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HT Staff  |  Jan 16, 2004  |  0 comments
Mel Tormé, George Shearing—A Vintage Year
Mel Tormé, Rob McConnell and the Boss Brass—Velvet & Brass
(SACDs, Concord)

Having seen Mel Tormé perform at Carnegie Hall in the last few years of his life, I can vouch for his vocal virtuosity, incredible energy, infectious charm, and ability to toss off a Buddy Rich drum solo. The first of these two hybrid SACD/CD releases captures him with pianist George Shearing live at the Paul Masson Mountain Winery in 1988. On the second, a studio set recorded in 1995, he pairs off with a big band, just a year before the stroke that would end his career.
HT Staff  |  Mar 13, 2003  |  0 comments
DVD: Ghost Ship—Warner Brothers
Audio: 3
Video: 3
Extras: 2
A horror movie just isn't as terrifying without the presence of a ghost girl. While Ghost Ship's little moppet goes against the malevolent stereotype, she's no less creepy in this tale of an unsuspecting salvage crew attempting to recover a 40-year-old Titanic-like ocean liner.
HT Staff  |  Apr 24, 2003  |  0 comments
Pink Floyd—The Dark Side of the Moon (SACD, EMI Records)
I can't think of many rock bands that are a better fit for the multichannel treatment than Pink Floyd. In addition to their music's many other pioneering aspects, toying with dimensions and perspective has never been something that the band was afraid to do. While it must've been a great temptation to incorporate sonic gymnastics of every kind into this material, the SACD's 5.1 mix has enough presence to make it interesting but enough subtlety to keep it legitimate. You get your experimentation, but it's rarely distracting or overpowering.
HT Staff  |  May 08, 2003  |  0 comments
DVD: The Mission—Warner Brothers (Web Exclusive)
Video: 2
Audio: 3
Extras: 2
Despite its ambitious intentions, Roland Joffe's treatise on sin and redemption in the South American rain forest falls well short of epic proportions, the main problem being a script (penned by David Lean collaborator Robert Bolt) that fails to rouse any strong emotions. The film is beautifully photographed, though. While its picture clarity is on the soft side, Argentina's lush greenery and awe-inspiring waterfalls are pleasing to the eye in this 1.85:1 anamorphic transfer. The audio is sufficiently powerful, whether the newly mastered Dolby Digital 5.1 soundtrack delivers the rush of cascading water, the whiz of arrows, or Ennio Morricone's simultaneously mournful and hopeful score.
HT Staff  |  Jun 19, 2003  |  0 comments
DVD: Dark Blue—MGM/UA
Video: 3
Audio: 4
Extras: 3
Director Ron Shelton knows sports movies; so, when corrupt cops gather in the inner sanctum of the Los Angeles Police Department, the scene resembles a Major League clubhouse—or at least a Hollywoodized version of it. The director, known for Bull Durham, Tin Cup and other athletic fare, talks about the similarity between the two cultures in his running commentary that also deals with the Rodney King trial and resulting riots against which Dark Blue's morality tale unfolds.
HT Staff  |  Sep 19, 2003  |  0 comments
DVD: El Mariachi and Desperado—Columbia TriStar
El Mariachi
Video: 3
Audio: 3
Extras: 4
HT Staff  |  May 15, 2003  |  0 comments
DVD: 25th Hour—Buena Vista
Audio: 3
Video: 4
Extras: 3
I'll admit that 25th Hour seemed slow at first. Yet, as it went on, I noticed that, instead of Hollywood's usual mind-numbing blizzard of special effects, this film has something much rarer: a great script. Edward Norton plays Monty, a drug dealer who gets picked up by the cops and sentenced to seven years in prison. The film follows Monty for the 24 hours before he has to go in, raising many interesting questions, the most simple of which is: What do people think about right before they're locked up? Through strikingly realistic dialogue and a refusal to sugarcoat any issue, 25th Hour allows you a fascinating look into the mind of an ex-criminal, ending in a satisfying twist.
HT Staff  |  Feb 02, 2003  |  0 comments
A buck per watt is a bargain in anybody's book today. It's an especially good value when those watts feature audiophile specifications, and plenty of dynamic headroom.
HT Staff  |  Feb 12, 2013  |  1 comments
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Unleash Your TV Sound. Unleash All The Music On Earth.

Santa Barbara, CA - Tuesday, February 12, 2013 - Sonos, Inc., the leading manufacturer of wireless audio systems, today introduced SONOS PLAYBAR™, the soundbar for music lovers.

HT Staff  |  Feb 26, 2002  |  0 comments
Sony Electronics has unveiled its new collection of Hi-Scan 1080i widescreen, HDTV-monitor rear projection televisions for 2002.