Acoustic Alchemy – Roseland (2011) [24-96]

Acoustic Alchemy – Roseland (2011)
FLAC (tracks) 24 bit/96 kHz | Time – 56:00 | 1.21 GB | Genre: Jazz
Official Digital Download – Source: | Front Cover
Recorded at 9 Miles High Studios, York, England. Engineering by Miles Gilderdale.

2011 marked the 30th anniversary of Acoustic Alchemy; it was back in 1981 that Simon James and the late Nick Webb, Acoustic Alchemy’s original co-leaders, started working together. These days, Acoustic Alchemy have two different co-leaders: Greg Carmichael and Miles Gilderdale. But even though James left in the mid-’80s and Webb died in 1998, the basic idea for the group has remained: two acoustic guitarists up front playing a light, unassuming mixture of jazz and pop. Of course, there is a difference between light and lightweight, and Acoustic Alchemy have recorded their share of lightweight background fluff over the years. But they have also had their more creative moments; thankfully, it turns out that Roseland is more than an exercise in fluff for the sake of fluff. In fact, much of this 2011 release is decent. “Right Place, Wrong Time” is easily the album’s most edgy offering; the tune borders on straight-ahead post-bop and is even somewhat Chick Corea-ish. Most of Roseland, however, is in the smooth jazz vein, but on the more memorable smooth jazz tracks, the Carmichael/Gilderdale version of Acoustic Alchemy reminds us that not all pop-jazz is created equal. The album’s more substantial smooth jazz offerings include “One for Shorty” (which is both bluesy and poppy at the same time), the Middle Eastern-flavored “State of the Arc,” and the funky “Swamp Top.” Meanwhile, “Sand on Her Toes” is a pleasant tune with a bossa nova-ish ambience, and the use of a reggae beat serves Acoustic Alchemy well on “The Ebor Sound System.” Roseland also has its throwaway tracks, but it would be a mistake to think of Roseland as strictly a mindless fluff album that panders to smooth jazz radio 100-percent of the time. Although Roseland is slightly uneven, there are more substantial moments than throwaway moments on this 55-minute CD.

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Ace of Base – The Bridge (1995/2015) [Qobuz 24-48]

Ace of Base – The Bridge (1995/2015)
FLAC (tracks) 24-bit/48 kHz | Time – 01:05:51 minutes |  831 MB | Genre: Pop
Studio Master, Official Digital Download |  Source:Qobuz |  Front cover
© 2015 Mega Records, A division of Playground Music Scandinavia AB

Ace of Base’s sequel to their multi-platinum debut The Sign sounds like the same record on the surface. There are the same bouncy Europop beats, ingratiatingly catchy melodies, and shiny production. However, underneath that gloss is an improved sense of songwriting. Ace of Base still might not be innovators, but they don’t need to be. Instead, they turn out tightly constructed pop songs that are better written than they appear — songs like the hit “Beautiful Life” would sound good in different arrangements or if they were performed acoustically. And the songs on The Bridge are, overall, better than the ones on The Sign. Ace of Base might not be able to replicate the phenomenal success of their debut, but they have managed to deliver an album that is just as satisfying.

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Ace of Base – Cruel Summer (1998) [Qobuz 24-44.1]

Ace of Base – Cruel Summer (1998/2015)
FLAC (tracks) 24-bit/44.1 kHz | Time – 00:56:32 minutes |  610 MB | Genre: Pop
Studio Master, Official Digital Download |  Source:Qobuz |  Front cover
© 2015 Mega Records, A division of Playground Music Scandinavia AB

“All That She Wants,” the song that catapulted the photogenic Swedish quartet to the Top 10 in the early ’90s, was impossible to escape–it kept popping up on radio and prime-time TV shows, and even in novels. Despite the inevitable Abba comparisons–and the fact that the music was crafted in that sugary pop fashion that seldom lasts past the first single–Jenny, Linn, Jonas, and Ulf refused to disappear. They followed up their debut album, The Sign, with The Bridge, the songs on which–“Beautiful Life,” “Lucky Love”–headed more and more toward lollipop dance, and it is there that they pick up with their third release, Cruel Summer. It is hard to label this collection of syncopation and radio-friendly melodies as anything more than fun, but that’s just fine with Ace of Base. As they’ve pointed out in the past, “A good song is a good song.” These songs–as exemplified by the light, upbeat groove of the title track–are just as apt to convince their fans likewise. –Rebecca Wallwork

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AC/DC – Rock or Bust (2014) [HDTracks 24-96]

AC/DC – Rock or Bust (2014)
FLAC (tracks) 24-bit/96 kHz | Time ~ 34:57 minutes | 878 MB | Genre: Rock, Hard Rock, Heavy Metal
Official Digital Download – Source: HDTracks | Front Cover | © Columbia Records  2014
Recorded: 2014 at Warehouse Studio, Vancouver, British Columbia

Columbia Records proudly announces the release of Rock or Bust, the highly anticipated new studio album from AC/DC, available December 2, 2014. Rock or Bust is the band’s first studio album in six years and features 11 new tracks. Rock or Bust follows the immensely successfulBlack Ice album, which debuted at #1 in 31 countries upon its release in 2008 and has gone on to sell nearly 8 million copies worldwide. Rock or Bust was recorded in Spring 2014 at Warehouse Studio in Vancouver, BC and finds AC/DC once again working with producer Brendan O’Brien and mixer Mike Fraser.

Rock or Bust is the first AC/DC album in the band’s 41 year history without founding member Malcolm Young on the recordings. Earlier this year AC/DC released a statement explaining that due to illness, Malcolm would be taking a break from the band. Unfortunately, due to the nature of Malcolm’s condition, he will not be returning to the band. AC/DC will undertake a world tour in support of Rock or Bust in 2015. Stevie Young, nephew of founding members Angus and Malcolm Young, plays rhythm guitar on Rock or Bust and will accompany the band on tour.

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2562 – The New Today (2014) [Bleep 24-44.1]

2562 – The New Today (2014)
FLAC (tracks) 24 bit/44.1 kHz | Time – 51:04 | 570 MB | Genre: Electronic
Official Digital Download – Source: Bleep |  Front Cover

Dutchman Dave Huismans returns to his 2562 nom-de-plume for the first time since 2012 with his latest full-length, The New Today. This record steps aside from the dance floor work under his A Made Up Sound title, instead opting to explore a world of narrative collage, drawing together elements of new age, musique concrete, electro pop and Krautrock. An unusual set of influences are connected through his own singular vision, adding another sterling effort to this essential artist’s impeccable back catalogue.

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2Cellos – Celloverse (Japan Edition) (2015) [24-44.1]

2Cellos – Celloverse (Japan Edition) (2015)
FLAC (tracks) 24-bit/44.1 kHz |  771 MB | Studio Master, Official Digital Download
Genre: Classical

2011年1月20日 YouTube にマイケル・ジャクソンの「スムーズ・クリミナル」の演奏映像をアップし世界中の注目をあつめた衝撃のデビューから4年、3rdアルバムが遂に完成!スタジオ・アルバムとしては前作「IN2ITION」から2年ぶりとなる3rdアルバムのテーマは「バック・トゥ・ベーシック」。セカンドでは大御所ボブ・エズリンをプロデューサーに迎え、エルトン・ジョン、スティーヴ・ヴァイ等豪華ゲストたちと多様性を打ち出した。本作では2曲を除き2人のチェロをメインに、とことんチェロの表現にこだわった作品。新たなマイケル・ジャクソンのカバー曲や、彼ら以外には演奏不可能なクラシックの名曲とメタルを独自のアレンジでマッシュアップし、現在YouTubeで話題沸騰中のアイアン・メイデン「明日なき戦い」、全世界で2800万回再生されているAC/DC「サンダーストラック」のカバーを始め ますます磨きがかかったエッジーな超絶パフォーマンスをあますところなく収録!一方、ルカが敬愛する映画音楽の巨匠ハンス・ジマー『インセプション』のカバーにも挑戦し、「静」と「動」の対比も鮮やかな意欲作。

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Yes – Going For The One (1977) [Audio Fidelity ‘2013] {SACD-R + FLAC 24-88.2}

Yes – Going For The One (1977) [Audio Fidelity ‘2013]
PS3 Rip | ISO | SACD DSD64 2.0 > 1-bit/2.8224 MHz | 38:48 minutes | 1,55 GB
or FLAC 2.0 (converted with foobar2000 to tracks) 24bit/88,2 kHz | 724 MB
Audio Fidelity SACD #AFZ-157 | Mastered for this SACD by Steve Hoffman | Genre: Rock

Going for the One is perhaps the most overlooked item in the Yes catalog. It marked Rick Wakeman’s return to the band after a three-year absence, and also a return to shorter song forms after the experimentalism of Close to the Edge, Tales from Topographic Oceans, and Relayer. In many ways, this disc could be seen as the follow-up to Fragile. Its five tracks still retain mystical, abstract lyrical images, and the music is grand and melodic, the vocal harmonies perfectly balanced by the stinging guitar work of Steve Howe, Wakeman’s keyboards, and the solid rhythms of Alan White and Chris Squire. The title track features Howe on steel guitar (he’s the only prog rocker who bothers with the instrument). “Turn of the Century” and the album’s single, “Wonderous Stories,” are lovely ballads the way only Yes can do them. “Parallels” is the album’s big, pompous song, so well done that in later years the band opened concerts with it. Wakeman’s stately church organ, recorded at St. Martin’s Church, Vevey, Switzerland, sets the tone for this “Roundabout”-ish track. The concluding “Awaken” is the album’s nod to the extended suite. Again, the lyrics are spacy in the extreme, but Jon Anderson and Squire are dead-on vocally, and the addition of Anderson’s harp and White’s tuned percussion round out this evocative track.

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Various Artists – 80’s Love (2014) {SACD-R + FLAC 24-88.2}

Various Artists – 80’s Love (2014)
PS3 Rip | SACD ISO | DST64 2.0 > 1-bit/2.8224 MHz | 69:06 minutes | Scans included | 1,17 GB
or FLAC(converted with foobar2000 to tracks) 24bit/88,2 kHz | Full Scans included | 1,33 GB
Genre: Pop

01. Whitney Houston – Saving All My Love For You
02. Air Supply – All Out Of Love
03. Paul Young – Everytime You Go Away
04. Cyndi Lauper – Time After Time
05. Dan Fogelberg – Longer
06. Bonnie Tyler – Total Eclipse of the Heart
07. Earth, Wind & Fire – After The Love Has Gone
08. Gloria Estefan – Don’t Wanna Lose You
09. The Bangles – Eternal Flame
10. Michael Bolton – How Am I Supposed to Live Without You
11. Billy Ocean – Suddenly
12. REO Speedwagon – Can’t Fight This Feeling
13. Jennifer Rush – The Power Of Love
14. Jermaine Jackson – Lonely Won’t Leave Me Alone
15. Johnny Logan – Hold Me Now (Clean Version)
16. Rick Astley – When I Fall in Love

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Various Artists – 80’s Hits (2014) {SACD-R + FLAC 24-88.2}

Various Artists – 80’s Hits (2014)
PS3 Rip | SACD ISO | DST64 2.0 > 1-bit/2.8224 MHz | 63:21 minutes | Scans included | 1,07 GB
or FLAC(converted with foobar2000 to tracks) 24bit/88,2 kHz | Full Scans included | 1,24 GB
Genre: Pop

01. Rick Astley – Never Gonna Give You Up
02. Whitney Houston – I Wanna Dance With Somebody
03. Billy Ocean – Caribbean Queen (No More Love on the Run)
04. Cyndi Lauper – Girls Just Want to Have Fun
05. Eurythmics – Sweet Dreams (Are Made Of This)
06. Wham! – Wake Me up Before You Go-Go
07. The Pointer Sisters – Jump (For My Love)
08. Survivor – Eye of the Tiger
09. Toto – Africa
10. Nena – 99 Red Balloons
11. The Bangles – Manic Monday
12. Terence Trent D’Arby – Wishing Well
13. Thompson Twins – Hold Me Now
14. Haircut 100 – Fantastic Day
15. Men At Work – Down Under
16. Bill Withers – Lovely Day (7″ Sunshine Mix)

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Valery Gergiev, Vienna Philharmonic – Tchaikovsky: Symphony No.6 (2005) {SACD-R + FLAC 24-88.2}

Valery Gergiev, Vienna Philharmonic – Tchaikovsky: Symphony No.6 (2005)
PS3 Rip | SACD ISO | DST64 2.0 & 5.1 > 1-bit/2.8224 MHz | 44:00 minutes | Artwork (PDF) | 3,17 GB
or FLAC 2.0 Stereo (converted with foobar2000 to tracks) 24bit/88,2 kHz | Full Artwork (PDF) | 807 MB
Features 2.0 Stereo and 5.1 multichannel surround sound | Decca/Philips # 475 6197 | Genre: Classical

Tchaikovsky’s six symphonie by Valery Gergiev leading the Vienna Philharmonic contains performances that are undeniably fire-breathing, undoubtedly heaven-storming, and inarguably heart-on-sleeve. Gergiev, one of the most exciting Russian conductors, leads the works with a combination of reckless passion, imperious command, and unbearable drama that is his hallmark, and the Vienna Philharmonic, one of the finest Austrian orchestras, plays the works with a combination of superb polish, impeccable technique, and warm colors that are its trademark and the fusion is absolutely riveting.

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