SACD Number: Stax
Next to Hot Buttered Soul the SHAFT- Music from the Soundtrack album has stood the test of time as an utter jazz-blues-soul-pop classic. This was an excellent choice to reformat in the SACD configuration. Isaac Hayes and his band were at the peak of their creative powers during this time and I think someone in Hollywood was very aware of that and understood that signing on Hayes to record the soundtrack to help launch their movie would be a key factor to its success, and it was.
I have been trying to get my hands on this album for two years now for review! Finally, my long time friends at Fantasy Jazz came through for me.
This is one incredible album. The sound and production are superior for 1971, and now it is just beyond words how fine this album sounds. Every detail comes to the forefront in this format, you can tell that the original production was solid and very precise and full in sound, and obviously, if this was not so, the existing version would not sound so sparkling and crisp. You need something good to work with to be able to improve upon it. Hayes did not miss a step when he put his band together and went into the studio for this project.
The "Theme From Shaft" is one of the most recognizable songs in the history of recorded music and I could not stop playing it, it sounds so new and fresh now. What really blew me away was "Do Your Thing," which is equal to one side on an LP, 19 minutes and 30 seconds (in old-timer's terms). The guitar, bass, drums, well, everything is so outstanding, it makes for a classic combination of jazz, blues and rock. This unbelievable track will have your eyes bugging out of your head, guaranteed.
To make a potentially very long story short, this is an indispensable piece of music that is an absolute necessity for any serious music fan, do not pass on this release, it is truly a phenomenal listening experience that you will not forget.