On Tuesday (April 26), T Bone Burnett revealed that he has been in the studio with frequent collaborator Bob Dylan, and the two have been working toward re-recording some of the legend’s classic songs.
The revisited recordings were created to showcase the brand-new high-fidelity medium Ionic Originals. The introduction of Ionic Originals debuts the first breakthrough in analog sound reproduction in more than 70 years, according to a release announcing the news.
Few details have been released regarding when we can expect these new Dylan recordings to come out and what songs were re-recorded, or what hardware will be needed to play them.
Burnett has long been committed to advocating for the sonic excellence of analog sound. The Grammy-winning producer’s new company, NeoFidelity Inc., will release a series of Ionic Originals, with the Dylan recordings serving as the company’s first offering. Though the format they will be released in resembles vinyl, it will be a whole new medium altogether. A photo accompanying the announcement shows Burnett holding an aluminum platter on which “Ionic Originals” releases will be available.
In a press release, Burnett shared his enthusiasm for his new venture. “An Ionic Original is the pinnacle of recorded sound. It is archival quality. It is future-proof. It is one of one. Not only is an Ionic Original the equivalent of a painting, it is a painting. It is lacquer painted onto an aluminum disc, with a spiral etched into it by music. This painting, however, has the additional quality of containing that music, which can be heard by putting a stylus into the spiral and spinning it.”
Burnett also spoke on his preference for analog sound over digital sound, saying: “When describing the quality that raises analog sound above digital sound, the word ‘warmth’ is often used,” Burnett further notes. “Analog sound has more depth, more harmonic complexity, more resonance, better imaging. Analog has more feel, more character, more touch. Digital sound is frozen. Analog sound is alive.”
The announcement concluded by affirming NeoFidelity Inc. and Burnett’s mission “to record artists across a wide range of musical genres and provide a platform of distribution for Ionic Originals” and “to reset the valuation for recorded music.”