Friday, March 21, 2014

CD Review: Audio Fidelity Brings To Life Classic Albums From Jon Anderson And Alice Cooper

It's very exciting when you can listen to an album over and over again and you continually hear things that you may have missed before. The leader in high quality audio discs, Audio Fidelity, continues to select certain albums from the past and master them in a way that makes your speakers come alive.

A couple of the newer releases from Audio Fidelity include albums that were long overdue to be upgraded to Hybrid-Super Audio (SACD). One is from the founding father of shock rock, Alice Cooper with his break-through album, "Billion Dollar Babies" and the other is from the masterful musical genius Jon Anderson of Yes with his solo debut album "Olias of Sunhillow."

As an original member of the progressive rock band Yes, Jon Anderson became one of the lead songwriters and vocalists in classic rock. His musical skills were overshadowed by other members of the band, until he released his debut solo album in 1976 entitled "Olias of Sunhillow." The album was entirely written and performed by Anderson and tells the story of an alien race and their journey to a new world. The album's theme was inspired by the cover of the 1972 Yes album "Fragile" as it shows earth cracking with a winged-glider leaving the planet.

The new SACD lets Anderson's amazing musicianship to take flight as you feel the opening build-up of the "Ocean Song" phase into the Yes-like rock of "Meeting (Garden Of Geda)/Sound Out The Galleon." Each pluck of the harp in "Dance of Ranyart / Olias (To Build The Moorglade)" rings with innocence as if Anderson created this music to be heard in the highest quality. The big closing numbers are spectacular sounding, during the 12-minute collage of sound on "Moon Ra / Chords / Song of Search" and layered vocals of "To The Runner" with its glorious finish.

To find out more about the SACD version of Jon Anderson's album "Olias of Sunhillow," please visit www.audiofidelity.net/content/jon-anderson-olias-sunhillow.

Now finally, the essential Alice Cooper album gets the respect it deserves with the release of "Billion Dollar Babies" on Hybrid SACD. It was the band's first album to hit #1 and contains many of the songs that have defined Alice Cooper like "Elected" and "No More Mr. Nice Guy." Original Alice Cooper Band drummer Neal Smith stated that "other than being elected into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2011, our second biggest achievement was when 'Billion Dollar Babies' went #1."

The original album was produced by the famous Bob Ezrin and sounds as good today as it did back in 1973. This new Hyper SACD allows you to hear every instrument in its own individual space like the horns on "Elected," the acoustic guitars of "Generation Landslide" and the jazz piano of "Mary-Ann."

This latest release from Audio Fidelity is available now and the CD comes with the original reproduced album artwork, including a highly collectible replica of the "Billion Dollar Bill." To find out more, please visit www.audiofidelity.net/content/alice-cooper-billion-dollar-babies

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