96kHz/24-bit, FLAC*; Blue Note 00600406671585 (supplied by www.highresaudio.com)
Bit of a dream team exercise, this Blue Note label debut by saxophonist Richardson: quite apart from Pat Metheny on guitar, he’s also brought together Jason Moran on piano and keyboards, with a rhythm section of bassist Harish Raghavan and Nasheet Waits on drums. It’s quite an assembly of talent, and it shows in this richly recorded set that nevertheless lets the musicians’ solo contributions shine through, from Metheny’s soloing on ‘Creeper’ to his attack on ‘Untitled’, while the building complexity of ‘Slow’ is handled deftly yet maintaining the almost stately tempo of the piece. But then that’s the way of this album: beautifully stated melodies breaking down into lyrical, challenging variation and improvisation, with Richardson and Metheny trading blows underpinned by that oh-so-tight engine-room of drums and bass. Lovely stuff, and the sound shines, too. AE
Sound Quality: 85%
Hi-Fi News Lab Report
This file will light the 96kHz LED on your DAC, but the spectrum suggests it might be an upsample from 88.2kHz. But Shift was recorded at Sear Sound (the tube gear specialists) who are not known for jiggery-pokery. So I’ll let it stand. PM
Want the latest issue of Hi-Fi News? Use our magazine locator link to find your nearest stockist!