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Reviews: Stevie Wonder: Hotter than July

Reviews: 2

Review by Blu Falcon November 11, 2011 (3 of 3 found this review helpful)
Performance:   Sonics:
This Stevie Wonder release is very near and dear to my heart. Besides Songs in the Key of Life, this was one of the albums that really got me open to Stevie Wonder at a young age. As with the other Stevie Wonder SHM-SACD titles released so far, I was especially excited about this release in particular. So much so that I skipped the other previously released SW titles and added this to my collection next. I've had this title for about a week now and it's been a very enjoyable listen. This is a very musical sounding disc, nice and smooth, and very analogue-like. The bottom end is nice and fat, well extended but not over-emphasized. Though it's not your typical early 80s recording, it's still brighter than most of his 70s output. Still, highs are not extremely fatiguing or ear-piercing shrill even when cranked. Up until now I've only had my original Tamla vinyl pressing to compare to, and this SHM-SACD is certainly a gem worth checking out. It's hard to justify the cost of these single layer SHM-SACDs, but if you've got the extra cheese and you're a Stevie Wonder fan this is a worthy addition to your collection. Will be picking up Innervisions next...

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Review by Marpow March 21, 2015 (2 of 3 found this review helpful)
Performance:   Sonics:
Stevie Wonder: Hotter than July SHM SACD Stereo Only. Serial # UIGY 9618.

This is a Japanese re release 11-26-2014 SHM SACD. The review by Blu Falcon was the original shm sacd release in 2011, his description is very good and equal to my experience.
Originally released in 1980 still under the Motown label.

Looking at the DR levels of all versions of this release there is not a bad recording at all. In the liner notes Stevie says, Thank you to Sony for their creation of the Professional Digital Audio System which helped them reach there technological dream.

Performance: Superb. Even, mellow feel to entire disc. A bit of a rasta sound as Wonder had recently met Bob Marley and had influence on Stevie's release. Rock, funk, pop, as usual for this great artist. Big keyboard and horn sound. No denying this is Stevie Wonder even hearing it for the first time. I really came into Stevie late as I was more narrow minded in my youth, better late than never.

Stereo Sonics: Perfect. As the 2011 review claims, very analogue sound and warm feel. But as it is a disc and not an LP there is more depth and great stereo separation. No need to turn up loud as is needed on other recordings to hear there sonic beauty. I did listen medium and medium loud, and of course a higher volume is always truer to any recording, just not completely necessary if you are not in the mood. There are many moments when one note is played on electric piano, kick drums, etc, that are sonic beauty's. Another little fun ditty is at the end of a track 7, Do Like You, there is a recording of two children playing and breaking a vase, and the interaction between the two, the glass breaking, there interaction, I swear they where in my living room, sonic joy.

Packaging: Plastic jewel case with square corners. Original mini paper booklet. Stevie Wonder never holds back on his liner notes. This is exceptional as he has a page of pictures of violent racial scenes with MLK in the middle, the next page Stevie makes a plea to honor MLK on January 15th as a National holiday. We know his wish came true. Also included is mini paper booklet, black and white with Japanese writing. Green ink disc.

I have yet to not like a Stevie Wonder recording in the SHM SACD series.

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