About Folk Art (Pure Pleasure) by Joe Lovano Us Five:
Jazz is essentially an African-American folk art, elements not lost on Joe Lovano as he presents this all-original program of progressive music. His updated quintet Us Five is one of his freshest units in some time, with bassist Esperanza Spalding, the criminally underrated pianist James Weidman, and two stir-the-pot drummers in Francisco Mela and Otis Brown III. Together they fulfill Lovano's vision as a band that is not afraid to take many chances, stay within a bop-based tradition, and cut loose on many levels in terms of adding diverse elements to this mix of music. Lovano is noticeably restless, using his reliable tenor sax, but also straight alto, clarinet, and taragato. The drummers not only play their standard kits, but ethnic percussion instruments from many continents, while Spalding is maturing and growing exponentially into a formidable voice on her instrument. Weidman is simply brilliant throughout, largely ignored since his early days with Abbey Lincoln until now, but there's no reason he should be so underestimated or slighted.
- Joe Lovano (saxophone)
- James Weidman (piano)
- Esperanza Spaulding (bass)
- Otis III, Francisco Mela (drums)
About Pure Pleasure
At the beginning of the 90s, in the early days of audiophile vinyl re-releases, the situation was fairly straightforward. Companies such as DCC, Mobile Fidelity, Classic Records and, of course, Pure Pleasure all maintained a mutual, unwritten ethical code: we would only use analogue tapes to manufacture records.
During the course of the present vinyl hype, many others have jumped on the bandwagon in the hope of securing a corner of the market. Very often they are not so ethical and use every imaginable source to master from: CDs, LPs, digital files, MP3s – or employed existent tools from the 80s and 90s for manufacturing.
A digital delay is gladly used when cutting a lacquer disc because tape machines with an analogue delay have become quite rare and are therefore expensive. When cutting the lacquer, the audio signal is delayed by one LP revolution against the signal, which controls the cutter head, and for this a digital delay is very often employed. Of course, the resultant sound signal is completely digital and thus only as good as this delay.
We should like to emphasize that Pure Pleasure Records on principle only uses the original master tape as the basis for the entirely analogue cutting of lacquer discs. In addition, the pressing tool is newly manufactured as a matter of principle.
We only employ existing tools for manufacturing if an improved result is not forthcoming, e.g. the title Elvis Is Back, which was mastered by Steve Hoffman and Kevin Gray, or several titles from our Philips Classics series, which in any case Willem Makkee cut from the original masters at the Emil Berliner Studios in the 90s. It goes without saying that we only used the mother and that new tools were made for our production.
To put it in a nutshell: we can ensure you that our releases are free from any kind of digital effects and that the lacquer discs are newly cut.