Universal Releases 5 SACDs and Plans Sting Hybrid SACD

Universal Music continues their prolific release schedule of SACD discs this week with 5 new SACD releases. The new SACDs issued on Tuesday include releases from Shania Twain and Dredg as well as 3 classical music SACDs. Universal has also provided more information about the SACD release of the new album by Sting entitled «Sacred Love».

All 5 of this week’s new SACDs from Universal Music are Hybrid Layer Multichannel SACD discs. They have Surround Sound SACD, Stereo SACD and CD Audio versions of the music on each album and are playable on SACD, CD and SACD compatible DVD Video players. The new SACDs are:

  • Shania Twain — Up! (Mercury Nashville B0000788-36)
  • Dredg — El Cielo (Interscope B0000798-36)
  • Renee Fleming — Bel Canto (Decca Classics 0289-471621-2)
  • Gergiev, Weiner Philharmonic — Moussorgsky: Pictures at an Exhibition (Philips 0289-470619-2)
  • Gergiev, Rotterdam Philharmonic — Shostakovich: Symphony No. 7 (Philips 0289-470623-2)


The best known album in this group is Shania Twain’s Up! album. Up! features 19 upbeat pop/country songs with a new 5.1 Surround Sound SACD mix by Mike Shipley. I had a chance to listen to the 5.1 Surround tracks on the album and I will say that it is one of the more ambitious surround mixes I’ve heard lately. The SACD was mastered by Stephen Marcussen at Marcussen Mastering in Hollywood. A DVD-A release of Up! is slated for later this year by Universal.

An Update on Sting’s Sacred Love SACD
In a recent article on Universal Music’s Fall Pop, Rock and Jazz SACD releases I mentioned their plans to release the new Sting album Sacred Love as both a Hybrid Multichannel SACD and a DVD Video disc. Since that time, Universal’s A&M label has moved up the release date of the Sacred Love SACD to September 30th.

They have also announced that Sacred Love will be a single inventory, Hybrid SACD release that will be packaged in a DigiPak case. This is the same approach that A&M took with this year’s Hybrid SACD Surround Sound reissue of Every Breath You Take: The Classics by The Police. It’s nice to see A&M endorsing the single inventory Hybrid SACD Surround Sound approach with another major release like this.

Sting fans will be pleased to hear that some stores are already accepting pre-orders for the upcoming Sacred Love SACD by Sting. These stores include Amazon.Com ($14.99 for the SACD on pre-order) and CD Universe ($18.99 for the SACD preorder).

Some Upcoming Universal Music SACDs Now on Preorder
And while we’re talking about upcoming Universal Music SACDs now appearing as pre-orders on the SACD web stores, you’ll now find the Allman Brothers: Live at Fillmore East SACD on Mercury (due out on September 9th according to the Elusive Disc web site), the 3 SACD set of Live at Royal Albert Hall by The Who on Steamhammer (preorders on that one being taken by Amazon.Com, CD Universe and Red Trumpet) and Aaron Neville’s Nature Boy: The Standards Album SACD on Verve (preorders being taken by Elusive Disc).

On the Nature Boy SACD, I should mention there seems to be some confusion on whether it is a single inventory SACD release or whether it will be available in separate CD and SACD versions. As its release date draws nearer, we will know more. Universal Music also plans a DVD-A release of the Nature Boy album.
Up! by Shania Twain (Mercury Nashville B0000788-36)