Hi Jepson. The songs I use for reviewing hi-fi components have changed over time.
In the past, one of my fave tracks was Dire Straits’ Money For Nothing. I have also used Dire Straits’ Sultans Of Swing and Six Blade Knife (for the bass) to review components.
I also liked Joni Mitchell’s Hits (all the tracks). For male vocals, I played Frank Sinatra’s Sinatra–Basie: An Historic Musical First which was fantastic for checking out the reproduction of horns.
Then I discovered Eva Cassidy and used Live At Blues Alley, Eva By Heart, Songbird and Time After Time.
I also played Suzanne Vega’s The Best of Suzanne Vega Tried and True and used songs like Luka, Tom’s Diner, Marlene on the Wall, 99.9° F and Small Blue Thing.
For soundstaging, I still play live recordings like The Corrs Unplugged and Eric Clapton Unplugged. For depth, I now play the HDTracks hi-res version of Joni Mitchell’s Both Sides Now.
If I want to listen to acoustic music, I play Joni Mitchell’s Court and Spark and Yo-Yo Ma’s Yo-Yo Ma & Friends: Songs of Joy & Peace for the rich sound of the cello. I especially like the James Taylor version of Here Comes The Sun in this CD.
If I want to listen to rock, I play Bad Company’s debut album, Police’s Every Breath I Take (for the bass) and Fleetwood Mac’s Rumours (I love Dreams and Songbird).
For jazz, I play Charles Mingus Blues & Roots these days.
For duets, I play HDTrack’s hi-res version of Ray Charles’ Genius Loves Company (10th Anniversary Edition).