MERIDIAN: Their gimmick-free golden years of 2-channel music

Howard Popeck: Emerging phoenix-like or perhaps Cinderella-like out of the turmoil of Lecson via the short-lived Orpheus designs, Bob Stuart and Allen Boothroyd announced the arrival of BS Meridian in Hi-fi News 35 years ago. The series 1 system comprised initially the 101 preamp, the 103 power amp and the astonishing M1 active speakers with […]

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NICO: The End (2CD)

Nico’s 1974 album remastered and expanded into a 2CD set with the inclusion of five tracks from two John Peel sesions, two tracks from the Old Grey Whistle Test in 1975 and two tracks from the Rainbow Theatre Allmusic.com review by Dave Thompson: “It is one of the most entrenched visions in the rock critic’s […]

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NICK CAVE: Morose? I’m just getting started’ – Nick Cave loses patience during Twitter Q&A with fans

Nick Clark writes ….. Many musicians see social networking sites as an ideal way to get closer to fans and drum up publicity for albums and concerts. Nick Cave is not one of those musicians. The 55-year old, described as having “one of the most extraordinary careers in the annals of pop music,” was dragged […]

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THE CARS: Heartbeat City [Expanded Edition]

Coming off the less-than-classic Shake It Up, the Cars decided again to change things up, this time moving from their home studio in Boston to London to record with Mutt Lange. The producer was coming off a string of sleek modern hits, most recently Def Leppard’s Pyromania, and the Cars put themselves in Lange’s capable […]

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TONE CONTROLS: Howard Popeck in conversation with Neil McCauley about his SAE 2800, Cello Palette, Yamaha C1, Carver 4000 and the Daniel Hertz

This is the next in an occasional series of recorded brief conversations between Howard and myself during snatched time between deadlines and other time issues. Neil: Howard? Howard: Yes! (faking irritability) N: it’s that time again! (faking sarcasm) H: Oh …… good (faking sarcasm) N: So, whatever happened to tone controls? You know, the bass […]

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WEBERN: Appreciating Anton Webern

A disciple of Schoenberg, Webern’s music has exercised a tremendous influence on contemporary composers, especially Boulez and Stockhausen. The son of an aristocratic mining engineer (Webern dropped the nobiliary ‘von’ when Austria became a republic after the First World War), it was while he was a student at the University of Vienna that he was […]

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Audiophile buying: How to make better quality buying decisions – by Howard Popeck (Part 1)

Those of you who know me personally probably know that I’m fascinated by the psychologies (or in simpler terms the brain processes) which guide people to make decisions in general and buying decisions in particular. Having made many seriously flawed commercial decisions (the demise of Subjective Audio being a case in point) I strive to […]

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