Michael Lavorgna  |  Mar 09, 2018  |  3 comments
The Breeders are back and there's gonna be trouble (Hey la, hey la, The Breeder's are back).

It feels like forever ago that I got to sit in on an early listen of All Nerve, The Breeders new album, at John DeVore's place with a few members of the band. If you are under the impression we all listen for the same thing and thus hear the same thing when listening to music, just spend some time listening to musicians listening to themselves.

Michael Lavorgna  |  Mar 08, 2018  |  42 comments
On a lovely March evening, Herb Reichert, Alex Halberstadt, Stephen Mejias, and I met up at John DeVore's place for The Great DAC-Off!
Michael Lavorgna  |  Mar 07, 2018  |  0 comments
The best places keep their menu fresh. With that in mind, we have re-organized AudioStream's menu structure to, ideally, make things make more sense while keeping pace with Network Audio's shifting landscape (e.g. I think "Network" audio makes more sense than "Computer" audio).
Michael Lavorgna  |  Mar 06, 2018  |  5 comments
DJM GigaFOILv4 – INLINE Ethernet filter ($475.00).
Michael Lavorgna  |  Mar 05, 2018  |  1 comments
"Is there anybody going to listen to my story...".

Being four (or perhaps five) years old I had absolutely had no idea what John Lennon was singing about, but I could tell it was important.

If it started with the Beatles, it continued with Elvis. And Miles—"Sketches from Spain"—I was lured by the cool cover... And piano jazz, because that's what my parents were playing.

The drive of Elvis, the patience of Miles, the urgency of John Lennon, the swing of Errol Garner and the beauty of them all, is what I look for. Pretense. Sure, but that's what I ended up with when thinking about what attracts me to a piece of music or a performance.

Michael Lavorgna  |  Mar 02, 2018  |  1 comments
Protest music. Some of my favorite music is protest music, both covert and overt. Following on in the great tradition of overt anger from records like Max Roach's scathing hot We Insist! featuring the always memorable Abbey Lincoln, Irreversible Entanglements' eponymous debut features Camae Ayewa on spoken word, regular readers know her as the viscerally frightening Moor Mother, Keir Neuringer on alto sax, Aquiles Navarro on trumpet, Luke Stewart double bass, and Tcheser Holmes drums. They went into the studio together one day and walked away with this fiery gem.
Joe Surdna  |  Mar 01, 2018  |  0 comments
If you ask me “What sort of music do you like?” I’m faced with one of those ineffable conundrums that would come with a long pause before I answered, a sharp intake of breath, perhaps an aversion from your direct gaze--what we have here in this simple question is not an affirmation of taste per se but a moral equivalency toward “taste.” “What sort of music don’t you like?” might be the better question. Why do I feel physically ill whenever I hear a live bootleg of a Grateful Dead concert, or come away traumatized when subjected to most modern country? Why do I generally feel a sense of emptiness when I hear most classical jazz made in the last 35 years? Or, why do I go through long periods of wanting Chopin etudes and nothing else? Why does 95% of music described as “ambient” make me feel irritated and so thankful when I finally hit pause? And why does 95% of Vaporwave or Shoegaze so rarely move me? Ditto with what is called Folk or most variations of Metal? What is it about the 5% that transcends this mystery of banality and somehow manages to move me to recognize it as something unique and worthy of repeated listens? The easy answer is that I like all forms of music, but it has to move me in some way, actually alter my brainwaves--to elicit a response wherein I give back a part of myself, or open up a part of myself I never knew existed, that absolute sense of joy at recognizing that something wholly new has been born into the world, or that someone has taken a traditional form and somehow made it all their own. As Elvis said on The Sun Sessions: “Let’s get real, real gone.”
Michael Lavorgna  |  Mar 01, 2018  |  8 comments
Imagine your uncle Bob comes over unannounced and before he rings the bell, your doorbell rings. That's not right. That's not natural. Thankfully, the Stellar Gain Cell DAC/Preamp comes with your choice of three filters which, among other things, offer differences in ringing; Filter 1 is a Slow Roll-Off Linear Phase filter which offers the least amount of ringing. Filter 2 provides better high-frequency response but its Fast Roll-off Minimum Phase filter lets in some post-ringing. Filter 3 is Bob's your uncle.
Michael Lavorgna  |  Feb 27, 2018  |  2 comments
iFi micro iDSD Black Label DAC Headamp($540.00).