Stevie Wonder Hotter Than July on Japanese Import SHM-SACD
Released in 1980, Stevie Wonder’s brilliant Hotter Than July witnessed the end of the legendary artist’s “Classic Period.” Excited after meeting Bob Marley, Wonder embraced reggae’s sunnier feel and colorful look on the album, which yielded four Top Ten singles in the U.K. and three charting singles in the U.S. Hotter Than July remains the peerless composer’s last true masterpiece.
Possessing a slightly faster and jam-oriented direction that Wonder’s other trademark efforts, the record finds the singer doing what he does best: Crafting memorable arrangements and addictive grooves, all the while ignoring the musical trends that surrounded him at the time. Wonder flirts with a disco pulse on “All I Do,” yet the main attractions relate to his irrepressible soulfulness. Rather than play everything himself, he switches up his prior methods by employing all-star backing choirs and abundant rhythm sections that grace songs with insouciant tunefulness and buoyant hooks. More than a dozen backing vocalists (including Michael Jackson, Eddie Levert, and Angela Winbush) also appear
Historically, Hotter Than July not only marks a return to form, but a launching pad for the now-observed Martin Luther King holiday. With the anthemic “Happy Birthday,” Wonder issued a call to action and ultimately, got it. The song is line with the mood of the majority of the album: celebratory, positive, and lively. Wonder, however, doesn’t abandon his penchant for social critique, as “Cash In Your Face” stands as a protest against housing discrimination. Simply put, Hotter Than July has it all, and 35 years after its original release, continues to burn brightly.
SHM-SACD (Super High Material SACD) is the ultimate Super Audio CD that utilizes the materials and technologies that were developed for the SHM-CD to further enhance the audio-resolution. These discs are made with polycarbonate developed for the screen of the liquid crystal display. As it has a higher transparency, players can read the signal more faithfully. Also, it excels in fluidity, which enables you to cast a more accurate pit. What works wonders for a low resolution format such as CD should offer even greater sonic improvements in a real high resolution format such as SACD.
• 2-channel Single Layer SACD
• Two-channel SACD layer only, to secure enough reflectance and not to compress DSD file
• Label of the disc is printed with a special green ink called 'Onsho Shiyou,' which minimizes diffuse reflection
• Carefully selected master audio is used, from existing DSD files to newly converted from analog tapes
• This disc will ONLY work on a Super Audio Disc Player