The HiFi Starters Club August 22 playlist……find it on Spotify here

1. “Angel” by Charles Lloyd & Lucinda Williams from Vanished Gardens

Pairing Lucinda Williams’ gritty country voice with a jazz outfit led by octoganarian jazz saxophonist Charles Lloyd isn’t the most obvious choice. Particularly with a rock drummer underpinning things. Boy does it work though, the whole album a delight. Sounds good too – how well does your system resolve the complex and delicate arrangements?

2. “Sea Horse” by Sean Shibe from the Moondog EP

Short, sweet, atmospheric. Sean Shibe is the latest wunderkid of classical guitar, his 2020 Bach release a beautifully recorded / played album that everyone should listen to once. Moondog sees him switching it up, ditching acoustic for electric guitar, playing far from the classical groove. Great album cover too. 

3. “This is” by Grace Jones from Hurricane

From 2008, her first album after a 20 year hiatus. Plus ca change, it’s as outrageous as you’d hope from the bad girl of the 80s. The first track hammers out of your speakers, testing bass and dynamics and then some. Get through the initial furore before revelling in the complexity played out in the ongoing storm. If your system can handle it that is.

4. “Hoshi Meguri No Uta” by The Shinya Fukumori Trio from For 2 Akis

Japanese jazz at its best. Delicate, detailed, atmospheric. A good system captures the suspense in the music, the sense of timing the musicians have. Beautiful stuff.

5. “Twin Rocks Oregon” by Shawn Mullins from Soul’s Core

A simple track with a story to tell, it’s rooted in Mullins’ gorgeous voice. If you want to hear how well your system does midrange then head here. He also reprised the album 20 years later in Soul’s Core Revival. The intervening two decades can be heard in his voice.

6. “Occam’s Razor” by Porcupine Tree from The Incident

Those opening chords – great dynamics. Enough said.


Hans Zimmer - Inception
Derrick Hodge - Colour of Noize
Sarah Jarosz - World on the Ground
Metallice - The Black Album
Michel Petrucciani - Power of Three
Charles Munch - Saint Saens Organ Symphony No 3