All posts by Rachmaninov

I was born for the music. Music was my first love and will be the last.... (John Miles)

HD-Vinyls 24/96 (EMI) Francis Poulenc – La Musique De Chambre (Fournier, Le Quintette À Vent De Paris, Menuhin)


Many thanks to Jean-Luc for this marvellous set
Francis Poulenc had throughout his life a predilection for wind instruments. He composed for the winds at the very beginning (sonata for 2 clarinets) at the very end of his career (sonatas for clarinet and piano, for oboe and piano). But this did not prevent him from producing during the Second World War two magnificent sonatas for violin and piano and cello and piano (each dedicated to Ginette Neveu and Pierre Fournier). His music

Composer: Francis Poulenc
Performer: Pierre Fournier, Le Quintette À Vent De Paris, Yehudi Menuhin
Vinyl 1973

Number of Discs: 4
Format: FLAC
Label: EMI
DR-Analysis: DR 13
Size: 3.5 GB
Scan: yes
Server: FF
Continue reading HD-Vinyls 24/96 (EMI) Francis Poulenc – La Musique De Chambre (Fournier, Le Quintette À Vent De Paris, Menuhin)

HD-Vinyls 24/192 (EMI) Niccolò Paganini – Violin Concerti No. 1 & 2 (Menuhin)


A feast for heart & ears. Without any doubt, Paganini was the greatest violin virtuous ever lived. By the way: marvellous sound on this reissue!
Stunning album so beautifully played. As can be expected, there are music lovers who relish the technical details of Paganini’s violin concertos, and then there are those who find themselves ever-so-comfortable in the rich and lush romanticism of his quitessentially Italian expressiveness. You may freely count your servant in the latter category: in th eopinion of your servant, no one wrote more exquisitely romantic violin music (with the exception of Pablo de Sarasate) than Niccolo Paganini, and Yehudi Menuhin captures the essence of this romanticism at the highest levels of technicianship and expressive musicality!!! The cadenzas are from an older era, but they are no less technically demanding, and Yehudi Menuhin shows himself more than equal to the task. An absolute benchmark recording for all lovers of violin pyrotechnics, as well as violin students.
Highly recommended!

Composer: Niccolò Paganini
Orchestra: Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
Conductor: Alberto Erede
Vinyl 1961

Number of Discs: 1
Format: FLAC
Label: EMI
DR-Analysis: DR 15
Size: 2.09 GB
Scan: yes
Server: FF
Continue reading HD-Vinyls 24/192 (EMI) Niccolò Paganini – Violin Concerti No. 1 & 2 (Menuhin)

HD-Vinyls 24/192 (EMI/Melodyia) Jean Sibelius – Symphonies No. 5 & 6 (Rozhdestvensky)


Many thanks to Jean-Luc for this pearl
Rozhdestvensky is one of the later Soviet conductors who was still young enough to have a lengthy post Soviet career. These Sibelius recordings are from the 1970s when he was in his 40s. One has to accept that the Soviet brass sections were always a bit blaring and intrusive. It adds excitement at climaxes but also can upset the musical balance. Bearing that in mind, Rozhdestvensky brings an exceptional lyrical impulse to these works combined with a consistent rhythmic impulse which keeps the music from becoming unfocused. In the Sixth symphony Rozhdestvensky does a particularly brilliant job with the first two movements. The opening with strings and woodwind is magically handled and the movement gently evolves out of that, building momentum without seeming to. The brass provide a blazing punctuation to the movement right before the final cadence. The second movement carries the listener to the edge of a Finnish forest where little noises and rustling trees disturb the solitude in evanescent fashion. The final two movements are excellent but not quite to the level of the earlier ones.

Composer: Jean Sibelius
Orchestra: Moscow Radio Symphony Orchestra
Conductor: Gennady Rozhdestvensky
Vinyl 1975/80

Number of Discs: 1
Format: FLAC
Label: EMI/Melodyia
DR-Analysis: DR 12
Size: 2.19 GB
Scan: yes
Server: FF
Continue reading HD-Vinyls 24/192 (EMI/Melodyia) Jean Sibelius – Symphonies No. 5 & 6 (Rozhdestvensky)

HD-Vinyls 24/192 (DGG) Anton Bruckner – Symphony No. 7 (Karajan)


Bruckner’s Seventh Symphony is considered his most perfectly conceived, and it has remained among the most performed of his works. The immediate success of his Seventh certainly must have given Bruckner some much needed confidence over the fate of his music.

Composer: Anton Bruckner, Richard Strauss
Orchestra: Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra
Conductor: Herbert von Karajan
Vinyl 1975/77

Number of Discs: 2
Format: FLAC
Label: DGG
DR-Analysis: DR 12
Size: 3.2 GB
Scan: yes
Server: FF
Continue reading HD-Vinyls 24/192 (DGG) Anton Bruckner – Symphony No. 7 (Karajan)

HD-Vinyls 24/96 (Decca) Gustav Holst – The Hymn Of Jesus (Boult)


Gustav Theodore Holst (born Gustavus Theodore von Holst; 21 September 1874 – 25 May 1934) was an English composer, arranger and teacher. Best known for his orchestral suite The Planets, he composed a large number of other works across a range of genres, although none achieved comparable success. His distinctive compositional style was the product of many influences, Richard Wagner and Richard Strauss being most crucial early in his development. The subsequent inspiration of the English folksong revival of the early 20th century, and the example of such rising modern composers as Maurice Ravel, led Holst to develop and refine an individual style.

Composer: Gustav Holst
Orchestra: B.B.C. Symphony Orchestra, London Philharmonic Orchestra
Conductor: Sir Adrian Boult
Vinyl 1962

Number of Discs: 1
Format: FLAC
Label: Decca
DR-Analysis: DR 14
Size: 875 MB
Scan: yes
Server: FF
Continue reading HD-Vinyls 24/96 (Decca) Gustav Holst – The Hymn Of Jesus (Boult)

HD-Vinyls 24/96 (CBS) Maurice Ravel – Complete Works For Solo Piano (Entremont)


Many thanks to Trottar for this gem
Philippe Entremont was born in Reims to musical parents, his mother being a Grand Prix pianist and his father an operatic conductor. Philippe first received piano lessons from his mother at the age of six. His father introduced him to the world of chamber and orchestral music. He studied in Paris with Marguerite Long, and entered the Conservatoire de Paris. He won prizes in sight-reading at age 12, chamber-music aged 14, and piano at 15. He became Laureat at the international Long-Thibaud Competition at the age of 16. In the following year he won a prize in the Queen Elisabeth Music Competition in Brussels, and then began his career of serious concert-giving at the piano.

Composer: Maurice Ravel
Performer: Philippe Entremont, Dennis Lee
Vinyl 1975

Number of Discs: 3
Format: FLAC
Label: CBS
DR-Analysis: DR 14
Size: 2.83 GB
Scan: yes
Server: FF
Continue reading HD-Vinyls 24/96 (CBS) Maurice Ravel – Complete Works For Solo Piano (Entremont)

HD-Vinyls 24/192 (Melodyia) Dmitri Shostakovich – Symphony No. 14 (Kondrashin)


Many thanks to Jean-Luc for this rarity
The 14th Symphony, a cycle of 11 songs, is a series of meditations of one sort or another on death (or immortality, dissent or loss of some sort), for solo bass and soprano voices, and scored for strings and percussion (made up of castanets, woodblock, three tom toms, whip, bells, vibraphone, xylophone, celesta). The songs are potent indeed, each being a microcosm of some type of pain. Kondrashin gets great playing from the orchestra, with the percussion startling with each of its aggressive entrances. The performance is excellent. Highly recommended.

Composer: Dmitri Shostakovich
Performer: Eugenia Tselovalnik, Eugeni Nesterenko
Orchestra: Ensemble Of Soloists Of Moscow Philharmonic Academic Symphony Orchestra
Conductor: Kirill Kondrashin
Vinyl 1974

Number of Discs: 1
Format: FLAC
Label: Melodyia
DR-Analysis: DR 13
Size: 1.86 GB
Scan: yes
Server: FF
Continue reading HD-Vinyls 24/192 (Melodyia) Dmitri Shostakovich – Symphony No. 14 (Kondrashin)

HD-Vinyls 24/192 (DGG) Ludwig van Beethoven – Sonatas For Piano & Cello Op. 5 No. 1 & 2 (Fournier, Gulda)


Many thanks to Jean-Luc for this wonderful 1st pressing
One of Pierre Fournier’s great recordings – arguably the best recording of this Cello work.. The recording was made when Fournier was at his technical peak, and partnered by the keenly-insightful Friedrich Gulda. They make sublime music together! Fournier first paired with Schnabel and later with Kempf. I’ve seen reviews to the effect that the Fournier – Gulda and Fournier – Kempf partnerships have equal merit and receive equally high praise. — But while it makes sense that Fournier and Kempf should make a natural partnership in musical temperament and style of play, Gulda partnering with Fournier might appear to be a surprising collaboration!… Until you hear them engage in a profound and brilliant (technically) conversation.

Composer: Ludwig van Beethoven
Performer: Pierre Fournier, Friedrich Gulda
Vinyl 1959

Number of Discs: 1
Format: FLAC
Label: DGG
DR-Analysis: DR 13
Size: 1.59 GB
Scan: yes
Server: FF
Continue reading HD-Vinyls 24/192 (DGG) Ludwig van Beethoven – Sonatas For Piano & Cello Op. 5 No. 1 & 2 (Fournier, Gulda)

HD-Vinyls 24/192 (Archiv) Johann Sebastian Bach – Cantatas BWV 147, BWV 60 (Richter)


Many thanks to Jean-Luc for this stunning promotional copy
Captured in 32 bit/384 kHz

Johann Sebastian Bach composed the church cantata Herz und Mund und Tat und Leben (Heart and mouth and deed and life), BWV 147, in 1723 during his first year as Thomaskantor, the director of church music in Leipzig.
O Ewigkeit, du Donnerwort (O eternity, you word of thunder), BWV 60 is a church cantata written in Leipzig for the 24th Sunday after Trinity, first performed on 7 November 1723.

Composer: Johann Sebastian Bach
Performer: Münchener Bach-Chor, Hertha Töpper, Kieth Engen, Ursula Buckel, Ernst Haefliger, John van Kesteren
Orchestra: Münchener Bach-Orchester, Solistengemeinschaft der Bachwoche Ansbach

Conductor: Karl Richter
Vinyl 1964

Number of Discs: 1
Format: FLAC
Label: Archiv
DR-Analysis: DR 12
Size: 2.14 GB
Scan: yes
Server: FF
Continue reading HD-Vinyls 24/192 (Archiv) Johann Sebastian Bach – Cantatas BWV 147, BWV 60 (Richter)

HD-Vinyls 24/96 (DGG) Peter Tchaikowsky – Ouverture 1812, Capriccio Italien, Hamlet, Marche Slave (Bernstein)


Many thanks to our friend Dagote for the vinyl
Since the Israel Philharmonic usually plays as a second line orchestra, i never
took this issue seriously. But after listening disastrous readings of those works by Dudamel, i decided to give Lenny a chance, and.. what a big surprise, can this orchestra play! Those are thrilling and first line performances of this basic tchaikovskian repertoire. First of all, a superb and breathtaking Hamlet, that is with no doubt one of the best on record. Lenny explore every texture, note and detail from the score, taking advantage of some wide tempi, delivering a fantastic and unforgettable rendition, comparable to his late Romeo & Juliet with the NYPO. Then we have a very compelling Marche Slave, powerful and energetic, perhaps not so excellent as his old NYPO recording for CBS, but still a very good one. Finally, the Capriccio Italien and 1812 that are delivered with swaggering virtuosity and panache; cannon salvoes, bells and processional brass approach overkill, but with Lenny before a live audience anything could happen, and often did!

Pay attention: due to a converting error, the tracks B1 and B2 were corrupted. Now everything’s OK. Please, DL again.

Composer: Peter Tchaikowsky
Orchestra: Israel Philharmonic Orchestra
Conductor: Leonard Bernstein
Vinyl 1985
Number of Discs: 1
Format: FLAC
Label: DGG
DR-Analysis: DR 16
Size: 877 MB
Scan: yes
Server: FF
Continue reading HD-Vinyls 24/96 (DGG) Peter Tchaikowsky – Ouverture 1812, Capriccio Italien, Hamlet, Marche Slave (Bernstein)