To Die For in Stereophile Magazine Jan 29 by Fred Kaplan, Kal Rubinson and Jason Victor Serinus from Stereophile Magazine in Music Reviews

Fred Kaplan

* Bill Evans – Another Time: The Hilversum Concert 
2xHD-Resonance, available at NativeDSD up to DSD 256 – Stereo

Another gem from Resonance Records’ vault hunting, this 1968 session, recorded before a small audience in a Dutch studio, finds Evans in rare buoyant spirit, heading a short-lived band exceeded only by his classic trio of 1958–61. It was recorded five days after their gig at the Montreux Jazz Festival, which was released the same year by Verve and may be Evans’s best post-1961 album. This one ranks just below it. The sound is excellent, too. (Vol.40 No.6)

“To Die For”

Another Time – The Hilversum Concert

Bill Evans

Qualities: DSD 64fs, 128fs, 256fs
Channels: Stereo

Read the review in Stereophile Magazine at To Die For 2018

Kal Rubinson

* Ebony Quartet – Unheard: Music from the Interwar Period 
Channel Classics, available at NativeDSD up to DSD 256 – Stereo and Multichannel

In the years after the 1st World War, much of European music expresses the relief from the terrors of war and seeks madly to find joy. However, those expressions are curdled by a disturbing premonition of the unavoidable terrors yet to come because the war to end all wars wasn’t. This deeply emotional recording confronts these mixed feelings and its centerpiece, Süsskind’s “Rechenschaft über uns,” (an accounting or reckoning for us) addresses them directly. Its voice-over-quartet uses an eerie Sprechstimme to present both intense happiness and dread. The rest of the music is similarly unsettling from the first “Fragment” by Kahn that ends midphrase through the last but not concluding “Indiscretions for Quartet” by Gruenberg.

The performances are profoundly communicating and the multichannel recording is excellent. Both serve well to enclose you into a hothouse of unease. Disturbing but deeply affecting.

“To Die For”


Ebony Band String Quartet

Qualities: DSD 64fs, 128fs, 256fs, DXD
Channels: Multi, MultiDXD, Stereo, StereoDXD

Read the review at To Die For 2018

Kal Rubinson

* Sibelius Piano Trio – Volume 1 and Volume 2
Yarlung Records, available at NativeDSD up to DSD 256 – Sonorus, Stereo and Multichannel

In the months since I downloaded this album, it is probably the one I most return to. First off, I love Sibelius and, although I did not know these three piano trios before, I find them romantically engaging. The performances brim with vigor and elan. Second, they are interspersed with and complemented by 4 additional works of quite different temperament such that listening to the entire program a varied experience and bears repeating. Schissi’s Nene is a contemporary suite of evocative moments and Lefkowitz’s Ruminations is more moody but dance-like and these recorded premieres serve as excellent appetizers for the Korppoo Trio. Wennäkoski’s and Saariaho’s contributions are more bracingly modern and impassioned that provide refreshing contrast to Sibelius’ more traditional trios.

Finally, this multichannel release was made and offered at DSD 256. Tom Caulfield used a carbon-fiber frame for his four DPA 4006A microphones and one 4041 (for center channel) and the result is a clear and immediate sound with just the right amount of hall ambiance to be thrillingly realistic.

“To Die For”

Sibelius Piano Trio vol. I

Sibelius Piano Trio

Qualities: DSD 128fs, 256fs, 64fs, DXD
Channels: Sonorus, Stereo and Multichannel

Sibelius Piano Trio vol. II

Sibelius Piano Trio

Qualities: DSD 128fs, 256fs, 64fs, DXD
Channels: Sonorus, Stereo and Multichannel

Read the review at To Die For 2018

Jason Victor Serinus

* Ragazze Quartet, Kapok & Slagwerk Den Haag – Four Four Three, Music of Terry Riley
Channel Classics, available at NativeDSD up to DSD 256 – Stereo and Multichannel

I know of no finer way to re-experience the stoned-out ecstasy of minimalist master Terry Riley than to turn off the lights, play this recording at the highest resolution your system can handle, and immerse yourself in In C—a unique improvisatory take on the 53 patterns that came to Riley in 1964 while riding the bus to his job as a pianist at San Francisco’s Gold Street Salon. The engineering is sensational, the colors supersaturated, the dynamic climax so thrilling that you may find yourself gasping for breath, unable to move. Sunrise of the Planetary Dream Collector (1980) was the first work that Riley wrote for the Kronos Quartet; Kapok’s performance here offers a viable alternative to Kronos’s, recorded 35 years after they premiered the work.

“To Die For”

Riley – Four Four Three

Ragazze String Quartet

Qualities: DSD 128fs, 256fs, 64fs, DXD
Channels: Multi, StereoDXD, Stereo, MultiDXD

Read the review at To Die For 2018

Fred Kaplan, Kal Rubinson and Jason Victor Serinus from Stereophile Magazine

Fred Kaplan, Kal Rubinson and Jason Victor Serinus are reviewers at Stereophile Magazine

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