Mar 22

Scann-Tec – Unyt (2016)
FLAC (tracks) 24-bit/44,1 kHz | Time – 01:11:09 minutes | 744 MB | Genre: Electronic
Studio Master, Official Digital Download – Source: Bandcamp | Artwork: Front cover | Ultimae Records

Vladislav Isaev, music composer and sound sculptor from Moscow, Russia, also known as Scann-Tec started writing music in 1996. He has since been working as Audio director for NIVAL, a Russian game developer and composing music for various TV Series. Vladislav collaborated with The Future Sound of London and Mark Morgan on several projects and with his partner Elena on Broadcast of Variants. After several tracks on various compilations and two solo albums, Scann-Tec releases his third opus “Unyt” on French label Ultimae.

The album redefines Scann-Tec’s approach to musical composition and introduces multi-form field recordings vaporised in an array of analog and digital tools to create surreal and behind the veil atmospheres ; wide etheral pads floating high above his distinctive, dynamic and well-calibrated low-end, slender drums, and finely carved rhythmic patterns set the pace gradually transforming free fall into a zero-G experiment.

With its unique cinematic downtempo aesthetics, Unyt leads us into a perpetually expanding travel through soundscapes while playing with our centers of attention, loss of focus and a certain sense of dispersion.

01 – Snova I Snova
02 – Unyt
03 – Quantum Evo
04 – Ne Viden
05 – Svet
06 – Klinostat
07 – Parsec
08 – Delta-V
09 – Nadezhda
10 – Turgenev

All tracks written, arranged, produced and mixed by Vladislav Isaev at studio Monokanal, Russia.
Audio mastering by Vincent Villuis at Ultimae Studio, Lyon, France.

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Mar 22

Salut Salon – Carnival Fantasy: A Carnival Of The Animals And Other (2016)
FLAC (tracks) 24-bit/88,2 kHz | Time – 56:24 minutes | 973 MB | Genre: Classical
Studio Master, Official Digital Download – Source: | Artwork: Front cover | © Warner Classics

For their new album, ‘Carnival Fantasy’, the four exceptional musicians have taken their successful stage program into the studio. Like no other chamber music group, these four ladies from Germany have inspired fans around the world for the past 13 years with virtuoso playfulness, charm and humour that transcend the boundaries of genre and ventures off the beaten path of traditional classical music. ‘Carnival Fantasy’ is a firework of transformation, a playground for boundless joy and a celebration of unique, surprising arrangements – a trademark of the quartet.

Why did it take so long to realize this? The true heroes, the honored and adored subjects of countless classical works, are not obscure distant lovers, landscapes or heroic ideals – no, our animal friends are what inspired the great masters! Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov devoted his most popular piece (also one of the most famous classical works ever) to a bumblebee, Bach wrote ‘Sheep May Safely Graze’, Camille Saint-Saëns created an entire imaginary musical zoo in his famous ‘Carnival of the Animals’, Jacques Ibert composed a monument to a donkey. We can thank the Salut Salon ensemble, along with many others, for exploring this zoological side of music.

01 – Camille Saint-Saëns: Introduction et marche royale du lion
02 – Camille Saint-Saëns: Africa
03 – Jacques Ibert: Le petit ane blanc (The Little White Donkey)
04 – Traditional: Malaika
05 – Camille Saint-Saëns: Hémiones: animaux véloces (Wild Asses: Swift Animals)
06 – Camille Saint-Saëns: Danse Macabre (Dance of Death)
07 – Camille Saint-Saëns: Volière (Aviary)
08 – Camille Saint-Saëns: Le Cygne (The Swan)
09 – Camille Saint-Saëns: Aquarium
10 – Kurt Weill; Klaus Doldinger; John Williams: Shark (Medley)
11 – Lhasa De Sela; Yves Desrosiers; Jean Massicotte; François Lalonde; Jean Claude Segal: Das Liebeslied an die Leuchtqualle (The Love Song to the Luminescent Jellyfish)
12 – Astor Piazzolla: Escualo (Shark)
13 – Richard M. Sherman; Robert B. Sherman: The Python’s Song – Trust in Me (La Chanson de Kaa – Aie confiance)
14 – Sulchan Zinzadse: Sachidao
15 – Traditional: Les Deux Guitares
16 – J.S. Bach: Sheep May Safely Graze
17 – Nikolai Rimski-Korsakow: Hummelflug – Green Hornet
18 – Aram Khachaturian: Masquerade
19 – Franz Wittenbrink: J’ai en moi un zoo tout entier (There’s a Zoo Inside of Me)

Angelika Bachmann – violin
Iris Siegfried – violin, vocals
Anne-Monika von Twardowski – piano
Sonja Lena Schmid – cello

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Mar 22

The Clarinotts – Ernst, Daniel & Andreas Ottensamer (2016)
FLAC (tracks) 24-bit/96 kHz | Time – 56:51 minutes | 995 MB | Genre: Classical
Studio Master, Official Digital Download – Source: | Digital booklet | © Deutsche Grammophon

The Clarinotts are formed of father Ernst and his sons Daniel (both solo clarinettists at Vienna Philharmonic) and Andreas Ottensamer (solo clarinettist at Berlin Philharmonic) – dubbed the Viennese ‘royal family of clarinet’. The ensemble goes back to when Daniel and Andreas were children and the family played music together at home. Now the Clarinotts are a successful touring ensemble, dedicated to creating and playing the most virtuosic music for multiple clarinets. The program of the album is centred around music for the stage and includes pieces by Mendelssohn, Mozart, Rossini and many others, and features the Wiener Virtuosen string ensemble.

This debut album on Mercury Classics and Deutsche Grammophon presents some of the virtuoso clarinet repertoire of Ernst Ottensamer and his two sons, Daniel Ottensamer and Andreas Ottensamer, known collectively as the Clarinotts. The family group formed in 2005 as a professional ensemble, and they have toured while also holding key positions with major orchestras, Ernst and Daniel playing with the Vienna Philharmonic, and Andreas performing with the Berlin Philharmonic. For the most part, this album is focused on short pieces in fresh arrangements, backed by the Wiener Virtuosen, that show off the trio’s brilliant techniques, not only on the clarinets in B flat and A, but also on the E flat clarinet, bass clarinet, and the basset horn. The most substantial items are Mendelssohn’s vibrant Konzertstück No. 1 for clarinet, basset horn, and piano and the instrumental arrangement of the trio from Mozart’s Così fan tutte, both of which give the clarinetists fine opportunities for expressive playing. However, for demonstrations of the group’s brilliance and flexibility, Rossini’s La danza, Bonfá’s Manha de Carnaval, and Truan’s The Chase are recommended tracks.

01 – Mendelssohn: Concert Piece for Clarinet, Basset Horn and Orchestra op. 113: I. Allegro con fuoco
02 – Mendelssohn: Concert Piece for Clarinet, Basset Horn and Orchestra op. 113: II. Andante
03 – Mendelssohn: Concert Piece for Clarinet, Basset Horn and Orchestra op. 113: III. Presto
04 – Mozart: Trio ‘Soave sia il vento’ from ‘Cosi fan tutte’, K.588
05 – Doppler: Fantasy on Themes from Verdi’s ‘Rigoletto’
06 – Rossini: La Danza
07 – Ponchielli: Il Convegno, Op.76
08 – Françaix: Petit Quatour pour Saxophones: II. Cantilène
09 – Koreny: Cinema I
10 – Bonfá: Manhã de Carnaval
11 – Truan: The Chase

Ernst Ottensamer – clarinet, bass clarinet
Daniel Ottensamer – clarinet
Andreas Ottensamer – clarinet, basset horn
Christoph Traxler – Piano on “9”
František Jánoška – Piano on “10”
Wiener Virtuosen Streichensemble (“1-9”)

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Mar 22

Samantha Jade – Nine (2015)
FLAC (tracks) 24 bit/44,1kHz | Time – 00:38:34 minutes | 465 MB | Genre: Pop
Studio Masters, Official Digital Download – Source: Qobuz | © Sony Music

Nine is the second studio album by Australian singer Samantha Jade, released through Sony Music Australia on 20 November 2015. It is her first album of completely original material.

Nine has been in the works since Jade won The X Factor Australia in 2012, but experienced numerous delays – most notably the passing of her mother in 2014. In February 2014, Jade put her career on hold to care for her mother Jacqueline after she was diagnosed with an aggressive form of cancer. While in hospital, her mother was heavily involved in the album’s plans. “She actually had a lot of input into it… she was in bed and I was there with her so I went through all the artwork with her, all the ideas for the songs and played her the songs we had.”
After her mother passed four months later, Jade continued recording for the album, newly inspired by her recent experiences. On 18 November 2014, she released a new single, “Sweet Talk”. She decided to release a positive, summery song, as she “didn’t want to come out with anything too deep after the kind of year I’ve had.” It was originally intended to be the lead single from Nine, however after a moderate peak of number 38 on the ARIA Singles Chart, it did not make the final track list.

The album’s title, and title track, Nine is a reference to the nine years between releasing her debut single, “Step Up”, and finally achieving her goal of releasing her first album of original material. Jade further explains the meaning behind the title; “When I wrote ‘Nine’, I wanted to get a sense of positivity in even the darkest moments so it came with the reference of being on cloud 9 or a cat with nine lives. The number 9 has also always been important in our family, and our birth dates have some sort of connection with it too. The song is very organic in that sense and directly from my heart.”

Perth-born singer/songwriter Samantha Jade had already retired as a successful model in Australia when she made her worldwide pop music debut at the age of 16. Modeling began at age four; being bitten by the music bug came at age nine when Samantha won her first talent show singing “Amazing Grace.” Writing music soon became a passion, and by 2004 when she was just 16 she landed her song “Secret Love” on the Shark Tale soundtrack. The song was performed by teen pop star JoJo, but it wasn’t long before Jade’s powerful singing voice would be featured on another soundtrack, 2006’s Step Up, which put the now 18-year-old singer in the company of Ciara, Kelis, and Sean Paul. Jade’s track, also titled “Step Up,” was written in part by superstar songwriter Diane Warren and produced by Wyclef Jean. The Jive record company used the catchy single to promote Jade’s own full-length debut, which was promised for later in the year. –Artist Biography by David Jeffries

1 Always 3:01
2 Naked 3:48
3 Wait For It 3:15
4 What You Want 3:34
5 Only Just Begun 3:58
6 Shake That (Feat. Pitbull) 3:38
7 Show Me Love 3:24
8 Let The Good Times Roll 3:53
9 Castle 3:30
10 Born To Be Alive 3:16
11 Nine 3:17

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Mar 22

Tomasz Stanko New York Quartet – Wislawa (2013)
FLAC (tracks) 24 bit/88,2 kHz | Time – 1:39:28 minutes | 1,78 GB | Genre: Jazz
Studio Master, Official Digital Download – Source: HDTracks | Digital Booklet | © ECM

Like his early hero Miles Davis, acclaimed trumpeter Tomasz Stanko has a knack for shaping great bands, and this one, formed in the world’s jazz capital, overflows with promise. Thomas Morgan, Gerald Cleaver and David Virelles join Stanko for this breathtaking masterpiece. This must-have audiophile download is filled with brooding darkness and sophisticated ballads. In the uptempo pieces, all four players enter new territory with exciting results. The double-album program of Stanko compositions is inspired by the poetry of Wislawa Szymborska, the Nobel Laureate.

Since relocating to America from his native Europe, Polish trumpeter Tomasz Stańko has assembled a crack band to articulate his ever fluctuating, often experimental musical ideas. His New York Quartet, consisting of pianist David Virelles, bassist Thomas Morgan, and drummer Gerald Cleaver is a study in contrasts. The septuagenarian trumpeter proves as wily as ever on Wisława, a double-disc titled for the late poet and Nobel Laureate Wisława Szymborska, who passed away in 2012, and whose work and persona proved influential in composing the material for this set. Several of these pieces bear the titles of her poems. Stańko’s signature brooding, cranky, tone-altering phrasing and disconsolate spirit of tenderness are apparent throughout, but they don’t necessarily dictate the album’s flow. Two versions of the title track bookend the album and showcase those qualities in balladic form, as do others such as “April Song”; there is also plenty of fire here, evidenced by the aggressive interplay of the rhythm section on tracks such as “Assassins” and “Metafizyka.” “Mikrokosmos” is a Stańko showcase, offering at its opening all manner of squeals, skronks, sputters, and sharply angled tones before Virelles adds a Latin touch and the quartet settles into a groove. Likewise in the “Dernier “Cri,” where the spirit of Miles Davis’ second quintet is evoked. The second disc opens with “Oni,” led by Morgan’s bass walk. It commences impressionistically, yet develops into an easy grooving post-bop thanks to the bassist and Cleaver’s shimmering cymbal work. “Tutaj – Here” offers scintillating — though often subtle — interplay between Virelles and the trumpeter, while “Faces” presents the pianist’s forceful, canny, harmonic assertions that the rhythm section responds to with near glee. Stańko is at his most fiery in this driven post-bop number that also recalls the Davis quintet’s fearless sense of exploration. Throughout this set, Stańko leads this band as he has many others: by example. His democratic sensibilities allow his players to be fully themselves through his compositions, in turn adding depth and heft to them. Wisława deftly celebrates in a deliberate way, not only the memory of an honored person in Stańko’s life, but also the profound inspiration of her life’s work upon his own. –AllMusic Review by Thom Jurek

1. Wisława 10:23
2. Assassins 07:49
3. Metafizyka 07:41
4. Dernier Cri 10:18
5. Mikrokosmos 08:23
6. Song for H 04:38
7. Oni 06:34
8. April Story 07:10
9. Tutaj – Here 08:33
10. Faces 08:07
11. A Shaggy Vandal 07:35
12. Wisława, Var. 13:12

Tomasz Stanko, trumpet
David Virelles, piano
Thomas Morgan, bass
Gerald Cleaver, drums

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Mar 22

The Smithereens – The Smithereens Play Tommy (2009)
FLAC (tracks) 24 bit/96 kHz | Time – 45:12 minutes | 937 MB | Genre: Alternative
Official Digital Download – Source: | Digital Booklet | © eOne Music

The Smithereens decided to make a proper, all-out studio version of one of the albums that inspired their rock dreams of becoming a band in the first place for this 40th anniversary tribute. The Who’s unique sound will never be duplicated, but then again neither will The Smithereens’ sound that has made them enduring rock icons over the past 25 plus years. The result is part Who, part Smithereens. Part totally familiar, and part unexpectedly unique… and 100% tour de force. The Smithereens’ “musical dreams ain’t quite what they seem” – the result is more than a loving tribute and much more like an inspired re-imagining. After listening to this album a few times, you may never hear any of The Who’s versions of Tommy the same way again.

After releasing two albums devoted entirely to Beatles tunes in a year and a half (Meet the Smithereens! and B-Sides the Beatles), the Smithereens clearly wanted to prove that they were still a band capable of more than just coasting on the strength of another act’s legacy, and with this in mind they’ve decided to boldly branch out — and spend an entire album covering the Who. The Smithereens Play Tommy is, you guessed it, the Smithereens’ own rather faithful interpretation of Pete Townshend’s rock opera about a deaf, dumb, and blind pinball champion and spiritual leader, though they have tightened it up quite a bit, editing the piece from 24 selections to a lean 13 tunes and zipping through the work in 41 minutes. It’s hard not to be baffled by the Smithereens’ decision to become a cover band, but they do seem better suited to interpreting the Who than the Beatles; guitarist Jim Babjak may lack Townshend’s epic vision and sense of flourish, but he gets the crunchy bash of this music right, and drummer Dennis Diken and bassist Severo Jornacion find a way to pare down the style of the most manic rhythm section in rock history while achieving some approximation of their power and musical sense. Lead vocalist Pat Dinizio’s deep, moody tone doesn’t match Roger Daltrey’s style any more than it did Paul McCartney’s or John Lennon’s, but at least these songs are better suited to the dark, dramatic feel of Dinizio’s instrument, and Babjak and Diken contribute lead vocals on a few tunes that demand something lighter. And while this condensed version of Tommy makes about as much narrative sense as the original (which is to say not much), from a musical standpoint the feel of the album is pretty close to the Who’s version, especially the several live recordings of the opera that have appeared in recent years. So the Smithereens do better by the Who on The Smithereens Play Tommy than they did by the Beatles, but that doesn’t change the fact that as long as the Who’s Tommy remains readily available (and it’s actually easier to find than this disc), this album is little more than an oddity for Smithereens completists and Who fans obsessive enough to want every cover version of their favorite band’s work. In short, this gets an A for effort but a C- for practical utility. (the Smithereens do deserve credit for hiring William Stout to do the cover, whose witty cartoon artwork graced the sleeves of several top-notch Who bootlegs).

01 – Overture
02 – It’s A Boy
03 – Amazing Journey
04 – Sparks
05 – Eyesight To The Blind
06 – Christmas
07 – Acid Queen
08 – Pinball Wizard
09 – Go To The Mirror
10 – Tommy Can You Hear Me?
11 – Sensation
12 – I’m Free
13 – We’re Not Gonna Take It / See Me Feel Me

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Mar 22

Alexander Scriabin – Piano Sonatas Nos. 1-10 – Varduhi Yeritsyan (2015)
FLAC (tracks) 24 bit/96 kHz | Time – 02:08:24 minutes | 1,92 GB | Genre: Classical
Official Digital Download – Source: | Digital booklet | © Paraty Productions
Recorded: March 2015 at Théâtre Impérial de Compiègne

A fellow student of Rachmaninov’s at the Moscow Conservatory, where he studied under Arensky and Taneyev, Alexander Scriabin (1872-1915) occupies a unique sphere in Russian music. Rejecting the vocal and folkloristic music that occupied most of his contemporaries, he wrote exclusively for piano and for orchestra. His musical language constantly evolved over the length of his life, passing from the early influence of Chopin and Liszt, through a Wagnerian period, before reaching an atonal style that gazes far into the future of the 20th century’s sound world. Known for her interpretations of Scriabin’s music, which she plays often in recital, Franco-Armenian pianist Varduhi Yeritsyan studied with both Brigitte Engerer and Pierre-Laurent Aimard. She made her UK debut with the BBC Symphony Orchestra in February 2014 at the Barbican where she premiered a new concerto for two pianos, by Bruno Mantovani, written for her and François-Frédéric Guy.

Conventional sets of the ten piano sonatas of Alexander Scriabin typically present them in numerical order, which allows the listener to follow his musical development over the course of 20 years, from his early Chopin-inspired period to the late visionary works. On this 2015 release from Paraty, Varduhi Yeritsyan favors a different arrangement, separating them equally under two headings, “White Mass” and “Black Mass” (taken from the subtitles of the Sonata No. 7 and the Sonata No. 9, respectively), which one might guess separates the lighter and darker works. This is a bit misleading, since Scriabin didn’t conceive his music within that dichotomy, and the highly varied sonatas are not well-served by such a simplistic categorization. Even so, Yeritsyan plays with phenomenal fluency, and whether she is radiating heat and light, as in the Sonata No. 4 and the Sonata No. 10, or brooding in the darkness of the Sonata No. 6, she fully grasps the technical demands of the music, even if its metaphysical import is harder for her to communicate. This may be for the best, because Scriabin’s histrionic mysticism is sometimes a stumbling block, giving pianists permission to be self-indulgent, which the meticulous Yeritsyan never is, and her faithfulness to the printed score is worth more than the atmospheric imprecision some recordings reveal. –AllMusic Review by Blair Sanderson

Alexander Scriabin (1872-1915)
Piano Sonata No. 10, Op. 70
1 Moderato 12:30
Piano Sonata No. 4 in F Sharp Major, Op. 30
2 I. Andante 2:43
3 II. Prestissimo volando 5:04
Piano Sonata No. 6, Op. 62
4 Modéré 11:53
Piano Sonata No. 3 in F-Sharp Minor, Op. 23
5 I. Dramatico 5:48
6 II. Allegretto 2:28
7 III. Andante 4:08
8 IV. Presto con fuoco 6:14
Piano Sonata No. 7, Op. 64 “White Mass”
9 Allegro 11:42
Piano Sonata No. 8, Op. 66
10 Lento 13:13
Piano Sonata No. 9, Op. 68, “Black Mass”
11 Moderato quasi Andante 8:17
Piano Sonata No. 1 in F Minor, Op. 6
12 I. Allegro con fuoco 7:31
13 II. – 4:50
14 III. Presto 3:41
15 IV. Funèbre 5:28
Piano Sonata No. 2 in G Sharp Minor, Op. 19, “Sonata Fantasy”
16 I. Andante 7:23
17 II. Presto 4:13
Piano Sonata No. 5 in F Sharp Major, Op. 53, “Poem of Ecstacy”
18 Allegro impetuoso con stravaganza 11:18

Varduhi Yeritsyan, piano

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Mar 22

Tarquinio Merula – Arpa Davidica – Nova Ars Cantandi, Giovanni Acciai (2015)
FLAC (tracks) 24-bit/96 kHz | Time – 01:06:33 minutes | 1,02 GB | Genre: Classical
Studio Master, Official Digital Download – Source: AcousticSounds | © Archiv Produktion

Italian vocal and chamber ensemble Nova Ars Cantandi is led by founder Giovanni Acciai on the world premiere recording of Arpa Davidica by Baroque composer Tarquinio Merula. This album, released in 2015, commemorates the 350th anniversary of Merula’s death.

Tarquinio Merula (1595-1665)
1. Domine ad adjuvandum 02:30
2. Dixit Dominus 04:25
3. Confitebor 04:36
4. Beatus vir 05:42
5. Laudate pueri 05:11
6. Laetatus sum 04:58
7. Nisi Dominus 04:43
8. Lauda Jerusalem 05:14
9. Magnificat 05:42
10. Credidi 03:49
11. In convertendo 04:27
12. Laudate Dominum 02:06
Messa concertata op.XVI
13. Kyrie 01:44
14. Gloria 01:47
15. Credo 05:31
16. Sanctus – Benedictus 01:42
17. Agnus Dei 02:26

Nova Ars Cantandi
Giovanni Acciai, conductor

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Mar 22

Voices Incorporated – Roots: An Anthology Of Negro Music In America (1965/2015)
FLAC (tracks) 24-bit/96 kHz | Time – 37:27 minutes | 826 MB | Genre: Folk, Soul
Studio Master, Official Digital Download – Source: Q0buz | Artwork: Front cover | © Columbia

01 – Children Go Where I Send Thee / I Wanna Be Ready
02 – Ride the Chariot
03 – Work Song Medley: Sometimes I Feel Like a Motherless Child / Bayeza
04 – Ain’t That Good News
05 – I Been in the Storm So Long / I Wanna Die Easy, When I Die / No More Weepin’ and Awailin’
06 – Where Shall I Be / Judgment Day
07 – Street Cries / Children’s Rhythm Games
08 – Jelly Jelly / Early Mornin’ Blues
09 – Medley: I Turn to Jesus / I’m So Glad
10 – Naked Foot
11 – Thinkin’

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Mar 22

Willie Dixon – I Am The Blues (1969/2015)
FLAC (tracks) 24-bit/192 kHz | Time – 43:56 minutes | 1,45 GB | Genre: Blues
Studio Master, Official Digital Download – Source: HDTracks | Artwork: Front cover | © Columbia

Willie Dixon sings his originals on this album, even though many were written for other artists to perform previously. The album offers a unique perspective in comparing how Dixon interprets his music to how other performers (Muddy Waters and Howlin’ Wolf for example) have interpreted it.

The material is superb, consisting of some of Willie Dixon’s best-known songs of the 1960s, and the production is smoothly professional, but none of the performances here are likely to make you forget the hits by Howlin’ Wolf, Muddy Waters, and others.

01 – Back Door Man
02 – I Can’t Quit You, Baby
03 – The Seventh Son
04 – Spoonful
05 – I Ain’t Superstitious
06 – You Shook Me
07 – I’m Your Hoochie Coochie Man
08 – The Little Red Rooster
09 – The Same Thing

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