Speakers Corners Vinyl Highlights Vol. 1

Speakers Corner truly analogue vinyls

Are you sure you're getting your vinyl records mastered directly from analogue master tapes? With Speakers Corner you can bet your hard earned money on the pure process. There are many vinyl reissues of great musical albums coming from digital files. While some might argue about DSD like quality, noise free (er) reproduction, when it comes to the vinyl my heart and money goes to the full analogue path. It's a must!

Speakers Corner www.speakerscorner.de hold legendary status among vinyl lovers. They're known for their no compromise approach to the sound. 

Miyajima Labs new top of the line Kansui cartridge just arrived and it was almost glorious to drop the needle on this records. Let me write few words about albums:

Clifford Brown & Max Roach-A Study in Brown

Every jazz lover knows recognizing drum playing of Max Roach. Often one finds himself captured by precise meditation on single notes played by his fluid almost magical hands.

Clifford Brown's story was a short one. Like many famous musician he's life lane was sadly not a long one, but he left behind a unique imprint that still inspire generations of musicians. 

This is a dynamic, crescendo like record that won't let you rest. It behold the power of true musical storm with   more than interesting harmonical plane, that on the moments almost transcend the heritage of hard-bop.

Recorded in the golden era (1955), this album speaks out with the true art of emotions and engineering audio skills, that makes this recording not only special, but crucial to your jazz catalogue. Speakers Corner produced this album in pristine quality. Noise floor is very low and almost in absence of usual vinyl artefacts. Highly-recommended. 

Sonny Rollins-East Broadway Run Down

What could you say about the man who still gaze the earth with steady blow that is not only legendary, but also above a mundane perceptions.

Sonny Rollins is a walking legend with the catalogue that can make any serious jazz musician scared.  East Brodway Run Down is a piano-less recording. In that way it interestingly focus on Freddie and Sonny rapid changing of virtuoso playing. With Elvin Jones on the drums music never seems to loose the pace.

It feels like tour de force of rhythm and interplay with almost forceful friendly attack of the notes. This record is a jazz without constraints and with the hint of blues. Vinyl is Speakers Corner recognisable quality with almost noise free pressing and well known analogue sound. Do not miss this one in your collection!

John Coltrane-Impressions

John Coltrane is my favourite jazz musician. I respect the great ones with an open heart, but I grew up discovering Coltrane music without any suggestions and all those countless hours in repetition touched me dearly. I'm not sure how, but John's playing and his notes simply address my inner musician clock. On the days that my mind is exploded and perplexed by the viscous energy of the world, there is one certain remedy that simply connect my intelligence and mind into working symbiotic partnership, when everything else fail.

Impressions points towards his later albums with the intensity and spirituality slowly coming into John's thinking and playing. This is not a conceptual album, since it was recording on separate occasions, but you simply don't wont to miss any of album songs. Even without trained jazz ears one can instantly hear and feel John's pure emotions that resonate through his playing. They say that Coltrane playing is the closest thing musically to a transcendence. Not far from a truth. Impressions is an album that started to combine his master playing with the scents of something above ordinary musical perception. An insight into eternity and hoe music can be the via medium to that path.

Legendary Rudy Van Gelder was a master magician behind the recording process. He managed to convey Coltrane's playing with warm emotions and lifelike feelings. Sound quality of Speakers Corner vinyl is on the spot and it's joy for the ears. Highly recommended for every music lover and not just jazz fans.

Ben Webster And Associates

In A Mellow Tone would evoke sentimental mood even in non hard core non jazzers. This is as soulful as it gets with traditional jazz. Associates are spot on, actually on the spot in this ensemble. You can simply feel the connection between musicians and that they loved what they were doing. Such an ease of musical floating and with invisible strings that tie you down in it's journey.

This is timeless album that simply stand on its own. Nothing to follow, just fluid, right, beautiful. Call it romantic swing, jazz, anything. I don't care. This is what MUSIC is all about. Timeless emotions. 

If you want to treat yourself with not only great music, but outstanding sound, do the honours to Speakers Corner and buy it. This is not only audiophile treasure, but true jewel for any music enthusiast regardless of labeling. Super quiet vinyl and with true spirit of the late 50's. It's one of my favourite recordings and dream come true for vinyl fans.

Duke Ellington & Johnny Hodges-Side By Side

What happens when two stars collide. Eruption of emotions and pure musicianship. This is swing galaxy that shake everything around it. How can swing in late 50's carries 40's into 60's so effortlessly? Easy, with the pin pointed invisible hand of a perfect conductor and master musicians. Sometimes I feel like I'm stuck in that era and simply wont let it go thanks to recordings like this. 

Duke Ellington and Johnny Hodges need no introduction and the following musicians are refined selection, that simply offer their respect to the music under the guidance of great Duke. You cannot stop thinking, that he precisely and thoughtfully selected each musician for this record. They all contribute to the music equally and with enough time and space to stand out on their own. 

Sound of recording is exceptional and floats within the air. Speakers just cease to exists and you can feel the life of musicians in the room. Really a stand out analogue recording with careful unmistakable touch of Speakers Corner. Quiet vinyl at it's best. Highly recommended. 

Matej Isak: text
Mono & Stereo high-end audio magazine
March 2011, All rights reserved