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Gerry Mulligan and the Paul Desmond Quartet: Blues in Time

The premium reissue of Verve recordings by the Mobile Fidelity company-which boasts expanded range and heightened detailing on their trademarked Ultradiscs-continues with these newly mastered reissues: two undeniable classics and two near-misses.

Ella and Louis Again provides the showpiece: two CDs brimming with music that needs no label and never loses its charm. Fitzgerald and Armstrong recorded this 1957 double-album as a sequel to their highly successful first collaboration for Verve the previous year. It’s more of the same, 19 great standards spread out over two discs; and actually, when compared to the first album, this one does have a slight feeling of recapitulation. Then again, upon hearing these two old friends continue their public musical love affair, who’d seriously complain?

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