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Herb Alpert: Passion Dance (DTS CD)
List Price: Unknown [Buy now and save at Amazon]
4. Passion Dance
6. Qu? Pasa Mr. Jones?
7. Baila Conmigo (Dance with Me)
8. Until We Meet Again
9. Stormy Sunday
10. Route 101
11. Brasil Nativo(Bonus)
SOUND: "Passion Dance" is presented in 20-bit DTS 5.1 audio. "Passion Dance" also brings back original mixer Alan Meyerson, who provides his thoughts in the DTS CD's liner notes about his initial experiences mixing for surround music. His discussion of how he took advantage of the format's unlimited palette is reflected well in the mix itself, which does a terrific job taking Alpert's latin and jazz-driven (he was a member of the Tijuana Brass) sound and spreading it agressively and often beautifully throughout the entire listening space.
And there's quite a few instruments requiring space throughout the album; congas, drums, guitar, bass, keyboards, trumpet, saxophone, piano and more come in and out at some point or another. Surrounds find themselves with quite a bit of work to do as they take on a good deal of the congos, bongos, drums and other instruments, while main instruments receive focus from the front three main speakers.
The majority of the album is instrumental, although there are a few tracks where vocals play a part, such as on "Baila Conmigo", where vocals come mainly from the front - along with a little re-inforcement from the surrounds. The 5.1 presentation is at its most engaging during the upbeat numbers where the high-energy percussion fills the room and provides an immersive experience for the listener, such as on "Stormy Sunday". Even the subtler songs are enjoyably presented though, especially with this edition's superior audio quality.
Audio quality was superb throughout the album. All of the many instruments on display throughout the different tracks came through with exceptional detail and clarity. Mixer Meyerson has really embraced the possibilities in bringing this album to surround-sound, with a really pleasing spread of the instruments around the room, allowing them to be nicely spread around the listening space - with a nice balance, so that no element calls too much attention to itself, as well. There's an enjoyable, appropriate amount of low bass during many of the songs, as well. This is a really enjoyable presentation of excellent music, offering not only top-notch audio quality, but it was a great choice to bring in the original mixer to work on the very enjoyable and successful surround-sound edition.
Extras: There are no extras on DTS CDs.
Final Thoughts: A highly enjoyable latin/jazz sounding recording with exceptional playing, "Passion Dance" is a passionate and entertaining album that provided a really remarkable experience when presented in the DTS 5.1 CD format. Recommended.