HiRez Poll Charles, Ray - GENIUS LOVES COMPANY [SACD]

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Rate the SACD of Ray Charles - GENIUS LOVES COMPANY


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    38

JonUrban

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Please post your comments, thoughts and observations.......(y) (n)

Ray Charles Genius Loves Company SACD Front.jpgRay Charles Genius Loves Company SACD Back.jpg
 
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Bob R

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Oh, I wish that I could have given this disc more than the 6 than I did.

Mighty fine songs with a great guest list. I truly love Ray Charles.

But, the concept of nailing Ray in one speaker and the guest singer in the other, just annoys the heck out of me.

I prefer to listen to this disc in the background, not in my sweet spot.
 

BigE43

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Unfortunately, Ray's voice was gone before this project got finished. It has better qualities than the redbook cd but is not a master work. I guess if you had a choice, and both the redbook and Hi-rez were the same $, you should go with the Hi-rez.

Putting this recording on a Hi-rez format is like putting Z-rated radials on a Yugo.

Eric
 

Kazaam

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Hi, Bob R! I'm with you on this one. I think this would've been better had it not been mixed with Ray in one channel and the guest singer in the other. The stereo tracks don't do this. So why did someone get cutesy on the multichannel mix? I love multi-channel. I even love most of the over-the-top stuff. But what they did with the voices just isn't right. Still... It's not horrible. I went with a 6.

btw - I love the duet Ray does with Diana Krall.
 

ChristopherLees

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If there were no vocals , I'd probably give it a 10 as the backing tracks are fantastic. I don't mind the left/ right voices.....then again I like listening to "With the Beatles" in stereo.
Yes Perhaps Ray's voice wasn't as good as the old days, and his duet with Elton anoys me a bit as they are both singing around the melody (wavering around) and not precisely on it. ..But gee his voice is still pretty good and is alot better than Sinatras last efforts or Peggy Lee's disasterous Chesky cd
where she sounded like she was singing from the grave.
 

Foxman

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Well I'm bummed, I missed this was available on SACD and purchased it on CD. Oh well, I suppose I will have to pawn the cd one day and find this one, sad to hear it is not the best mix. Would everyone rather have this mix than the CD at least??
 

Kazaam

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Foxman said:
Well I'm bummed, I missed this was available on SACD and purchased it on CD. Oh well, I suppose I will have to pawn the cd one day and find this one, sad to hear it is not the best mix. Would everyone rather have this mix than the CD at least??
As to you question... I'm not entirely sure. I suppose I prefer the multi-channel. It has lots of good moments, to be sure, but it's just that I really hate that the surround mix has Ray in one speaker and the duet partner in the other speaker. I hate it bad.

If you didn't already have the CD it'd be a no brainer to get the SACD since it's a hybrid, but... :confused:
 

Guy Robinson

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I don't find anything wrong with the positioning of the vocalists. Sonically this disc is very good. Typical Concord. I gave it a 9. Ray's voice is largely gone but it is still a better release than a lot of the stuff coming out. I bought Snow Patrol at the same time. Yeesh! Same price as well. The Charles disc is miles above. If you want to hear compression pick up Snow Patrol. I would go on my little rant about what a waste of time this "technique" is but it would take more space than is available on this forum.
 

bmoura

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Well I'm bummed, I missed this was available on SACD and purchased it on CD. Oh well, I suppose I will have to pawn the cd one day and find this one, sad to hear it is not the best mix. Would everyone rather have this mix than the CD at least??
I would think so. As earlier raters noted, Ray has been in better form on earlier discs. Still the sonics on the SACD and the Surround mix are worth owning.

You can also hear him in a Concert SACD from earlier in his career on the "Live at the Olympia" SACD (see http://www.highfidelityreview.com/news/news.asp?newsnumber=12617498 for details) and on a couple tunes on the excellent Pancho Sanchez Single Inventory Surround Sound SACD "Out of Sight!" on Concord Records.
 

ss9001

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Even tho his voice in this set was like Sinatra past his prime, this recording strikes me as a classic, to be enjoyed, no matter what one's musical taste, for its emotion as well as the excellent multichannel layered sound. Most of the time, I agree that right-left vocals are contrived and annoying, on this recording it didn't bother me because of the songs, the emotion in the vocals and the overall recording balance. Excellent sound quality & use of surrounds. For me, like the Elton John SACD's, the best way to fully enjoy this one is the sweet spot.

Regardless of voices showing their age, this is a 10, IMO. If anyone listens to It Was a Very Good Year, and doesn't hear the feeling that Nelson and Charles put into it, or turns up the volume for Fever, Sinner's Prayer, or the bluesy song with Raitt, then what can one say :eek:

I recently just bought this and am glad I did. This mix by Al Schmidt puts the Genesis over bright & compressed SACD's to shame.

ss9001
 
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Larry Geller

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I just cracked it out & listened to the 5.1 mix. The vocals are just barely left-right. They're at 11:00 & 1:00 if hard left-right is 9:00 & 3:00. I gave it a 7. If it was HARD left & right, it would have gotten a 9. I LOVE that kind of stuff!
 

dbmay75

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I'm not nuts about duet projects, but this won 8 grammies (only Santana, Norah Jones and Michael Jackson have done this) and Ray is a legend so I had this on my list of discs to pick up, but forgot about it...until yesterday :)

I found both the Monster SuperDisc (96/24 DTS) and the hybrid SACD at Amoeba Music here in SF laying side by side. They were mint and Amoeba had them priced so ridiculously low, I couldn't resist. Besides, I enjoy the task of comparing formats whenever possible.

The Monster SuperDisc is a CD & DVD housed in a digipak package w/two booklets while the SACD happened to be a promo ... but, but, in a DVD-A jewel case?! As we all know, some artists such as Natalie Merchant, KD Lang and Stone Temple Pilots had their DVD-A's housed in CD jewel cases, but this is the first time I've seen an SACD, booklets n' all, in a DVD-A jewel case. Anyone else seen this before? I don't have my camera right now, but I'll post photos in a day or two if anyone is interested.

Anyhow, for a duets project ... considering we're talking about some of the finest artists of all-time alongside Ray, the CD makes for a great listen in the car, office, etc. Ray's voice may not be in perfect pitch at times, which I normally can't tolerate, but considering death was upon him in the months and weeks to follow this release, I can overlook this. And as for Ray's voice being hard left and the guest being hard right, I personally wouldn't want it any other way. I mean, would you want to hear Al Di Meola and Paco De Lucia's articulate flamenco guitar phrases both coming at you from the middle of the room? I certainly wouldn't pay hard-earned bucks for that kind of cluttered engineering. If you close your eyes and imagine Ray and his guests in the studio singing under the mic, it's clearly the way it should be IMO.

As for the mix, it's done very well. I didn't have to touch the speaker settings on my remote and instrumentation is more or less where it should be. I suppose this makes it predictable in a way, but this is not the kind of music that I would desire a multitude of surprises. I haven't referenced the booklets for credits, etc. but other than the fidelity, I don't expect to hear a difference between the SuperDisc and the SACD.

If you haven't yet heard this album and are considering picking this up in one format or the other, there are some definite clinchers between the two releases:

The Monster SuperDisc includes a nice menu layout and some features which are both interesting and helpful such as a 1985 segment with photographer Norman Seeff and a speaker/receiver tutorial from the "Head Monster" Noel Lee as well as a THX audio/video test. The SuperDisc also includes 2 bonus tracks not available on the SACD: one with Take 6 ... a gorgeous 5.1 vocal showcase ... although Ray's presence is missing from this track. The other is with Poncho Sanchez so it's Ray Charles in a salsa enviornment. Different and cool. In addition, there are high-definition stereo digital music files for your iPod as well as a Dolby headphone surround feature so you can simulate a 5.1 enviornment with two cups on your ears. Hmmm.

The SACD is enhanced - when played through Windows (I couldn't access the video via my Apple laptop), it also features the Norman Seeff segment.

To conclude, great sonics, great mix, excellent musicianship and nice packaging/features. I can play this around my kids without scaring them and would definitely demo this for the uninitiated who are still only aware of a 2-channel world.

I give this a 10 :banana:

Cheers,
Dan
 

haikubass

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Yeah, I've seen a SACD in jewel's clothing before - in fact I got it housed just beside the Ray Charles disc. No big surprise here, it's 'Ultimate Mancini' by Concord Records. Nice one just for 'The Pink Panther Theme' alone... and still available here!

the SACD happened to be a promo ... but, but, in a DVD-A jewel case?! As we all know, some artists such as Natalie Merchant, KD Lang and Stone Temple Pilots had their DVD-A's housed in CD jewel cases, but this is the first time I've seen an SACD, booklets n' all, in a DVD-A jewel case. Anyone else seen this before?
 

edisonbaggins

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Wowzers. Not sure I should vote, as I have the Monster Superdisc, but this is really great.
Some people need to untwist the panties. Ray sounds old, but not bad. He died shortly after recording, for criminey sakes.
The vocals somewhat offset are actually nice. You get a sense of where two people singing a duet (to you) would be standing.
Wonderful songs. Tremendous guests. It's a knock-out. Will listen with Mum soon!
 

GOS

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Wowzers. Not sure I should vote, as I have the Monster Superdisc, but this is really great.
Some people need to untwist the panties. Ray sounds old, but not bad. He died shortly after recording, for criminey sakes.
The vocals somewhat offset are actually nice. You get a sense of where two people singing a duet (to you) would be standing.
Wonderful songs. Tremendous guests. It's a knock-out. Will listen with Mum soon!
I love the way it sounds as well....
 

Clint Eastwood

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Wowzers. Not sure I should vote, as I have the Monster Superdisc, but this is really great.
Some people need to untwist the panties. Ray sounds old, but not bad. He died shortly after recording, for criminey sakes.
The vocals somewhat offset are actually nice. You get a sense of where two people singing a duet (to you) would be standing.
Wonderful songs. Tremendous guests. It's a knock-out. Will listen with Mum soon!
Ray died in 2004 and was 73...Paul McCartney is 73 and sounds great...Tony Bennett is freaking 89 and sounds great...a lot of singers reach that age and sound fine...IMO Ray's vocals don't sound like an old man...they just sound bad...I think you are more impressed with the overall sound of the disc...which is excellent(every one of the Monster Discs I have sound great)...and not really concentrating on the vocals....I'm just talking about his voice...not the disc itself...which I like a lot...even with Ray's voice I still like it...
 

edisonbaggins

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His vocals just don't bother me... I heard them loud and clear and for what they are. For one thing I have zero nostalgia for how he would have sounded young.
To me, he's the "uh-huh" dude for Pepsi.
Based on previous reviews I was expecting far worse.

Incidentally, Mrs. Baggynz, upon hearing the Take 6 track, commented that she likes them and also Boyz II Men, so I picked up the II DTS disc for around $8 on Amerzon.
 

Clint Eastwood

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His vocals just don't bother me... I heard them loud and clear and for what they are. For one thing I have zero nostalgia for how he would have sounded young.
To me, he's the "uh-huh" dude for Pepsi.
Based on previous reviews I was expecting far worse.

Incidentally, Mrs. Baggynz, upon hearing the Take 6 track, commented that she likes them and also Boyz II Men, so I picked up the II DTS disc for around $8 on Amerzon.
Well...that explains it...if you never heard him in his prime like I and the other reviewers have..I can understand how that wouldn't bother you..and like I said...the overall sound quality is excellent for that disc...
 

sbrom

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Really late on this. I just picked this up (2016) in Superdisc form while browsing a Nashville used record store.

There's a lot of history here, performers no longer with us. My favorite track is the duet with BB king. I might call it a trio with Ray, BB, and Lucille!

Regarding the singer's position, maybe the superdisc is mixed differently than the SACD. I hear nothing that's hard left/right. They are definitely positioned near the edges, but it seems very natural like they are on stage in front of me.

The rest of the mix is nicely discrete. Some of the tracks have mid-bass boom. Overall a 9 for me.
 

sjcorne

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Listened to this (Monster SuperDisc) for the first time in a while today. It's pretty discrete. Vocals, drums, and piano are in the front, with organ, guitar, and reverb in the rears.

It's interesting reading the comments about the left/right split vocals. I agree it is rather strange how they mixed it: Ray is in the left, the guest singer is in the right, but BOTH are in the center channel. The resulting effect is that each singer is suspended in the phantom space between a front channel and the center.

However, the center channel doesn't have anything that isn't also in the mains (vocals, drums, bass), so if you mute it, you get a nice discrete quad mix with vocals cleanly separated into each front channel.

Here's the first track, "Here We Go Again". You can "see" that the vocals very discretely alternate between the fronts, but the same content is replicated in the center.

38909

Ditch the center and sub and you get a much more discrete presentation, if that's your preference.

38910
 
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