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Sentinel (Essex)
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Waldron - Haslam
Waldron - Haslam
Price: £13.99

5.0 out of 5 stars Delightful Duo, 24 Sep 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Waldron - Haslam (Audio CD)
This is a delightful album. Both partners in the duo give the other plenty of room to breathe, so that the crystalline glitter of Waldron's keyboard is contrasted with, and complemented by, the deeper husky voice of Haslam's baritone sax.

Although the overall tone is a mellow one (thankfully, relatively little spiky, discordant register), there is still plenty of life here, with the lengthy tracks allowing Haslam especially the chance to explore a more free-flowing exploration, such as 'Motion in Order', which is a gorgeous blend of driven, questing voice, and an irresistible, tender ballad.

Three of the tracks are standards: a perky version of Ellington's 'I got it bad'; a meltingly sensitive & beautiful 'If I were a Bell' by Loesser, and a suitably restrained 'Somewhere' (Bernstein). The other pieces are collaborations between the duo, except for Haslam's wonderfully affecting 'Vortex' (much more controlled than it sounds), Waldron's memorable 'A Time for Duke', and his take on Brahms 'Variations'.

The quality of recording is excellent, and the sensitive interplay between piano & sax is a thing of wonder at times. This delightful album is likely to demand much repeated listening in future. Strongly recommended in Penguin Jazz Guide...and by me!


Seven Classic Albums
Seven Classic Albums
Offered by skyvo-direct
Price: £9.20

5.0 out of 5 stars A Lovely Surprise., 17 Sep 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Seven Classic Albums (Audio CD)
This superb collection was my introduction to Max Waldron, after being intrigued by a haunting description of 'Left Alone' in David Mitchell's book 'Ghostwritten', a track included on Waldron's album of the same name on this 7-album, 4 cd set. For me, it's been a lovely discovery.

There's a mixture of hard bop & ballads throughout, delivered from trio to septet assemblies. There's a mouth-watering selection of jazz 'greats', including Gigi Gryce, John Coltrane, Jackie McLean, Art Farmer, Eric Dolphy, Booker Ervin & Idrees Suliemen, and that only includes those on horns. Drummers vary throughout, but Julian Euell is the most prominent bassist, while even cello makes a welcome appearance, adding warmth & depth to a couple of albums here, thanks to Calo Scott & Ron Carter.

However, the real joy of this set is not the individual parts, illustrious though the names may be, but the way in which Waldron's arrangements allow the process to gell, and really lift off in the more driven numbers, such as 'Potpourri' & 'Status Seeking', while creating a richly memorable warmth to the slower pieces, including the achingly beautiful 'Left Alone' with McLean's sax plunging a deep well, and the rich chocolate of 'Duquilty', with Dolphy's clarinet exquisitely hanging over 'Warm Canto'.

Sound quality is good throughout, with individual instruments well identified, and there is a similar energising drive in the two trio albums here. This lovely collection features some very classy jazz, and some very interesting & unusual keyboard work from Waldron, which put me in mind of Monk at times, especially in 'Mal 3' & 'Impressions'. Most of these albums are highly rated in Penguin, Gramophone & All Music jazz guides, and the savings over buying these individually is substantial. Well worth exploring.


Samsung UE24H4003 24-inch Widescreen HD Ready Slim LED TV with Freeview HD
Samsung UE24H4003 24-inch Widescreen HD Ready Slim LED TV with Freeview HD
Price: £149.99

8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Happy Picture!, 7 Sep 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
We bought this to replace a 19 inch LG set, which we'd only had for three years before it broke down, whereas our equivalent Samsung model, although older, is still going strong. We only really wanted this as a working TV, to hook up with our VCR, though it also provides options to hook up with laptop, usb stick etc. There's headphone & speaker sockets too, though we found the sound better quality than its 19 inch model anyway (just as well).

Assembly & set-up was dead easy, even to this limited technophobe! Three screws to connect base to TV, and an automatic tuning set-up on a step by step basis. Picture quality is sharp & realistic (unlike some rather garish/overlit displays), and the unit is very light & easy to move around. Predicted annual consumption output is only 29 kWh, which seems reasonable, with an energy efficiency rating of 'A'.

Very happy with performance so far; shall update over next few months.


7 Classic Albums Vol.2
7 Classic Albums Vol.2
Offered by produXa UK
Price: £9.56

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Evans...and a bit more?, 30 Aug 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: 7 Classic Albums Vol.2 (Audio CD)
This is a lovely collection of true 'classics', in very decent sound, and with the Real Gone Jazz label's very minimalist documentation (names of personnel & track length is all that you get). However, although this collection is bulging with classic jazz albums, bundling them together as all Bill Evans work is rather misleading, as 'Blues & the Abstract Truth' and 'Modern Art' are albums led by, and credited to, Oliver Nelson & Art Farmer respectively. To underline this, you'll find them under their names rather than Evans in any of the major guides to jazz. Very odd, given how many other Evans albums might have made it into this collection (and the fact that cd4 has space for another album on it...)

Having said all that, both the 'intruder' albums are outstanding examples of their leader's work, and highly rated in both 'Penguin' and 'All Your Music' jazz guides. Additionally, the Evans albums here include the iconic and superb 'Village Vanguard' set (6 tracks), plus two albums with guitarist Jim Hall on board, 'Undercurrent' & 'Interplay'. The former, with just the duo playing is exquisite, the guitar & piano meshing sublimely, the latter also features Freddie Hubbard, with the bass/drums combo. That leaves two piano trios, 'Moon Beams' & 'Empathy', which are very different in character. The former is a gorgeous collection of ballads, and one of my all-time favourite Evans albums, while the latter has Shelly Manne's drumming driving Evans into some sparkling, lively explorations.

So: a rather unusual combination to be sure, but you'll find plenty of variety in this collection, and some top-class jazz throughout.


Mens Fisherman Leather Summer Sandals SIZE 7
Mens Fisherman Leather Summer Sandals SIZE 7
Offered by Sky Walker df
Price: £11.40

2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Good, comfortable fit; impossible to fasten/unfasten., 29 Aug 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
I'm really disappointed with these sandals. Although they were comfortable and fit well, a manufacturing problem means that the velcro strap is too broad for the buckle. This means that if you undo the strap (with a great struggle), it's impossible to buckle the sandal again, so you can only wear it loose.

I've ordered these twice, after the first seller told me they couldn't be replaced as they were all faulty, and they were returning them to the manufacturer. About a month later I noticed similar sandals (different colour) were being advertised by another seller, so ordered these only to find out they had an identical problem.

Unless you want to wear these loose, avoid!


Boulevard de L'independence
Boulevard de L'independence
Price: £15.58

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I'm a Convert!, 12 Aug 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
As a lover of Diabate's classic kora albums, such as 'Mande Variations', or the exquisite 'In the Heart of the Moon' with Farka Tore, I was wary of any kind of 'fushion' approach which might overwhelm the delicate subtleties of the kora. However, the positive reviews here won me over. At first, I confess, I thought I'd made a mistake, as the blast of trumpets which begin the album seemed way out of kilter with the delicate singing voice of the kora which follows.
I was still uncertain by the end of the album.

However, a few plays later, and I'm a covert. The sheer excitement & electricity of the performance is captivating, and either the balance of instruments improve, or the ear adjusts as you listen on, till the last few pieces seem more beguiling and addictive than ever. I was genuinely sad when the cd finished; happily unlike a live performance, I could immediately play this again. Wonderful!


Another Setting
Another Setting

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Voice v Guitar, 9 Aug 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Another Setting (Audio CD)
There are those who love Vini's voice & his guitar playing, and there are those who feel the former can't really compete with the sublime sounds of the latter. I have to confess that I was disappointed that his voice takes precedence, to the neglect of his gorgeous guitar sounds, on this album.

Happily, the final seven tracks redeemed the situation for me, with 5 'Portugese' and 2 further instrumental tracks, which were well worth the wait. As you know, even a little of what Vini can do with a guitar can go a long way, and these final tracks are really lovely.

And if you love both, well you're in clover!


Anker ® CB310 Full-Size Ergonomic Wireless Keyboard and Mouse Combo for Desktop with Water-Resistant and whisper-quiet Keyboard Design
Anker ® CB310 Full-Size Ergonomic Wireless Keyboard and Mouse Combo for Desktop with Water-Resistant and whisper-quiet Keyboard Design
Offered by AnkerDirect
Price: £69.99

2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Super, Stable Combo., 4 Aug 2014
When our last keyboard letters started fading away, I was about to replace it with another cheap corded board; however my wife fancied the idea of this wire-free combo. I was sceptical, as our mouse still worked perfectly well, but what a well of ignorance I lay in!

I'm now fully converted to this great set, as the keyboard is much quieter, and more importantly, much more stable than our previous one, which tended to slip & slide around a lot.It has little legs at the back which slide out if you prefer the board in a raised, rather than flat position. We received a regular UK board (I know some buyers had problems with U.S.lettering.)

Secondly, the mouse is also a much more stable, solid-feeling bit of kit, which I enjoy using. My accuracy level has improved as a consequence (not that it was ever very good!), and this has been a real bonus, as I have a permanent tremor in my right hand ( 'benign essential tremor' I was told in the hospital; the doctor didn't think it funny when I told him I didn't find it very benign or essential...).

Anyway, the point of this is that hopefully anyone who has similar problems may also find this an improvement on a cheap wired combo. I used to have great difficulty with using the mouse to point & click with accuracy, and had often to start again; this is much better. I'd also say that neither of us have had problems with the correct symbol appearing ( I note from reviews that a few had difficulty with £ or @ symbols), so all appears well.

An impressive combination, and excellent value for money.


The Very Best Of Cat Stevens
The Very Best Of Cat Stevens
Price: £3.00

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good Stuff!, 26 July 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This is a very decent collection of Cat's songwriting abilities, spanning 60's-80's Almost all of his best known, or hit material is here, and the sound quality is very good, cut at quite a high level, so very immediate. There's also a booklet giving some helpful background to some of the price he had to pay for fame, and an update on where his life/career is now.
Sadly, although his album 'Foreigner' is give a short paragraph, none of the tracks on it appear in this collection. I think 'Later' from that album much better than some of the weaker tracks on here. In fact, I still enjoy the album as a whole, particularly 'Foreigner Suite', but that's probably just me...

Still a very good collection & recommended.
Comment Comments (2) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Aug 9, 2014 12:45 PM BST


7 Classic Albums Volume 2
7 Classic Albums Volume 2
Offered by jim-exselecky
Price: £9.99

2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Lovely Getz, 26 July 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This is another great bargain from Real Gone Jazz. Okay, the packaging & supporting information as usual leave much to be desired: you get recording dates (that for the Dizzy Gillespie album is out by two years!), personnel, track titles and their running times, and that's it. Oh, and the 4-cd jewel case may be prone to arriving with spindle damage.

However, with music & price this good, it's easy to say 'so what'! What we have here is another great selection of Getz albums, the majority highly recommended in 'All your Music' and 'Penguin Jazz Guide'. Getz' ground-breaking 'Focus' is here (where he improvises over an orchestral score; forty years ahead of Garbarek's own experiments with the Hilliard).

If you enjoy Bossa Nova, you have a choice of two albums: 'Jazz Samba' with Charlie Byrd (the album which started the trend with 'Desafinado' and 'One Note Samba'), while there's a surprisingly 'Big Band Bossa Nova' in which the delicacy of the music making survives being swamped by the brass section, in a subtly arranged production. The former album has an exquisite performance of 'Baia' to send shivers down the spine.

There's also 'Recorded Fall' with Bob Brookmeyer, with oustanding chemistry & playing from both the valve trombone & tenor sax (& Steve Kuhn on piano), and an even balance of bop & ballad. Another wonderful collaboration is 'At the Opera House' with JJ Johnson, with the interplay being a thing of tender wonder, helped by sensitive support from Oscar Peterson. 'Diz & Getz' is another heavyweight pairing, but less successful to my ears. Dizzy's rasping, edgy performance finds an echo in Stan's playing, and though there's no lack of energy here, it feels a ragged, uneven performance., even with Oscar Petersen's band providing the engine room.

This only leaves 'Getz in Stockholm' (1956), which is probably my favourite album here, despite the very stiff competition. The support from Gunnar Johnson (bass), Anders Burman (drums) & Bengt Hallberg (piano) is impeccable, and this is a beautifully rich & warm performance.

There's some lovely music-making here, across a range of styles, influences & collaborations, with Getz 'lovely sound' at its warm heart. Well worth investigating at such a modest price.


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