Flamenco (CD review)
There is no doubt this K2HD LIM remastering of the 1988 Philips album "Flamenco" sounds fabulous. The dynamic range is exceptionally wide; the transient attack and impact are as strong as they could possibly be; the width and depth of image places the performers at realistic distances across and behind the speakers; and the whole show possesses an ambient naturalism that puts the listener in the very room with the artists. The sound is superclean and amazingly vivid.
The only problem I had with the music is that I don't personally care all that much for flamenco. Understand, I love Pepe Romero's guitar playing, and I have a number of his recordings, including a Mercury disc of flamenco music he made almost thirty years before this one.
The Romeros obviously have flamenco in their blood, and Pepe was probably born with a guitar in his baby hands. The playing here is terrific, to say the least. But for me, a couple of the tracks became a little nerve-wracking, especially the several cuts that contain dancing, which started to give a bit of a headache. Nor did I particularly care for Chano Lobato's singing in several other numbers. Fortunately, that still left enough purely instrumental tracks that I could appreciate fully.
As I say, this is splendid flamenco playing, one of the best flamenco albums ever recorded, and LIM's disc reproduction does it justice. If you like the music, I'd have to say this one is a must.
William (Bill) Heck, Contributing Reviewer
Among my early childhood memories are those of listening to my mother playing records (some even 78 rpm ones!) of both classical music and jazz tunes. I suppose that her love of music was transmitted genetically, and my interest was sustained by years of playing in rock bands – until I realized that this was no way to make a living. The interest in classical music was rekindled in grad school when the university FM station serving as background music for studying happened to play the Brahms First Symphony. As the work came to an end, it struck me forcibly that this was the most beautiful thing I had ever heard, and from that point on, I never looked back. This revelation was to the detriment of my studies, as I subsequently spent way too much time simply listening, but music has remained a significant part of my life. These days, although I still can tell a trumpet from a bassoon and a quarter note from a treble clef, I have to admit that I remain a nonexpert. But I do love music in general and classical music in particular, and I enjoy sharing both information and opinions about it.
The audiophile bug bit about the same time that I returned to that classical music. I’ve gone through plenty of equipment, brands from Audio Research to Yamaha, and the best of it has opened new audio insights. Along the way, I reviewed components, and occasionally recordings, for The $ensible Sound magazine. Recently I’ve rebuilt--I prefer to say reinvigorated--my audio system, with a Sangean FM HD tuner and (for the moment) an ancient Toshiba multi-format disk player serving as a transport, both feeding a NAD C 658 streaming preamp/DAC, which in turn connects to a Legacy Powerbloc2 amplifier driving my trusty Waveform Mach Solo speakers, supplemented by a Hsu Research ULS 15 Mk II subwoofer.