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SeaWasp (Sydney, Australia)

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Beatnik Jazz Anthology
Beatnik Jazz Anthology
Offered by Discs4all
Price: £3.03

5.0 out of 5 stars Dig it, Daddy..!, 16 Feb. 2015
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This review is from: Beatnik Jazz Anthology (Audio CD)
Sublime compilation of American Jazz from 1958-1960. Great sound quality as well. The liner notes give a little beatnik history and at the bottom of page 2 you will find (in very small print) the year each track was recorded and also the composer of the piece. We are told in the liner notes that Cannonball Adderley's "Somethin' Else" also features Miles Davis, Hank Jones, Stan Jones and Art Blakey but that is all the details listed regarding sidemen here. A pity. I would have liked to know more.. still, at this price, the 2 Cd set is a steal. Nice picture of a cool cat (Monk?) with shades and spinach on the cover and a few small pics of contributing musicians inside. A nice package ..but, yeah, a little more info as to the sidemen would have made it nicer still. Buy it and, while you're in a spending mood, grab the "Birth Of The Cool" compilation as well. Pass the hookah.


With Nat King Cole - Lester Young / Buddy Rich Trio (Plus 8 Bonus Tracks)
With Nat King Cole - Lester Young / Buddy Rich Trio (Plus 8 Bonus Tracks)
Price: £10.09

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Warning.!, 10 Feb. 2015
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When we're talking Nat Cole, Buddy Rich and Lester Young the results can be no less than excellent. The other reviewer said it all but I'd like to add that the source material here is not very good quality. Sure, the new cd has 24 Bit Digital remastering but it sounds like it is mastered from scratched 78s.. scratched AND worn in some cases. Still, this timeless music is worth owning and I would guess that this was the best source material available. So yeah, cool music but be prepared for disappointment if you expect pristine recording quality.. still sounds damn good though. The instrumental virtuosity almost overcomes the worn grooves. It's not really THAT bad but.. well, noticeable, yes.!!


The Best Big Band Jazz - Classics from the 1950s
The Best Big Band Jazz - Classics from the 1950s
Price: £11.41

9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Blow Yer Brains Out..!!, 10 Feb. 2015
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Wow..! Make sure you listen to this on a good stereo with BIG speakers. A tiny shelf model stereo system would not do this baby justice. This stuff will blow you out of your chair for the main part (tunes like "Skylark" not withstanding) but man, it swings. Listen to "Four Brothers" on the "Woody Herman Live at Monterey" album and you'll see what I mean. I have bought 4 of these multi album sets (Jazz Guitar, West Coast Jazz, Oscar Peterson & Friends + this one) and Big Band Jazz is definitely the loudest. A bit of a shock after listening to the cool West Coast Jazz and the laid-back Jazz Guitar pleasures. Don't get me wrong, not all Lps here are ear-splitting brass. There are many mellow moments ..especially in Clark Terry's Duke Ellington "tribute" album on Cd2. Some rare stuff here. A treasure trove of cool albums for guys dabbling in jazz who don't "have it all". The "Stan Kenton with Voices" album is a revelation, but there is much here to savour including Duke Ellington's Spacemen (a 9 piece ensemble as opposed to his usual big band) doing a new take on some old standards.

The audio quality is fine but there is not much in the way of information and liner notes except for track listings, personnel and the recording date on the back of each cardboard cd sleeve. You'll be surprised at the host of well-known jazzbos who turn up as sidemen in some of these bands (Shorty Rogers, Shelley Manne, etc..)so I'm glad they are listed.

The individual sleeve artwork features the main box art shot plus 2 small original Lp cover pics in the bottom right hand corner ... oh well, I suppose we can't have everything. Still, it's the music that counts and this stuff will blow your mind if you dig big band jazz. Swingin'..!


Bing Sings The Great American Songbook
Bing Sings The Great American Songbook
Offered by Fulfillment Express
Price: £10.12

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Bing Swings It...!, 26 Dec. 2014
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Very easy to listen to... perhaps TOO easy. Bing whips through American standards backed by Buddy Cole and his Trio so it has a light jazzy feel to it. At times it seems so effortless that it's almost throw-away but Bing and the boys could do this stuff in their sleep. Recorded for radio shows so it's more or less a live thing but I wish there were more casual asides from Der Bingle.. sometimes he comes out with some good ones. All in all, recommended if you like "the old groaner".. I think he's great. Cool as a cucumber. The cd comes in a fold-out digi-pak.


Terror Tales of London
Terror Tales of London
by Paul Finch
Edition: Paperback
Price: £8.99

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars I liked the final Tower Of London story but do the ..., 26 Dec. 2014
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This review is from: Terror Tales of London (Paperback)
I was going to buy the whole set of "Terror Tales From..." books but I thought I would just try two and see how they struck me. I'm sorry to say that the "London" volume is, for the most part, bland. I liked the final Tower Of London story but do the authors really have to resort to cliché when describing the ghostly executioner as being "built like a brick S***house"? Lovecraft this isn't but then again I wasn't expecting it to be. I started with the last story and then went to the front of the book. One after another the tales just seemed to go nowhere so I put the book down and thought I'd try my luck with "Terror Tales From The Seaside". I feel "Seaside" is a superior collection going from what I have read so far. In this age of mediocrity I don't expect very much from new music, new films and new literature but "Terror Tales From London" fell below my initial hopes. Non of it is particularly riveting or scary .. I will finish the "London" collection but only after I have run out of other stuff to read. I was really hoping I would like this book but it wasn't to be.. but hey, try it.. you might like it.


West Coast Jazz
West Coast Jazz
Price: £11.71

8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars KInda COOL... Kinda WOW..!, 29 Nov. 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: West Coast Jazz (Audio CD)
This is a short review for the West Coast Jazz 10 cd box set with the beach and palm trees on the cover. (amazon seem to lump in a whole lot of reviews together for differing cds each called "West Coast Jazz") Anyway, this is a superb deal even though I already have a couple of the singular albums. The sound quality is great. You get 2 albums on each cds. The 10 individual cds come in cardboard sleeves and have the same artwork as the box except that there is a replica of the two original album covers along the bottom, each about 4 cm square, so they are quite small. A pity because some of this artwork is iconic, especially the Jim Flora stuff. The back of each cd sleeve gives you a personnel and track listing as well as the time and place where the recording was made. That's it.. but, as much as I love Lp art and liner notes, it's the music that counts and I am very impressed with this box set.. so much so that I have ordered the jazz guitar, Oscar Peterson and Big Band sets (still considering the bossa nova one). So, if you dig Getz, Mulligan, Baker, Hamilton and all the usual suspects, you can't go wrong here. Man, I could listen to this stuff all day... and I WILL...
Buy it while you still can.


Vertigo Mixed By Andy Votel
Vertigo Mixed By Andy Votel

5.0 out of 5 stars Great to be sure, but..., 5 Nov. 2014
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I was just wondering if that mess at the start of track 4 is supposed to be there. It sounds like the disc is repeating and skipping for about 10 seconds or so yet the timer shows all is okay. Very annoying and unnecessary effect if put there on purpose. The music is, of course, superb. I wish I'd kept all my old Lps from the day... Buy it while you still can,


Hatari!
Hatari!
Price: £3.44

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars This (just over 30 minutes) cd soundtrack is nothing short of excellent and very nicely (low) priced, 29 Oct. 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Hatari! (Audio CD)
What can I say about Mancini except that Clapton was a false God. This (just over 30 minutes) cd soundtrack is nothing short of excellent and very nicely (low) priced. Even though it is a Hallmark/Pickwick release the audio quality is fine. Not as good as some of the later remastered albums but (to quote Basil Fawlty) "it will certainly do in an emergency". Unless you are a hopeless audiophile I'm sure you wont find fault here.

Typical Mancini excellence. A couple of the jazzier tracks would sound at home on the Peter Gunn soundtrack and a couple more would fit right into Pink Panther music. The Jungle Drum track even delves into Les Baxter-style exotica. All-in-all, a great listen at a great price.


Black Magic
Black Magic
Price: £3.99

5.0 out of 5 stars Never heard of this guy..., 29 Oct. 2014
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This review is from: Black Magic (Audio CD)
Being brought up on Zeppelin, Tull and Purple I never had much time for the Mantovanis of this world. Now, in my dotage, I am discovering the wonderful sounds the "big people" used to listen to when I was trying to cultivate a Beatle fringe. I'm glad I bought this budget priced cd because it opened my life to the world of Mr Black. These are lush orchestrations for the main part with a little small group stuff thrown in as well as some Latin numbers. These prompted me to seek out the Exotic Percussion albums Stanley released that are available on a Vocalion Twofer. This is, indeed, wonderful stuff to relax to when you have had enough angst for the day. The audio quality on this budget release is top notch. Well worth the four quid I paid for it.. so if you're partial to Chacksfield and Melachrino, give this cd a listen. I'm betting you'll want to hear more of that Stanley Black magic. I'm glad I bought it.


Peter Gunn
Peter Gunn
Price: £5.10

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars 5-Star music, but. get the RCA Living Stereo Cds instead., 16 April 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Peter Gunn (Audio CD)
This is a review for the Peter Gunn/ More Peter Gunn cd distributed by the Hot Record Society. This is the cd with the white half-border and the small yellow square in the top left-hand corner on the front cover.

The albums are here obviously "needle-drops" taken from Lp records instead of the master tapes. I compared the sound of this cd to the "Peter Gunn" cd found in the 5-disc Henry Mancini box set and the Hot Disc Society product is definitely inferior to the RCA release in that it lacks the vibrancy of a remaster taken from the original source material. This cd sounds okay but when compared to the Living Stereo cd it seems to sound a little "flatter". One gets used to the sound soon enough because the music is sublime, and the only giveaway that these are actually needle-drops is the very slight crackling of surface scratches heard in "Walking Bass".

The price is right but I would recommend you spend the extra sheckles and buy the 5-cd Mancini box set which contains a properly remastered version of the "Peter Gun" album plus 4 bonus tracks from "More Music.." and whole lot of other KOOL stuff. Hey, you can never have enough Mancini on the cd shelf...!!


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