Surrounded On Sundays - 5.1/quad reviews and summaries

Discussion in 'Music Corner' started by mark winstanley, Jun 15, 2019.

  1. mark winstanley

    mark winstanley Pick up a fast car, burn my name in the road Thread Starter

    I know a lot of folks aren't interested in surround sound, but I also know that some folks, like me, really enjoy it.
    I thought it may be interesting to have a once a week post that looks at the mixes of some of these albums.
    I know when I first started getting surround sound albums, it seemed a little hit and miss with the mixes. Some were fantastic and some were somewhat a waste of time, or poorly conceived.

    I think some albums really come alive in a 5.1 or quad format, and some just seem to exist with no real depth or clarity achieved.

    Being a once a week thing would leave plenty of time for others to summarise their view on the "album of the week", so to speak, and over a period of time we could build a nice little database of information about certain albums that are available out there. With good information about how the mixes sound and whether they are immersive in their construct, whether they work from a perspective of separation of instruments, and all those kinds of things.

    Tomorrow I will post the first album, and for the most part I will probably only know what album I am going to do on any given Sunday.

    There should be a decent amount of artistic variety with Elvis, Gentle Giant, ELP, Genesis, Aerosmith, Jethro Tull, Tears For Fears, Simple Minds, King Crimson, Miles Davis, and an absolute ton of other stuff.

    I sincerely hope folks will participate in this and share their thoughts and feelings on the mixes and how they sound and feel. If you don't like surround sound, that's fine, nobody is trying to force your hand, but if you do like surround sound it would be very cool if you can join in and share your thoughts and feelings on the albums, but mainly the mixes.

    Cheers,
    Mark
     
  2. rxcory

    rxcory proud marching band parent

    Location:
    Portland, Oregon
    Really nice idea to have a single thread on this topic instead of having to search for each release. It’s also timely with another round of Dutton Vocalion SACDs recently announced.
     
  3. mark winstanley

    mark winstanley Pick up a fast car, burn my name in the road Thread Starter

    It will be cool for folks to let us know about new releases also.
    The industry being the monster it is these days, it is sometimes hard to keep up.
     
  4. mark winstanley

    mark winstanley Pick up a fast car, burn my name in the road Thread Starter

    Jackson Browne - Running On Empty
    [​IMG]

    Live album / studio album by
    Jackson Browne
    Released December 6, 1977
    Recorded August 17-September 17, 1977
    Genre Rock
    Length 41:49
    Label Asylum
    Producer Jackson Browne


    CD/DVD-audio deluxe reissue 2005
    · Entire Album in 96KHZ 24bit 5.1 Surround Sound and Stereo
    · Photo Gallery
    · "Running On Empty" Video Montage
    · "Tour Photo Album" Video Montage
    · Lyrics
    · Weblink

    Tracklist
    CD-1 Running On Empty 5:00
    CD-2 The Road 4:50
    CD-3 Rosie 3:36
    CD-4 You Love The Thunder 3:56
    CD-5 Cocaine 4:52
    CD-6 Shaky Town 3:40
    CD-7 Love Needs A Heart 3:33
    CD-8 Nothing But Time 3:32
    CD-9 The Load-Out 5:35
    CD-10 Stay 3:23

    DVD-1 Running On Empty 5:27
    DVD-2 The Road 4:55
    DVD-3 Rosie 3:54
    DVD-4 You Love The Thunder 3:59
    DVD-5 Cocaine 4:56
    DVD-6 Shaky Town 3:40
    DVD-7 Love Needs A Heart 3:31
    DVD-8 Nothing But Time 6:23
    DVD-9 The Load-Out 6:03
    DVD-10 Stay 3:22
    DVD-11 Cocaine Again 3:16
    DVD-12 Edwardsville Room 124 4:44

    So it became an issue of where do I start this morning. I am a huge fan of music in general, as I guess everyone on this site is, but I am a big fan of surround sound mixes, because when done properly they are pretty hard to beat as a music listening experience.
    As a starting point with this thread I have chosen this album, because it is a rock classic and when it came out there was a lot of expectation, because a lot of us were really keen on the format (surround in general, not the stupid Warner vs Sony thing, that almost crippled it from the get go) and among my generation this album was very highly regarded. Unfortunately these days, some of these earlier dvd-a's are a little hard to get hold of, and just from browsing this morning the current prices were $40 at discogs, $100 on amazon and $70 on ebay. Before buying an item like this where you know the song, but haven't heard the 5.1, you certainly want to know that it is done in a manner that you would want to pay that much for it.

    The surround mix was done by Greg Ladanyi at Tidal Wave Sound using Nuendo.
    Editing and transfer engineer - Rob Hill
    Additional engineer - Paul Dieter
    Mastering - Steve Hall at Futuredisc
    Authoring - Craig Anderson, Spencer Chrislu and David Dieckman
    Produced by Jackson Browne
    Executive Producer Robin Hurley

    That's some information for those of you up on these kinds of things.

    To the best of my memory there is a slightly extended opening to the title track, with some crowd noise and a count in.
    Running On Empty comes in with a nice replication of the warm live sound of the original release. David Lindley's beautiful slide guitar is sitting to our right occupying the space naturally and comfortably.
    We have Danny Kortchmar naturally balanced against him on the left.
    The feel of the band is natural, and we get a nice mix that isn't about freaking anyone out by showing how many speakers there are. It ends up sounding like a really wide stereo sound with a naturally enveloping sound and feel.
    The Road has a beautiful mix with the acoustic guitar and Jackson's vocal sitting right in front of us, with harmonised fiddles on either side of us. It really is a beautiful sound. Of course this song has that wonderful transition from the off stage recording and the live recording. So the crowd comes in wonderfully and then the full band sound works great.
    Rosie has some speaking in the rears as the piano intro plays. Not too loud or distracting. In this mix they have gone for a nice full piano sound, which is another thing some people seem to forget as being a possibility with surround recording and mixing. The backing vocals sit around us beautifully and have a natural balance, like the band are singing just for us.
    You Love The Thunder has a very similar mix to running on empty, giving us a nice consistency on a similar style of track.
    Cocaine is fantastic .... hang on, don't misread me here, I've never actually tried it .... what i mean is you feel like you are sitting in the hotel room with the band. We have the fiddle player sitting to our left shoulder. Someone is playing an acoustic at our right shoulder. Just in front of us to the left someone else is playing an acoustic.... to me this is the magic I am looking for in a surround mix. The conversation afterwards is just like a real conversation in a room, people are around you, not in a paper plain in front of you.
    Shaky Town has a slightly unusual mix, but in context of the type of album this is, I think it works. A guitarist and the drummer are sitting on our left. The keyboardist is sitting in front of us. Jackson is sitting just to the right in front and Lindley is playing his slide just to Jackson's right.
    This album really sounds like sitting in on a jam, it is beautifully and thoughtfully mixed.
    Love Needs A Heart has Jackson sitting in front of us playing his piano and singing. Lindley is sitting over by our right hand side again. The backing singers sit around us nicely.
    Nothing but Time, although recorded at Universal Amphitheater, feels like we're back in the hotel. Again we have the band sitting comfortably around us, and if you have ever hung out, in, or with a band having little jams in a room, you know exactly what I mean ... you can almost see them this set up works so well.
    The Load Out/Stay is probably one of the biggest none mainstream tracks of the late seventies early eighties. In Perth, Western Australia it was getting a lot of play, and it was the trigger for me to get the original vinyl. The Load Out is wonderful. Here we have Jackson sitting in front of us playing piano and singing, and a natural ambiance filling the room. Lindley really was Jackson's right hand man on this album, and he is there again. This again gives us that continuity of the live set up.
    Obviously Stay is a classic cover. As a continuation/medley the mix stays consistent. Rosemary Butler sing her section just to Jackson's left and Lindley's "rare", at this stage, vocal is to Jackson's right. Danny Kortchmar plays some nice lead just to our left.

    Cocaine again is a bonus track on the dvd-a and we have that same wonderful sitting with the band feel.
    Edwardsville Room 124 is the other bonus cut on here and it is a really nice mellow jam with some very nice slide guitar. This song has a beautiful ambiance and has another really nice encompassing mix.

    A lot of the tracks are extended on here (to the best of my memory) and in a good way. Just nice little additions that add to the atmosphere, and were more than likely only edited for vinyl space reasons.

    This album, and many more like it were major reasons why this surround format appealed to me so much. This album is done so very well. It creates an intimacy that just isn't possible in a stereo field. It is like wearing headphones in it's immediacy, but much more like being in the room due to its use of space.
    There are no zipping around the room "effects", there is no gimmickry, we just have a nice seat with the band as they play their songs.
    I am certainly not against the zipping around effects, if they are in context with what the song/album/artist is trying to present, but here we have a pure sitting with the band experience, that is well worth experiencing... in my opinion.

     
    Last edited: Jun 16, 2019
  5. Juggsnelson

    Juggsnelson Senior Member

    Location:
    Long Island
    Count me in Mark. One title a week is a perfect opportunity to fully examine a surround title. Looking forward to some in depth discussion on these oft overlooked gems of the music world.
     
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  6. mark winstanley

    mark winstanley Pick up a fast car, burn my name in the road Thread Starter

    I am no audiophile, but I think the sound is fantastic on this album. If you are an audiophile, I am sure folks would love your input on the sound.
    Please correct me if I have made any errors, but more importantly, please share your thoughts about this album, and particularly the mix that is on here. I would love folks to join in and discuss the mix here, and if we have any interest, future mixes we sit and have a look at.

    Cheers,
    Mark
     
  7. Juggsnelson

    Juggsnelson Senior Member

    Location:
    Long Island
    You picked a great title to start with. Looks like my day just got a little more interesting! Great notes on the songs Mark.
     
  8. mark winstanley

    mark winstanley Pick up a fast car, burn my name in the road Thread Starter

    Cheers mate. It's a bit nerve wracking, because I know there are folks with much better ears than I on here lol
     
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  9. thetman

    thetman Forum Resident

    Location:
    USA
    Count me in as a big fan of surround sound ( Dolby Atmos for home theater movies) and multi channel music. I listen to it all the time, blu-ray audio. sacd, DVD-A. I wish it had caught on more. shame.
     
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  10. Juggsnelson

    Juggsnelson Senior Member

    Location:
    Long Island
    There will always be someone with better ears or better gear. No worries. If they can enlighten me on something I'm all for it but this needn't be a thread strictly based on DR readings and technical specs. Surround doesn't get the attention it deserves unfortunately and your thread seems like a great spot to highlight the format...the good and the bad! Im,going to go tackle the lawn before tackling Mr. Browne this afternoon.
     
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  11. privit1

    privit1 Forum Resident

    It's. Sunday and I'm listening to new tangerine dream in 5.1 right now excitingstuff
     
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  12. mark winstanley

    mark winstanley Pick up a fast car, burn my name in the road Thread Starter

    I haven't got that yet, but I'm sure at some point I will. Wilson rarely disappoints.
    I was considering some newer stuff, but want to give some folks a chance to get them before we look at them. Something like this will work two ways (in my mind at least) I really want folks to put their two cents in on the mixes, so we get a good cross section of input, and I also want to hopefully inform folks, who are a little more tentative about buying some of these, what they will be getting, in a way.
    As we go along we will certainly do some newer stuff, but for the most part I think in this context it will work better if the title has been out for a couple of months at least. I almost ran with Crimson's Power to Believe this morning, but stopped myself, based on that line of thought :)
     
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  13. Captain Rogers

    Captain Rogers Forum Resident

    Location:
    new york

    Agreed
     
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  14. Mikey471

    Mikey471 Forum Resident

    Location:
    Leeds, UK
    Great idea for a thread, I've only upgraded to 5.1 a couple of months ago so don't have that many surround albums. Looking forward to following the discussion and learning about some surround mixes that I should look to buy.
     
  15. thetman

    thetman Forum Resident

    Location:
    USA
    Hans Zimmer: Live in Prague. I watched this last week in my home theater ( 7.4.2 set up) the concert has outstanding musical presence. Puts you right in the concert. outstanding deep bass that really rocks the room. Dolby Atmos soundtrack
    1. Medley: Driving (Driving Miss Daisy) / Discombobulate (Sherlock Holmes) / Zoosters Breakout (Madagascar)
    2. Medley: Crimson Tide / 160 BPM (Angels And Demons)
    3. Gladiator Medley: The Wheat / The Battle / Elysium / Now We Are Free 4. Chevaliers De Sangreal (The Da Vinci Code)
    5. The Lion King Medley: Circle Of Life (Prelude) / King Of Pride Rock (reprise)
    6. Pirates Of The Caribbean Medley: Captain Jack Sparrow / One Day / Up Is Down / He's A Pirate
    7. You're So Cool (True Romance)
    8. Rain Man: Main Theme
    9. What Are You Going To Do When You Are Not Saving The World (Man Of Steel)
    10. Journey To The Line (The Thin Red Line)
    11. The Electro Suite (themes from The Amazing Spider-Man 2)
    12. The Dark Knight Trilogy Medley: Why So Serious? / Like A Dog Chasing Cars / Why Do We Fall? / Introduce A Little Anarchy / The Fire Rises
    13. Aurora
    14. Interstellar Medley: Day One / Cornfield Chase / No Time For Caution / Stay
    15. Inception Medley: Half Remembered Dream /


    [​IMG]santander bank near me now
     
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  16. mark winstanley

    mark winstanley Pick up a fast car, burn my name in the road Thread Starter

    We will be looking more at audio only albums, more than concert videos. Although they may come in to the picture at some stage.
     
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  17. Juggsnelson

    Juggsnelson Senior Member

    Location:
    Long Island
    Haven't received mine yet! Can't wait though!
     
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  18. Juggsnelson

    Juggsnelson Senior Member

    Location:
    Long Island
    Good thinking as my Tangerine Dream and new Crimson titles are en route! I wouldn't wait long on the Tangerine Dream...they specified it was a one time run.
     
    mark winstanley likes this.
  19. mark winstanley

    mark winstanley Pick up a fast car, burn my name in the road Thread Starter

    I just ordered it. I hate the pressure they put on for these things these days, but anyhow.
    Managed to get it for 150.... I get a little annoyed at the new buy a whole box of stuff for the two discs you want, but at least the other stuff looks pretty interesting.
     
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  20. Juggsnelson

    Juggsnelson Senior Member

    Location:
    Long Island
    I agree with you but luckily for me there is a lot of content I don't own already. Steven Wilson said that this one wasn't going to around forever so I will take him at his word. Surround is not an inexpensive hobby. Hopefully this thread will help people spend their hard earned cash on releases that really shine.
     
    mark winstanley likes this.
  21. lennonfan1

    lennonfan1 Forum Resident

    Location:
    baltimore maryland
    for me, some of the best quad has still not been re-released. ...but in the future maybe if not likely:
    Edgar Winter Group - They Only Come Out At Night
    Worst of Jefferson Airplane
    Kraftwerk Autobahn
    Nilsson Schmilsson or however its spelled;)
    Janis Joplin Pearl
    Aerosmith Get Your Wings and Rocks
    Paul Simon 1st, Rhymin' Simon, Still Crazy
    Joni Mitchell Court and Spark
    to name a few.
     
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  22. dennis the menace

    dennis the menace Forum Veteran

    Location:
    Montréal
    Can you supply me an Amazon link to get the Phaedra 5.1 Steven Wilson`s remix ? Can`t seem to find it...
     
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  23. Yankeefan01

    Yankeefan01 Forum Resident

    Location:
    Tonawanda, NY, USA
    Great idea for a thread and it's nice to have all the 5.1 talk in one place. When I first saw the title of the thread, Jackson Browne's 5.1 Runnin' on Empty was what came to mind. It's a great rendition of a fabulous album. I purchased the 5.1 release before I got my 2 rear speakers in anticipation of the improvement in sound. As you said, it didn't disappoint, the hotel songs put you right in the room with the musicians.

    The 4 disc blu-ray of The Allman Brothers Band Fillmore shows is also a pretty good 5.1 listen.
     
  24. MYKE

    MYKE Analog Upstairs, Digital Downstairs

    2009 : My son got me into surround mixes, indirectly, by convincing me I needed a 5.1 setup for watching films. My brain immediately took it to the next step, and I even said out loud I hope there's a 5.1 of The Captain And Me ! next day, I was ordering a brand new, sealed copy for $100.00 !
    I've since amassed a very nice selection of DVD-A, SACD, Blu ray Audio.
    Listening to the Vocalion of The Guess Who twofer of Road Food / # 10 right now in fact.
     
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  25. Juggsnelson

    Juggsnelson Senior Member

    Location:
    Long Island
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