: 8.0
Comments
Another fantastic Pratum Integrum SACD with a standout depth, space and 'air' in the recording. A must listen for any baroque music fan. Wonderful.
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Baroque_music http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Teleman

Artist: Portraits of CubaTitle: Paquito d'Rivera
Music: 8.0Recording: 9.0Space: 8.0
Depth: 8.0Dynamics: 7.0Total: 8.0
Comments
A Classic! Absolutely wonderful collection of tunes by a modern Latin Master. Another one for a Saturday afternoon and a bottle of Rioja while the partner is out shopping . . .
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Paquito_D%27Rivera

Artist: Paul SimonTitle: Rythym of the Saints
Music: 8.0Recording: 7.0Space: 7.0
Depth: 7.0Dynamics: 7.0Total: 7.2
Comments
Another great CD from Paul Simon. The recording is outstanding with great space and depth through the sensible use of reverb, and the sympathetic use of compression. Simon has a gift for weaving in ethnic elements to create some great music. Wonderful stuff.
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Paul_Simon

Artist: Paquito d'RiveraTitle: Big Band time
Music: 9.0Recording: 8.0Space: 8.0
Depth: 7.0Dynamics: 8.0Total: 8.0
Comments
A wonderful CD and beautifuly recorded - spacey, plenty of room around the performers with a very believable sound stage. The Latin Maestro does it again. My favorite track is Andalusia. This is how big band should be done. A collectors piece.
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Paquito_D%27Rivera

Artist: Oscar PetersonTitle: Piano Moods
Music: 8.0Recording: 7.0Space: 7.0
Depth: 6.0Dynamics: 6.0Total: 6.8
Comments
A hugely enjoyable collection of jazz standards from one of the greatest jazz pianists of the 20th century. Recordings not always great, but the music and energy shine through.
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Oscar_Peterson

Artist: New York TrioTitle: Always
Music: 8.0Recording: 7.0Space: 7.0
Depth: 7.0Dynamics: 8.0Total: 7.4
Comments
I had a lot of pleasure listening to this threesome. Pianist Bill Charlap's performance of these Irving Berlin classics is masterful, as is Jay Leonhart and Bill Stewarts performance on Bass and drums respectively.
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bill_Charlap

Artist: Morning SparksTitle: Breaking Up, Losing Touch
Music: 7.0Recording: 8.0Space: 7.0
Depth: 6.0Dynamics: 7.0Total: 7.2
Comments
A great first and only album from this now defunct Stoke, UK band. At one time they garnered a sizeable following in the NW of England. I happen to know this album was recorded on a Studer tape machine, and mixed and engineered attentively. As a result, this all analog recording oozes class - its so easy to compress the hell out of rock music and end up with something flat an souless. Not so here. The songs were all penned by the band members and the musicianship is first class. RIP Morning Sparks. You were great.
Link: http://uk.myspace.com/morningsparks

Artist: Miles DavisTitle: Kind of Blue
Music: 9.0Recording: 8.0Space: 8.0
Depth: 7.0Dynamics: 7.0Total: 7.8
Comments
A jazz classic, never since repeated. Absolutely wonderful. It will take half a dozen listening sessions for the uninitiated, after which a long addiction will surely follow . . .
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Miles_Davis

Artist: Miles DavisTitle: Bitches Brew
Music: 8.0Recording: 8.0Space: 7.0
Depth: 7.0Dynamics: 8.0Total: 7.6
Comments
Great recording, great virtuosity . . . But inaccessible and requires real dedication to get into. One for musicians who can appreciate the technicalities . . .
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Miles_Davis

Artist: Milcho Leviev and Dave HollandTitle: Up & Down
Music: 8.0Recording: 8.0Space: 7.0
Depth: 7.0Dynamics: 7.0Total: 7.4
Comments
This is a live recording from gig held in Japan from 1993. This is great album, with Bulgarian jazz pianist Leviev and Brummie bassist Holland strutting their stuff. Highly recomended.
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dave_Holland http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Milcho_Leviev

Artist: Mikhail Pletnev with Russion National OrchestraTitle: Tchaikovsky's The Sleeping Beauty
Music: 7.0Recording: 8.0Space: 8.0
Depth: 8.0Dynamics: 8.0Total: 7.8
Comments
One of Tchaikovsky's fabulous 3 masterpieces (the others being 'Swan Lake' and the 'Nutcracker Suite') written in 1888/89 at the prompting of Russian Imperial Theatre Director Ivan Vsevolozhsky . The liner notes say 'Revelatory' and ' . . . firing on all cylinders' which is not quite classical music CD review terminology is it? But, these comments are spot on. This is a tremendous CD, very well recorded (DG again!) and the orchestra exudes energy, power and absolute precision. What is it about Russian Orchestra's that makes them so good? Fantastic!
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tchaikovsky http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mikhail_Pletnev

Artist: Michel PetruccianiTitle: Both Worlds
Music: 8.0Recording: 8.0Space: 7.0
Depth: 7.0Dynamics: 8.0Total: 7.6
Comments
Released in 1997, this wonderful CD sees the jazz pianist at his best. Challenged with brittle bone disease to which he evenutally succumbed, Petrucciani's music was always thoughful and beautifuly executed. Joined here by a slew of jazz heavyweights, this alblum is a masterpiece.
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Michel_Petrucciani

Artist: Michael McDonaldTitle: Sweet Freedom
Music: 8.0Recording: 7.0Space: 7.0
Depth: 6.0Dynamics: 7.0Total: 7.0
Comments
A wonderful collection of tunes. McDonald, a west coast music veteran, probably reached his zenith with this early '90's album, before sadly fading into obscurity. What a voice. Some great duets on this CD as well. Glorious music.
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Michael_McDonald_(singer)

Artist: Michael FranksTitle: The Best of Michael Franks
Music: 7.0Recording: 8.0Space: 7.0
Depth: 6.0Dynamics: 7.0Total: 7.0
Comments
Great collection of songs. 'The Art of Love' has got to be the funkiest tune ever! Great stuff!!
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Michael_Franks_(musician)

Artist: Michael BubleTitle: It's Time
Music: 7.0Recording: 8.0Space: 7.0
Depth: 7.0Dynamics: 6.0Total: 7.0
Comments
A great recording from the Canadian with the mellifluous voice. Some classic songs. Smooth and refined. Pour me a Scotch darling and come and join me on the couch . . . Its time!
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Michael_Buble

Artist: Michael BubleTitle: Crazy
Music: 7.0Recording: 8.0Space: 7.0
Depth: 7.0Dynamics: 8.0Total: 7.4
Comments
The vocals on this CD have a strange 'synthesized' quality to them - can't put my finger on it, but its not natural. Arrangements are good, but . . . not his best.
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Michael_buble

Artist: Matt BiancoTitle: Matt Bianco
Music: 3.0Recording: 6.0Space: 6.0
Depth: 6.0Dynamics: 6.0Total: 5.4
Comments
A trashy, poppy recording. One for a party, but not anything serious. Probably best consumed along with 5 or 6 litres of beer, but count me out on that . . .
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Matt_Bianco

Artist: Matt BiancoTitle: Wap Bam Boogie
Music: 5.0Recording: 6.0Space: 6.0
Depth: 6.0Dynamics: 6.0Total: 5.8
Comments
More mindless crap from Matt Bianco. Play it when your'e hammered and need something to jig around to.
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Matt_Bianco

Artist: Manhattan Jazz OrchestraTitle: Spain
Music: 8.0Recording: 7.0Space: 7.0
Depth: 8.0Dynamics: 8.0Total: 7.6
Comments
A great CD that could have benefitted from a more sympathetic approach to the preservation of the recording space. Nevertheless, wonderful brass attack and 'tizz'. Great for a Saturday afternoon, loud and when the house is devoid of family.
Link: http://www.allaboutjazz.com/php/musician.php?id=15750

Artist: Lionel RitchieTitle: Back to Front
Music: 7.0Recording: 7.0Space: 6.0
Depth: 6.0Dynamics: 7.0Total: 6.6
Comments
This damn good album was released in 1992 and showcased a string of Ritchie's hits. The material ranges from 'light rock' through to fun pop music and ballads. The arrangeements are all good and the artists song writing skills shine through
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lionel_Richie

Artist: Lana Del ReyTitle: Paradise
Music: 8.0Recording: 7.0Space: 7.0
Depth: 7.0Dynamics: 7.0Total: 7.2
Comments
A credible pop CD from songstress Lana Del Rey that explores a life less travelled, much of it on the darker side. My favourite is a cover of the classic 'Blue Velvet'. Great CD!
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lana_Del_Rey

Artist: LambchopTitle: Damaged
Music: 6.0Recording: 7.0Space: 6.0
Depth: 7.0Dynamics: 7.0Total: 6.6
Comments
A nice relaxing CD. Vallium vocals. Something to enjoy late on a Saturday night after the comsumption of a bottle of wine, hopfully after drifting off into a deep sleep . . . Zzzzz
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lambchop_(band)

Artist: Julian JosephTitle: Universal traveller
Music: 8.0Recording: 8.0Space: 8.0
Depth: 8.0Dynamics: 7.0Total: 7.8
Comments
Great 90's CD from the English Jazz Maestro. Absolutely outstanding musicianship and recording.
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Julian_Joseph

Artist: Julian BreamTitle: Ultimate Guitar Collection
Music: 9.0Recording: 6.5Space: 5.0
Depth: 5.0Dynamics: 9.0Total: 6.9
Comments
Wonderful collection of guitar pieces from the pre-eminent classical guitarist of the late 20th century. These recordings span perhaps thirty years, some of them from the 60's. Bream is the sort of 'elder statesman' of the classical guitar, and one could argue that he took up Segovia's mantle. One thing is clear, Bream is the supreme master of his instrument 'every note like a drop of water' someone remarked.
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Julian_Bream

Artist: Joni MitchellTitle: Shine
Music: 7.0Recording: 8.0Space: 7.0
Depth: 7.0Dynamics: 7.0Total: 7.4
Comments
A great album from the singer/painter and 8 times Grammy Award winner. I first became aquainted with her music in the mid 1970's. Feited in some quarters as one of the most important recording artists of the 20th century, Mitchell is a superbly accomplished songwriter/instrumentalist. This CD is one of her best and deserves 2 or 3 listening sessions to fully appreciate her talent. Wonderful.
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Joni_Mitchell

Artist: John ScofieldTitle: Quiet
Music: 7.0Recording: 8.0Space: 8.0
Depth: 7.0Dynamics: 6.0Total: 7.2
Comments
Great music with inspired guitar playing by Scofield and some wonderful brass . . . completey spoilt by the synthesized bass lines on every track. Who the hell decided to do this? What could have been a classic, tragically relegated to mediocrity . . . listen and weep at what could have been.
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Scofield

Artist: John ColtraneTitle: A Love Supreme
Music: 8.0Recording: 8.0Space: 7.0
Depth: 7.0Dynamics: 8.0Total: 7.6
Comments
Coltrane reached his zenith on this recording and its not hard to see why. By the time this was recorded, Coltrane was already gripped by heroin addiction, as were so many jazz players of the time. Although his influence on Jazz was and remains hugely significant, he was never able to repeat this performance. He died in 1967 of liver cancer. A masterpiece and beautifully recorded given it's vintage.
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Coltrane

Artist: Joe SampleTitle: Carmel
Music: 8.0Recording: 7.0Space: 6.0
Depth: 7.0Dynamics: 7.0Total: 7.0
Comments
One of Joe Samples great recrodings, this '79 masterpiece sees him displaying all his virtuosity in 'Carmel', while 'A Rainy Day in Monterey' re-affirms him as one of the foremost exponents of the electric piano. Not the best recording around, but the musicianship shines through.
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Joe_Sample

Artist: Joe SampleTitle: Old Places Old Faces
Music: 9.0Recording: 8.0Space: 8.0
Depth: 9.0Dynamics: 8.0Total: 8.4
Comments
This great recording from the 90's is sparse and open in a wonderful way. The music breathes and is exceptionally well recorded. Clifton's Gold is a classic as is Tones for Ben. A great disc for exercising your system. Essential listening.
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Joe_Sample

Artist: Joan as PolicewomanTitle: Cover
Music: 6.0Recording: 7.0Space: 6.0
Depth: 7.0Dynamics: 7.0Total: 7.0
Comments
One of her earlier efforts and thoroughly dissapointing. It sounds ameteurish, with some overcooked melodic lines and over the top guitar. The kind of stuff I guess all musicians go through before they crack it, which is exactly what she went on to do on 'To Survive'
Link:

Artist: Joan as Policewoman Title: To Survive
Music: 9.0Recording: 9.0Space: 7.0
Depth: 7.0Dynamics: 7.0Total: 7.8
Comments
A wonderfully intimate album from a highly respected artist Joan Wasser. The vocals are a bit too close mic'd for my tastes, but the music shines through. Takes 3 or 4 listens to 'get into' but addiction soon follows . . .
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Joan_Wasser

Artist: Jim LampiTitle: Greazy
Music: 7.0Recording: 8.0Space: 8.0
Depth: 7.0Dynamics: 6.0Total: 7.2
Comments
Quite nicely recorded with good space, this is a fun album thats good to chill out to. The bass is deep and strong.
Link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZJ2MP8wacIE

Artist: Jeff Wayne et alTitle: War of the Worlds
Music: 8.0Recording: 8.0Space: 8.0
Depth: 8.0Dynamics: 8.0Total: 8.0
Comments
A classic released in 1978. Play the whole thing late on a Friday night, loud (screw the neighbours) and with a Pinoit Noir at your side. Marvel at the recording and Richard Burton's narration. Mind you, you'll need your specs to read the liner notes. Fabulous, but I hope to hell the Martian's never visit . . .
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jeff_Wayne

Artist: Jeff BuckleyTitle: Grace
Music: 8.0Recording: 8.0Space: 8.0
Depth: 8.0Dynamics: 8.0Total: 8.0
Comments
Tragically, the only release by an artist that would have undoubtedly emerged as one of the great talents of the pop world; musically enthralling, Buckley's unique vocal talent's give wing's to the songs, underpinned by great guitar playing. A classic - and do try it out on 180g vinyl. Absolutely essential listening.
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jeff_Buckley

Artist: Itzhak PerlmanTitle: Itzhak Perlman Greatest Hits
Music: 9.0Recording: 8.0Space: 8.0
Depth: 7.0Dynamics: 8.0Total: 8.0
Comments
A fantastic recording showcasing the very best of IP. Its clear from these recordings, done with the NY Philharmonic and Orchestre de Paris, why he is held in such awe. My favourite pieces are Carmen and Havanaise. Essential listening.
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Itzhak_Perlman

Artist: Houston PersonTitle: Mellow
Music: 8.0Recording: 8.0Space: 8.0
Depth: 7.0Dynamics: 8.0Total: 7.8
Comments
A very well recorded album. The cymbals are a little forward for my taste, but the material is beautifully arranged and the recording space is palpable. Wonderful stuff!
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Houston_Person

Artist: Hothouse FlowersTitle: Home
Music: 8.0Recording: 8.0Space: 7.0
Depth: 7.0Dynamics: 7.0Total: 7.4
Comments
A great album from this Irish outfit, and a trick they seem to have been unable to repeat on subsequent releases. 'Christchurch Bells' is a favourite, as is 'Giving It All Away'. Great stuff!
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hothouse_Flowers

Artist: High FiveTitle: Five For Fun
Music: 8.0Recording: 8.0Space: 8.0
Depth: 8.0Dynamics: 8.0Total: 8.0
Comments
Exciting Latin Jazz wonderfully and sensitively recorded. Italian mastery: very spacey recording coupled to great sound stage depth that is both musically enjoyable, and technically enthralling
Link: http://www.fabriziobosso.com/site.php

Artist: Hank MobleyTitle: No Room for Squares
Music: 8.0Recording: 7.0Space: 7.0
Depth: 7.0Dynamics: 8.0Total: 7.4
Comments
Released in 1963, this wonderful CD was given to me by my son, a recording engineer and musician. The recording is top notch, and one is left wondering how this kind of spaciousness and dynamic was able to be captured given the technology at the time. Deserves a serious listen.
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hank_Mobley

Artist: Hank MobelyTitle: Workout
Music: 8.0Recording: 7.0Space: 7.0
Depth: 7.0Dynamics: 8.0Total: 7.4
Comments
An incredibly good recording from the 60's. Mobely, on tenor sax, struts his stuff, in the company of guitarist Grant Green, Wynton Kelly at the piano, Paul Chambers on bass and Philly Joe Jones on drums. Simply recorded to capture the music, this is essential listening for jazz aficianados.
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hank_Mobley

Artist: GuillemotsTitle: Through the Window Pane
Music: 9.0Recording: 7.0Space: 8.0
Depth: 7.0Dynamics: 8.0Total: 7.8
Comments
An album that blends some wonderful song writing with first class arrangements to create what I think is a classic. Even Paul McCartney was bowled over by this one. My favourites are Little Bear, Redwings and If the World Ends. Great use of strings (not a synth in earshot!) and the recording is not half bad, although I think it was mixed to sound good on earphones, since it can get a bit muddled on speakers. Nevertheless, a truly wonderful, uplifting album.
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Guillemots

Artist: GracelandTitle: Paul Simon
Music: 8.0Recording: 8.0Space: 7.0
Depth: 7.0Dynamics: 7.0Total: 7.4
Comments
The album that re-ignited Simon's career and gave Ladysmith Black Mambazo, the South African accapella group, their international break is hard to fault at any level. The recordings is top notch and the music a wonderful mix of some very soulful and sophisticated African rythyms. The musicians on this album are absolutely superb. Outstanding.
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Paul_Simon http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ladysmith_Black_Mambazo

Artist: Gordon Goodwin Big BandTitle: Swingin' For the Fences
Music: 7.0Recording: 8.0Space: 8.0
Depth: 8.0Dynamics: 6.0Total: 7.4
Comments
A nice enough recording but ultimately does not excite as anticipated. After a few listen's, you are left yawning, and reaching for something else. A pity, because a big band should be an enormously visceral listening experience. This recording is very over engineered and clearly done with many takes that were then mixed to create the final product. There's no damn soul in it. I heard them live at the Blue Note in Tokyo, and they were awesome. Sadly, something they are unable to repeat on this CD.
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gordon_Goodwin

Artist: George MichaelTitle: Patience
Music: 6.0Recording: 6.0Space: 6.0
Depth: 5.0Dynamics: 5.0Total: 5.6
Comments
A thoroughly dissappointing CD. I found the arrangements flat, the recording flat and the choice of material all at odds with my expectations. If you are a dyed in the wool GM fan then get it, otherwise I'd give it a miss.
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/George_Michael

Artist: George BensonTitle: Breezin'
Music: 9.0Recording: 8.0Space: 8.0
Depth: 7.0Dynamics: 7.0Total: 7.8
Comments
Released in 1976, this album cemented Benson's reputation as the foremost jazz guitarist of the quarter century leading up to 2000. Flawless playing and a glorious voice to match, this album is an absolute classic. The recording overall is ok, but does not stand up to the best on offer in 2010. Nevertheless, stunning!
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/George_Benson

Artist: George BensonTitle: The Very Best Of George Benson
Music: 7.0Recording: 8.0Space: 8.0
Depth: 7.0Dynamics: 7.0Total: 7.4
Comments
Certainly a step away from his jazz roots, this collection of songs nevertheless is fun, poppy and makes great listening however. You get a measure of just how versatile George Benson is - he can sing anything and make it sound good. The recordings and arrangements of course designed to sound punchy and overly clean, but the producer and engineer did a great job - one of the better examples of the genre.
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/George_Benson

Artist: GenesisTitle: Selling England by the Pound
Music: 8.0Recording: 8.0Space: 7.0
Depth: 6.0Dynamics: 6.0Total: 7.0
Comments
A great 70's album that still resonates in 2010 - we have come full circle, but this time (2007) its more likely 'Selling America by the Dollar'. Quite well recorded with good instrument and performer placment considering its early 1970's vintage. However, on cymbals and hi-hats it clearly falls very short (one of those early mixers full of LM741's perhaps?). Still, Wonderful record.
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Genesis_(band)

Artist: GenesisTitle: Wind and Wuthering
Music: 8.0Recording: 7.0Space: 7.0
Depth: 7.0Dynamics: 6.0Total: 7.0
Comments
A great album released in 1977. 'All in a Mouse's Night' is one of my favourites, along with the '11th Earl of Mar'. Another classic that brings the memories of my '70's youth flooding back . . . I love this album and the production is clearly a big step up from 'Selling England by the Pound'.
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Genesis_(band)

Artist: From the CliffsTitle: Guillemots
Music: 9.0Recording: 7.0Space: 8.0
Depth: 7.0Dynamics: 8.0Total: 7.8
Comments
I first got to hear about this band after my son's outfit, Morning Sparks, fronted then a few years ago. This album is full of gems - My Chosen One, Over The Stairs, Trains to Brazil and so on. No doubt about it, head man Fyfe Dangerfield is a masterfull songwriter, and the arrangements are first class as well. Fantastic.
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Guillemots

Artist: FourplayTitle: X
Music: 6.0Recording: 6.0Space: 8.0
Depth: 5.0Dynamics: 6.0Total: 6.2
Comments
Fourplay are Grammy Award winners and Congressional Honors recipients. However, music choreographed to such straightjacket perfection, and over engineered to such squeaky clean standards sadly loses it's soul. Obviously engineered with separate, perfect, takes, and then mixed to create the final product, it does not warrant anything more than a '6.0' for the recording. Great for 'deep background' listening (i.e. at -80dBA), or 'lift music'. Although pleasant enough, sadly cannot be taken seriously in the final analysis. Ho hum, time to move on.
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fourplay

Artist: FourplayTitle: Fourplay
Music: 8.0Recording: 8.0Space: 7.0
Depth: 7.0Dynamics: 8.0Total: 7.6
Comments
Great album and great recording by the Bob James led contemporary jazz output. The recording is very good and not overcooked or over engineered, which is a trap many outfits like this tend to fall into. Bali Run, Moon Jogger and Rain forest are my favourites.
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fourplay

Artist: FourplayTitle: Between the Sheets
Music: 8.0Recording: 8.0Space: 8.0
Depth: 7.0Dynamics: 7.0Total: 7.6
Comments
This was another hit for the band, and its easy to see why - great music and a first class, spacey recording that on a good system will really allow the listener a front row seat. Wonderful stuff.
Link:

Artist: Forma AtiqvaTitle: Concerto Zapico
Music: 8.0Recording: 9.0Space: 8.0
Depth: 8.0Dynamics: 8.0Total: 8.2
Comments
A fantastic CD of baroque dance music from Italy and Spain. The recording is excellent and the three brothers playing is superb.
Link: http://www.formaantiqva.com/2013/

Artist: FocusTitle: Hamburger Concerto
Music: 8.0Recording: 7.0Space: 6.0
Depth: 6.0Dynamics: 7.0Total: 6.8
Comments
This album was released in 1974, and I first heard it around 1978 or '79, subsequently losing it until I happened to discover it again while rooting around on Amazon about 3 years ago. There are a few quirky Euro things going on in some of the arrangements, but the musicianship is outstanding. Just take a listen to some of Jan Akkerman's guitar licks. Those Dutch boys really knew how to play.
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Focus_(band)

Artist: Fleetwood MacTitle: Rumours
Music: 9.0Recording: 7.0Space: 7.0
Depth: 7.0Dynamics: 6.0Total: 7.2
Comments
Incredibly, this album is 33 years old (as of 2010). A 70's classic, combining the best talents from both sides of the pond, it will no doubt continue to shine in the pop firmament for decades to come. Pull it out and take a listen every 12-18 months to recalibrate your sensibilties. Wonderful.
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fleetwood_Mac

Artist: Fleet FoxesTitle: Helplessness Blues
Music: 9.0Recording: 8.0Space: 8.0
Depth: 7.0Dynamics: 7.0Total: 7.8
Comments
Fleet Foxes sound like a mixture of CSN&Y, with a smattering of the Beach Boys and maybe a sprinkling of the the Mama's and Papa's. Penned by lead singer Robin Peknold (who, producer Phil Ek remarked after first hearing him a few years ago ' . . . it was clear he had so much talent it was even coming out of his ass' or words to that effect), the music is wonderfully evocative and melodic. The vocals are a bit heavy on the reverb, but I find that infinitely more preferable than the close mic'd approach, and on this recording, it only adds to the magic. Fantastic. Essential listening.
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fleet_Foxes

Artist: Fairground AttractionTitle: First of a Million Kisses
Music: 8.0Recording: 9.0Space: 8.0
Depth: 8.0Dynamics: 7.0Total: 8.0
Comments
A very well recorded CD, given its 1988 vintage although perhap's a little over engineered. But, the commitment of the musicians shines through; some wonderful stories in the lyrics - a great album.
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fairground_Attraction

Artist: Fabrizio BossoTitle: Sol
Music: 8.0Recording: 8.0Space: 8.0
Depth: 8.0Dynamics: 7.0Total: 7.8
Comments
The modern day Italian 'brass maestro' displays his flair on this album. Album liner story obscure in the x-treme (sounds like the story of someone's acid trip), but the music is totally overwhelming. If you're looking for the ultimate demo CD, look no further . . . The producer has used compression, but this is an example of how to use it properly so that it enhances the musical experience. Play it reasonably loud. Screw the neighbours.
Link: http://www.fabriziobosso.com/site.php

Artist: Eliane EliasTitle: Something For You
Music: 9.0Recording: 7.0Space: 7.0
Depth: 6.0Dynamics: 7.0Total: 7.2
Comments
A wonderful collection of Bill Evans clasics played by one of the greatest jazz pianists around. A first class recording. Wonderfully evocative. A masterpiece.
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eliane_Elias

Artist: ElbowTitle: Asleep in the Back
Music: 8.0Recording: 8.0Space: 7.0
Depth: 6.0Dynamics: 7.0Total: 7.2
Comments
A very solid album from this Manchester UK outfit, who have been around since the early 1990's, virtually unknown outside the UK's North West, emerging butterfly like in their mid to late thirties, fully formed and as very credible music force. The songwriting is absolutely first class and the arrangements top notch. This is clearly the result of many years of creating and playing together. Excellent.
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Elbow_(band)

Artist: Earl KlughTitle: The Spice of Life
Music: 7.0Recording: 8.0Space: 7.0
Depth: 7.0Dynamics: 8.0Total: 7.4
Comments
A solid album from acoustic guitar whizz EK. The playing is great and some of the tunes transport you straight back to the 1970's. However, the material is very safe. Would be great to see him let rip with some brass, an orchestra . . . oh well. Overall though, a great album
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Earl_Klugh

Artist: Diana KrallTitle: Live in Paris
Music: 9.0Recording: 9.0Space: 9.0
Depth: 8.0Dynamics: 7.0Total: 8.4
Comments
Jazz Godess Krall weaves magic with her piano playing and rich, soulful vocals. Exemplary recording and great backing musicians. Audience applauses and ambience only make the recording more entertaining. Turn down the house lights and turn up the music!
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Diana_Krall

Artist: Diana KrallTitle: When I look in Your Eyes
Music: 8.0Recording: 8.0Space: 8.0
Depth: 7.0Dynamics: 8.0Total: 7.8
Comments
Another great recroding from the Canadian artist and a tick in the box for Tommy LiPuma who has guided this star's rise to fame over the last decade or so. The material in my view a little too 'safe', but that's ok. Krall's recordings are always absolutely top class, and when combined with the musicianship, makes for an enthralling listen. Wonderful stuff.
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Diana_Krall

Artist: Dhafer YoussefTitle: Abu Nawas Rhapsody
Music: 9.0Recording: 8.0Space: 7.0
Depth: 7.0Dynamics: 8.0Total: 7.8
Comments
This Tunisian master, now resident for many years in Europe, has created a unique musical canvas on this album. Inspired playing by skilled instrumentalists, coupled to Youssef's spectacular vocal abilites leaves the listener entranced. Check out the 2nd track 'Les Ondes Orientales'. Essential listening.
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dhafer_Youssef

Artist: David GilmourTitle: On An Island
Music: 7.0Recording: 8.0Space: 8.0
Depth: 7.0Dynamics: 7.0Total: 7.4
Comments
David Gilmour's return to the studio after a long hiatus, this CD re-affirms his status as a great rock guitarist and a hugely competent composer. The music's broad sweep is uplifting and I'd say almost spiritual. With Gilmour's playing, it's as much about the notes he does not play as the ones he does - wonderful and utterly devoid of any pretension. A great CD.
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/David_Gilmour

Artist: Dave Brubeck QuartetTitle: Time Out
Music: 9.0Recording: 8.0Space: 7.0
Depth: 8.0Dynamics: 8.0Total: 8.0
Comments
An outstanding piece of work given that this recording is from the earley 1960's. The musicianship shines through and the recording stands up to techical scrutiny 50 years later. Check out 'Pick Up Sticks' (my favourite) and of course 'Take Five'! A classic.
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dave_Brubeck_Quartet

Artist: Crosby, Stills, Nash & YoungTitle: Deja Vu
Music: 9.0Recording: 7.0Space: 5.0
Depth: 6.0Dynamics: 6.0Total: 6.6
Comments
A classsic from the very early '70's. Memories of a different time flood back. I only got to appreciate this when I was in my mid teens a few years after it's initial release. A Spliff or two, beer, girls (although I could never find one), surfing and a carefree youth, utterly misguided but intent on changing the world for the better. Our time has come . . . along with complexities we never could have contemplated. Wonderfully nostalgic and evocative now.
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Crosby,_Stills,_Nash_%26_Young

Artist: Corea, Gadd & McBrideTitle: Super Trio
Music: 8.0Recording: 8.0Space: 8.0
Depth: 8.0Dynamics: 7.0Total: 7.8
Comments
The consumate musicianship, coupled to an outstanding live recording places the listener right in the audience. Both Corea and Gadd display some of thier dazzling virtuosity, while McBride, perhaps a little less well known is equally up to the task on bass. A superb CD and highly recommended.
Link: http://www.christianmcbride.com/ http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Steve_Gadd

Artist: Cocteau TwinsTitle: Treasure
Music: 7.0Recording: 8.0Space: 7.0
Depth: 7.0Dynamics: 7.0Total: 7.2
Comments
A great album. Spacy and free spirited, one to enjoy when in a good frame of mind as background music.
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cocteau_Twins

Artist: Chris RussellTitle: Day Dreamer
Music: 8.0Recording: 8.0Space: 7.0
Depth: 7.0Dynamics: 7.0Total: 7.4
Comments
A great 1st album by this young Mancunian indie artist. Heartbreak (take a listen to Oh Laura White), cold weather, social commentary (check out 'Pamela') - this is all covered. Beautifully recorded, this CD is full of great songs. Great recording and fine lyrics! Sign him up!
Link: http://chrisrussell.bandcamp.com/track/hang-on

Artist: Chick CoreaTitle: My Spanish Heart
Music: 8.0Recording: 6.0Space: 7.0
Depth: 7.0Dynamics: 8.0Total: 7.2
Comments
I first bought this album in LP format in 1977 or 1978 and was instantly captivated. Corea is a phenomenal, if not quirky, pianist and the material and arrangements on this selection really play to his strengths. Great Album and a 'must listen'.
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chick_Corea

Artist: Celine DionTitle: Lets Talk About love
Music: 7.0Recording: 8.0Space: 7.0
Depth: 8.0Dynamics: 7.0Total: 7.4
Comments
Dion has an incredible voice (until she sings the duet with Pavarotti in 'I Hate you then I Love You' where he just blows her away) , and this CD is well recorded. But, I can only listen to it once every two years or so . . . Actually, make that once every three years. What the hell is it about Celine Dion?
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Celine_dion

Artist: Cat StevensTitle: The Very Best of Cat Stevens
Music: 9.0Recording: 7.0Space: 6.0
Depth: 6.0Dynamics: 7.0Total: 7.0
Comments
One of the great British pop stars of the 70's, this CD showcases a string of Stevens hits from that era. I remember getting smacked up quite badly at school for declaring myself a Cat Steven's fan when everybody thought Led Zepplin were cool (no doubt they were), but how could I mention Cat Stevens in the same breadth as Led Zepplin? Lady D'Arbanville, Moonshadow, Mathew and son, Rubylove with its bazouki accompaniment . . . Wow, what wonderful stuff. Surprisingly well recorded given its vintage. A great CD.
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cat_Stevens

Artist: Brian WilsonTitle: Smile
Music: 7.0Recording: 8.0Space: 7.0
Depth: 7.0Dynamics: 7.0Total: 7.2
Comments
This album received many good reviews, although some commentators thought the album pitch ('the greatest alum ever recorded . . . thirty years in the making') was a bit over the top. The stand out track of course is Good Vibrations, but there is a host of other likeable tunes as well. Some of the song material is a little faecile (e.g. Vega-tables), but the whole thing hangs together well in a most listenable way. Very Nice.
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Brian_Wilson

Artist: Bossa Nova StoriesTitle: Eliane Elias
Music: 7.0Recording: 6.0Space: 6.0
Depth: 6.0Dynamics: 7.0Total: 6.4
Comments
I love some of the songs on this CD - The Girl from Ipanema, The More I See You, Estate, Superwoman. Elias is a great pianist, but this CD is not at the same level as her earlier release 'Something for You'. Nevertheless, highly recommended.
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eliane_Elias

Artist: Berlin Philharmonic/Herbert von KarajanTitle: Beethoven's 9 Symphonies
Music: 9.0Recording: 7.0Space: 7.0
Depth: 7.0Dynamics: 9.0Total: 7.8
Comments
Heavily criticized in some quarters for the arrangements and on occasion for von Karajan's self agrandizement, this 6 CD set nevertheless captures all of Beethoven's 9 symphonies splendidly. The recordings are very good, although not quite as spacey and 3 dimensional as they could have been in my view. Everytime I listen, I discover something new, such is the glory of Beethoven. Wonderful. Essential listening.
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Herbert_von_Karajan

Artist: Ben Webster & Oscar PetersonTitle: Ben Webster Meets Oscar Peterson
Music: 9.0Recording: 7.0Space: 6.0
Depth: 7.0Dynamics: 6.0Total: 7.0
Comments
Recorded in the 1960's in the Netherlands, Ben 'The Bullfrog' Webster's sax is as laid back as you can get without falling over - utterly relaxing and cool, but the bass playing on this recording is a little pedestrian in my view. Clearly Oscar Peterson was destined for even better things. A great album and surprisingly well recorded.
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ben_Webster

Artist: BasiaTitle: Its that Girl Again
Music: 7.0Recording: 7.0Space: 8.0
Depth: 7.0Dynamics: 7.0Total: 7.2
Comments
Barbara Trzetrzelewska, better known and more easily pronounced simply as Basia, was a long time member of Matt Bianco. However, this CD is definitely not as mindless as that stuff. The songs on this CD are all upbeat and span everything from jazz through pop and rock. This is a very modern recording which is perhaps a little too crisp, the compression a bit overdone and the bass leaves one feeling after a while like you've done 3 rounds in a boxing ring with George Foreman. Nevertheless, a nice CD!
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Basia

Artist: Aretha FranklinTitle: Respect
Music: 9.0Recording: 7.0Space: 5.0
Depth: 6.0Dynamics: 7.0Total: 6.8
Comments
A collection of her hits spanning 30 years. This is absolutely first class music from one of the greatist vocalists of the last 50 years. Wonderful.
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aretha_Franklin

Artist: Al Jerreau and George BensonTitle: Givin it Up
Music: 8.0Recording: 7.0Space: 7.0
Depth: 7.0Dynamics: 7.0Total: 7.2
Comments
I just love this CD. Check out 'Summer Breeze' (remember the original by Seals and Crofts from the early 1970's?), 'Four', 'Breezin'. Punchy and very energetic, although a little over compressed on some tracks, but nevertheless a first class CD.
Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Al_Jerreau