Apr 26

Alison Balsom – Jubilo (2016)
FLAC (tracks) 24-bit/96 kHz | Time – 54:04 minutes | 0,99 GB | Genre: Classical
Studio Master, Official Digital Download | Artwork: Digital booklet | © Warner Classics

With this release Alison records on the natural trumpet for the first time since the hugely successful album Sound the Trumpet. Inspired by seasonal Baroque repertoire, the recording includes concertos by Bach, Corelli, Torelli, and Fasch performed with the Academy of Ancient Music under the direction of violinist Pavlo Besnosiuk. The Schübler Chorales and In dulce jubilo by Bach, performed in arrangements for trumpet and organ played here by Stephen Cleobury, act as a beautiful foil to the full orchestral sound of the concertos. Bach’s Jesu Joy of Man’s Desiring featuring Stephen Cleobury and the Choir of King’s College, Cambridge tops off this Christmas cracker of an album. This classy winter-themed album is a perfect core classical seasonal offering.


01. Trumpet Concerto in D Major, FWV L:D1: I. Allegro
02. Trumpet Concerto in D Major, FWV L:D1: II. Largo
03. Trumpet Concerto in D Major, FWV L:D1: III. Allegro
04. In dulci jubilo, BWV 729
05. 6 Schübler Chorales: IV. Meine Seele erhebt den Herren (‘My Soul Doth Magnify the Lord’), BWV 648
06. Sonata in D Major, G. 1: I. Andante
07. Sonata in D Major, G. 1: II. Allegro
08. Sonata in D Major, G. 1: III. Grave
09. Sonata in D Major, G. 1: IV. Allegro
10. 6 Schübler Chorales: III. Wer nur den lieben Gott lässt walten (‘Who Allows God Alone to Rule Him’), BWV 647
11. Cantata No. 147, ‘Herz und Mund und Tat und Leben’, BWV147: Jesu, Joy of Man’s Desiring
12. 6 Schübler Chorales: II. Wo soll ich fliehen hin(‘Whither Shall I Flee?’), BWV 646
13. Concerto Grosso in G Minor, Op. 6 No. 8 ‘Christmas Concerto’: I. Vivace – Grave
14. Concerto Grosso in G Minor, Op. 6 No. 8 ‘Christmas Concerto’: II. Allegro
15. Concerto Grosso in G Minor, Op. 6 No. 8 ‘Christmas Concerto’: III. Adagio – Allegro
16. Concerto Grosso in G Minor, Op. 6 No. 8 ‘Christmas Concerto’: IV. Vivace
17. Concerto Grosso in G Minor, Op. 6 No. 8 ‘Christmas Concerto’: V. Allegro
18. Concerto Grosso in G Minor, Op. 6 No. 8 ‘Christmas Concerto’: VI. Largo. Pastorale ad libitum
19. 6 Schübler Chorales: V. Ach bleib bei uns, Herr Jesu Christ (‘Lord Jesus Christ, with Us Abide’), BWV 649
20. 6 Schübler Chorales: I. Wachet auf, ruft uns die Stimme ‘(Wake, Awake for Night is Passing’), BWV 645
21. 6 Schübler Chorales: VI. Kommst du nun, Jesu, vom Himmel herunter auf Erden (‘Come Thou, Jesu, from Heaven to Earth’), BWV 650

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Apr 26

Alejandro Escovedo – Burn Something Beautiful
FLAC (tracks) 24-bit/96 kHz | Time – 48:27 minutes | 1,06 GB | Genre: Rock, Country
Studio Master, Official Digital Download | Source: HDTracks | Digital Booklet | © Fantasy Records

Produced by Peter Buck (R.E.M.) and Scott McCaughey (The Minus 5) Burn Something Beautiful is Alejandro’s 12th solo studio album and most definitive album to date. The album was written, arranged and performed as a true collaboration with Peter and Scott in Portland, OR. The band is rounded out with guitarist Kurt Bloch (Fastbacks), Decembertists’ drummer John Moen, Los Lobos’ saxophonist Steve Berlin and singers Corin Tucker (SleaterKinney) and Kelly Hogan (Neko Case).

Born in 1951, Alejandro Escovedo is at an age where most rock musicians are happily coasting on their past accomplishments, if they’re still making new music at all. Thankfully, Escovedo is and always has been a maverick, and he’s eagerly overhauled his sound and approach with his twelfth studio album, 2016’s Burn Something Beautiful. After making three fine albums with producer Tony Visconti and a band anchored by guitarist Chuck Prophet, Escovedo has taken a creative left turn and crafted Burn Something Beautiful with a new set of collaborators. The album was produced by former R.E.M. guitarist Peter Buck and Young Fresh Fellows and Minus 5 founder Scott McCaughey, and the two also co-wrote the songs with Escovedo. The studio band includes Buck, McCaughey, Kurt Bloch (of the Fastbacks), and John Moen (of the Decemberists), with guest appearances from Corin Tucker (ex-Sleater-Kinney). Kelly Hogan (longtime vocal cohort with Neko Case), and Steve Berlin (of Los Lobos). The finished product sounds unmistakably like an Alejandro Escovedo album, but the textures of his musical personality readily mesh with the tuneful but noisy, anything-goes freedom of Buck’s freewheeling post-R.E.M. solo albums. The thick layers of buzzy guitar that dominate tunes like “Horizontal” and “Luna de Miel” take Escovedo’s punk and glam influences and twist them into new shapes, while pop-oriented tracks such as “Heartbeat Smile” and “Farewell to the Good Times” have potent hooks but also a tough, insistent rock & roll backbone. And when Escovedo bares his soul on tunes like “Suit of Lights” and “I Don’t Want to Play Guitar Anymore,” his collaborators know how to match the mood without letting the music go limp. Escovedo is working with some stellar musicians who also lock in with him like a band, and this is an album where the players create a whole that’s more than the sum of its parts. Burn Something Beautiful comes after a period of transition for Escovedo, with the artist leaving his longtime home of Austin, Texas for Houston after a health scare and a brush with death when he and his new wife found their honeymoon interrupted by a category four hurricane. But despite time and tough circumstances, the man is still writing outstanding, revealing songs full of heart, soul, and intelligence, and these performances show he’s hardly run short of new ways to make his work communicate. An album full of potent atmosphere, dirty guitars, and emotional honesty, Burn Something Beautiful ranks with Escovedo’s best and most adventurous work, and both fans and curious neophytes owe it to themselves to give it a listen. (Mark Deming, allmusic)

01. Horizontal
02. Heartbeat Smile
03. Sunday Morning Feeling
04. Suit Of Lights
05. Redemption Blues
06. Shave The Cat
07. Johnny Volume
08. Beauty Of Your Smile
09. I Don’t Want To Play Guitar Anymore
10. Beauty And The Buzz
11. Luna De Miel
12. Farewell To The Good Times
13. Thought I’d Let You Know

Alejandro Escovedo – guitars, lead vocals
Kurt Bloch − lead guitar
Peter Buck − guitars
Scott McCaughey − bass, keyboards, guitar, backing vocals
John Moen − drums, percussion, vibraphone, backing vocals
Steve Berlin − baritone saxophone
Kelly Hogan – vocals
Corin Tucker − vocals (6, 11)

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