96kHz/24-bit ALAC/FLAC/WAV, moscd4010 (supplied by www.naimlabel.com)
It’s not uncommon that a recording identified as compromised in the Lab Report might still sound quite marvellous to these ears. Here, however, something was clearly wrong, with distortion hovering at the edge of audibility, pressuring the peaks and affecting image clarity on busier tracks like ‘Listen To Me’ and the surprising bottle-neck blues of ‘Dust My Broom’. This dents what is a thrilling tenth album from McEvoy, tripping between styles in her lilting honey-dripping tones, and not shy of brave material including a touching take on Cyndi Lauper’s ‘True Colours’ and a still sparser ‘God Only Knows’, a song rarely covered because it’s so darned difficult. Attempted here with simple piano accompaniment, she nails it in gaspable form, the piano less so, a trifle underplayed. The whole is a delight in musical terms, with just that query over the sonics. JF
Sound Quality: 70%
Hi-Fi News Lab Report
Originally recorded at 96kHz, this album was subsequently converted to DSD before being asymmetrically downsampled down to 96kHz. Hence the swell of requantisation noise and obvious cut-off point around 44kHz. PM
Want the latest issue of Hi-Fi News? Use our magazine locator link to find your nearest stockist!