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Wolfgang Muthspiel - Rising Grace (2016) High-Fidelity FLAC Stereo 24bit/88,2kHz

Artist: Wolfgang Muthspiel, Ambrose Akinmusire, Brad Mehldau, Larry Grenadier, Brian Blade
Title: Rising Grace
Genre: Jazz, Modern Creative, Guitar Jazz
Label: © ECM Records GmbH
Release Date: 2016
Quality: High-Fidelity FLAC Stereo 88,2kHz/24bit
Duration: 01:08:35
Recorded: January 2016, Studios La Buissonne, Pernes-Les-Fontaines

Wolfgang Muthspiel – whom The New Yorker has called “a shining light” among today’s jazz guitarists – made his ECM leader debut in 2014 with the trio disc Driftwood, featuring him alongside two longtime colleagues, bassist Larry Grenadier and drummer Brian Blade. For his follow-up – Rising Grace – the Austrian guitarist has convened a very special quintet, adding jazz luminary Brad Mehldau on piano and the outstanding young trumpeter Ambrose Akinmusire to the subtly virtuosic Grenadier/Blade rhythm section. Muthspiel moves between electric guitar and classically tinged acoustic six-string, his playing by turns grooving (“Boogaloo”) and enchanting (“Rising Grace”). The lyrical flights of Akinmusire’s trumpet and the probing improvisations of Mehldau run through Muthspiel’s rich set of compositions like golden threads, the tracks including a warm tribute to a late, great ECM artist, Kenny Wheeler (“Den Wheeler, Den Kenny”). Rising Grace also includes a deeply melodious piece that Mehldau composed especially for the album, “Wolfgang’s Waltz.”
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Werner Acker - Roots (2016) High-Fidelity FLAC Stereo 24bit/44,1kHz

Artist: Werner Acker
Title: Roots
Genre: Jazz
Label: © Personality Records
Release Date: 2016
Quality: High-Fidelity FLAC Stereo 44,1kHz/24bit
Duration: 46:52

In most cases it needs a good glass of wine and a motivating advice of a narrow friend and something special can emerge. Exactly this glass of wine and the convincing “kick” of drummer Herbert Wachter have encouraged Werner Acker to record his debut album ‘Roots’. An album, reflecting the musical roots of the artist and his grooving talent in playing the guitar. Werner Acker has been a studio a live musician for 45 years now. Further he has been able to present himself as a multifaceted sideman in countless musical projects over the past decades. Now, however, he is the bandleader himself and debuts with his first album ‘Roots’ at the age of 60. This proves that the guitarist has never lost the fun and the joy in making music. Also one special feature of the album is the innovative and expressive kind of playing the guitar. Own compositions and arrangements convinced by the sound, groove and the joy of improvisation. The artist and his band succeed to bridge between Rhythm and Blues, Soul and Jazz without losing the unified groove and sound concept of the album. Werner Acker himself describes the musical context of ‚Roots’ as: „a mixture of clear earthy beats and grooves and a sound which is stamped by blues, jazz and funky guitars, accompanied from Hammond B3, Wurlitzer and Rhodespiano, grand piano, Bass, doublebass, drumset and a set consisting of altsax, trombone and tenor or baritone saxophone.“ The relation to his instrument is essential to Werner Acker. „The Album was recorded with various, partly very old guitars“, enthuses the musician. Besides instrument, sound and groove the teamwork with longstanding musical companions and meanwhile good friends constitutes the foundation of the album.  Even though it has in fact lasted a little longer to publish his first album, it does not necessarily take long to wait for the second. Enough compositions are just waiting to be published. Werner Acker surely doesn’t lose the musical euphoria and the groove within the next years either.
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Vittorio Grigolo - Ave Maria (2013) High-Fidelity FLAC Stereo 24bit/48kHz

Сomposer: Various
Artist: Vittorio Grigolo
Title: Ave Maria
Genre: Classical
Label: © Sony Music Entertainment
Release Date: 2013
Quality: High-Fidelity FLAC Stereo 48kHz/24bit
Source: Qobuz
Duration: 01:00:40
Recorded: Forum Music Village (Studio A), Roma, May 15–17, 2012; Wathen Hall (St Paul’s School), London, July 22 – August 6, 2012

Renowned the world over for his soaring tenor voice and passionate stage presence, Vittorio Grigòlo learned his craft as a chorister in the legendary Sistine Chapel Choir in the Vatican, at the very source of western sacred music. Drawing inspiration from this time, he now brings together an intimate collection of uplifting and beautiful spiritual songs, together with the very choir that shaped his musical beginnings.
“I want to let people know where I come from and to share something of my history with them. It’s a tribute to all the people who helped me, to the hours we spent studying and practising in those little rooms inside the chapel, and to the incredible music we sang together.” --Vittorio Grigòlo
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Giuseppe Verdi - La Traviata - Ileana Cotrubas, Placido Domingo, Sherrill Milnes, Bavarian State Opera Orchestra, Carlos Kleiber (1977/2016) High-Fidelity FLAC Stereo 24bit/96kHz

Сomposer: Giuseppe Verdi (1813-1901)
Artist: Ileana Cotrubas, Plácido Domingo, Sherrill Milnes, Bavarian State Opera Orchestra, Carlos Kleiber
Title: Verdi - La Traviata
Genre: Classical, Opera
Label: © Deutsche Grammophon is a Universal Music Company
Release Date: 1977/2016
Quality: High-Fidelity FLAC Stereo 96kHz/24bit
Source: HDTracks
Duration: 01:49:59
Recorded: Munich, Bürgerbräu-Keller, 5/1976 & 6/1977

Quite possibly the definitive studio recording of Verdi’s opera masterpiece, this stunning performance, brilliantly conducted by Kleiber, features multiple Grammy®-winning tenor Plácido Domingo and the legendary soprano Ileana Cotrubaş. Originally recorded in 1977, this new high-definition release lends an unheard clarity to this already essential recording.
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Antonio Vivaldi - Concerti per due violini - Giuliano Carmignola, Amandine Beyer, Gli Incogniti (2016) High-Fidelity FLAC Stereo 24bit/88,2kHz

Сomposer: Antonio Vivaldi (1678-1741)
Artist: Giuliano Carmignola, Amandine Beyer, Gli Incogniti
Title: Vivaldi: Concerti per due violini
Genre: Classical
Label: © 2016 harmonia mundi usa
Release Date: 2016
Quality: High-Fidelity FLAC Stereo 88.2kHz/24bit
Duration: 01:09:59
Recorded: 2-6 février 2016 , Pontifico Istituto de Musica Sacra, Sala, Roma

Vivaldi’s double concertos resemble jousts: ‘the standards are raised, the bystanders comment, analyse, compare, speculate, the betting counter is open’, writes Olivier Fourés. But, he continues, the joust is not for real. It is ‘the stage of a theatre where two solitudes, within a group, meet up, then both size each other up and comfort each other’. There is bound to be comparison between the two protagonists, but in the end the triumph will be collective. And the least one can say is that Amandine Beyer and her illustrious guest Giuliano Carmignola have breathed new life into this dazzling form of musical theatre!
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Van Morrison - Keep Me Singing (2016) High-Fidelity FLAC Stereo 24bit/48kHz

Artist: Van Morrison
Title: Keep Me Singing
Genre: Blues, Pop Rock, Blue-Eyed Soul, Singer/Songwriter
Label: © Exile Productions Ltd.
Release Date: 2016
Quality: High-Fidelity FLAC Stereo 48kHz/24bit
Source: HDTracks
Duration: 00:56:40
Recorded: 2015–16

Van Morrison does exactly what he wants, when he wants, and continually mines the past no matter the cost. It's been four years since the Celtic soulman issued a collection of new, original studio material (Born to Sing: No Plan B), but given the music, it could have been yesterday. Morrison has no interest in innovation, he's already done that. The pace here is (mostly) laid-back, the music drenched in jazz, R&B, blues, and classy pop. He revels throughout in an elegant slow burn; his lyric themes are bittersweet, melancholic, filled with emotional and symbolic memory; his longing for the previous prevalent. The first line on album-opener "Let It Rhyme" is: "Throw another coin in the wishing well/Tell everybody to go to hell…" atop skeins of country and R&B as he reveals his recalcitrance. Celtic folk burrows underneath soul in the title track, as a trio of female backing singers, swelling B-3, and a snare undulate beneath his lyrics: "Keep me singing, a new beginning/waiting for my change to come...." A breezy harmonica solo adds a twist, but this tune reflects (musically as well as poetically) the protagonist in "Tore Down à la Rimbaud" from 1985's A Sense of Wonder, who is far down the road, holding stubbornly to a hope he knows (like his countryman Samuel Beckett) will elude him. "Out in the Cold Again" is one of Morrison's finest torch songs in a decade. His delivery hovers just above a small string section and Fiachra Trench's Errol Garner-esque piano. "The Pen Is Mightier Than the Sword" weaves blues-drenched electric guitar and organ exchanges in a midtempo steamy groove appended to excellent backing vocals from Dana Masters and Lance Ellington. The lone cover is a gospelized-blues version of Don Robey's and Alfred Braggs' ballad "Share Your Love with Me." (It was originally recorded by Bobby "Blue" Bland in 1963, and made immortal by Aretha Franklin in 1970. Morrison's version lies closer to the original in spirit.) The singer revisits his time in the San Francisco Bay area for "In Tiburon," where a circular Celtic jazz melody flows under his poetic lines as they name check various signposts in memory, invoking Beat poets, musicians, and locales. At its heart is a mysterious person he invokes over and again with the lines "Now we need each other to lean on…." A muted trumpet solo is misty, bittersweet, and tender. "Look Beyond the Hill" is a fingerpopping jazz tune with ghost traces of a "Moondance" musical feel, but without the magic hook. The outlier is "Going Down to Bangor," a raw blues, that directly references the early Chicago sound. Morrison offers his best blues shout and wails on harmonica. Keep Me Singing closes with "Caledonia Swing," an instrumental where skiffle, punchy R&B, and bluebeat ska rhythm (yes, really) come together in trademark style. Morrison delivers each of these songs with attentiveness; the material is consistently presented with finesse. Nothing further is required. --AllMusic Review by Thom Jurek
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VA - The Musical Mojo Of Dr. John - Celebrating Mac And His Music Live (2016) High-Fidelity FLAC Stereo 24bit/48kHz

Artist: Dr. John, Allen Toussaint, Anders Osborne, Bill Kreutzmann, Brian Stoltz, Bruce Springsteen, Charles Neville, Big Chief Monk Boudreaux, Chuck Leavell, Aaron Neville, Cyril Neville, Dave Malone, George Porter Jr., Irma Thomas, Jason Isbell, John Fogerty, Jimmie Vaughan, John “Papa” Gros, John Boutte, Mavis Staples, Ryan Bingham, Sarah Morrow, Shannon McNally, Tab Benoit, Terence Blanchard, The Blind Boys Of Alabama, The Dirty Dozen Horns, Warren Haynes, Widespread Panic, Zigaboo Modeliste
Title: The Musical Mojo Of Dr. John - Celebrating Mac And His Music Live
Genre: Blues, New Orleans R&B, Rock & Roll, Jazz Blues, Piano Blues
Label: © Blackbird Production Partners, LLC. Under exclusive license to Concord Music Group, Inc.
Release Date: 2016
Quality: High-Fidelity FLAC Stereo 48kHz/24bit
Source: HDTracks
Duration: 01:51:14
Recorded live at Saenger Theatre, New Orleans, LA

“It was very moving to have all these people paying tribute to me, but I just treated it like it was another show,” Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee and six-time GRAMMY®-winner Dr. John says of The Musical Mojo of Dr. John: A Celebration of Mac & His Music.
Scheduled for release on October 14, 2016 via Concord Records and available for immediate pre-order, the expansive live tribute set, created and produced by Keith Wortman, CEO of Blackbird Presents, is a powerful testament to the far-ranging influence and indomitable musical spirit of the iconic New Orleans singer/pianist/guitarist. Encompassing a two-CD, Blu-ray and DVD package along with a stand-alone two-CD version, The Musical Mojo of Dr. John captures a star-studded concert at New Orleans’ Saenger Theatre, with Dr. John joined by a stunningly diverse assortment of notable guest artists, who perform 22 songs written, recorded and/or popularized by Dr. John during his prolific six-decade career, honoring his large and still-growing musical legacy.
The performers include Bruce Springsteen, who duets with Dr. John on the 1973 smash “Right Place Wrong Time”; Jason Isbell, who delivers a heartfelt “Blow Wind Blow”; John Fogerty, who performs the raucous Crescent City anthem “New Orleans”; Mavis Staples, who brings gospel fervor to “Lay My Burden Down”; Widespread Panic, who lend musical muscle to “Familiar Reality”; and Ryan Bingham, who delivers a haunting “Back by the River.”
Fittingly, The Musical Mojo of Dr. John also features memorable performances by several New Orleans legends, including Allen Toussaint, Irma Thomas, Terence Blanchard, John Boutté, Big Chief Monk Boudreaux, the Dirty Dozen Brass Band, George Porter Jr. and Zigaboo Modeliste of the Meters, and Aaron, Charles and Cyril Neville. Bassist Don Was served as the project’s musical director, leading an all-star house band that also included Allman Brothers Band/Rolling Stones keyboardist Chuck Leavell, renowned NOLA pianist John Gros, Funky Meters guitarist Brian Stoltz and journeyman drummer Kenny Aronoff, as well as Dr. John’s longstanding musical compatriot, trombonist Sarah Morrow.
“The whole night felt pretty special, and everyone’s performance was spiritually correct,” says Dr. John.
Dr. John is New Orleans’ most prominent living musical icon. Through the embodiment of his hometown’s freewheeling creative spirit and multiple musical traditions, he’s built a visionary, idiosyncratic body of work that’s deeply rooted in the Crescent City’s myriad blues, R&B, jazz and rock ‘n’ roll traditions. That body of work stretches back to the 1950s, when Dr. John—then still known by his given name, Mac Rebennack—emerged as an in-demand producer, guitarist, pianist and songwriter on New Orleans’ studio scene, working for such local labels as Ace, Ron and Ric; collaborating with the likes of James Booker, Earl King, Professor Longhair, Art Neville and Frankie Ford; and scoring the regional solo hit “Storm Warning.”
In the early ’60s, he relocated to Los Angeles, where he played on countless sessions before debuting his flamboyant new musical persona, “Dr. John, The Night Tripper,” on his first solo album, 1968’s Gris-Gris, which introduced the world to his uniquely eclectic voodoo-funk. In the years since, he has remained a distinctly prolific and powerful force, releasing more than 30 albums of his own while collaborating with a broad array of acts including the Rolling Stones, Sonny & Cher, Van Morrison, Aretha Franklin, Gregg Allman, Mike Bloomfield, Levon Helm, Ringo Starr, Rickie Lee Jones, B.B. King and Christina Aguilera. He’s also performed in such films as The Last Waltz and Blues Brothers 2000, and pursued a successful two-decade songwriting partnership with legendary tunesmith Doc Pomus.
Dr. John was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2011, and won the most recent of his six GRAMMY® Awards in 2013 when Locked Down was voted that year’s Best Blues Album. He made his Concord debut in 2014 with Ske-Dat-De-Dat…The Spirit of Satch, a tribute to fellow New Orleanian Louis Armstrong. Dr. John co-produced the album with his longtime Nite Tripper band directress Sarah Morrow, who also arranged the album.
“I try not to look back too much, but it really moved me to have all of these people paying tribute,” Dr. John asserts. “But I want people to know that I’m still in the game and still have a lot more music in me.”
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Uriah Heep - Salisbury (1971/2016) High-Fidelity FLAC Stereo 24bit/96kHz

Artist: Uriah Heep
Title: Salisbury
Genre: Rock, Prog Rock, Hard Rock, British Metal
Label: © Sanctuary Records Group Ltd.
Release Date: 1971/2016
Quality: High-Fidelity FLAC Stereo 96kHz/24bit; Bonus tracks 44,1kHz/24bit
Source: HDTracks
Duration: 01:49:00
Recorded: October–November 1970, Lansdowne Studios, London

On their second album, Uriah Heep jettisons the experiments that weighed down Very 'Eavy Very 'Umble and works toward perfecting their blend of heavy metal power and prog rock complexity. Salisbury tips the band's style in the prog direction, containing one side of songs and one side dominated by a lengthy and ornate epic-length composition. Highlights on the song-oriented side include "Bird of Prey," a soaring rocker that blends furious, power chord-fuelled verses with spacy, keyboard-drenched instrumental breaks, and "Lady in Black," a stylishly arranged tune that builds from a folk-styled acoustic tune into a throbbing rocker full of ghostly harmonies and crunching guitar riffs. The big surprise on this side is "The Park," a ballad-style song built on a light blend of acoustic guitars and ethereal keyboards. It has a gentle, appealingly psychedelic feel that is topped off by David Byron's falsetto vocal and some soaring harmonies from Byron and Ken Hensley. However, Salisbury is undone by its title track, the 16-minute track that dominates the album's entire second side: it feels more like a lengthy jam session instead of a prog epic with distinctive and carefully crafted sections. Another problem is that the overly busy brass and woodwind arrangements that have been grafted onto it intrude on the group's sound instead of fleshing it out. All in all, Salisbury is too unfocused for the casual listener but offers enough solid songs for the Uriah Heep completist. Collector's note: The American version of this album had different cover art (the tank on the British edition was replaced by a gruesome image of man tearing out of his own skin) and replaced "Bird of Prey" with a bluesy B-side entitled "Simon the Bullet Freak." --AllMusic Review by Donald A. Guarisco
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Uriah Heep - ...Very 'Eavy ...Very 'Umble (1970/2016) High-Fidelity FLAC Stereo 24bit/96kHz

Artist: Uriah Heep
Title: …Very 'Eavy …Very 'Umble
Genre: Rock, Prog Rock, Hard Rock, British Metal
Label: © Sanctuary Records Group Ltd.
Release Date: 1970/2016
Quality: High-Fidelity FLAC Stereo 96kHz/24bit; Bonus tracks 44,1kHz/24bit
Source: HDTracks
Duration: 01:45:03
Recorded: July 1969 – April 1970, Lansdowne Studios, London

This album was the debut of Uriah Heep, an English band that would become one of the Titans of the '70s heavy metal sound. Despite their eventual hard-rocking reputation, Very 'Eavy...Very 'Umble finds the band trying on different stylistic hats as they work towards finding their own sound. At this juncture, their music falls halfway between the crunch of heavy metal and the dramatic arrangements of prog rock. When this style jells, the results are quite powerful: "Dreammare" blends psychedelic lyrics and a complex vocal arrangement with a stomping beat from the rhythm section to create an effective slice of prog metal fusion while "I'll Keep on Trying" presents a head-spinning, complex tune with enough riffs, hooks, and tempo changes to fill three or four songs. However, the album's finest achievement is "Gypsy": this heavy metal gem nails the blend of swirling organ riffs, power chords, and leather-lunged vocal harmonies that would define the group's classic tunes and remains a staple of the band's live performances today. Unfortunately, the focus of the album is diluted by some unsuccessful experiments: "Lucy Blues" is a dull, unmemorable stab at a Led Zeppelin-style heavy blues tune and "Come Away Melinda" is an overproduced, melodramatic cover that tries to marry the band's full-throttle musical style to a message song. Despite these occasional moments of stylistic schizophrenia, Very 'Eavy...Very 'Umble is a likable album that shows the promise that Uriah Heep would soon realize. Those unfamiliar with Uriah Heep may want to try out Demons and Wizards or a compilation first, but anyone with a serious interest in Uriah Heep or the roots of heavy metal will find plenty to like on Very 'Eavy...Very 'Umble. The American edition of this album was retitled Uriah Heep and omits "Lucy Blues" in favor of the track "Bird of Prey" from Salisbury. --AllMusic Review by Donald A. Guarisco
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