The Standards in Gray album by jazz singer Kellye Gray, long out of print as a Stereo CD has released been released as a new Hybrid Stereo Super Audio CD by Top Music International, the Hong Kong based audiophile music label. Top Music specializes in high quality audiophile releases in the LP, Gold CD and Super Audio CD formats and also distributes the Super Audio CD titles from Delos Music in Hong Kong. They have also released a recent Demo Disc for McIntosh on the DVD-A format as well.
In some instances the releases from Top Music International are strictly music titles while others are demonstration discs and promotions for various audio manufacturers. In the case of the Kellye Gray SACD, the disc is sponsored by Shelter, a maker of phono cartridges in the Asian market and Audio Extreme.
Standards in Gray
SACD Stereo/CD Audio
(Top Music International TM-SACD 8104.2)
Standards in Gray was Austin, Texas based jazz singer Kellye Gray’s first album. It was originally released in 1989 on the Justice Records label and has been out of print for some time. The album is known for it’s sonics and features Gray and her band performing 8 well known standards in a bluesy jazz style.
Top Music says “Kellye is that breed of jazz singer who has developed a sound that is truly their own. This same kind of recognition is given to such names as Ella, Sarah, Cassandra and Betty. Her style is post-modernist and she uses her voice like an instrument within the ensemble. She possesses what critics like to call “musicianly chops”.
Top Music’s SACD edition of Standards in Gray was mastered by Bernie Grundman at Bernie Grundman Mastering in Hollywood, CA. The album cover says that the release lets the listener “experience analogue sound from SACD”.
Taking a listen to the Super Audio Stereo tracks on the disc proves quite a pleasure. The first two tracks on the SACD (The Island and Miles Davis’ All Blues) provide an excellent introduction to the singer. Both tracks have a wonderful, three dimensional sound field when it comes to the musicians backing Gray. If you’ve been searching for the out of print Stereo CD edition of this album, I’d suggest stopping that search and scoring this new Super Audio CD edition instead.
Kellye Gray – Vocals
Dave Catney – Piano
Sebastian Whittaker – Drums
Tom Anastasio – Bass
Dwight Sims – Guitar
Warren Sneed – Soprano and Tenor Sax
1. The Island
2. All Blues
4. How Long Has This Been Going On ?
5. Don’t Explain
6. Since I Fell
7. How Insensitive
8. Good Morning Heartche
Earlier SACD Releases from Top Music
As noted earlier, Top Music International has released a number of Hybrid Stereo SACDs. This includes the excellent instrumental Stereo Super Audio CD entitled The Vultures by guitarist Joe Weed and several guest bluegrass artists. To date, the label has 18 Super Audio CDs now on the market including the Kellye Gray SACD and these titles:
The Hybrid SACD Stereo edition of Standards in Gray by Kellye Gray is now available from music stores and web sites in Hong Kong and Asia, including the Top Music International web site. It is also beginning to become available from some other web sites that carry Super Audio CDs including Audiophile Resource.Com in the U.S. and DVD4Music.Com in the U.K.
The earlier Hybrid Stereo Super Audio CDs from Top Music International are available from all of these outlets as well as the Acoustic Sounds web site.