Michael Lavorgna

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Michael Lavorgna  |  Nov 21, 2012
I don't mean to pick on Neil Young especially since he's been one of my favorite musicians for decades (even before Decades) and he's also one of a few high profile musicians leading the charge for better sound quality and away from MP3s but his newest album, Psychedelic Pill is only available in download form as a "Digital Bundle" for $10.99 and this bundle is no bundle of hi-rez joy. Rather its, hold onto your irony board, MP3s.
Michael Lavorgna  |  Nov 11, 2012
Wind + Trees = No Power. In Hurricane Sandy's case, we're talking nearly two weeks without power and counting and that puts a real damper on day-to-day activities including listening to music on the hi-fi. Since we live in a rural community, our water comes from a well so no power also means no...Water, water, every where/Nor any drop to drink. That said, we were among the fortunate and only lost a few (very large) trees. My cousin's home was filled with water and many of our friends who own houses at the shore saw the ocean and bay rise up to reclaim much of the barrier island they call summer home, a sobering reminder of nature's fury.
Michael Lavorgna  |  Nov 05, 2012
David Byrne of Talking Heads fame offers up 300+ pages on music including the meaning of listening to music, the music business, the history of music-making, recording, why CBGBs was a special place to make music in (partly because people didn't always have to listen to the music being made), how the place influences the music made in it, how business can influence musical decisions, and why music is man's cosmic connection to all things. In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was Music.
Michael Lavorgna  |  Oct 22, 2012
Peachtree Audio Grand Integrated Amplifier ($4,499)

Here are a few things that are on deck for review.

Michael Lavorgna  |  Oct 07, 2012
Reader Oscar N. from Spain sends iPhone photos of his nearfield setup as well as some new musical discoveries. Thanks Oscar!
Michael Lavorgna  |  Oct 04, 2012
Reader Chris P. sent me an email mainly to talk about his new-found speaker stands:
As soon as I saw the pictures of your cool home setup, I slapped myself for not elevating my own desktop monitors as you've done. After searching around unsuccessfully for a solution I stumbled upon yoga blocks. I am now the proud owner of two Manduka artisan wood yoga blocks that seem to do a good job.
I thought this was something worth sharing mainly for the nice vibe Chris has going on around and on his desktop. I also think this would make a great feature if more people were interested in sharing what their desktop/computer-based audio setups look like. After all, its only in the living with our gear that its real value begins to shine.

Here's the skinny on Chris' setup from Chris:

Michael Lavorgna  |  Sep 23, 2012
Thanks to reader Daniel S. for pointing us to this great article (before my print subscription copy has arrived!) by archivist Will Prentice of the British Library’s Sound & Vision Department. Mr. Prentice talks about our vanishing analogue world and the issues involved with digital archiving, "We have conceptually separated the ephemeral carrier from its everlasting content, and assume that intermediate carriers will be junked every few years."
Michael Lavorgna  |  Sep 23, 2012
Listen to a selection from the British Library’s extensive collections of unique sound recordings, which come from all over the world and cover the entire range of recorded sound: music, drama and literature, oral history, wildlife and environmental sounds.
And there are over 50,000 of 'em to choose from. Music selections include the amazing Touch Radio live recordings, the world's largest collection of Decca West African 78s, and much much more. Listen to live recordings of Fennesz, Philip Jeck, Jacob Kirkegaard, Oren Ambarchi, hear Coleman Hawkins and Evan Parker talk about jazz, pull up a chair to original recordings of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, Mahatma Gandhi, John Keats, Ernest Shackleton, J. R. R Tolkien, groove to some 'Wilhelmj' cylinders, Brandenburg Concertos and Arabian Camels, and browse through some blues from Benin.
Michael Lavorgna  |  Sep 23, 2012
Today marks the official 1st birthday of AudioStream's unofficial launch and this post marks the 401st I've made over the past year (I didn't plan to hit such a round number, it just worked out that way). Now is as good a time as any to thank all of you for visiting AudioStream and for helping to make this site what it is. I am most thankful to all of the people who comment and share their thoughts, experiences, and knowledge. This helps to foster a sense of community which I see as one of my most important goals. AudioStream is certainly a group effort and you are the most important part of this site's continued success.

Of course there is a business side and other people who remain behind the scenes without which AudioStream would not exist and now is a good time to introduce you to the rest of the team.

Michael Lavorgna  |  Sep 20, 2012
47 Labs Shigaraki DAC

Reader Alex H. commented in our Forums that he had become fascinated playing back music through his MacBook Pro but, "...compared to analog, I've found every digital combination I've tried to sound at least to some degree fatiguing and harshly wiry, with a kind of hollow, insubstantial sound that immediately reveals itself to be artificial. It lacks coherence and most of all, presence." He went on to ask, "...can someone recommend a DAC, preferably for under a grand and a half, that sounds musical, involving and relaxed?"

Michael Lavorgna  |  Sep 20, 2012
Last night my wife and I stood for eight hours along with a few thousand other people to see and hear Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band. This was the opening night for their Wrecking Ball tour at MetLife Stadium (do we need to talk about the cost of insurance?) and we had GA tickets which involved standing in line outside for a few hours and then standing inside for a few more to make sure we got into the Front Pit. And then of course standing for the three and half plus-hour show. But if you've ever seen Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band you know what to expect and what you expect is to have your spirits lifted for a few hours along with fifty or so thousand of your closest friends (at least during show time).
Michael Lavorgna  |  Sep 14, 2012
Last night I saw a performance/concert at Our Lady of Lebanon Cathedral in Brooklyn by Philip Jeck and Ted Riederer that was part of the Issue Project Room Series celebrating publisher Touch's 30th Anniversary. The concert consisted of a live performance by Ted Riederer on guitar and vocals and Philip Jeck on turntables/electronics. This live performance was captured direct to lathe-cut vinyl. This live-recorded lathe-cut vinyl was then handed to Jeck who incorporated it into his live turntable/electronics. Then they repeated this process of recording the live sounds to lathe cut vinyl and over time live became all processed turntable/electronics over processed live recordings of turntables/electronics as if Jeck's instruments dissected Ted Riederer over time and repetition causing him to deconstruct before our, um, ears.
Michael Lavorgna  |  Sep 05, 2012
I recently reviewed the Mytek Stereo192-DSD DAC and it has proven to be one of the most-viewed reviews so far. And one of the things that sets the Mytek DAC apart from other DACs is its ability to play back DSD natively. So what's the big deal about DSD playback? Its the sound, silly. Now that I have a second DSD-capable DAC here, the Sonore exD/DAC ($1,195), and some more native DSD recordings thanks to Channel Classics Records and MA Recordings, I'm hearing things I also heard with the Mytek which leads me to believe that some aspects of this wonderful sound is due to DSD. And that's a big deal.
Michael Lavorgna  |  Aug 28, 2012
There have been a few additions (and one deletion) from my system and for those visually astute regular readers, this picture is worth its weight in words.

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