Some labels I now avoid:
Not Now Music
Jazz Wax Records
Thank you for your list.
What comes to my mind is "Simply Vinyl". They are out of business
now but I remember they had a big Fangroup, too.
Btw. they got good "reviews" from our usual magazines- online cheaters, too :-)
Everyone gets what he deserves.
I think all 'Vinyl Labels' should be avoided... No, just kidding. Did get out of the analog side of the hobby a few years back and really haven't missed it, although I recognize that a first rate turntable, arm and cartridge set-up is a beautiful thing to behold both sonically and aesthetically.
Was reading the following just the other night -- http://www.analogplanet.com/content/reissue-labels-avoid-and-some-best-proceed-caution
It may be of interest.
Simply Vinyl and Back to Black come to mind for me.
Music on Vinyl, another made in EU which I have not been impressed with at all.
Simply Vinyl did good on Nick Drake IMO.
There is also some discussion of this on Fremer's Analog Planet as well as SH Forums, my go-to resource for any pressing/reissue questions I have.
On the "sounds surprisingly great for the price" I am consistently impressed by the OJC vinyl. Some of the old 70s two-fers can also be excellent and priced right used.
And spotting Scorpio pressings is a good skill to pick up.
I have a few recent Music on Vinyl 180g jazz reissues which are quite decent, and according to their website, they use analogue masters:
"As for our sources; We are provided with the best possible (analogue) masters available. On top of that, our sound engineer has over 35 years of experience in cutting and mastering records for (major) labels."
Does anyone else have more experience with them?
I have a Jazz Wax reissue of "Ben Webster meets Oscar Peterson" that is fabulous. Bought it off of ebay for $12. I compared it to the Bob Ludwig Verve reissue and I much prefer the Jazz Wax.
First, the pressing and vinyl quality are outstanding. No surface noise what so ever. Then there is a nuance and subtlety to the Jazz Wax that just draws me in. You can hear Oscar talking to himself as he plays, and you can hear every detail of the nuanced musicianship of Ben and Oscar - Ben's slurs and breath, Oscars delicate filigree, the unobtrusive but tasteful drumming, the studio reverb is intact and natural.
These may have been made from CDs. There is certainly no tape hiss, so someone did something to whatever the source is. I don't care. This particular record is so gorgeous that I just melt into the playing.
I realize the questionable origins of these releases. If they were made from CDs then all I can say is that the lowered noise floor and pressing process more than make up for what may have been lost in the CD. Sure that sounds counter intuitive, but I don't have any other explanation.
One other things, it does not sound unlike the Verve reissue. It just sounds better to me.
Just my opinion, but at least in this case, I am glad that I was not dismissive.
I am consistently impressed by the OJC vinyl.
I agree! Many of the earlier pressings sound terrific.
"Ben Webster meets Oscar Peterson" sounds wonderful on CD, and the CD sourced Jazz Wax reissue probably also sounds good despite the compressed source material.
This same album was reissued by Speakers Corner, with analogue remastering, and it sounds stunning. It is still currently available.
If you buy it, it would be interesting to hear your impressions of how the Speakers Corner reissue compares to Jazz Wax. You might be pleasantly surprised.
I have issues with a number of the Rhino re-issues. Dead sound. I'm not impressed by the sound or pressing quality of the Roxy Music re-issues on the From the Vault series, either. Need to check each re-issue on a one-by-one basis. The Simply Vinyl re-issue of Dylan's Blonde is outstanding. I heard that Simply vinyl can get most UK master tapes but not US. Anyone else?
When some of the Simply Vinyl reissues sound "terrific", buy the CD
and compare :-)
In my last 20 years I hardly found a Reissue which was better overall than its
Original. Or let's say it the other way, when you have a good sounding Reissue
you can bet your car, wife, house, dog... that the original (and its later copies)
will be easily on par.
What all those reissue guys can do, is to hold it (at best) or to ruin it (also
In the early days there was a big difference compared to today, the guys at the
tapes, in theStudios did know their job very well (in general), some were
outstanding and the vinyl process was generally done better. This knowledge is
Reissues are ok when you want to listen to music which is very expensive - or
ultra rare - in its original Pressing (RCA Living Stereos, Deccas..in mint
condition) and Classic Records made a pretty good job in the 90's. Speakers
Corner have the advantage of quiet vinyl but that's all, the mastering is really a
few classes below the originals.
Chad Kassem is the only one who really has a Standard which is top class, he
really tries to do something useful (and make money with it, but in a good way).
But Cat Stevens, Pink Floyd, Freewheelin' Bob Dylan for 35$ and more??? When I
can buy a mint 360 Columbia pressing for 5$? By the way, I compared, 5$ can
be worth more than 35$ ... :-)
I agree with Syntax 100%.
Original,original and original
alot of the reissue movement boils down to marketing and simply reselling what many audiophiles already own...i have original pressings of Steely Dan, Eagles, Santana, Floyd, Supertramp, Queen, etc...and for the most part have been pleased with the results...the extra 20-30 bucks per reissue for at best a marginal increase in quality is not good value in my book....