HiRez Poll Fagen, Donald - MORPH THE CAT [DVD-A]

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Rate the DVD-A of Donald Fagen - MORPH THE CAT


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JonUrban

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Please post your thoughts and comments on this new release from the founder of Steely Dan. (y) :phones (n)

This is a benchmark of 5.1 HiRez presentation. If all HiRez 5.1 was released in this manner, I would be thrilled.

You get a Redbook CD and a DVD-A that includes the surround mix at 24/96, the Stereo tracks at 24/96, DTS, Dolby Digital, all in a standard sized jewel box, and an in-store price of $19.99. You cannot beat this!

And that's even BEFORE I get into the music!! šŸŒ
 

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DrMabuse2001

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Just took the first full listen - first impressions...
Definitely DF all the way - there is a certain familiarity about all things Fagen/Becker/Steely Dan and this album is no different.
The surround mix was by Elliot Scheiner and it continues in the tradition of "Two Against nature" and "Everything Must GO" in it's tight syncopation and precise placement.
The drums and bass are grounded, the main vocal anchored in the centre and the backing vocals surround with a lot of warmth.
First blow by - fave track is #8 called "Mary Shut The Garden Door".
There is no one doing what the Steely Dan guys do and they do it VERY well.
If this is your thing - HIGHLY recommend it!
/\/\
 

elmer

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(y) This gets a 10 all around. This is not one of your science experiment 5.1 mixes which is good if you want to make sure that your speakers are hooked up correctly. You are totally immersed in the mix. No need to belabor the obvious Elliot Scheiner kudos. This album was recorded for 5.1 from the get go. Fagen employs the same top shelf session men he has for the last 5 - 10 years and you can hear every nuance of their contributions on this album. When ES gives you a little aural whammy like on the track "Brite Nightgown" it beats the most audacious 5.1 mix - but it's part of the music not a cheap effect.

As far as the music is concerned, this is Donald Fagen/Steely Dan territory no doubt - the lyrics are a real treat and bear your attention - dark, funny, even touching at moments. Great session work all around - Howard Levy ( a great, under the radar jazz harmonicat) lays down a tremendous solo on the Ray Charles inspired "What I Do." Jon Herrington, Wayne Krantz and Hugh McCracken guitar playing never disappoints. The only extras are a screen capture for each song -nothing to get excited about - to be quite honest, I couldn't care less - give me more DVD - A mixes like this and I will gladly trade the lousy EPK's and self - indulgent video nonsense usually served up as "bonus" content.
 

Guy Robinson

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I listened to the CD on the way home in the car. After it was done I was thinking that the music was good and would probably take a few listens to get into fully like most good titles. Then when I got home I played the DVD-A. WOW!! This is another of those ES demo discs. Discrete surround, warm, lots of good clean bass. No over emphasized top end. I wasn't going to buy this one a few days ago because basically I felt the song I was hearing all the time, "The H Gang" was just more of the same and IMO this is still the weakest song in the set. Am I ever glad I picked it up. It wasn't the easiest thing to find here in Toronto either. The HMV stores in the malls seemed to get one copy each and of the 4 BestBuy and Future Shops I went to didn't have any copies either. I had an HMV put their one copy away for me fairly early this morning. I think they made a mistake as well because it was priced at $19.99. I have to give this a 10. It's going to spend a lot of time in my player.
 

Cai Campbell

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Another exceptional Donald Fagen release with another exceptional Elliot Scheiner surround mix! The music is excellent and very accessible. I warmed up to it right away, much more quickly than I did with Kamakiriad.

Nine strong points here.

Warner Bros. rocks! The DVD-A titles trickle out, but at least they're still supporting high-rez surround releases.
 

JonUrban

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Cai Campbell said:
.....

Warner Bros. rocks! The DVD-A titles trickle out, but at least they're still supporting high-rez surround releases.
This is a good point. I like the fact that it's full 24/96, 5.1 and stereo as well (not that I'd ever play it that way :D ).

Right now, I'm really loving "It's What I Do"! Great tune.
 

Cai Campbell

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JonUrban said:
Right now, I'm really loving "It's What I Do"! Great tune.
Yeah, that's a great tune, probably my #2 at the moment. Personally, I'm groovin' most on the title cut, along with the reprise. Heck, this is a great ALBUM! Becoming a lost art, I'm afraid.

This disc really made me want to give the "Nightfly" DVD-A another spin. Man, that disc is without a doubt in my top five of all surround titles.
 

JonUrban

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NOTE: I merged the two "MORPH" threads for future reference! You all are not hallucinating! :D
 

analogdemon

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OK I am completely impressed. Donald Fagen is now on #3 and has yet to put out a bad album. The music is awesome, the mix is beautiful. A greasy, unapologetic 10!
 

Don C

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I've listened to it three times now. The sound quality is as good as it gets. The music is not quite as engaging as Nighfly, but a bit better than Kamakiriad. I'll give it a 9.
 

Frantic

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Unbelievable:banana:

This IMHO rates a solid 10(y)

ES has mixed another classic!

The band is superb and Fagen shines. I am very impressed with the multiple guitar work as it dances around the room. A throwback to earlier work.

I do not need extras with efforts such as this. My favorites at this writing are H-Gang and Brite Nightgown. Although all are quite good.:smokin

How can DVD-A be put on a back burner? It does not get any better than this!
 

bugdaddy

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certainly agree with the consensus on the mix. zowie! those rhythm guitars can't help make you smile. but you know, when i put this in context with the last fagen and and the last two steely's, i'm thinking i've heard these same tasteful grooves a time or two (or more) before. i give it an 8 (10 for the mix).
 

JonUrban

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This one takes time. The first few listens, I enjoyed the mix but was not that impressed with all of the tunes. However, at this point, I love the frickin' disc. Even the songs I thought were boring now shine. This one is a 10 all the way, but you have to give it time.
 

omega4

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I scored this an 8, but that was on the basis of one quick and then one complete listen, and I like what I hear but not yet as good as Nightfly to me. It may grow on me more, and I note Jon's comment about that. Great mix though as you would expect.

The most important thing for me is that this is how DVD-A discs should be released. One disc for the car and one for home. It completely overshadows Dualdisc because you know the Red Book side will play on any CD player. I bought this for Ā£12.99 from www.play.com - the single CD is Ā£8.95, so the Ā£4.04 premium is an absolute bargain. WELL DONE WARNERS!!
 

IDJIT DRAGON

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JonUrban said:
This one takes time. The first few listens, I enjoyed the mix but was not that impressed with all of the tunes. However, at this point, I love the frickin' disc. Even the songs I thought were boring now shine. This one is a 10 all the way, but you have to give it time.
Agreed, the MCh mix is exemplary, great bass - still a little uncertain about the songs in the middle but the bookends are great.

PS I love the vibra (xylo?)phone run in the rears on Brite Nightgown - gives me goosebumps(y)

A 9 from me

Cheers

Martin
 

JonUrban

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I am still enjoying this album. However, I was thinking. If it were not from an artist that I really liked, would I have given it a chance? Frankly, on the first two passes, I was not that impressed. Even though I saw him live where he did 3 tunes from this disc, I still was not thinking that this would be a "classic".

However, after "learning" the tunes (in your brain), you get to appreciate them and start to really like them and admire the song construction and musicmanship.

That being said, "How hard should we have to work to like new music"? This may be a topic for another thread, but it seems to me that albums like this will be dismissed by many who do not take the time to "learn" them. Seems like these days, people don't take the time to get into anything new. "The Eagles Greatest Hits" is a lot safer listen! :D
 

Guy Robinson

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In my experience the best music over time is that which takes longer for you to "learn.". Music which becomes immediately likable often becomes older faster.
 

dr. simple

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Guy Robinson said:
In my experience the best music over time is that which takes longer for you to "learn.". Music which becomes immediately likable often becomes older faster.
I agree. And that being said, I think this disc will last the test of time.

The fidelity of this disc is not even debatable. The mix is typical Elliott Scheiner - not that "typical" is a bad thing - but his are often the same: bass, drums, keyboards and lead vocals in front; ear candy (i.e., background vocals, rhythm guitars, horns, extra keyboards) in the back. Very discreet and very pure.

As far as the content goes, I wonder how Fagen keeps writing gem after gem in the same style. It's more of the same, yet different. I gave it a 10.
 

Chris Gerhard

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Wow, I love this disc already after only one listen. I know this guy takes a long time to make music that sounds really similar to what he did the last time, but somehow he makes it work. I will have to get Kamakiriad as my next DVD-A purchase. A 9 here.

Chris
 
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