This history-making family, even with all the success it's had, the critical acclaim, and the adoration of its loyal fans, is still probably the most under-rated act of the "rock era." It sounds like a pretty bold statement, but think about it. How influential were songs like "Shout," "Twist And Shout," "This Old Heart Of Mine," and "It's Your Thing"? And that was before phase II of the Isleys story began. Now add to the list "That Lady," "Fight The Power," and "For The Love Of You." This was a living legend of a group at the time "Go For Your Guns" was released in 1977. Yes, 1975's "The Heat is On" topped the pop chart, but for my money, "Go For Your Guns" is the ultimate Isleys experience.
Reissue with latest remastering. Comes with new liner notes. This cd is the second of 2 put out to chronicle Miles' stay at the Blackhawk in San Francisco in 1961. After a period of transition which included the sometimes uneven results of the "Someday My Prince Will Come" lp, Miles' working band of Hank Mobley on tenor sax, Wynton Kelly on piano, Paul Chambers, bass, and drummer Jimmy Cobb, were coming together as a tight unit. Both dates of the Blackhawk shows are prime examples of the greatness of this working group.
Of course, Tony Bennett never was "plugged in," so the concept here is redundant, but what the hell. It's been a while since a Tony Bennett live album, and he's always terrific in concert. Certainly, he is here, singing 22 pop standards, including many of his hits and many other songs he's made his own. Elvis Costello and k.d. lang drop by, but they're feeding off Bennett's energy and star power, not the other way around. The album may be part of a successful marketing plan, but forget that and revel in the singing of a masterful song interpreter still, after 40 years, at the top of his game.
Reissue with latest remastering. Comes with new liner notes. The first of two sets recorded during a weekend in 1961 features the Miles Davis Quintet at a period of time when Hank Mobley was on tenor and the rhythm section was comprised of pianist Wynton Kelly, bassist Paul Chambers, and drummer Jimmy Cobb. What is most remarkable is the way Kelly fits into this particular blend of the Miles band. Kelly's interplay with Chambers is especially brilliant, because his sense of blues phrasing inside counterpoint harmony is edgy and large, with left-hand chords in the middle register rather than sharp right-hand runs to accentuate choruses.
Despite the presence of classic tracks like Joe Zawinul's "Great Expectations," Big Fun feels like the compendium of sources it is. These tracks are all outtakes from other sessions, most notably Bitches Brew, On the Corner, and others. The other element is that many of these tracks appeared in different versions elsewhere. These were second takes, or the unedited takes before producer Teo Macero and Miles were able to edit them, cut and paste their parts into other things, or whatever. That is not to say the album should be dismissed.
Reissue with latest 2014 DSD remastering. Comes with liner notes. One of the key turning points of Louis Armstrong's career occurred at the Town Hall concert fully documented on this two-CD set, a reissue of the earlier two-LP release. Armstrong, who had been leading a big band for 18 years, was showcased with some musical friends who were all very complementary players (including trombonist Jack Teagarden, clarinetist Peanuts Hucko and cornetist Bobby Hackett), and the results were so exciting that Armstrong soon broke up his orchestra to form a similar all-star sextet.
1990s Puzzle of Hearts is an album surprisingly similar to both Djavan and Oceano (both released in 1989), all of which are on Columbia Records, no less. In fact, no less than seven of the nine tracks on Djavan and Oceano (which are essentially the same album) make up the bulk of Puzzle of Hearts. The new tracks here are the title track, a soft sort of MPB in English, "Being Cool," another English number with a bouncier samba-based rhythm to it, and "Amazon Farewell," one more English work with a thumping bassline underneath a more exotic melody. While the album isn't necessarily particularly original when compared to the items released only a year prior, it's a nice piece of work.
Não É Azul, Mas É Mar é o oitavo álbum de estúdio do músico, cantor e compositor brasileiro Djavan, lançado em 1987 pela Columbia. Gravado em Los Angeles nos Estados Unidos, foi lançado no Brasil, Estados Unidos, Japão e em alguns países da Europa, sendo que nos três últimos países o álbum foi lançado na versão em inglês, intitulada Bird of Paradise. Os principais hits do álbum são "Soweto", "Me Leve" e "Dou-Não-Dou" (um dos principais hits do álbum, selecionado para entrar na trilha sonora da telenovela brasileira Mandala, em 1987) e alguns outros de destaque entre público e crítica: "Florir", "Maçã", "Doidice" e "Carnaval do Rio".