Mobile Fidelity - MFSL 1-425 - 180 Gram Virgin Vinyl - 821797142519
Pure Analogue Mastered by Kreig Wunderlich from the Original Master Tape at MFSL
AAA 100% Analogue - Numbered Limited Edition - Pressed at RTI
Half Speed Mastered on the Mobile Fidelity The Gain 2 Ultra Analog System
This album might have saved Bob Dylan’s career. At the least, it proved the icon still relevant, and his wits still in tact. And it immediately followed what remains the artist’s biggest disaster, the yet-unexplained and forever puzzling Self Portrait, a nearly unlistenable attempt that caused many to wonder whether Dylan had lost his mind.
If intended as a joke, it bombed, making the sublime New Morning all the more important to restore faith in the singer’s creativity and songwriting prowess. It did all this and more, and stands as his finest studio effort during a five-year span.
Mastered on Mobile Fidelity’s world-renowned mastering system and pressed at RTI, this restored 45RPM analog version spotlights the open, woozy sound that welcomes wholeheartedly Dylan’s piano, several eager guitars, female background singers, Al Kooper’s organ, and snappy drumming into a world of their own. New Morning remains one of Dylan’s loosest and jovial affairs, the instruments retaining an off-the-cuff sensibility relating to a nightclub atmosphere or live stage feel. On this reissue, notes naturally dangle and fade, allowing the playful vibes and humor to come through like never before.
Consequently, the album can be experienced with a new perspective. Wider grooves mean more information reaches your ears. “Many of the songs seem to have been made up on the spot, with confidence in the ability of first-rate musicians to move in any direction at any time,” wrote Dylan expert and cultural critic Greil Marcus in his original review for the New York Times. “The riffs, inventions, and studio jams of New Morning have their own personality…the full joy of anticipating the right move and the exhilaration of hitting it square and bouncing off a chord into a new lyric.”
These observations hold true today, for the 1970 effort claims a daring flair Dylan rarely exhibited on albums before or since. Enthusiasm and excitement surround his singing, and his work on the 88s underlines the liberating arrangements. Offbeat and eclectic, the record frolics and swings, with the Bard and his crack band pursuing jazzy steps (“Sign on the Window”), shuffling spoken-word experiments (“If Dogs Run Free”), and soulful rock (“The Man In Me,” used to wonderful and prominent effect in the Coen Brothers film The Big Lebowski). Throughout, Dylan’s phrasing communicates joyousness and simplicity seemingly carried over from the stripped-down John Wesley Harding and Nashville Skyline. The record’s dominant sentiments trace to the lead track, “If Not For You,” one of the singer’s all-time greatest singles, stitched with country threads and warmth that pervades everything that follows.
Yes, New Morning may lack the iconic status of some of Dylan’s better-known records. Yet the underdog stature makes repeat listens all the more rewarding.
• Numbered, Limited Edition • 33rpm Speed Edition
• Mastering by Mobile Fidelity Sound Lab • Specially Plated and Pressed on 180 grams of High Definition Vinyl
• Special Static Free - Dust Free Inner Sleeve • Heavy Duty Protective Packaging
• Mastered from the Original Master Tapes • Pressed at RTI
Vocals & Guitar– Bob Dylan
Backing Vocals – Albertine Robinson, Hilda Harris, Maeretha Stewart
Electric Bass – Charlie Daniels, Harvey Brooks
Electric Guitar – Buzzy Feiten, Ron Cornelius
Electric Guitar, Dobro – David Bromberg
Organ, Piano, Electric Guitar, French Horn – Al Kooper
Producer – Bob Johnston
Remastered By – Krieg Wunderlich, Rob LoVerde
1. If Not for You
2. Day of the Locusts
3. Time Passes Slowly
4. Went to See the Gypsy
6. If Dogs Run Free
7. New Morning
8. Sign on the Window
9. One More Weekend
10. The Man In Me
11. Three Angels
12. Father of Night
GAIN 2 Ultra Analog™ is a proprietary cutting system built and designed by legendary design genius Tim De Paravicini, with consultation from one of MFSL’s founding fathers – Stan Ricker, an audio engineer responsible for many of MFSL’s most heralded past releases.
The GAIN 2 Ultra Analog™ system is comprised of a Studer™ tape machine with customized reproduction electronics* and handcrafted cutting amps that drive an Ortofon cutting head on a restored Neumann VMS-70 lathe. (*It is worth noting that independent studies have confirmed that the GAIN 2 Ultra Analog™ system can unveil sonic information all the way up to 122kHz!)
First and foremost, we only utilize first generation original master recordings as source material for our releases. We then play back master tapes at half speed enabling the GAIN 2 Ultra Analog™ system to fully extract the master’s sonic information. Our lacquers are then plated in a specialized process that protects transients in the musical signal. (Due to this process, there may be occasional pops or ticks inherent in initial play back, but as the disc is played more, a high quality stylus will actually polish the grooves and improve the sound). We further ensure optimum sound quality by strictly limiting the number of pressings printed for each release. These limited editions, in addition to being collectors’ items, ensure that the quality of the last pressing matches the quality of the first.
As you can imagine, all these efforts involve a tremendous amount of time, technology, cost and effort. The introduction of GAIN 2 Ultra Analog™ maintains Mobile Fidelity Sound Lab’s position as the world’s leading audiophile record label, where a passion for music with extraordinary sound quality matters most.