DVD/DTS Poll Benson, George - SONGS AND STORIES [DTS/DD DVD]

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Rate the Audio-DVD of George Benson - SONGS AND STORIES

  • 6:

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  • 5:

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  • 4:

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  • 3:

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  • 2:

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  • 1: Poor Surround, Poor Fidelity, Poor Content

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  • Total voters
    21

dbmay75

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Jon, just curious where you purchased your copy at? Do you own any other Monster discs to compare it to in terms of surround...? I own the Benson & Jarreau and Ray Charles and they are both GREAT in my opinion.

Dan
 

JonUrban

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Jon, just curious where you purchased your copy at? Do you own any other Monster discs to compare it to in terms of surround...? I own the Benson & Jarreau and Ray Charles and they are both GREAT in my opinion.

Dan
Dan,

Let me just say this. This is the best surround music disc of a newly recorded (2009) album that I've heard in a L-O-N-G time. This disc is spectacular. (I got mine from Amazon)

Holy Crap! :eek: The surround mix is totally aggressive, without being the dreaded "gimmicky", and the 24/96 DTS Audio track on the DVD sounds incredible. The detail in the guitars, percussion, and backing instruments will grab your attention right from the opening bars of the first track.

Listening to the tunes I already am familiar with, like "Don't Let Me Be Lonely Tonight", "Rainy Night in Georgia" and "Sailing" brought a smile to my face. What a great recording.

I can't recommend this one enough. Please support Monster Music, as here we have a genuine surround audio disc release in 24/96 that you can play for friends and they will go "Wow!", I'm sure of it. Pure demo material, and it sounds so good.

There's even an "Abbey Road" moment when "Sailing" ends. (You'll get it if you let the disc play through with your monitor on). Speaking of Abbey Road, it sure would be nice to get George Benson's "The other side of Abbey Road" in surround on some format. Anyone remember that one from what seems like 100 years ago?

One thing that got me, though, as I've gotten so used to Blu-Ray discs. When I song is playing, there's a graphic screen with the song title and info on the song. There's also a blurb that says "Press TOP MENU to see the options for listening to this song" (or something like that). Well, I pressed "TOP MENU" and the playback stopped and returned me to the main menu. That doesn't happen with BD discs, there's a real pop-up menu, but aside from that little quirk which is really not a problem with a DVD, this disc is a solid 10+.

Order this disc while you can still get it. I don't know how many were made, in fact, as you can see by looking at the scan above, my "Limited Edition" number was BLANK!!! So, who knows how many there will be out there.

At this point, this disc is well worth the selling price. Go for it! :phones
 

bmoura

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I got mine from Amazon.

At this point, this disc is well worth the selling price. Go for it! :phones
That's probably the way to go. I went to a Best Buy today that has 4 copies available according to the store computer (Emeryville, CA) - and the workers there were unable to locate any of the copies!

Wow.
 

Ge Someone

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Well, I pressed "TOP MENU" and the playback stopped and returned me to the main menu. That doesn't happen with BD discs, there's a real pop-up menu, but aside from that little quirk ...
It's a limitation of the DVD-V (menu) format, DVD-A could have "active" menus as well. As you say, not a big deal, once you know it.
BTW. ordered from Amazon.com
 
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elmer

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A nice surprise in my mailbox today - consider it an early Christmas present. I ordered this directly from Concord a few months ago and almost forgot about it. Have to agree w/Jon - a very aggressive and immersive mix. The DTS 96/24 sounds fantastic. As expected, Benson has assembled a group of the best session players and producers around - Marcus Miller, Tom Scott, most of Toto (Lukather, Porcaro, Paich), Smokey Robinson, Ray Parker Jr., Lee Ritenour, Patti Austin - the list goes on. This is a very slick production and is predominantly "smooth urban/quiet storm" - a fun listen but a little light (for my tastes) on the jazz guitar side. I realize that Benson's bread has been buttered on this stuff for a long time now but it would be great if he put out a full instrumental album reminiscent of his CTI days.

Great mix, great sound, ton's o features courtesy of Monster Music, good content - the mix and fidelity warrants a 10. The music production and playing a 10 - the songs unfortunately a 7.5 - but overall a 9 and a good addition to my collection.
 

Chiburb

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That's probably the way to go. I went to a Best Buy today that has 4 copies available according to the store computer (Emeryville, CA) - and the workers there were unable to locate any of the copies!

Wow.
Read this, happened by Best Buy and checked anyway. There were exactly FOUR copies, and $16.99 later there are three.

Not sure I share Mr. Urban's "demo disc" assessment, but I certainly concur with the 10 rating. Pristine, beautiful (surround) sound. No Wilson or Scheiner at work here, but i'd buy ANY disc mixed like this.
 

Chiburb

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Upon further review...

3rd time through it, and I agree that several tracks are "demo" worthy.

This is a GREAT production.
 

dbmay75

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Thanks Jon, I found myself a sealed copy shopping online at Chicago's Reckless Records (reckless.com) for $10.99 shipped. My limited edition no. box is also blank but there should be enough copies pressed for at least each member here at QQ :D

I knew to expect a lighter jazz/r&b record, certainly nothing that would hark back to the days of Beyond The Blue Horizon or even Breezin' but MAN - what a surround mix! I personally love it when I can level all of my speakers rather than having to crank the rears. Just as with the Ray Charles or Benson/Jarreau project, Monster has created another definite winner for themselves and I hope we see more material from them in the years to come, even if it's at the rate of only one or two albums per year.

The artist/production line up is top notch and whether it's the covers (I almost wish George had sung "Sailing" rather than playing it) or the original material, the entire album from front to back is worth a listen. The behind the scenes video segment is an added bonus to the music (although Noel Lee needs to lay off the tanning salon) and while I'm not usually crazy about digipaks, the packaging is very nice.

$16.99 at Amazon and Best Buy - get your copy now!

Dan
 

JonUrban

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Upon further review...

3rd time through it, and I agree that several tracks are "demo" worthy.

This is a GREAT production.
For this type of genre, there are a few demo quality tunes, not all of them, but there *are* some head turners.

As for the blank LTD ED numbers, well, we could all say that we have #00001! :D All we need is a magic marker! :phones
 

bmoura

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Read this, happened by Best Buy and checked anyway. There were exactly FOUR copies, and $16.99 later there are three.

Not sure I share Mr. Urban's "demo disc" assessment, but I certainly concur with the 10 rating. Pristine, beautiful (surround) sound. No Wilson or Scheiner at work here, but i'd buy ANY disc mixed like this.
I found mine at a Barnes & Noble.

Where were they at BB ?
 

dr. simple

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WOW. I'd definitely call this a demo disc. I can't find any flaws.

One thing I noticed on this disc that I never really noticed on many others is the front positioning, particularly the way George's guitar is between the center and front left speakers. His vocal is always in the center, but on the duets he's a little to the left of the center while the other vocal is to the right of the center.

Fantastic disc.
 

kvsawilson

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I see Amazon has this priced at $14.99 now. I gave this to my brother for Christmas and was able to listen to part of it and thought it did sound real good. I've now ordered a copy for myself. Have to support a company that keeps putting out surround titles.

K
 

Ge Someone

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I received the disc(s) and it certainly is easy listening, smooth jazz style.
That doesn't mean it's no good, here are top guys in the field, besides Benson there's
renowned bassist /composer / producer Marcus Miller.
Benson, Miller, keyboardist Greg Phillinganes, guitarist Jubu and drummer John Robinson make up the core unit for the project. They were joined by special guests: guitarists Lee Ritenour, Steve Lukather, Wah Wah Watson and Norman Brown, vocalists Lalah Hathaway and Patti Austin, keyboardist David Paich, saxophonists Tom Scott and Gerald Albright along with several others.
(They even forget Smokey Robinson in this quote). But I see Elmer listed this before.

While it is good for romantic or relaxing moments, not so much for a party. The 5.1 surround mix is OK but not exceptional. There are occasional discrete instruments and vocals in the rear but emphasis is clearly on the (3) fronts.

I have to play it again before I vote, I'm thinking about an 8+
 

bmoura

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I received the disc(s) and it certainly is easy listening, smooth jazz style.
That doesn't mean it's no good, here are top guys in the field, besides Benson there's
(They even forget Smokey Robinson in this quote). But I see Elmer listed this before.

While it is good for romantic or relaxing moments, not so much for a party. The 5.1 surround mix is OK but not exceptional. There are occasional discrete instruments and vocals in the rear but emphasis is clearly on the (3) fronts.

I have to play it again before I vote, I'm thinking about an 8+
That's my take on it as well. Nice but not exceptional. In the 7 or 8 range.
 

ss9001

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I just listened to it this afternoon, based on all of YOUR recommendations ;) And I'm really impressed!

This is a sleeper, certainly does not have the star quality of the King Crimson releases, but outstanding surround mix nonetheless. I found myself liking the last half of the songs more than the 1st half, starting with Nuthin But a Party. I particularly liked Rainy Night in GA, but I'm biased ;) I always liked that song. There's more to this than plain-jane contemporary smooth jazz, especially as you listen past track 6.

I can't find fault with any of the songs' mixes. Lots of tight bass (sub fans will be pleased), smooth vocals and detail without being harsh, bright or fatiguing, great instrument positioning. Music wise - it'll depend on your tastes.

I give the mix 9, music 8. I really think this deserves a solid 9, if not 10. And we need to support the few new multichannel titles that come out.

It's a bit of a shame Breezin' kind of stamped Benson as a smooth jazz kind of guy, because some of us earlier work like White Rabbit has definite improvisational elements and creative guitar work.

How does this compare to the DVD-Audio of Breezin? Surround and sound quality wise? I was thinking of seeking out Breezin on ebay, and wanted to know.

Thanks!
ss9001
 

ss9001

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One thing I noticed on this disc that I never really noticed on many others is the front positioning, particularly the way George's guitar is between the center and front left speakers. His vocal is always in the center, but on the duets he's a little to the left of the center while the other vocal is to the right of the center.

Fantastic disc.
I'm with you on the positioning of the vocals. One of the songs, Telephone Call Away, had Lalah Hathaway right of center but not hard right....really great front soundstaging.

"Fantastic disc". Agreed! :D
 

fredblue

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A "10".
Absolutely fantastic in every respect!
I urge any QQ-ers who haven't got it yet to grab a copy, sit back in the sweet spot and ENJOY..!!
 

sbrom

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Another high-scoring title in the QQ poll arena. As I get deeper in this surround sound hobby, I'm trying to buy as many highly reviewed surround albums I can, at reasonable cost. Build up my collection with max bang for the buck!

This Benson entry qualifies big-time. Great artistry, mostly excellent sound quality, and an active yet comfortable mix.

My only personal quibble, forcing me to knock a point off the score, is a bit too much low bass. It may be normal for the genre, but for my ears 6 dB less would be perfect. Easily accomplished by receiver EQ but I prefer playing flat.

Highly recommended, and a tremendous value at $10 from Monster. (y)
 

The Bright Side

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Checked this album out on Spotify and liked it a lot. Especially "Sailing" and "Rainy Night", which are incredible songs to begin with, and Benson really does them justice.

Based on your glowing reviews here, I'd love to buy one, but Monster Music seems to be having some fun at international buyers' expense. o_O They have big buttons advertising free international shipping, but when trying to purchase, it ends in a greyed-out "Set Country" button.

Anybody been able to buy this from their website from outside the US?
 
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