Quad fans, heads up, the 1973 Billboard Album of the year, War’s “The World is a Ghetto,” which saw the group leaning towards a progressive soul and jazz sound is now part of the Rhino Quadio series. The record houses the gold-certified tracks “The Cisco Kid” and “The World is a Ghetto.” Now for the first time in nearly 50 years, transferred from the original Half-Inch 4-Channel Masters, it is available on a Blu-ray in extraordinary 192kHz / 24-bit high resolution quadraphonic and stereo mixes.
Gordon Fletcher, in a 1973 Rolling Stone review, applauds War's album "The World is a Ghetto." He describes the opening track, "The Cisco Kid," as vividly portraying a fantasy world for ghetto youth, providing hope and heroes. The subsequent track, "Where Was You At," is praised for its soulful energy. Fletcher finds "City, Country, City" to be an energetic tour de force but criticizes its failure to convey the urgency of ghetto life. "Four Cornered Room" is deemed mildly interesting, while the title track is highlighted as a successful use of the "Groovin'" motif, with a magnificent sax solo.
Joel Vance, in Stereo Review, commends the first side of the album as marvelous, combining Latin, rock, jazz, and soul with faultless technique. He particularly praises the performances of Charles Miller, Lonnie Jordan, Papa Dee Allen, and Lee Oskar. However, Vance dismisses the second side as standard "soul" with elements of pop and jazz, finding tracks like "Four Cornered Room" and "Beetles in the Bog" beneath the band's talents.
Billboard praises War's album as an excellent package with standout tracks like "The Cisco Kid" and the title cut, "The World is a Ghetto."
In a retrospective review, Barry Walters, writing for Rolling Stone in 2002, reflects on the album's significance in the early 1970s, describing it as a groundbreaking mix of funk, blues, jazz, and prog rock. He acknowledges War's role in progressive black music and their ability to create a unified groove.
Obviously the album's lasting impact is evident with its acknowledgement in Rolling Stone's 2003 list of the greatest albums of all time. Overall, reviews have recognized War's fusion of genres, and the album's importance in capturing the urban experience of the time. Now, for immersionists this Quadio edition is most welcome.
Released January 19, 2024.
Blu-ray Audio featuring DTS HD Master Audio 192kHz / 24-bit 4.0 Quad and 2.0 Stereo mixes. Also available on streaming platforms with different mastering..
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About the Author
Wesley is a lifelong music enthusiast. He started his career in the recording industry in New York City as an audio engineer, producer, and studio manager. Subsequently he toured across America as a guitarist with the short-lived band Land's Crossing. After many years in the technology sector and amassing a substantial vinyl and CD collection, he delved into immersive audio and created Hi-Res Edition to share with other listeners about the sound quality and discrete mixes available on many formats. He recently upgraded his system to 5.1.4 Dolby Atmos and continues to seek out and share about the best sounding releases.