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No B.S  Audiophile CD recommendations  


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2) Vocals (Male & Females)



 Title:  Elizabeth Grümmer                                           Rating: 4.4 / 5

            Schubert & Brahams Lieder   


Label: Testament (Amazon ASIN: ASIN: B000003XJQ )



There's something magical about analog recordings of 1950's which, when compared to the digitized 'Hi End" recordings of our days, makes you wonder whether modern technology has taken a wrong turn somewhere in the 60s.


The original recording of this title is probably done with a single microphone, connected to some ancient tube equipment through copper wires which resembles the cord on your desk lamp.


Yet, when Elisabeth Grümmer's gracious and dmirable voice delivers the outstanding interpretation of Brahms' Wiegenlied (from Des Knaben Wunderhorn' arr.Scherer), you  submerge into a semi-transcendent state mesmerised by fond memories of childhood lullabies.    The black and white photos of Grümmer on the CD booklet adds to the already heavy nostalgic flavour of the title.


With gratitude to my neighbor and fellow audiophile Lawrence Lock, whose system will soon be featured on our Home Visit page, this title should not be missed if you're a lover of female sopranos.







Title: Aftonpsalm och Julesang                                 Rating: 4.5 / 5

           by Hakan Hagegard


Label: Proprius PRCD9004


Swedish baritone Hakan Hagegard is no stranger to lovers of male vocals.   NY Times calls him one of the world's finest male lieder signers of our times.   His career spans three decades and he has performed at all major international opera houses.


In this title, Hakan Hagegard offers his interpretations of 16 Christmas hymns.


The recording was made in the vaulted church of Adolf Fredrik in downtown Stockholm.  With the setup, your living room will be transformed into heaven with Hagegard's interpretation of O Helga Natt / Julsang.    His voice is flexible and pleasing, but he when command is called for, Hegegard provides explosive power without hesitation.


This title is certainly one of the best of my Proprius collection.   





    Title: Pure - Primrose Path                                           Rating: 4.1 / 5

Label: STS Digital, available through

A relaxing album combining a smooth cajun male vocal with an electronic harp.   The recording was done with Siltech cables, and no overdubs were recorded which contributes to the natural sound of this album.

You can listen to samples HERE.

STS Digital is a relatively new label, but the recording quality is excellent in quality.   It focuses on producing the most natural and realistic sound.   This is favorite title from STS, and you can be sure I'll be recommending more STS titles later on.






Recommended by S. Robertson
To see S. Robertson's system:







  Title: Reference Collection of Female Vocalist       

                                                                                            Shawn’s Rating: 5/5

Label: CFIM 048SA (First Impression Music)

After listening to this CD on Shawn Robertson’s system, I immediately fell in love with this title. I can see why he gave it a much deserved 5 out of 5, although I would have probably rated it with a slightly lower score. 

The tracks by Esther Ofarim are my favorites.  However, the XRCD version sounds more aggressive and "Hi Fi-ish" by comparison.   (ATRXRCD 001, Fist Impression Music)     I personally prefer the regular CD.  I would only rate the XRCD a 2.5/ 5.  

I have received emails from audiophiles who expressed the opposite opinion.  They said they prefer the XRCD over the regular version.  I suppose its a matter of personal taste.






Recommended by S. Robertson.
To see S. Robertson's system:


  Title: Eishu Songs                                                 Shawn’s Rating: 3.75/5

Label: TEAF-8 Toera Records

Another one of Shawn’s pick . Although this title only scored 3.75 out of 5 on Shawn’s scale, consider buying it as it scored 5/5 on Shawn’s “Best late night chill out CD scale”.
A Japanese who sings with the voice of an angel. Personally I would give it slight higher marks on the Quality Scale. Details about this album can be found here:,04.htm

And you can buy it here:






Recommended by Steve Huang.

To see Steve's system:         



  Title: The Well - Jennifer Warnes                  Steve’s  Rating: 4 / 5

Label: Cisco CCIS 2034 SA

Steve's Comments:

"Jennifer has a rich textured voice which is in prime form in The Well. The recording quality is first rate. She is always in great demand as a backup singer for other artists. She is best known for the Oscar winning song Up Where We Belong & Goes Like It Goes. The SACD Version is first rate as well.” 









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