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Charlie Brown Christmas
Charlie Brown Christmas
Offered by Hand-me-ups
Price: $14.78
73 used & new from $0.01

8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Probably the best Christmas Album ever, but this new edition is a missed opportunity..., October 31, 2006
This review is from: Charlie Brown Christmas (Audio CD)
While the packaging appears first rate and the improved sound quality seems promising, I'm disappointed to see they missed this opportunity to include three tracks that were in the special but never on the album.

They are "Surfin' Snoopy" (plays as Snoopy decorates his house), "Charlie Brown Theme" (plays while Charlie Brown is going over his director signals), and "Jingle Bells", which is of course, Lucy's request to Schroder. The first two were included on the compilation "Charlie Brown's Holiday Hits", but it's a shame we couldn't have them all under one roof instead of the alternate takes. Yes, they are short pieces of background music and don't hold up well on their own (certainly not as well as Guaraldi's masterpieces that were always featured on the album we all know and love), but when your including bonus tracks, why not include them?

It remains a five star recording though...


Moondance
Moondance
358 used & new from $0.01

16 of 27 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars 5 Star Material, poor release..., November 29, 2005
This review is from: Moondance (Audio CD)
First off, I must say the album and the music itself is both a masterpiece in terms of art AND a great accessible pop gem for casual fans. In fact, Moondance probably gains much of it's sales due to the fact that it contains songs that were popular and/or reached the charts at one point or another (Crazy Love, Caravan, Into the Mystic, Come Running) that were surprisingly not included on "The Best of Van Morrison" compilation. Well, even though they are shocking omissions to that collection, I believe it is for the better as it draws more casual fans to purchase an original configuration studio album.

But, what bothers me is the poor nature of the CD release. While Van's Bang Material and all the albums from Tupelo Honey to Poetic Champions Compose get the benefit of a remasters (Into the Music, Common One, Beautiful Vision and Inarticulate Speech of the Heart still have yet to see remastering in the US, but you can purchase them imported to get releases of those albums that are consistent to the surrounding remastered titles), Morrison's three early and most popular classics (Astral Weeks, Moondance and His Band and the Street Choir) are left in the dust on muddy sounding and poorly packaged `80s CDs.

Perhaps it's not really a terrible sound and is passable, but when listened to before or after one of Morrison's albums that was remastered, one can immediately catch the lower volume and the sonic difference in quality.

Also, the packaging; The CD insert here is far from complete, based off the vinyl LP packaging. The original included a fable from Van's [then] wife Janet Planet, as well as four b/w photographs, all were printed inside the gatefold interior and disappointingly not reproduced anywhere inside the booklet of this release.

So to summarize, a 5 star album just not done justice on Compact Disc.
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Dec 18, 2013 12:17 PM PST


New Moon Shine
New Moon Shine
Offered by Big_Box_Bargains
Price: $4.65
190 used & new from $0.01

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars JT's Intro to the 90s, March 20, 2005
This review is from: New Moon Shine (Audio CD)
Taylor entered the 1990s with his first album to be limited to CD and cassette tape releases (no vinyl LP): "New Moon Shine". I have to admit that upon receiving this album, I was under the impression that the entire disc as a whole album was on the weak side, reading several negative reviews. I knew the songs "Copperline", "Shed A Little Light" and "The Frozen Man" from the "Pull Over" DVD concert, but didn't have any other knowledge beyond those tracks. Nothing really caught my attention on the first listen, but on subsequent times through, it slowly grew to become my favorite start-to-finish album by JT.

"New Moon Shine" continues the sound of "World Music" (I believe that's what they call it) for the majority of the tracks. JT started to use this style of music on "That's Why I'm Here" and again on "Never Die Young". As good as those two recordings are I believe he perfected the sound of the genre on this disk.

First comes the nostalgic "Copperline", which will make you reminisce about your childhood with a good felling. The singer returns to his old home at the end of the song to find it's just not the same anymore, which is something many of us can relate to. Next we have "Down in the Hole", which is an analogy about how loosing a love can make you feel insignificant. "(I've Got to) Stop Thinkin' 'Bout That" is an upbeat song that is also about a lost love, and the singer seems to be driving himself crazy trying to forget his ex. The fourth track ("Shed a Little Light") is a tribute to Martin Luther King Jr., and carries a great message. After that comes a song with a unique concept: "The Frozen Man". The lyrics tell us a story about a man who was lost at sea many years ago and became frozen in the water. We are told of his discovery and how he is able to walk to earth years ahead of his time. The mood is broken with a political rocker, "Slap Leather". After that comes a buried treasure and a highlight to the album; "Like Everyone She Knows" begins as a song about a girl loosing self confidence, but soon evolves into a great message: No matter what anyone tells you, never give up on a love. "One More Go Round" may indeed be filler, but it's by no means a bad track and doesn't hurt the album. Next comes a Sam Cooke cover "Everybody Loves to Cha Cha", which deals with a dilemma: The singer's date does not know the dance, and that's all that's being played at the event. The situation is resolved with him teaching her the dance, and she ends up performing it better. "Native Son" is another contender for the best track on the disc. The song deals with the relief of a war ending and the returning to the comforts of home after a long battle. The disc finishes out with "Oh Brother", followed by another obscure JT gem: "The Water is Wide", which is an arrangement of a traditional song. It's a great song to just close your eyes and indulge in the great sound, and one of JT's best album finales.

The album cover is one of JT's most unique. Lyrics and band credits are also included with several more photos on a horizontal foldout. This is the original CD release from 1991, as the majority of the album was digitally recorded, so a re-master probably isn't necessary.

This album is probably not the right intro to JT's music. Perhaps you should go with "Sweet Baby James", "Mud Slide Slim" or a greatest hits compilation first. If you already have prior knowledge of JT's work and are satisfied, I strongly recommend the album that is "New Moon Shine".
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Jun 27, 2007 2:52 PM PDT


Living & Dying in 3/4 Time
Living & Dying in 3/4 Time
Price: $7.26
57 used & new from $0.01

13 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars CD Release Doesn't Do Justice, March 13, 2005
1974's Living and Dying in ¾ Time was Buffett's second major label album and fourth overall release. The quality of the music is 5 star material, as Buffett was at his singer/songwriter peak.

I would love to give a review that deals with the music contained within, but I must make a point of stress on this CD release. It's just plain bad. The sound quality is full of tape hiss, which contrary to what the disclaimer says on the back of the case, does NOT have to be heard when analogue recordings are transferred to digital. All it takes is finding the master tapes and preparing the tracks for a higher resolution format.

Don't expect to get any more artwork or liner notes with the disc either. What you see in the image at the top of this page is the only thing left from what was included in the original 1974 package. Gone is the rear cover photograph of a shark, a beautiful Key West sunset painting form the gatefold, a photo of Jimmy form the insert, band credits and complete lyrics to each song. Not to faithful to the original release, eh? Maybe that was excusable in the 80s when the CD boom was still taking place, but now... No.

Please, if your an MCA executive and are reading this, it's time to re-release.


One Particular Harbor
One Particular Harbor
Price: $7.30
74 used & new from $0.97

7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Very good album but..., March 13, 2005
This review is from: One Particular Harbor (Audio CD)
The CD issue is awful. The sound quality is the product of what happens when you take vinyl masters and transfer them directly to a CD. Not meant to happen, as why the tape hiss is excessive. Why? Because it's a remnant of MCA's "Compact Disc/Compact Price" series, along with all the other Buffett 1973-85 albums.

Also keep in mind that you don't get any artwork or liner notes in this release beyond the front cover you see in the stock image above (which is blemished by that horrible logo in the bottom right corner). It's quite a shame as Jimmy and photographer Jim Shea acquired permission to shoot on the set of the Mel Gibson film "Mutiny of the Bounty" for the album's package, and those photos went well with the recording and were good eye candy. Removing the band credits and dedications was just pain disrespectful to Jimmy, to say the least.

I would patiently wait on purchasing this album till a remaster happens, which is long over due and hopefully in the near future. When that happens, I will be happy to provide a review that deals 100% with the music and explains why I give it 5 stars.
Comment Comments (2) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Jul 19, 2008 1:08 PM PDT


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