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Lou Reed - Magic and Loss (1992/2015) High-Fidelity FLAC Stereo 24bit/96kHz + 24bit/192kHz

Artist: Lou Reed
Title: Magic and Loss
Genre: Rock, Hard Rock, Rock & Roll, Proto-Punk
Label: © Warner Bros. Records
Release Date: 1992/2015
Quality: High-Fidelity FLAC Stereo 96kHz/24bit + 192kHz/24bit
Source: HDTracks
Duration: 58:29
Recorded: April 1–27, 1991 at The Magic Shop, New York

With 1982's The Blue Mask, Lou Reed began approaching more mature and challenging themes in his music, and in 1992, Reed decided it was time to tackle the Most Serious Theme of All -- Death. Reed lost two close friends to cancer within the space of a year, and the experience informed Magic and Loss, a set of 14 songs about loss, illness, and mortality. It would have been easy for a project like this to sound morbid, but Reed avoids that; the emotions that dominate these songs are fear and helplessness in the face of a disease (and a fate) not fully understood, and Reed's songs struggle to balance these anxieties with bravery, humor, and an understanding of the notion that death is an inevitable part of life -- that you can't have the magic without the loss. It's obvious that Reed worked on this material with great care, and Magic and Loss contains some of his most intelligent and emotionally intense work as a lyricist. However, Reed hits many of the same themes over and over again, and while Reed and his accompanists -- guitarist Mike Rathke, bassist Rob Wasserman, and percussionist Michael Blair -- approach the music with skill and impeccable chops, many of these songs are a bit samey; the album's most memorable tunes are the ones that pull it out of its mid-tempo rut, like the grooving "What's Good" and the guitar workout "Gassed and Stoked." Magic and Loss is an intensely heartfelt piece of music, possessing a taste and subtlety one might never have expected from Reed, but its good taste almost works against it; it's a sincere bit of public mourning, but perhaps a more rousing wake might have been a more meaningful tribute to the departed. --Mark Deming
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Lou Reed - Live: Take No Prisoners (1978/2015) High-Fidelity FLAC Stereo 24bit/96kHz

Artist: Lou Reed
Title: Live: Take No Prisoners
Genre: Rock, Hard Rock, Proto-Punk, Rock & Roll
Label: © Arista Records
Release Date: 1978/2015
Quality: High-Fidelity FLAC Stereo 96kHz/24bit
Source: HDTracks
Duration: 01:38:31
Recorded: May 17–21, 1978, The Bottom Line, New York

"I do Lou Reed better than anybody, so I thought I'd get in on it," Reed says at one point during this double live set, and that seems to sum up the album's theme quite well. Recorded during a week of shows at New York's Bottom Line in 1978, Live: Take No Prisoners presents Lou Reed the Standup Comic, doing schtick on Patti Smith ("F*ck Radio Ethiopia, man! I'm Radio Brooklyn!"), political activism ("Give me an issue, I'll give you a tissue, and you can wipe my ass with it"), and the agony of playing "Walk on the Wild Side" ("It's not that I don't want to play your favorites, but there are so many favorites to choose from!") while occasionally pausing to play a song. As a comic, Lou is no Lenny Bruce or Bill Hicks, but he's funny by fits and starts (and he plays guitar better than either of them). On the odd moments when Lou is focused enough to actually perform a song from start to finish (such as "Pale Blue Eyes" or "Coney Island Baby"), he's in fine form, sounding loose but enthusiastic, but those moments don't happen especially often, and this album plows through a mere ten songs in close to 100 minutes, which gives you an idea of just how far he stretches out here. If you're a fan who wants a look into the mind of Lou Reed, comic or otherwise, Live: Take No Prisoners certainly fills the bill, but if you want to hear Lou actually play his music, you're better off with Rock N Roll Animal or Live in Italy. But then again, as Lou himself points out, "What's wrong with cheap dirty jokes? I never said I was tasteful." --Mark Deming
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Lou Reed - Ecstasy (2000/2015) High-Fidelity FLAC Stereo 24bit/96kHz + 24bit/192kHz

Artist: Lou Reed
Title: Ecstasy
Genre: Rock, Hard Rock, Rock & Roll, Proto-Punk
Label: © Warner Bros. Records
Release Date: 2000/2015
Quality: High-Fidelity FLAC Stereo 96kHz/24bit + 192kHz/24bit
Source: HDTracks
Duration: 01:17:34
Recorded: Sear Sound studios, NYC

Ecstasy was released in 2000 and is Lou Reed's of eighteenth studio album. It was produced by Lou Reed and Hal Willner, and is a concept album about Reed's personal experiences with marriage and relationships.
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Laurence Hobgood - Left To My Own Devices (2000) High-Fidelity FLAC Stereo 24bit/96kHz

Artist: Laurence Hobgood
Title: Left To My Own Devices
Genre: Jazz, Piano Jazz
Label: © Naim Label
Release Date: 2000
Quality: High-Fidelity FLAC Stereo 96kHz/24bit
Source: HDTracks
Duration: 59:27
Recorded: Lily Reid Holt Memorial Chapel, Lake Forest College, 12-14 March 2000 by Ken Christianson, Pro Musica, Chicago.

Piano music is cherished here at Naim Label and we couldn't believe our luck when Ken Christianson persuaded Laurence Hobgood to make a solo recording for us, which also features the Grammy Award winning vocalist Kurt Elling.
An eclectic mix of tunes is featured on this disc, including ‘Do Nothin' Til You hear From Me' written by Duke Ellington and Bob Russell, ‘Lovesick Blues' by Hank Williams and Theloniuos Monk's ‘Pannonica'.
Hobgood weighs in with ‘The Waltz' co-written with featured vocalist, the Grammy Award winning Kurt Elling, who sings on this and two other great tracks.
This is a ‘must have' collection, with something for everyone; beautifully played, sung and recorded and featuring two of the world's most wonderful instruments - the piano and the human voice.
In 1996 Hobgood joined with Wertico and bassist Brian Torff to form a new trio called Union. Their two releases, both on The Naim Label, were selected as among the top ten jazz recordings of ‘97 and ‘99 by the Chicago Tribune. --Produced by Laurence Hobgood
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Khatia Buniatishvili - Motherland (2014) High-Fidelity FLAC Stereo 24bit/96kHz

Сomposer: Various
Artist: Khatia Buniatishvili, piano
Title: Motherland
Genre: Classical
Label: © Sony Classical
Release Date: 2014
Quality: High-Fidelity FLAC Stereo 96kHz/24bit
Source: Qobuz
Duration: 01:04:35
Recorded: Jesus-Christus Kirche, Berlin, 15-19 April 2013


As she has demonstrated in her critically acclaimed albums of the keyboard music of Liszt and Chopin, Georgian pianist Khatia Buniatishvili is a stunning virtuoso with impressive skills and her dynamic playing compels listening. However, for her 2014 Sony album, Motherland, she finds subtle expressions in her favorite character pieces, and none of them could be considered showstoppers. Most of the selections reflect calm and intimate moods, typified by Bach's Sheep May Safely Graze, Tchaikovsky's Autumn Song, Debussy's Clair de lune, and Ravel's Pavane pour une infante défunte, while the liveliest pieces, which include Mendelssohn's Song Without Words in F sharp minor, György Ligeti's Musica Ricercata No. 7, Dvorák's Slavonic Dance in E minor, and Scarlatti's Sonata in E major, offer rather modest displays of technique. Instead of dazzling her listeners, Buniatishvili is putting forward her personal, private side in this understated program, and the key to her selections is the sense of yearning that these pieces evoke. The most passionate outpouring of emotion comes in her own arrangement of Vaguiorko ma, a Georgian folk song that surely must hold a special place in her emotional world. Because this is a gentle and poignant album, listeners may find it is best appreciated in a quiet space with few distractions. --Blair Sanderson, AllMusic
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Kenny Burrell with Art Blakey - On View at the Five Spot Cafe (1959/2010) High-Fidelity DSF Stereo DSD64/2.82MHz

Artist: Kenny Burrell with Art Blakey
Title: On View at the Five Spot Cafe
Genre: Jazz, Hard Bop, Standards, Guitar Jazz, Cool Jazz
Label: © Blue Note Records | Analogue Productions
Release Date: 1959 (BLP 4021/BST 84021)/2010
Quality: DSF Stereo DSD64/2.82MHz
Source: ISO SACD
Duration: 01:03:42
Recorded live at the Five Spot Cafe in New York City on August 25, 1959

A 1959 live date at the legendary club, with Art Blakey driving a band that includes Tina Brooks and alternating pianists, Bobby Timmons and Roland Hanna. Recorded live on August 25, 1959 at the Five Spot Café, New York.
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Jeff Ballard Trio - Time's Tales (2014) High-Fidelity FLAC Stereo 24bit/96kHz

Artist: Jeff Ballard Trio
Title: Time's Tales
Genre: Jazz, Modern Jazz
Label: © Okeh Records | Sony Music Entertainment
Release Date: 2014
Quality: High-Fidelity FLAC Stereo 96kHz/24bit
Source: HDTracks
Duration: 56:31
Recorded: 2013

There could hardly be a better start for the new year – the 2014 jazz season will be opened by none other than Jeff Ballard, together with outstanding guitarist Lionel Loueke and the great Miguel Zenon on saxophone. Their first ever album collaboration Time’s Tales offers a varied repartoire from Thelonious Monk to Iranian folk melodies, with influences from Bartók, Duke Ellington, George Gershwin, Stevie Wonder and more. At the same time, it reflects the musicians’ different geographic backgrounds – the USA, Benin and Puerto Rico.
Opening with a funky african groove in 9/4 and moving over to imitated bird melodies, Time’s Tales also offers dark and slow textures, including a cover of contemporary rock band Queens of the Stone Age while closing with a completely improvised song which can be considered a glimpse into the future of the band. The album is characterized by complex rythms, exotic harmonies and soulful melodies.
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Johann Sebastian Bach - Matthaus Passion, BWV 244 (St. Matthew Passion) - Academy of Ancient Music, Richard Egarr (2015) High-Fidelity FLAC Stereo 24bit/96kHz


Сomposer: Johann Sebastian Bach (1685-1750)
Artist: Academy of Ancient Music, Richard Egarr
Title: Johann Sebastian Bach - St. Matthew Passion (1727 version)
Genre: Classical
Label: © AAM Records (Academy of Ancient Music)
Release Date: 2015
Quality: High-Fidelity FLAC Stereo 96kHz/24bit
Source: Qobuz
Duration: 02:24:32
Recorded: at Saint Jude-on-the-Hill, London, UK, 20-27 April 2014.

Since 1727, JS Bach's "Great Passion" has gripped the hearts and uplifted the minds of audiences all over the globe. Nearly three centuries after its premiere, the work has lost none of its power to evoke feelings of compassion for all those who suffer. Its mix of urgent story-telling, meditative arias and mighty choruses sets St Matthew's account of Christ's betrayal, trial and execution eloquently and emotionally.

Over the past 40 years the AAM has made over 300 recordings of baroque and classical music, winning Brit and Gramophone Awards along the way, however – remarkably – this is our first recording of the St Matthew Passion. With a superlative cast including James Gilchrist, Sarah Connolly, Thomas Hobbs, Elizabeth Watts, Christopher Maltman and Matthew Rose, and directed by Richard Egarr, this is a landmark project.
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Johann Sebastian Bach - Six Partitas - Andras Schiff (2009) High-Fidelity FLAC Stereo 24bit/96kHz

Сomposer: Johann Sebastian Bach (1685 –1750)
Artist: András Schiff, piano
Title: J.S. Bach - Six Partitas
Genre: Classical
Label: © ECM Records GmbH
Release Date: 2009
Quality: High-Fidelity FLAC Stereo 96kHz/24bit
Source: highresaudio.com
Duration: 2:12:49
Recorded: September 21, 2007, Historischer Reitstadel, Neumarkt


After completing his highly praised Beethoven cycle, pianist András Schiff returns to Bach in this spot-on live recording of the Six Partitas. Though published as his Opus 1, the Partitas were Bach’s last compositions for keyboard. Both reasons make it a keystone in the mythical Bach pantheon. Although “partita” is essentially a euphemism for “suite,” in Bach’s hands the form was opened to a freer and more complex sense of infrastructure and performative demands.

The introductions show both composer and performer at their best. The Praeambulum of Partita V is a tour de force of rhythmic urgency and dynamic control. The Fantasia of Partita III is another astounding inauguration, its resplendence cluing us into the genesis of the music to follow. The meditative Praeludium of Partita I contrasts sublimely with the Sinfonia of Partita II, the latter a stately lead-in to the courtliest of the Partitas. The accompanying Allemandes overwhelm with their sparks, conflagrating our souls into rapt attention. The pacing throughout is nothing short of extraordinary. Schiff’s sprightly Correntes glisten like rain-drenched leaves, tempering their surrounding flames with a quiet power.
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Johann Sebastian Bach - Johannes Passion, BWV 245 (Passio secundum Johannem, St. John Passion) - Ricercar Consort, Philippe Pierlot (2011) High-Fidelity FLAC Stereo 24bit/88.2kHz

Сomposer: Johann Sebastian Bach (1685-1750)
Artist: Ricercar Consort, Philippe Pierlot
Title: Johann Sebastian Bach - Passio secundum Johannem
Genre: Classical
Label: © Mirare | Harmonia Mundi Label Group
Release Date: 2011
Quality: High-Fidelity FLAC Stereo 88,2kHz/24bit
Source: Qobuz
Duration: 01:53:31
Recorded: 27 au 30 septembre 2010 dans la Salle Philharmonique de Liège


« Il y a dans cette Passion, des moments d’une beauté déchirante, admirablement interprétés, admirablement joués. Dès le début, le choral d’ouverture « Herr, unser Herrscher » possède une cadence de battement de 150 – c’est quelque chose, suite à quoi le sportif a besoin d’endurance. Saisissante, immédiate et sans concession, cette interprétation est admirablement menée par un excellent Evangéliste. Philippe Pierlot démontre qu’il a la main heureuse lorsqu’il choisit les solistes, les tempi et du génie dans la dramaturgie. Pour résumer : ce disque est la meilleure interprétation de la Passion selon saint Jean du moment ! »

Robert Strobl

La Passion selon Saint-Jean, chef d'ceuvre universel de l'histoire musicale occidentale, créée en 1724 (1ère version) à Leipzig, a été de nombreuses fois enregistrée et c'est toujours, aujourd'hui une entreprise considérable (et admirable !) que de désirer la jouer en concert, ou la graver au disque. Philippe Pierlot et le Ricercar Consort s'attaquent à leur tour au monument de Jean-Sébastien Bach. Ils livrent une belle version qui réussit à trouver un point d'équilibre entre une nécessaire dramatisation du livret et une forme d'intimité inhérente à la méditation. Les solistes sont au rendez-vous dans les airs et les récitatifs, les affects baroques qui suivent le cycle traditionnel des stations, de l'arrestation de Jésus à sa mise au tombeau.
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