The copy we are selling is similar to the one pictured above.
Side One: Mint Minus Minus
Side Two: Mint Minus Minus
- Both sides here earned solid Double Plus (A++) grades, making this one of the better copies from our recent shootout - reasonably quiet vinyl too
- This is the successor to Bang Baaroom - it's music in the same percussive style, the major difference being the addition of a giant gong which the producers justifiably take great pride in
- THIS is the sound of Living Stereo Tubey Magic, circa 1960 - no CD will ever capture what is in the grooves of this record
- "Dick Schory's second major outing for RCA is more self-assured, from the preposterous jacket art and liner notes to more upbeat tunes... Schory's musical ideas are always fresher than those of Bobby Christian and Mike Simpson, who helped on the previous album. All but two tracks are good to great."
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This title is also at least 5 times as rare as LSP 1866; I rarely see these anymore. It features standards such as Caravan, Fascinating Rhythm and Stranger In Paradise, among others.
This copy of Music To Break Any Mood has a lot in common with the other Decca and Living Stereo titles we've listed over the years, albums by the likes of Henry Mancini, Esquivel, Edmundo Ros, Prez Prado and a handful of others. Talk about making your speakers disappear, these are the kinds of records that can do it!
An album like this is all about Tubey Magical Stereoscopic presentation. For us audiophiles both the sound and the music here are enchanting. If you're looking to demonstrate just how good 1960 All Tube Analog sound can be, this killer copy will do the trick.
This pressing is super spacious, sweet and positively dripping with ambience. Talk about Tubey Magic, the liquidity of the sound here is positively uncanny. This is vintage analog at its best, so full-bodied and relaxed you'll wonder how it ever came to be that anyone seriously contemplated trying to improve it.
This IS the sound of Tubey Magic. No recordings will ever be made like this again, and no CD will ever capture what is in the grooves of this record. There may well be a CD of this album, but those of us in possession of a working turntable and a good collection of vintage vinyl could care less.
What outstanding sides such as these have to offer is not hard to hear:
- The biggest, most immediate staging in the largest acoustic space
- The most Tubey Magic, without which you have almost nothing. CDs give you clean and clear. Only the best vintage vinyl pressings offer the kind of Tubey Magic that was on the tapes in 1960
- Tight, note-like, rich, full-bodied bass, with the correct amount of weight down low
- Natural tonality in the midrange -- with all the instruments having the correct timbre
- Transparency and resolution, critical to hearing into the three-dimensional studio space
What to Listen For (WTLF)
Top end extension is critical to the sound of the best copies. Lots of old records (and new ones) have no real top end; consequently the studio or stage will be missing much of its natural air and space, and instruments will lack their full complement of harmonic information.
Tube smear is common to most pressings from the late '50s and early '60s and this is no exception. The copies that tend to do the best in a shootout will have the least (or none), yet are full-bodied, tubey and rich. (Full sound is especially critical to the the horns; any blare, leanness or squawk ruins much of the fun, certainly at the loud levels the record should be playing at.)
Which brings up a point that needs making. The tonality of this record is correct when it is playing loud. The trumpets do not get harsh at loud volumes the way they will on, say, a Chicago record. The timbre of the instruments is correct when loud, which means that it was mixed loud to sound correct when loud.
The frequency extremes (on the best copies) are not boosted in any way. When you play this record quietly, the bottom and top will disappear (due to the way the ear handles quieter sounds as described by the Fletcher-Munson curve).
Most records (like most audiophile stereos) are designed to sound correct at moderate levels. Not this album. It wants you to turn it up. Then, and only then, will everything sound completely right from top to bottom.
What We Listen For on Music To Break Any Mood
- Energy for starters. What could be more important than the life of the music?
- The Big Sound comes next -- wall to wall, lots of depth, huge space, three-dimensionality, all that sort of thing.
- Then transient information -- fast, clear, sharp attacks, not the smear and thickness so common to these LPs.
- Tight punchy bass -- which ties in with good transient information, also the issue of frequency extension further down.
- Next: transparency -- the quality that allows you to hear deep into the soundfield, showing you the space and air around all the instruments.
- Extend the top and bottom and voila, you have The Real Thing -- an honest to goodness Hot Stamper.
Mint Minus Minus and maybe a bit better is about as quiet as any vintage pressing will play, and since only the right vintage pressings have any hope of sounding good on this album, that will most often be the playing condition of the copies we sell. (The copies that are even a bit noisier get listed on the site are seriously reduced prices or traded back in to the local record stores we shop at.)
Those of you looking for quiet vinyl will have to settle for the sound of other pressings and Heavy Vinyl reissues, purchased elsewhere of course as we have no interest in selling records that don't have the vintage analog magic of these wonderful originals.
If you want to make the trade-off between bad sound and quiet surfaces with whatever Heavy Vinyl pressing might be available, well, that's certainly your prerogative, but we can't imagine losing what's good about this music -- the size, the energy, the presence, the clarity, the weight -- just to hear it with less background noise.
South Rampart Street Parade
Walkin' My Baby Back Home
A Foggy Day
Autumn In New York
Fly Now, Pay Later
I'll Remember April
Stranger In Paradise
Dick Schory's second major outing for RCA is more self-assured, from the preposterous jacket art and liner notes to more upbeat tunes. One assumes Schory handled all or most of the arrangements; Schory's musical ideas are always fresher than those of Bobby Christian and Mike Simpson, who helped on the previous album. All but two tracks are good to great. It may help that several are indestructible standards: "Caravan," "Fascinating Rhythm," and "Stranger in Paradise." Other titles, also mostly standards, are typical of the Schory style: "Safari, Anyone," "Tortilla," and "Fly Now, Pay Later."
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