HiRez Poll Fiedler, Arthur - GREATEST HITS OF THE '70S VOLS. 1 & 2 [SACD]

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Rate the SACD of Arthur Fiedler - GREATEST HITS OF THE '70S VOLS. 1 & 2

  • 9

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • 5

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • 4

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • 3

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • 2

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • 1: Poor Content, Surround Mix, and Fidelity

    Votes: 0 0.0%

  • Total voters
    5

rtbluray

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Please post your thoughts and comments on this 2016 SACD release from Dutton Vocalion.

Full info below (all from the Dutton Vocalion website):
GREATEST HITS OF THE '70s • VOL. 1
THE ORIGINAL LP ARL1 0035 (1973) STEREO
ARD1 0035 QUADRAPHONIC
1. Popcorn (Kingsley)
2. Play Me (Diamond)
3. Me and Julio Down by the Schoolyard (Simon)
4. Amazing Grace (Trad)
5. Everything is Beautiful (Stevens)
6. Lost Horizon (Bacharach; David)
7. Help Me Make it Through the Night (Kristofferson)
8. Song Sung Blue (Diamond)
9. The First Time Ever (I Saw Your Face) (MacColl)
10. We’ve Only Just Begun (Nichols; Williams)

GREATEST HITS OF THE '70s • VOL. 2
THE ORIGINAL LP ARL1 0552 (1974) STEREO
ARD1 0552 QUADRAPHONIC
11. Love’s Theme (White)
12. The Way We Were (Hamlisch; A & M Bergman)
13. (I Never Promised You a) Rose Garden (South)
14. One Less Bell to Answer (Bacharach; David)
15. Leave Me Alone (Ruby Red Dress) (Laurie)
16. Time in a Bottle (Croce)
17. The Most Beautiful Girl (Wilson; Sherrill; Bourke)
18. You Are the Sunshine of My Life (Wonder)
19. Killing Me Softly with His Song (Fox; Gimbel)
20. Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy (Raye; Prince)
21. Take Me Home, Country Roads (Danoff; Nivert; Denver)
22. Joy to the World (Axton)

Multi-ch Stereo
All tracks available in stereo and multi-channel

SA-CD
This hybrid CD can be played on any standard CD players

CDLK4598

(n) :) (y)


 

steelydave

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I don't post reviews too often, but I thought it would be worthwhile to listen to, and post short reviews of some of these lower profile D-V discs because the majority of them are from obscure enough quads that people don't know them, or what the mixes are like.

So this the first one I thought I'd do..

You can see the tracklist above, it basically compiles a lot of MOR hits from 1973 and 1974, and rearranges them for an orchestra. The arrangements are pretty conventional for the most part with the strings playing the lead melodies supported by horns and percussion, but there are a few tracks that were pleasant surprises. There's something hilariously incongruous about a gigantic orchestra playing 'Popcorn', and I liked the way they figured out how to mimick the chucka-chucka wah-wah guitar on 'Love's Theme' using only orchestral instruments too. I think the arrangements are slightly better on vol.2, there are a few toward the 2nd half of the album that are a little more daring or unconventional which was nice because after 15 songs or so the album was getting a little 'samey'. There are a few moments where you can tell the classical musicians are struggling to find the right feel for pop and rock rhythms and phrasing, but it's never so much that it detracts or distracts, it's more just interesting to observe.

The sound quality throughout is phenomenal - this may be an album of pop covers done as a commercial cash grab, but it's still recorded with all of the professionalism that made RCA one of the worlds leading classical labels. The dynamic range is enormous too, there are a couple of moments where things go from very quiet to very loud in the blink of an eye, and because I wasn't fully paying attention it actually startled me. Mike Dutton's expertise with remastering orchestral music really shines here, when I was listening to this I kept thinking about how awful it must have been for these guys to spend all this time making high quality recordings only to have the public be listening to them on something as crappy as 8-track tape.

The mix is very discrete, but it's not like a Columbia mix where you get loads of isolated sounds in one rear speaker, or things swirling around the soundfield. It's very much a 'surround' mix, as you feel wrapped up in it. The strings are generally in a horseshoe around you, with the lead/melody part in the front and the background stuff on the sides and in the back. Horns are similar but often pushed more toward the rear. Percussion tends to be in stereo across one side wall, ie. front left and rear left or front right and rear right.


This kind of stuff probably isn't everyone's cup of tea, but if you do like it you can't do much better than a release like this - two full albums and an audiophile remastering for £10!

Using rtbluray's rating scale:

Content: 1/3 (A lot of these songs I feel are kinda dull, if this had been an album of Funkadelic covers on the other hand...)
Surround Mix: 2/3 (Discrete, well balanced, but not socks-blown-off)
Fidelity: 2.5/3
High-Res Disc: 1/1

So my final rating is a strong 6.5, although your personal experience may be higher or lower depending on how much you like the song choice.
 

4-earredwonder

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Nice, honest assessment of the POPS two~fer, Dave.

I gave it a 7.

My two favorite Stereo Arthur Fieldler/ Boston Pops RCAs are "Stardust" (which I have on Reel to Reel) and the Living Stereo of "Pops Round~up" (Western Themes). Both are great albums and are certainly deserving of the D~V stereo SACD reissue treatment.
 
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