Tina Brooks Back To The Tracks XRCD24
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Harold “Tina” Brooks could have been a tenor sax contender for legendary
status and certainly had the ability, the sound and the creative imagination. A
colorful player (and exceptional composer) whose hard bop solos were soulful,
inventive and stimulating, Brooks had the misfortune of having three of his four
Blue Note albums as a leader lay unissued until he had passed away. As difficult
as it is to believe after listening, Back To The Tracks was one of these
unreleased sets. In truth, there was no logical reason why this very rare 1960
session was bypassed for it features Brooks coming up with one brilliant solo
after another throughout a consistently superb set. More than holding his own
with a stellar cast including trumpeter Blue Mitchell, altoist Jackie McLean and
a superb rhythm section on a mixture of originals and standards, “Tina”
constantly takes solo honors. Brooks plays his heart out during these rare
recordings that really define where jazz was in 1960. Back To The Tracks is a
timeless hard bop gem that should not to be missed!
"I’ve heard both albums [Tina Brooks/Back To The Tracks & Dexter Gordon/A Swingin' Affair] in various forms, and these XRCDs compare with the very best of them. If you’re looking for the definitive digital versions, your search can begin and end here." - John Crossett, www.theaudiobeat.com, 4.5/5 Music, 4/5 Sound
"Back to the Tracks was one of the finest jazz albums never released in its day. It had an all-star supporting cast -- trumpeter Blue Mitchell, alto saxophonist Jackie McLean (on one track), pianist Kenny Drew, bassist Paul Chambers, and drummer Art Taylor -- and three Brooks originals. Right from the start, the title cut swings as hard as anything from Blue Note and is dominated by Brooks' unique tenor sound -- I’ve heard it described as keening, and it fits. That this album, despite being numbered, cataloged, scheduled for release, and even printed on inner sleeves of other Blue Note releases, never saw the light of day until 1985 is one of Alfred Lion’s bigger mistakes. We’ll never know what might have happened to Tina Brooks’ career had this album appeared. It may have given Brooks the opportunity to keep this band together, get regular work, and perhaps turn his life around, becoming one of Blue Note’s stars in the process." - John Crossett, www.theaudiobeat.com, 4.5/5 Music, 4/5 Sound
"When I listened to the Audio Wave XRCD release of [AWMXR0008] Lee Morgan - Tomcat I was awestruck. My conclusion was that rather than comparing digital to analog, a more logical conclusion was that the entire digital vs. analog debate becomes irrelevant when listening to a recording that is so far superior to anything that has come before it. My analog setup costs six times what my digital one does, but given the same Blue Note title on LP or XRCD I'd choose the XRCD each time. I question the motive of any writer who claims that there is an LP re-issue that equals the sound you all are achieving."
"I recently purchased three more Audio Wave Blue Note titles and the sound on each of them is really stunning. The clarity (without any brightness), dynamics, instrumental timbres and subtlety that I hear in these performances is amazing. You can really hear the emotion and intent of the performers in a way I have not experienced with my Blue Note records before, be it an original pressing, RVG remaster or one of the 45 rpm re- issues from other labels. When playing [AWMXR0010] Horace Silver- Cape Verdean Blues over the weekend, my mom (who was visiting from out of town) and daughter actually came in the room and started dancing around. Its magic on a silver disc."
"I hope you will have the opportunity to visit other back catalogs or more Blue Note titles with wizard Alan Yoshida at the helm. I have a new appreciation for the importance of mastering. Thanks for the great music." - Steven Frost, Elusive Disc Customer
"I recommend these highly. If you want the best digital versions of these great Blue Note albums, grab these. In my opinion they are the best that have ever been done and probably the best that ever will be. They can't stay in print forever so don't delay!" - Steve Hoffman, Mastering Engineer
"Blue Note has never sounded this good on CD before - these are the first digital Blue Notes that come close to the sound of vinyl. And the packaging is outstanding. I love the high quality glossy covers, and the insert booklets are the first effort I've seen to fit high quality photography into such a small package. Keep up the good work!" - Dennis Davis, Hi-Fi+
"Astute listeners know that the very first Blue Note CD issues are sonically superior to the more recent RVG remasters. Well, these XRCD24s absolutely crush them both, displaying high-frequency air, midrange presence, and bottom-end definition and weight missing on earlier CDs and many LPs as well." - Mark Mickelson, TheAudioBeat.com
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"Compared to the 45 r.p.m. vinyl, the LPs still have a slight edge in smoothness and liquidity, but thanks to the XRCD process and the care that was taken transferring these albums directly from the original analog masters, these CD’s have to be approaching the limit of what the compact disc is capable of resolving. Instrument timbre is stunningly real, and the amount of air and decay present on these recordings will make the uninitiated swear that there is a record playing on a turntable somewhere. I’ve never heard this music sound this good in any digital format." - Jeff Dorgay, TONEAudio
"The quality is next to none and as far the sound goes they are absolutely beautifully recorded, the timing is perfect and the clarity of the instruments is spot on, I will treasure these CDs. I am eagerly awaiting the rest of the collection." - Victor A., actual Elusive Disc customer
"The sound is absolutely stunning and natural and represents digital at its best. The space around instruments and decay times are reminiscent of live acoustic performances. The mini-hardcover book format packaging is exceptional with great photography and legible liner notes. Truly well done and keep them coming." - Roger B., actual Elusive Disc customer
“a well done XRCD... It’s a sound that comes about as close to analog excellence as we’ve heard from any digital format” - Wayne Garcia, TAS Issue 203, June/July 2010 pg. 120-123
“These discs are open, dynamically free, tonally natural... the bass is textured, melodic, and explosive when a drummer lets loose.” - Wayne Garcia, TAS Issue 203, June/July 2010 pg. 120-123
“...they may not quite equal the breathtaking sonics of the vinyl discs in transparency, immediacy, and ultimate dynamic pop, they come very close. So close, in fact... I was prepared to get up and flip the LP to Side Two—except I wasn’t listening to an LP but to a Yoshida-mastered XRCD.” - Wayne Garcia, TAS Issue 203, June/July 2010 pg. 120-123
Protect your Audio Wave Music/Blue Note XRCD24 Collection!
The Japanese Top Sealing Resealable CD Outer Sleeves
are also Recommended! Also featuring a 3-Mil Thick Mylar that keeps out dirt and dust and protects from nicks and scratches, this Top
Sealing Sleeve features a Looser Fit for easier jacket removal and Top Sealing Strip creating a seam down the spine.
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• Mastered and produced by Alan Yoshida and Joe Harley from the Original Rudy Van Gelder Blue Note 2-Track Analog Tapes!
• Highest Quality Analog-to-Digital transfers from tape to CD
• Deluxe Packaging with Hi-Resolution Black & White Session Photos by Francis Wolff.
• Includes Original Album Liner Notes
• XRCD24 is Compatible with ALL CD PLAYERS!
Blue Mitchell, trumpet
Jackie McLean, alto sax
Tina Brooks, tenor sax
Kenny Drew, piano
Paul Chambers, bass
Art Taylor, drums
1. Back to the Tracks
2. Street Singer
3. The Blues and I
4. For Heavens Sake
5. The Ruby and the Pearl