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Reviews: Jim Hall: Concierto

Reviews: 7

Review by rsbeck March 8, 2004 (1 of 1 found this review helpful)
Performance:   Sonics:
Jazz guitarist Jim Hall is accompanied by Paul Desmond, Ron Carter, Chet Baker, Steve Gadd, and Roland Hanna. These musicians are a wonderful match for each other and the sonics, by Mobile Fidelity -- are -- as usual -- stunning.

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Review by JW February 26, 2005 (5 of 5 found this review helpful)
Performance:   Sonics:
This disc has been around for a while. Recently a flurry of enthusiastic posts on AA and a recommendation from John Marks in Stereophile pushed me over the edge so I bought it. At first listen I was not convinced. It did not strike me as a great album musically. All a little too smooth and laid back. Sometimes you have to listen a few times to 'get it' - or not of course.

After a number of listening sessions I have to give it (almost) full marks - the Concerto de Aranguez track 4 alone is worth the - higher than normal - price of admission. This is such a well known melody, one wonders if someone is able to come up with anything new. Jim Hall created a master piece of intimate and sensitive guitar work here. The entire track hangs together so well, with Paul Desmond's tasteful solo's, the restrained drumming of Steve Gadd and the atmospheric piano playing by Roland Hanna. It's simply beautiful in its elegance and flowing rhythmic patterns. One to play over and over again. The other tracks are also interesting, from the upbeat 'Rock Skippin' and 'Two Blues' to the acoustic treatment on the slow 'Unfinished Business'.

You get almost 70 minutes of high quality smooth and swinging jazz on this SA-CD, 2 additional tracks (over the original LP) and three alternate takes. And what a joy to have Desmond and Baker on SA-CD !

The analog sound of this MoFi disc, the somewhat muted sound of Jim Hall's guitar contributed to my initial impression. This is not the most transparent of sounds, but a well crafted transfer nonetheless, the detail is there but with a warm and solid sonic character.

Jw

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Review by Jaws March 8, 2005 (3 of 3 found this review helpful)
Performance:   Sonics:
As with a previous reviewer, my initial reaction to this was that it resembled very sophisticated elevator music... (Since converting to SACD, my music buying habits are dictated more by availability than pre-meditated, conscious choice... like many others, it seems...) I soon got over my initial resistance, however, with repeated listens, and have since gained a great deal of enjoyment listening to these well-recorded, laid back tunes... After fifty or so spins, I'm just about sick of it now... there are a number of big names here - Ron Carter, Chet Baker... Nothing too cutting edge, but it makes for a very enjoyable late night listen nonetheless. If you are a fan of Cool Jazz, you can't go too wrong with this.

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Review by DeSelby June 1, 2005 (2 of 3 found this review helpful)
Sonics:
pulpy 70s sound without airiness and brilliance. MFSL will lose reputation if they produce SACDs from such hopelessly bad recorded tapes, even if the music is top.

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Review by Claude August 23, 2005 (3 of 3 found this review helpful)
Performance:   Sonics:
This session is good but overrated in my view, probably because of the all star linup with Chet Baker and Paul Desmond. Allmusic.com calls it "the greatest LP in the history of CTI", maybe the reviewer hasn't heard the Freddie Hubbard and Stanley Turrentine albums on the same label.

As many CTI recordings it is overproduced and not very well recorded. Compared to the 1997 Sony CD remaster the MFSL SACD sounds fuller and more dynamic, but offers no improvement in transparency. I'm giving 3.5 stars for the absolute sound quality, not for the transfer quality which may be the best ever for this album.

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Review by Croc May 9, 2006 (2 of 5 found this review helpful)
Performance:   Sonics:
superrrrrrrrrrrr

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Review by jrsanfilippo August 21, 2010
Performance:   Sonics:
I am relatively new to Jazz. I love this SACD. I listen to it over and over again. I have researched every musician on the album. All extremely talented. The clarity and feeling of this music is just something to experience. You must listen loud to really get the dynamics. I am sad to say many of the musicians are not with us anymore. The Trumpet on You'd Be So Nice To Come Home is so full of feeling ... wow! Jim Hall put together an amazing group of musicians. The bass lines are so powerful and resonate. Buy, enjoy, and repeat.

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