Albums

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Pop - Released November 16, 2018 | Elea

Distinctions 4F de Télérama
$79.49
$65.49

Rock - Released November 2, 2018 | Columbia - Legacy

Hi-Res Distinctions 4F de Télérama - Best New Reissue
For fans of Bob Dylan's wide-ranging Bootleg series, More Blood, More Tracks (Vol. 14) is an entryway into one of the most mysterious, tangled stories in his recording career. These six discs contain the complete recordings sessions for 1975's Blood on the Tracks, 87 tracks in all, the vast majority unreleased. This box assists in offering a view of the process behind one of the songwriter's most enigmatic albums. On September 16 of 1974, Dylan entered Columbia's Studio with engineer Phil Ramone, with songs at once seething with anger, brokenness, and vulnerability. Written and recorded during his eventual divorce from first wife Sara, Dylan shrouds these songs in alliteration and metaphor, stretching time itself as past and present, commingling in numerous locations; they separate and return in new configurations. His protagonists speak in first and third person, often in the same verse. Once encountered, however, they're impossible to shake. Presented here are the complete sessions of the four days in New York, chronologically recorded, and, for the first time at the proper speed (Dylan had Ramone bump the master tape speed to make the tunes faster for radio play), and without the substantial reverb on the original tapes. These tunes were cut in a fit of white-heat inspiration, first by Dylan solo, and then with a band of folk-associated sidemen in Eric Weissberg & Deliverance. By the time you reach discs three through five, all the accompaniment, save for Dylan's guitar, harmonica, Tony Brown's bass, and occasional pedal steel and organ, are stripped away, resulting in what was then thought to be the completed album. Scheduled for late December release with a promotional campaign drafted, printed cover, and test pressings distributed, Dylan wasn't satisfied. Ultimately, he kept only one band track, "Meet Me in the Morning." He spent Christmas in Minnesota with his producer brother David Zimmerman, who was also less than enthused with the tracks. Dylan called his label and insisted on holding the album back. On December 27, he and a band of hastily assembled local players re-recorded five songs to complete Blood on the Tracks (captured on disc six). Since nearly half-a-million copies of the cover were already printed, the Minnesota musicians remained uncredited until now. This is exhaustive but fascinating material that sounds fantastic due to a painstaking remixing job -- nothing here sounds like a rough demo. Check the nine takes of "Idiot Wind," some offer different words, all roil with anger and bitterness. "You're Gonna Make Me Lonesome When You Go" is gradually revealed as one of Dylan's finest love songs in a dozen more takes. "You're a Big Girl Now," in 15 takes, is peeled away from its sarcasm to reveal a man saddled with regret. Multiple versions of "Tangled Up in Blue," "Lily Rosemary and the Jack of Hearts," and "Simple Twist of Fate" offer proof that there were many versions of the songs before they assumed their final incarnations. Dylan's constant rewriting and creative flow are captured warts and all in false starts, stuttering alternate takes, studio conversation, and flowing inspiration in complete versions. There are hours of fascination awaiting listeners, and the music poses as many new questions as it does answers surrounding the album's mythos. As for the autobiographical nature of the content, it remains, thankfully, unclear. The enclosed photo book is as essential as the liner essays in the deluxe package. By any measure, More Blood, More Tracks is a monumentally important document in the history of popular music and a gem in Dylan's catalog. ~ Thom Jurek
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Rock - Released November 2, 2018 | Sanctuary Records

Distinctions 4F de Télérama
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Alternative & Indie - Released October 19, 2018 | Communion Group Ltd

Hi-Res Distinctions 4F de Télérama - Qobuzissime
It wouldn't be right to reduce Tamino-Amir Moharam Fouad simply to an heir of Jeff Buckley with hints of Radiohead from their earlier years. The Belgian songwriter, only 21 years old, offers much more than that on his first album, even if Colin Greenwood, the bassist from Radiohead, does feature on the album... Tamino, an Antwerp-native and John Lennon-admirer, has always kept his Egyptian origins preserved in a corner of his head, under his jet-black mane. The Arabic music that his mother played at home must have been all the more influential when it was the work of Muharram Fouad, his singer-actor grandfather, a star in Cairo in the sixties... This eclecticism is at the heart of Tamino's music, which owes as much to Buckley folk music as it does to Beatles pop and even to the nonchalant melancholy of Leonard Cohen, another one of his idols. To fuse these disparate influences, the mysterious young man possesses a deadly weapon: his voice. It’s an equally versatile organ, capable of stretching slowly and transforming itself into a stunning falsetto, an impressive technique that he never abuses. It is this voice that transforms Amir into a long and poignant novel. A coming-of-age story that alternates between the dreamer (the pure folk on Verses) and the lyrical poet as on So It Goes, Each Time and Intervals, conceived around a section of Arabic strings. A Qobuzissime album that’s oozing with original and touching poetry. © Marc Zisman/Qobuz

Classical - Released October 19, 2018 | Glossa

Booklet Distinctions 4F de Télérama - Gramophone Editor's Choice
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One of the great composing figures from the French Baroque, Michel-Richard de Lalande is starting to receive his just dues through modern recordings, and Glossa is happy to unveil a new release featuring Olivier Schneebeli directing Les Pages et Les Chantres du Centre de Musique Baroque de Versailles in three of Lalande’s sumptuous “grands motets”. Very much a favoured composer during the reign of Louis XIV, Lalande progressively assumed – from the 1680s onwards – more and more of the principal court offices, and was called upon to provide sacred music for the Chapelle Royale within the Château de Versailles. Although the new (and ‘definitive’) chapel was not consecrated until 1710, the trio of “grands motets” (extended multi-movement choral and solo settings, typically of Psalms, with instrumental accompaniment) recorded here will have been conceived of according to the chapel’s architectural and acoustical characteristics. Thomas Leconte, from the CMBV, provides an illuminating historical backdrop in his booklet essay. Much detailed performing information from Lalande’s time is known today – including number of instrumental forces used and about the composer’s later revisions of his scores – and Venite, exultemus Domino, De profundis and Dominus regnavit all receive expressive and meticulously-prepared performances within the Chapelle Royale itself. To the quality of preparation of the CMBV “maîtrise” can be added the presence of a quartet of vocal soloists deeply experienced in the style of music from this time: Chantal Santon-Jeffery, Reinoud Van Mechelen, François Joron and Lisandro Abadie. Likewise, the contribution of Jana Semerádová’s Collegium Marianum provides exemplary instrumental support to Schneebeli’s direction in this new CMBV production. © Glossa
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Dub - Released October 19, 2018 | Jarring Effects

Distinctions 4F de Télérama
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Jazz - Released October 19, 2018 | Gazebo

Hi-Res Distinctions 4F de Télérama
Eric Le Lann and Paul Lay return to the roots of jazz here. THE root even. With Thanks a Million the trumpeter and pianist embark on a pilgrimage to planet Louis Armstrong. They obviously aren’t the first to celebrate and pay homage to this brilliant music, but their refined approach deserves respect. Besides the wonderful elegance in their interpretations of these pieces, Le Lann and Lay display a fascinating knack for complicity, putting their own original spin on the pieces (which have been heard many times over). With some great piano/trumpet duos this album is a superb Paso Doble that closes with Farewell to Louis, an original composition that’s drenched in melancholy. © Marc Zisman/Qobuz
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World - Released October 19, 2018 | Molpé Music

Booklet Distinctions 4F de Télérama
$63.99

Soul - Released October 19, 2018 | Craft Recordings

Distinctions 4F de Télérama
1968 was a pivotal year in Stax Records' history and a fascinating story in itself. Otis Redding (their biggest star) and four members of the Bar-Kays were killed in a plane crash in December 1967. Their distribution agreement with Atlantic Records was dissolved, resulting in the loss of several more artists from Atlantic, and in the loss of their entire back catalog to Atlantic, which meant Stax earned no revenue from its previous recordings. Then, the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. in Memphis exacerbated racial tensions not just nationwide, but acutely in Stax's hometown of Memphis (King was in Memphis to support striking sanitation workers). Rising from the ashes, Stax had an ambitious plan to create an entirely new catalog in just over a year. Otis Redding's posthumous classic "Dock of the Bay" was a tremendous help in getting the label off the ground again. But the model of a house band and single producer that had given Stax their legendary sound was not going to work for the amount of material that had to be created in order to give them a solid catalog. To that end, they had to bring in outside producers, which began to upset what had essentially been a cooperative up to that point. At the same time, the music business was shifting from singles sales to album sales, and Stax was keen to make that transition as well. All this is extensively chronicled in the accompanying book. As far as the music, it's all top-notch, but you can hear the change in sound taking place. Of course, there are songs you recognize, but there are at least as many that you probably don't. Despite the pervasive unrest, the songs never get overtly political. Even "Tribute to a King" isn't about Dr. King, but about the King of Soul Music, their friend Otis Redding. The music stands on its own, of course, but the story behind it all is remarkable and largely untold. Stax '68 is a great collection of music, and this excellent set places it in a proper historical context, telling the story of the rebirth of one of America's great soul labels. ~ Sean Westergaard
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Rock - Released October 12, 2018 | Concord Records

Hi-Res Distinctions 4F de Télérama
From the release of his debut album, My Aim Is True, in 1977, Elvis Costello expressed his musical gluttony by mixing explosive pub rock, reggae tones, almost country-like ballads and pop songs sculpted with crystalline arpeggios. It was this eclecticism that allowed him to work with people as diverse as George Jones (the godfather of country music), Burt Bacharach (the master of pop lounge), the mezzo-soprano Anne Sofie von Otter, the jazz guitarist Bill Frisell, and even the rappers from The Roots, just to name a few… Forty years later, the elusive spectacled Brit (having always been fond of concept albums), releases Look Now with the Imposters, featuring Steve Nieve on keyboards, Davey Faragher on bass and Pete Thomas (already the drummer of his group Attractions). This group, with whom he recorded Momofuku in 2008, give him the chance to get his writing pen out once again… and it’s as sharp as ever. Here he has shared the writing responsibilities with the great Carole King on Burnt Sugar Is so Bitter, co-written 25 years earlier, as well as with Bacharach on Photographs Can Lie and Don't Look Now. Once again, it feels like Costello is searching for the perfect pop song. He takes an approach that screams 1960s. However, the timelessness of the album anchors the songwriter well in his time, in 2018. Costello succeeds in writing melodies and lyrics that stick in his listeners’ heads. A good song, as we all know, is ageless and Elvis Costello certainly reminds us of that here... © Marc Zisman/Qobuz
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Jazz - Released October 12, 2018 | Sunnyside

Hi-Res Distinctions 4F de Télérama
Even if the Oblique Quartet are moving forward together, Dave Liebman looks like a leader. The fact that his name appears on more than 300 albums and his CV includes “freelancing” for Miles Davis and Elvin Jones, to name but a few, gives an indication to the calibre of this saxophonist from Brooklyn. Fortunately for Liebman, who is now 72 years of age, he quickly succeeded in establishing his own name away from his famous employers. He is joined by pianist Marc Copland, double-bassist Drew Gress and drummer Michael Stephans, who is in fact the real mastermind behind this quartet and adds a Coltrane-esque air to a repertoire essentially comprising of classics, three of which are written by Miles (Nardis, All Blues and So What) and one by Duke (In a Sentimental Mood). Recorded live at the Deer Head Inn in Delawere Water Gap, Pennsylvania, this is a wonderful array of improvisations that were never very well-known or acclaimed. A real instrumental whirlwind to be experienced right the way through in one go. © Marc Zisman/Qobuz
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World - Released October 12, 2018 | Glitterbeat Records

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions 4F de Télérama
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Classical - Released October 12, 2018 | Ramée

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions 4F de Télérama
The present recording constitutes more than just a new version of the Vespers. It is the first recording of the Vespers in the alternative version proposed by the composer, without concertato instruments. It reveals the underlying matrix of the work we all know, the ‘original version’ to which Monteverdi added concertato instruments for use in large-scale performances. Respecting the structure of the Office of Vespers, Ludus Modalis has chosen to frame the psalms with the antiphons corresponding to a Marian ceremony. The interpretation proposed here is one influenced by the Renaissance tradition. It places the work in perspective in a musical world at the point of equilibrium between prima and seconda prattica, between the achievements of tradition and the contributions of modernity. © Alpha/Outhere
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Solo Piano - Released October 5, 2018 | Sony Classical

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions 5 de Diapason - 4F de Télérama - Gramophone Editor's Choice - 5 Sterne Fono Forum Klassik
Pianist Igor Levit moved from Russia to Germany when he was eight, but there's still a lot of Russian in his outlook: an attraction to the pure virtuoso tradition, and a tendency toward big statements and the big questions. Nowhere has this been more true than on Life, an album that succeeds both thematically and as a thrilling embodiment of late-Romantic pianism at its best. The title, and the contents, refer to the album's memorial function: Levit chose the program to honor a close artist friend who died in an accident. The music is monumental enough to live up to its death-haunted theme, rising out of silence in the Fantasia after J.S. Bach of Busoni and continuing with a remarkably sustained mood of soberness and dignity, punctuated by frenetic outbursts. Busoni is one major presence on the program; the other is Liszt, and the two come together in the Busoni transcription of the Fantasy and Fugue on the Chorale Ad nos, ad salutarem undam of Liszt, originally for organ and an impressive virtuoso task on the piano. So the program works well also as a revival of pure late-Romantic pianism: you can easily imagine that Liszt would have loved this, and loved to play it. A third theme interweaving the works on the program is that of reinterpretation, as in the Brahms transcription of the Chaconne from the Bach Partita for solo violin in D minor, BWV 1004; the fact that Levit has played these works in different orderings in recital testifies to the program's remarkable cohesiveness. There is music by Frederic Rzewski in a memorial vein, and Bill Evans' serene Peace Piece is a lovely conclusion. Bravo!

Reggae - Released October 5, 2018 | Yotanka Records

Distinctions 4F de Télérama
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Alternative & Indie - Released October 5, 2018 | Domino Recording Co

Hi-Res Distinctions 4F de Télérama
A guitar held up by the neck, a child's head pressed against the holder's body. Cat Power reveals a lot with the cover of her tenth album. The American is up and running again and now she is a mother. At 46, Chan Marshall seems to be doing... better? Well, It's not as if her life, which has been studded with internal chaos, turbulence, a lot of moving around, depression and addiction is going to be all plain sailing from here on in, but Wanderer contains some of her most beautiful songs yet. Stripped-down compositions. A simple piano. A few notes on a guitar. A lean rhythm section. It's clear that the message here is "less is more." Perhaps her aim is to return to the roots of her old folk and blues mentors. Bringing a child into the world during the Trump era is enough to get anyone thinking again... And Cat Power hasn't sung for years. Her tones with their bluesy style, unmistakeable from the first syllable, reach sublime heights here. After a slightly electro detour with Sun, mixed by Zdar from Cassius, she doesn't give us too many surprises here in terms of the pretty classical form of her songs, but the surprise comes in the sheer quality of the tracks. One of her biggest fans, Lana Del Rey, makes an appearance on the album on the track Woman maintaining the sober feel to this beautiful and honest record. © Marc Zisman/Qobuz  
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Contemporary Jazz - Released October 5, 2018 | TRAIN FANTOME

Hi-Res Distinctions 4F de Télérama - Indispensable JAZZ NEWS
It takes guts to name your album L’Odyssée. But Fred Pallem has always been a real jazz adventurer, never happy to let the genre just run its cause... And his 2018 release is yet another daring and dense piece of work, built around strong rhythms and delicious arrangements. Here, Pallem, alongside his trusty Sacre du Tympan creates some layered pieces, often very funky and very filmic. Nothing surprising there, when you think of his 2017 album Soul Cinema about blaxploitation and his homage to François de Roubaix published the previous year, two records which have rubbed off on Odyssée. The Odyssée experience is like watching a spoof film that's part thriller, part comedy, with a sort of 70s vintage feel to it. The arrangements are precise and well crafted and the soloist parts are always very original. © Max Dembo/Qobuz
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Rap/Hip-Hop - Released September 28, 2018 | BMG Rights Management GmbH

Hi-Res Distinctions 4F de Télérama
Eight years have passed since the Californians of Cypress Hill’s last album yet the band are still all over the scene, both with solo projects and collaborations. Cypress Hill’s energy on stage is unparalleled, which guarantees them a place at most festivals around the world. The promise of this new album, “Elephants on Acid”, is primarily based on the return of DJ Muggs, their brilliant producer, who is picking up right where he left off, between sixties psychedelics, blazing breakbeats and smoky mysticism. Just like on the very detailed gothic album cover, Muggs unearths a monster buried deep underground and resurrects the legend of “Temple of Boom”, the band’s labyrinth album released in 1995. Between drugs and spirituality, B-Real, the main rapper, reinterprets Cypress Hill’s rather dark repertoire, halfway between Los Angeles Latino culture and hallucinating fantasy à la H.P. Lovecraft. With a few more recreational tracks like “Crazy” or “Oh Na Na”, which make the group sound like a mutant gypsy marching band, Cypress Hill are revitalised, though slightly removed from the saturated guitars of their earlier releases. Ending on “Stairway To Heaven” which is reminiscent of the ethereal soul of Portishead or Massive Attack, “Elephants on Acid” is a multi-layered journey around the mind, in which listeners can both lose and find themselves. © Aurélien Chapuis/Qobuz
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Alternative & Indie - Released September 28, 2018 | Cracki Records

Distinctions 4F de Télérama
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Rock - Released September 28, 2018 | Lupus Lounge

Distinctions 4F de Télérama