Norchestra & GNU Quartet – Suite For The Seagulls

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Review by T.J.N. – Norway

Then I finally have been listening to the last tapes. And I have to say that the Norchestra tape is fantastic! You know, I have all my life lived at the Norwegian west coast, approx. 200 m. from the seaside, in fact just a 1,5 hour drive south from Haugesund where the NO people is from so I have grown up whith seagulls just outside my door….

And when I listening to this music and close my eyes I can see the seagulls, when it is flying quiet in the air checking the area, when it see something to eat, and when it fight for that food against a bunch of other seagulls. So the composer have been living with seagulls all his life I can imagine….

The music is beautiful, from those melodic lines to the dynamic changes in the approach to the music, just like a seagulls life…(and a human beeing`s life too….)
And I very much like the integration between Norchestra and GNU Quartet, they are playing together, it is always a danger that the musicians sitting for themselves somewhere else and play when doing x-overs like this. Very good produced!

And the sound; GORGEOUS!! It is so clear, clean and dynamic, there is this feeling of no limits all the way from top to bottom, the strings sounds like strings, the guitar sound is just fantastic! Everything is among the very best out there!!

So as I said it was worth waiting for!
Thanks again for everything, the service the music the sound, and not the least; your positivity!


 

Analogy Records Sampler 15 IPS

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Review by Brian Greenfield, Nottingham, UK.

This sampler tape is an excellent introduction to the artists and their music that are available through Analogy records. The fact that the 15 IPS sampler has customisable options, as well as the price, makes it a superb way of getting to know the music and the recording quality that are available.
The sampler has a selection of 9 tracks that represent the artists that Analogy have recorded. Most of the tracks are complete tracks as opposed to just partial track samples that some samplers provide.
The quality of music on offer here is superb. This is as close as it’s possible to get to hearing the artists and musicians as they were in the studio. The sampler, as well as all the other master tapes that Analogy sell, are taken directly from the multi-track masters. It doesn’t get any better than this!
The sampler also shows the superb attention to detail and passion that Roberto Vigo clearly puts in at the time of recording.
It has also opened my mind to artists and musical styles that I wouldn’t have normally considered buying. In particular, the tracks by Andrea Celeste are wonderful and engaging, and the Elias Nardi Group was a real eye opener and pulled me so deep into the music that I lost myself and didn’t want to come out again.
I ended up ordering two of the Premium tapes from Roberto after hearing this sampler tape, and I feel several more orders following up soon.
If you are able to make the most of 15 IPS tapes (I am sure the 7.5 IPS is still excellent) then this cannot be recommended highly enough as a way to understand what Analogy are doing for their artists and for our beloved music industry. If only all music had this lavish attention to detail applied to it the world would be a more colourful and enjoyable place.


 

Andrea Celeste – Kaleidoscope

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Review by Brian Greenfield, Nottingham, UK.

I ordered and bought this album based on the sampler tracks that I had heard on the Analogy Sampler tape. Boy did I make the right decision!
Andrea’s voice is captured in such a sublime way on the recordings by Roberto Vigo. The wonderful tone and textures that Andrea applies to this music is stunning. The range of tracks on this album is also a surprise, with some different styles and genres represented, which all work so well in this collection. I absolutely love the different timing changes in several of the tracks; they are so refreshing to hear. Every time I listen to this tape I get more and more out of the recording.
I got into open reel tapes because I wanted the best quality recordings that it was possible to buy. This is a prime example of why this was absolutely the right decision. Music like this simply shines on this format and you cannot get closer to the artist and the musicians than on a tape like this. We audiophiles need to sometimes be careful not to let the quality dictate the artists that we listen to. It should be the other way round really. However, Analogy provides me with the best of both worlds. Great artists and musicians on the very best format available.
The quality of the packaging of these tapes is also superb. Such attention to detail. The boxes and printing are performed by artisans who clearly know their craft. It all adds to the experience and in my opinion justifies the costs of the purchase. Tape is not cheap these days, but this album, with the quality of the music, recording, and packaging, are absolutely worth it.
At some point in the near future I shall also be ordering Andrea’s previous album, something Amazing, along with, I am sure, other albums from Analogy.
Highly recommended.


 

Elias Nardi Group – Flowers Of Fragility

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Review by Brian Greenfield, Nottingham, UK.

I ordered and bought this album based on the sampler tracks that I had heard on the Analogy Sampler tape. This is not normally the type of music I listen to but the sampler track certainly intrigued me enough to purchase this album.
These musicians create such an enveloping soundscape. The choice of instruments is certainly unusual but they work so well together, creating this beguiling music that simply draws you in. It is utterly captivating. The music, and the way it is recorded, draws you deeply into the soundscape. I listen to music with my eyes closed, and normally with the lights very low or off, and I was so drawn into the music I wondered where I was when it finished. Breathtaking.
The way Roberto Vigo has captured these instruments is beautiful. I swear I can reach out and touch the instruments as they are playing. The flute is so vibrant and captivating and really adds to the drama of these pieces. Several tracks have a nice driving underpinning beat that works so well with such unusual instruments. All of the sounds and textures that these instruments create, especially the Oud and the Bandonean, are absolutely wonderful to hear.
At some point in the near future I shall be ordering several other albums from Analogy.
Just wonderful!


 

Liguriani – Stundai & Red Wine – Pickin’ Friends

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Review by Paul Holdstock, Manchester, UK

The following review is for three Premium Original Master Tapes: Liguriani – Stundai (#AR006) and Red Wine – Pickin’ Friends Vol. 1 & 2 (#AR007 & #AR008). All three are recorded on ¼ in. SM468 tape, 2 track at 15 ips with CCIR EQ. The review covers three aspects: the presentation and quality of the packaging; the quality of the recording, and finally the music.

The tapes are presented in sturdy cardboard cases, with a rather nice black textured outer facing and embossed silver “Analogy Records” logo. Around the case is a thin card sleeve, which keeps the case closed and also provides details of the contents along the spine. Inside, the tapes are enclosed in ziplock polythene bags with sachets of desiccant. A small colour booklet with “sleeve notes”, etc. is also included with each tape. All very elegant and eminently practical. The tape reels are works of art in themselves. The brushed aluminium flanges are some of the nicest I have seen. They are precisely cut, with no sharp edges, and most importantly are perfectly flat. The cut-outs are uniquely shaped and are both attractive to look at and provide easy access when threading up tape. The plastic NAB hubs are of equal quality; correctly sized and concentric. Even during high speed rewind there is no sign of wobble or chatter. Tape is spooled neatly and correctly with tails out, and generous lengths of leader tape are attached; green at the start and red at the end.

My deck has been set up and biased for SM468 tape, so no adjustment should be necessary, and that proved to be the case. The levels were spot on from the start and remained so throughout all three tapes. I cannot fault the recording quality in any way.

One of the things I love about listening to tapes is the subtle detail that adds to the overall ambience. This detail might be present on vinyl records, but it is often lost in the surface noise; and it is completely missing from any CD. With tapes, and these three recording in particular, there really is a sense of the musicians being in to room. Now, my apartment is no concert hall, so this effect is not so noticeable with large orchestral recordings, but with the intimate recordings presented on these three tapes, I felt as if every musician was playing just for me. Each instrument and voice was clearly identifiable, with all the nuances conveyed within a harmonious and balanced mix. The only slight deviation from near perfection was the occasional loss of vocal clarity on the Red Wine recording, particularly when the banjo was so strident. But this is a very minor issue, and does not in any way detract from the overall enjoyment.

Liguriani are completely new to me, as are traditional Ligurian songs, so my purchase of Stundai was a bit of a shot in the dark. I am quite familiar with the Italian voice in opera, but in folk music it is a whole new experience. And in the case of Liguriani, what a wonderful experience. The music has obvious similarities to the Celtic & Gaelic music that I know so well, but the addition of the Italian voices was quite mesmerising. Not speaking Italian, I have no idea what the lyrics mean, but the poetic timbre of the voice blends seamlessly with the music.

I have heard a couple of songs by Red Wine before, but these were the first full albums I have listened to. The music is perhaps a little more upbeat and joyful than southern US music from which it is inspired, and is all the better for it. Whereas Stundai is an album for a lazy Sunday afternoon with glass or two of pigato, contrary to the name of the band, Pickin’ Friends is more for a Saturday night with friends and a few beers. All three albums in their own ways made for thoroughly enjoyable listening.

Equipment used: Tascam BR-20, Cyrus 8A, Spendor SPA1.


 

Peter Erskine European Trio – Live in Genova & Elias Nardi Group – Flowers Of Fragility

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Review by T.J.N. – Norway

“The tapes from AR is great products. The sound is very modern, clear and with fantastisc dynamics! The 3D and the sounstage is superb. The tapes itself is coming in a fantastic cover with all the info you will need, pictures, booklet etc., it even comes with a personal letter to the byer.
The service from AR is reference. A very quick delivery with a personall follow up. The packing itself is the best you can get.
I will also like to say that the personell at AR is very open minded, always open for inputs and willing to answer questions and comments.

Highly recommended!”


 

Analogy Records Whole Catalog

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Review by Matej Isak – Mono and Stereo

Yesterday Roberto ‘Robbo’ Vigo from Analogy Record brought the entire label analog catalog. All tapes are fresh new and recorded on 1/4″ factory fresh SM468, 2 tracks, 15ips, CCIR. After playing first song via Studer A807 there was no second guessing or contemplating. I’ve invited few of the friends and we all agreed regarding the sound. Tapes are in the league of their own.

What is different from other reel to reel record labels? Each, and every tape is an actual master coming directly from the mix board. So each customer is getting the same quality. All the premium tapes comes in exclusive packaging and with the personalized, singed certificate. But thats not all. With each premium master track one gets and an exclusive letter, that open up the door to something completely different. Via Analog Record you can invite the same band from the reels to perform directly at your home. Its a premium service and something, that not all will ignite, but a thoughtful and out of the box thinking.

I love the direction Roberto ‘Robbo’ Vigo took with his venture. From the first moments of unpacking the tapes, your treated with the luxury feeling and proud ownership. I really wish more companies in high-end audio would take this path as their own.

Analogy Records catalogue clearly shows ‘Robbo’ love for music and great sound as he was not cutting any corners. Even the aluminum reels are his custom design.This goes the same for the selection of the music being released. Usually, with smaller labels one is stretched with the selection on the bands and musician. But, Roberto selection is inspiring…

I’ll write more about all the albums soon, but I’m thrilled! Stay tuned…


 

Max De Aloe – Borderline

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Review by L.C.- Norway

Got my two tapes by Fedex today, superb packing and info material exactly as describes by my friend Jim. This is the kind of product that makes you happy just to look at, and the exclusive licence gives that extra luxury touch…
Sitting and listening to Max De Aloe – Borderline: superb recording with weight and extension fabulous harmonics…..very cool laidback jazz with chromatic harmonica, piano, bass and drums. This recording is up there among the top 5 for sound and 10 for musical presentation!
very highly recommended!
Run and order…..you most certainly won´t regret it.


 

Peter Erskine European Trio – Live in Genova Vol.1, Vol.2 and Vol.3

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Review by J.A.- United States

I am playing the tapes right now and I have to say…WOW!!!!!  Why we even bother with records or SACD I’ll never understand. These tapes are beyond Hi-Fi, they are so engaging and perfect. I look forward to collecting more titles from your catalog!


 

Andrea Celeste – Something Amazing

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Review by Greg Beron, Stafford, VA, United States

Having serious fun with the Analogy Records analog master tapes today. Many of you wrote and ask to write more about the experience and hands on, so here’s a quick insight. Reel to reel tapes are getting a lot of the attention recently and there are many reissues and new releases coming in. So how does they sound? Analogy Records material is of a different kind as music is recorded to the tape directly from the mixing board. In that way each premium tape is an actual master! When you hear what’s possible with this medium it really makes you scratch the head.

One big question arise: “How can we sincerely judge and explore our high-end gear with other material?” Difference is huge and there is so much more music being present. Even with the top notched analog vinyl based systems I’ve heard the results were great, but r2r, when done right and if sourced material is top notch, analog tapes can bring the level of musical impact, that its of different plane.

Yes, digital and even vinyl is more convenient, but its great to hear how music can sound at the upper echelon stratosphere.


 

Red Wine – Pickin’ Friends Vol.1 and Vol.2

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Review by D.A.- United States

This year vinyl has taken second fiddle to tape. I have purchased tapes from companies currently suppling pre-recorded 2-track 15 ips tapes, but purchasing from Analogy Records has to rate as one of the best purchasing experiences I’ve ever had. I’ve had less than acceptable from other reel tape producers.

I was informed about the progress of the production of the tapes on my order down to the day and hour the mix down was scheduled. When purchasing you get to select the format, tape, speed, and EQ for your tape. I’m happy that I decided to order, and Analogy and their tapes have been more than exceptional.

Besides being able to customize the tape, format, speed, and EQ you get a Analogy Records designed aluminum flange, handmade collector box, and album booklets.