since there is a surge of interest on this cd. i am re-posting here my previous review. interglobal malaysia will most likely bring in this cd to malaysia. check with interglobal 03-41428133.

this review is grossly belated. my apologies to sebastian koh, the boss of audiophile label groove note, s'pore.

i met seb 3 months ago during the emi fujita concert and he passed me this cd, at the same time showed me on his camcorder the entire direct-to-2-track recording process of this audiophile album. i must admit i was intrigued but never really had the urgency to listen to the cd. i left the cd untouched for months, also partly because i didn't have a system to listen to.

and 3 months later, tonight, to be exact - after i get back my system, performing at its peak - i am rendered speechless by the sheer quality of this direct-to-2-track recording.

skye, the singer, is a regular crowd-puller in st. james power station, a popular pub in the largest entertainment hub in singapore. she has a rather husky voice with much power and dynamic. as you know, to record direct-to-2-track, the singer has to be flawless cos you can't edit the vocals, as the recording bypasses the mixing board and goes straight into a 2-track DSD recorder. also, there is no mastering done to the recording - it is simply the most honest and raw way of doing recording. every off-pitching from the singer can be heard, bare and naked. i must say, i am impressed with skye's pitching throughout the album.

recording engineer is todd garfinkle from M.A recording. todd is famed for his recordings using specially-made B&K microphone. this recording must be one of his greatest. the recording took place in the studio hall of republic polytechnic of s'pore.

i must admit, i am not a fan of skye's voice. she comes across as a tad too jaded for my liking, tho' i am deeply impressed with the dynamism and explosiveness of her voice.

but what took me by surprise is how real and transparent the direct-to-2-track recording is. images are vivid and eeriely palpable. in fact, the most shocking thing of this recording is the image specificity or localization (in cantonese we can "ting wai") of each instruments/musicians. one could pinpoint the exact position the each musician within the sound field very accurately, even with the eyes closed, without much effort. it is right in front of my eyes, like an event taking place in real time.

the dynamic contrast of skye's voice is captured superbly; from soft crooning to loud climaxes, one could discern the wide gap in dynamic easily. this is precious attribute indeed and it does remind me of rickie lee's "pop pop" where the dynamic constrast is equally impressive but very hard to re-produce on an average system. your system must be revealing enough to enjoy this sort of attribute. i couldn't get this aspect with all my previous sub-RM10K cables, until i bought my stage 3 ASP gryphon interconnects.

the best track is track 2, a cover of sally yeh where all the instruments are distinctly heard and well captured within the acoustic space of the republic poly's studio hall. the ambience of the recording is gorgeous. it is shockingly real and palpable.

whoever says that singapore don't produce world-class audiophile recordings probably hasn't listened to skye's "deep blue". i urge you to get a copy, eventho' you may not dig skye's vocal style.

i am proud of you, seb! i hope we can collaborate one day.

5 comments:

chin said...

is the sound like blue, I mean the music mode.

maggielurva 愛美姬 said...

chin
it is cover versions of mandarin pop. songs by sally yeh, cass phang, a-mei etc etc.

kiarch said...

I would hope to pick-up this CD based on your recommendation ML. I have heard it in your system, it is indeed very well recorded which reminds me of Mappleshades label products.

Anonymous said...

No prizes for guessing how I found this site. I googled her name after I was given the same CD by my friend who came over to let me test a passive silk transformer preamp designed by him to tempt me.

Pleasently surprised to find the LS3/5a gang here too. Hi guys :)

Best wishes..

SM

Todd said...

Hello from Todd of MA. Thank you for your kind comments. SKYE is a great singer and the recording is good because she is SO GOOD!

Best Wishes from MA
www.marecordings.com
todd