They are cherished albums in the world of jazz and blues rock respectively, and despite how many copies you have seen of this around everywhere, you definitely haven’t heard them like this. Audio Fidelity are releasing audiophile hybrid SACD remasters of George Benson’s Breezin’ and the Mike Bloomfield/Al Kooper/Stephen Stills album known to many as Super Session.
Benson’s 1975 album is the one that helped moved him to the pop charts with his renditions of “This Masquerade” and the title track, a song that you could pretty much hear everywhere on the radio. The 5.1 mix was done by Doug Sax.
Super Session is an album that has carried a reputation for the guitarists that are on it, along with their performances of each song. In hip-hop circles, many will recognize “Season Of The Witch” as being sampled by The Pharcyde. The 5.1 mix was done by Bob Ludwig. For both CD’s, the stereo mixes were both mastered by Steve Hoffman, so you should know very well how this will sound. How will it compare to the MFSL audio pressing? Just wait and see/hear. Both SACD’s are scheduled for release on August 5th.
Eric Clapton’s Behind The Sun was released by Warner Bros. Records in 1985 and was a part of the guitarists exposure to a then-young MTV audience, and it lead to him getting hits with the songs “Forever Man” and “See What Love Can Do”, both of which receive classic rock radio airplay almost 30 years later. Mastering for this one is by Steve Hoffman.
What can be said about East-West that hasn’t already been said? The 1966 was groundbreaking for many reasons, and with Mike Bloomfield and Elvin Bishop as part of the Butterfield Blues Band back then, this was a stoner’s dream. Of course, you have Paul Butterfield himself and together they brought great songs such as “Two Trains Running”, “Get Out Of My Life Woman”, and the almighty title track. Kevin Gray handled the remastering for this new version of the Elektra Records gem.
Two distinctive blues rock artists in their own right are being honored with brand new 24k gold remastered SACD’s from Audio Fidelity, both scheduled for a release in March.
As with most of Audio Fidelity’s remastered discs, this is a hybrid SACD, which means it can be played on both compact disc and SACD players. I will provide Amazon pre-order links when they are made available.
Many heavy metal fans have wondered why albums in their preferred genre have not been given the audiophile treatment on a regular basis. I myself remember a time when heavy metal and hard rock on compact disc was feared because it was assumed the volume and clarity obtainable on a disc would damage stereo equipment. It shows how little we knew about CD technology back then, and of course how much we’ve progressed since the cold ages of digital.
Audio Fidelity will be releasing a brand new, 24k gold CD pressing of Judas Priest‘s classic 1978 album, Hell Bent For Leather. Known outside of the U.S. as Killing Machine, this new remaster was done by Steve Hoffman. To avoid confusion between the US and UK pressings, Hoffman used the American track listing for this, so it will feature their version of Fleetwood Mac‘s “The Green Manalishi (With The Two Prong Crown)”. The Audio Fidelity disc will be released on January 19th.
In addition to the audiophile CD, vinyl junkies will be pleased to know that Back On Black will be releasing most of Judas Priest’s Columbia output that featured Rob Halford as the lead vocalist, including 2005’s Angel Of Retribution (Halford left the band after the Painkiller tour in 1991). The albums that are not a part of this vinyl reissue program are oddly enough, their two live albums, Unleashed In The East and Priest: Live!.
Since track listings on the Back To Black website also show the inclusion of bonus tracks featured on the remastered CD’s done by Jon Astley, fans are wondering if these LP’s are simply using Astley’s remasters. A number of Judas Priest fans have commented on various music boards that they did not like what Astley did to the albums, with a few hoping that they would use the original master tapes and have them worked on by someone who might do a better job. Nonetheless, the albums will be reissued throughout 2010, with Stained Glass and Sin After Sin making it out first on February 22nd.
Yes‘ 90125 was the band’s comeback album in 1983 when they had went on hiatus after the release of Drama. The vocalist of that version of the band, Trevor Horn, would become their producer for their comeback. 90125 featured Jon Anderson, Chris Squire, Alan White, Tony Kaye and new guitarist Trevor Rabin, whose contributions were felt throughout the album. The album also featured contributions from various members of Horn’s production team, which also happened to be Art Of Noise. The album lead to three hit singles, including “Owner Of A Lonely Heart”, “Leave It”, and “It Can Happen”, along with album cuts like “Hold On” and “Changes”.
If you’re a classic rock fan, you’ll have to pick up these two newly-remastered CD’s when they are released on September 29th.
The album was remastered for vinyl and released earlier this year by Friday Music, but this CD is a completely different remastering, handled by Steve Hoffman.
Lynyrd Skynyrd‘s second album, appropriately titled Second Helping, was very popular with fans when it was released in 1974, and new fans were introduced to them with the help of what is arguably their second most popular song, “Sweet Home Alabama”. The album also features “Workin’ For MCA”, “The Needle And The Spoon”, and “Call Me The Breeze”. This 2009 remaster was done by noted mastering engineer Kevin Gray.
Both CD’s can be pre-ordered through CD Universe, so if you want 90125 go here; if you want Second Helping, head there
If you’re a rock or pop music fan and you have foolishly not purchased a CD in the last few weeks, months, or even years, you’ll want to bust open the piggy bank for these.
Audio Fidelity are back in the audiophile CD market again after taking a brief break, and with the help of mastering engineer Steve Hoffman you’ll get a chance to hear two classic albums in a way you’ve never heard them before.
First title is The Cars‘ hit album Heartbeat City, which featured such MTV staples as “You Might Think”, “Magic”, “Hell Again”, and “Drive”. The other album is Alice Cooper classic School’s Out album, which featured not only the hit title track, but also “Street Fight”, “Blue Turk”, and “Public Animal #9”.
They will be released on February 10th, and you can order them directly from CD Universe through the following links:
The Cars-Heartbeat City
Alice Cooper-School’s Out
On March 10th, Audio Fidelity will be relasing their new remasters of the following albums:
They can be pre-ordered now:
Beach Boys-Pet Sounds