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Traffic- Mr. Fantasy

Our Shootout Winner from 2019

  (Item #: traffmrfan_2019) 



A distinguished member of the Better Records Rock Hall of Fame.

This early Pink Label import pressing boasts Shootout Winning Triple Plus (A+++) sound or close to it on both sides, making this one of the best copies to hit the site in many years, if not THE best. We used to think that The Best of Traffic had better sound, but in a head to head comparison with this very copy, we were proved WRONG. Big, full-bodied and lively, with huge amounts of space and off the charts Tubey Magic, the sound here is Hard to Fault.

More Steve Winwood


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White Hot Stamper

Traffic
Mr. Fantasy

  (Item #: traffmrfan_1908_10) 

Our Price: $399.99

  • This early Pink Label import pressing boasts Shootout Winning Triple Plus (A+++) sound or close to it on both sides, making this one of the best copies to hit the site in many years, if not THE best
  • We used to think that The Best of Traffic had better sound, but in a head to head comparison with this very copy, we were proved WRONG
  • Big, full-bodied and lively, with huge amounts of space and off the charts Tubey Magic, the sound here is Hard to Fault - thanks Eddie and Jimmy!
  • "Winwood is simply incredible. He has a top group of musicians with him and they have made an album which is one of the best from any contemporary group." - Rolling Stone, 1968
More Steve Winwood / More Dave Mason


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Super Hot Stamper

Traffic
John Barleycorn Must Die

  (Item #: traffjohnb_1910) 

Our Price: $119.99

  • With two seriously good sides each rating a Double Plus (A++) or BETTER, this copy was one of the better pressings we played in our shootout
  • Both sides have the vintage analog sound we love - rich and smooth, with plenty of Tubey Magic and studio space
  • Arguably their best album, certainly their most groundbreaking, original and involving - Low Spark would rank a close second
  • "...the band sounds utterly grounded. As the grooves percolate effortlessly along, it becomes clear that unity, not any technical skill, is what makes the music levitate."
See all of our Traffic albums in stock


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Super Hot Stamper

Traffic
Welcome to the Canteen

  (Item #: traffwelco_1910) 

Our Price: $129.99

  • You'll find superb Double Plus (A++) sound or close to it on this outstanding UK copy of the band's first live album
  • Forget the dubby domestic pressings and whatever crappy Heavy Vinyl record they're making these days - these UK LPs are the only way to fly
  • 4 stars: "... the playing was exemplary, and the set list was an excellent mixture of old Traffic songs and recent Mason favorites. "Dear Mr. Fantasy" got an extended workout, and the capper was a rearranged version of Steve Winwood's old Spencer Davis Group hit "Gimme Some Lovin'." ...Welcome to the Canteen's status as only a semi-legitimate offering was emphasized by the release of The Low Spark of High Heeled Boys). But that doesn't make it any less appealing as a summing up of the Winwood/Mason/Traffic musical world."
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Super Hot Stamper (Quiet Vinyl)

Traffic
Low Spark of High Heeled Boys

  (Item #: trafflowsp_1811_7_9) 

Our Price: $149.99
Sale Price: $119.00 (You save $30.99 / 21%)


  • This is an outstanding Island Sunray domestic pressing offering spacious Tubey Magical Double Plus (A++) sound throughout - exceptionally quiet vinyl too
  • Low Spark is clearly one of the best sounding Proggy/Arty Rock records ever made - the space it recreates in your listening room is HUGE
  • A Better Records Top 100 album and a real Demo Disc on a pressing that sounds as good as this one does
  • 4 1/2 stars: "The commercial and artistic apex of the second coming of Traffic... The standout was the 12-minute title track, with its distinctive piano riff and its lyrics of weary disillusionment with the music business. "
See all of our Traffic albums in stock


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White Hot Stamper

Traffic
John Barleycorn Must Die

  (Item #: traffjohnb_1904_6_9) 

Our Price: $199.99

  • A stunning copy of this Traffic Classic with Shootout Winning Triple Plus (A+++) sound from first note to the last
  • Both sides have the vintage analog sound we love - rich and smooth, with plenty of Tubey Magic, bottom end weight and studio space
  • Arguably their best album, certainly their most groundbreaking, original and involving - Low Spark would rank a close second
  • "...the band sounds utterly grounded. As the grooves percolate effortlessly along, it becomes clear that unity, not any technical skill, is what makes the music levitate."
See all of our Traffic albums in stock


  more Info










Super Hot Stamper

Traffic
Mr. Fantasy

  (Item #: traffmrfan_1908_2) 

Our Price: $199.99

  • This Island import pressing boasts excellent Double Plus (A++) sound from start to finish
  • These sides are big, full-bodied and lively with plenty of extension on both ends - thanks Eddie!
  • Relatively quiet vinyl throughout, Mint Minus to Minus Minus - few copies will play remotely this well
  • "Winwood is simply incredible. He has a top group of musicians with him and they have made an album which is one of the best from any contemporary group." - Rolling Stone, 1968
More Steve Winwood / More Dave Mason


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Super Hot Stamper

Traffic
The Best of Traffic

  (Item #: traffbesto_1901_1907) 

Our Price: $119.99

  • You'll find outstanding Double Plus (A++) sound on both sides of this British Pink Label Island pressing
  • Here are the full-bodied mids, punchy lows and clear, open, extended highs that let this 1969 release come alive
  • This amazing compilation boasts superb sound, often better than the very same tracks on many of the original British releases
  • Top 100 and 4 stars: "The entire second side of the LP, comprising 'Medicated Goo,' 'Forty Thousand Headmen,' 'Feelin' Alright,' 'Shanghai Noodle Factory,' and 'Dear Mr. Fantasy,' was the kind of progressive rock that would define Traffic and give it its place in the rock pantheon."
See all of our Traffic albums in stock


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Super Hot Stamper

Traffic
The Low Spark of High Heeled Boys

  (Item #: trafflowsp_1907) 

Our Price: $99.99

  • An outstanding early pressing offering killer Double Plus (A++) sound quality or BETTER from start to finish
  • Low Spark is clearly one of the best sounding Proggy/Arty Rock records ever made - the space it recreates is huge
  • A Better Records Top 100 album and real Demo Disc on a pressing that sounds as good as this one does
  • 4 1/2 stars: "The commercial and artistic apex of the second coming of Traffic... The standout was the 12-minute title track, with its distinctive piano riff and its lyrics of weary disillusionment with the music business. "
See all of our Traffic albums in stock


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Traffic - Mr. Fantasy

Where's the Bass?

  (Item #: traffmrfan_pink) 



This Pink Label Original Island pressing has amazingly sweet, open, extended and transparent mids and highs. It has two major shortcomings: a lack of bass, and a fair amount of surface noise. If you can add a few dB around 50 cycles and can put up with some surface noise and scratches, you are guaranteed to hear some wonderful sound in the best tubey Island tradition.

Side two sounds better than side one; it has more bass and therefore is more tonally correct.

More Traffic


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Traffic - Shoot Out At The Fantasy Factory

Our Shootout Winner from 2015

  (Item #: traffshoot_2015) 



A distinguished member of the Better Records Rock Hall of Fame.

Import versus domestic? You would be hard pressed to find better sound than on the best of these DOMESTIC pressings, and that includes Low Spark of High Heeled Boys!

We just finished a huge shootout for this album and didn't find a copy that could hold a candle to this one in the huge stack we played. This may not be the best Traffic album ever, but on a copy that sounds this good it's very enjoyable and certainly an impressive sonic spectacular.

See all of our Traffic albums in stock


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Traffic - John Barleycorn Must Die

Our Shootout Winner from 2007

  (Item #: traffjohnb_UK_2007) 



A distinguished member of the Better Records Rock and Pop Hall of Fame.

This British Island Pink Label John Barelycorn has MASTER TAPE SOUND on THE BEST SIDE TWO WE’VE EVER HEARD! It’s also the only British copy we played that could hold its own with our best domestics on side one.

More Traffic


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Traffic - Traffic

Our Shootout Winner from 2010

  (Item #: trafftraff_2010) 



A distinguished member of the Better Records Rock and Pop Hall of Fame.

UNBELIEVABLE! Here's an Island Pink Label pressing of Traffic's self-titled second album that has a STUNNING side one, a GREAT side two, and plays close to Near Mint! It has been YEARS since we've had such a beautiful Pink Label copy, and I doubt we've ever heard a pressing on any label that could better this side one. The sound is as close to PERFECTION as we ever expect to hear for this music -- super tubey magical, unbelievably transparent and tonally correct from top to bottom.

More Steve Winwood / More Dave Mason


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Traffic- Mr. Fantasy

Our Shootout Winner from 2006

  (Item #: traffmrfan_2006) 



A distinguished member of the Better Records Rock Hall of Fame.

This British Sunray Label pressing has THE BEST SOUND I’VE EVER HEARD FOR THIS ALBUM! None of the Pink Label originals that we played had the deep, powerful, punchy bass that this pressing has, coupled with an extended, sweet top end.

This is one of the best sounding Traffic records ever made. Musically it’s hit or miss, but so is every other Traffic record, including my favorite, John Barleycorn. The best songs here are Heaven Is In Your Mind, Dear Mr. Fantasy, and Coloured Rain.

More Steve Winwood / More Dave Mason


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Traffic - Last Exit

Our Shootout Winner from 2010

  (Item #: trafflaste_2010) 



A distinguished member of the Better Records Rock Hall of Fame.

This QUIET British Import Island Sunray (Pink Rim) pressing has THE BEST SIDE TWO WE'VE EVER HEARD, which is where the two extended live cuts are found. We played a bunch of these recently (nothing but Brits, the only way to go for this album) and no side two could keep up with this one. It's got more extension up top, more weight down low, and more energy than we heard anywhere else.

More Traffic


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Traffic - John Barleycorn Must Die

Our Shootout Winner from 2012

  (Item #: traffjohnb_2012) 



A distinguished member of the Better Records Rock and Pop Hall of Fame.

This White Hot Stamper side one is OUT OF THIS WORLD -- the new KING for this album! We played a huge number of pressings -- Pink Labels, United Artists originals and reissues -- and this side one was completely UNMATCHED. What put it in a league of its own? BIG ENERGY for one thing. Side one of this copy was jumping out of the speakers in a way that took us completely by surprise. We had a dozen clean copies, that's 24 sides, and this was the only one that showed us just how lively and clear that side one master tape must be.

More Traffic


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Traffic - The Low Spark Of High Heeled Boys

Our Shootout Winner from 2008

  (Item #: trafflowsp_2008) 



A distinguished member of the Better Records Rock and Jazz Hall of Fame.

HOLY COW! Side one of this British Island Sunray pressing BLEW THE DOORS off the competition in our big shootout. It took the music to an entirely new level for us, so we awarded it the very rare grade of A++++ -- that’s four pluses, my man!

More Traffic


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Traffic - Best Of Traffic

Our Shootout Winner from 2011

  (Item #: traffbesto_2011) 



A distinguished member of the Better Records Rock and Pop Hall of Fame.

This Island British Pink Label pressing has SOME OF THE BEST TRAFFIC SOUND YOU'LL EVER HEAR! We've been flipping out over Hot Stamper copies of this greatest hits comp for ages for a very simple, yet likely shocking, reason -- the sound on the best copies can be BETTER than the best original pressings! How can that be you ask, dumbfounded by the sheer ridiculousness of such a statement? Well, dear reader, I'll tell you. Follow me over the jump to find out.

More Steve Winwood / More Dave Mason


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Traffic - The Low Spark Of High Heeled Boys

MoFi Debunked

  (Item #: trafflowsp_debunk) 



Sonic Grade: F

A Hall of Shame pressing and another MoFi LP debunked.

Of course our Hot Stamper pressings are going to be better than the Anadisq LP from the mid '90s. How much better? Words fail me. The MoFi was an out and out disaster. Perhaps some of the MoFi collectors didn't notice because they had nothing to compare it to. God forbid they would ever lower themselves to buy a "common" pressing such as one of our domestic Islands.

More Traffic


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Traffic - John Barleycorn Must Die

Listen for Winwood's Left Hand

  (Item #: traffjohnb_wtlf_2015) 



Another in our series of Home Audio Exercises with specific advice on What to Listen For.

We learned something new a few years back about John Barleycorn while playing an especially TRANSPARENT copy. This pressing made it clear -- really, for the first time -- exactly what Winwood was doing with his left hand on the piano during the song Glad.

More Traffic


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Traffic

  (Item #: _traffic) 


Traffic albums in stock

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Traffic - John Barleycorn Must Die

Listening in Depth

  (Item #: traffjohnb_depth) 



Another in our series of Home Audio Exercises with specific advice on What to Listen For as you critically evaluate your copy of John Barleycorn Must Die.

The toughest test on side two is the first track, Stranger to Himself. Getting the voices right is practically impossible. If the voices are full, smooth, yet breathy and clear, you have that rare copy that actually gets the midrange right. Not many do.

More Traffic / More Steve Winwood


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The Dirty Little Secret of the Record Biz Part 3

Hits That Are Made from Dub Tapes

  (Item #: nevermind_3) 


The sound of some songs on some greatest hits albums can be BETTER than the sound of those very same songs on the best original pressings.

How can that be you ask, dumbfounded by the sheer ridiculousness of such a statement? Well, dear reader, I'll tell you. It's a dirty little secret in the record biz that sometimes the master for the presumptive Hit Single (or singles) is pulled from the album's final two track master mix tape and used to make the 45 single, the idea being that the single is what people are going to hear on the radio and want to buy, or, having heard it sound so good on the radio, go out and buy the album.

More from our Thinking About Hot Stampers series


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Traffic - Mr. Fantasy

25th Anniversary British Pressing

  (Item #: traffmrfan) 



This Minty looking Island 25th Anniversary British Import LP has SURPRISINGLY GOOD SOUND! I’d have to say it’s the best sounding record from this series I’ve ever heard. (Note that this is the British version and not the Italian one.)

I can't vouch for other copies of this record -- they may not sound as good as this one -- but this one has the bass that's missing from some of the Pink Label copies and is overall tonally Right On The Money (ROTM), with almost none of the transistory grain that you find on domestic pressings. If you don't want to spend the big bucks for a Hot Stamper, this is probably the next best way to go.

More Traffic


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