All posts by Rachmaninov

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

Audiophile HD-Vinyl 24/192 (Argo) Antonio Vivaldi – Gloria RV 588 & RV 589 (Guest)

front-small-boxset
Many thanks to Jean-Luc for this outstanding gem
Another quality recording from time ago and at outstandingly good value offered by audiophile label Argo. Some aspects of the music are at a slower tempo than other recordings, which adds another level of interest when comparing artists. Highly recommended to add to your collection if you are a lover of choral music.

Composer: Antonio Vivaldi
Performer: Choir Of St. John’s College Cambridge, Anne Wilkens, Lynda Russell, Patrizia Kwella, Kenneth Bowen

Orchestra: The Wren Orchestra
Conductor: Dr. George Guest
Vinyl 1982
Number of Discs: 1
Format: Flac
Label: Argo
DR-Analysis: DR 12
Size: 2.25 GB
Scan: yes
Server: FileFactory

Continue reading Audiophile HD-Vinyl 24/192 (Argo) Antonio Vivaldi – Gloria RV 588 & RV 589 (Guest)

HD-Vinyl 24/96 (Archiv) Johann Sebastian Bach – Mass in H-Minor (Richter)

front-small-boxset
All thanks for this masterwork go to Jean-Luc
Bach’s majestically beautiful, deeply moving Mass in B Minor began life during the early months of 1733 as a 2 movement five-part Missa containing only a Kyrie and Gloria; often called “a Lutheran Mass” because Luther had reduced the Mass Ordinary to just those 2 sections for the Protestant service. The Missa was intended to enhance his authority with the Leipzig town council with whom he had been engaged in a ten-year long cold war regarding his conditions of service and his method of conducting his duties (not least of which was the onerous responsibility for teaching Latin, a task Bach despised and relegated to others). These 2 movements lasted nearly an hour in performance. Thus, they were far too long for performance in Protestant Leipzig but they were perfect for a festival service performance at the Catholic court in Dresden. There is no evidence …

Composer: Johann Sebastian Bach
Performer: Münchener Bach-Chor,
Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau, Hertha Töpper, Ernst Haefliger
Orchestra: Münchener Bach-Orchester
Conductor: Karl Richter
Vinyl 1961
Number of discs: 3
Format: Flac
Label: Archiv
DR-Analysis:
DR 11
Size: 2.53 GB
Scan: yes
Server: FF

Continue reading HD-Vinyl 24/96 (Archiv) Johann Sebastian Bach – Mass in H-Minor (Richter)

HD-Vinyl 24/96 (RCA) Giuseppe Verdi – La Traviata (Moffo, Tucker, Merrill)

front-small-boxset
All thanks for the beautiful Anna go to Astoler
Once in a lifetime a star is born that has it all – the talent, the looks, the musicality, and the technique. Moffo was just that. I read that before her auto accident which left her with a crushing back pain, impairing her singing, she had to be seen to be believed. Well, with the time-machine is still on the backburner, listening to the old restored recordings is the only way to experience the art of the bygone era. Her Violetta has it all – gorgeous voice with shimmering top notes and strong low register, amazing precise coloratura, and most importantly vulnerability and humanity. Her diction is very clear, every word is heard without any strain, and she conveys a strong sense of being completely ensnared in her character’s plight. I really think Moffo is one of the very best Violetta on record.

Composer: Giuseppe Verdi
Performer: Anna Moffo, Richard Tucker, Robert Merrill
Orchestra: Rome Opera Orchestra
Conductor: Fernando Previtali
Vinyl 1961
Number of Discs: 3
Format: Flac
Label: RCA
DR-Analysis: DR 12
Size: 2.41 GB
Scan: yes
Server: FileFactory

Continue reading HD-Vinyl 24/96 (RCA) Giuseppe Verdi – La Traviata (Moffo, Tucker, Merrill)

Mono HD-Vinyl 24/96 (Danacord) Richard Wagner – Lohengrin (Live MET 1950) (Melchior, Traubel, Varnay, Stiedry)

front-small-boxset
A great “THANK YOU” to Bob for this rarity

Lauritz Melchior (20 March 1890 – 19 March 1973) was a Danish-American opera singer. He was the pre-eminent Wagnerian tenor of the 1920s, 1930s, and 1940s and has since come to be considered the quintessence of his voice type. Late in his career, Melchior appeared in movie musicals and on radio and television. He also made numerous recordings.

Composer: Richard Wagner
Performer: Lauritz Melchior, Helen Traubel, Astrid Varnay
Orchestra: Metropolitan Opera Orchestra
Conductor: Fritz Stiedry
Vinyl 1950/1983
Number of Discs: 3
Format: Flac
Label: Danacord
DR-Analysis: DR 14
Size: 1.9 GB
Scan: yes
Server: FileFactory

Continue reading Mono HD-Vinyl 24/96 (Danacord) Richard Wagner – Lohengrin (Live MET 1950) (Melchior, Traubel, Varnay, Stiedry)

Super HD-Vinyl 24/192 (EMI) Joseph Haydn/Luigi Boccherini – Cello Concerti (Du Pré/Barenboim)

front-small-boxset
Jacqueline du Pré was one of the most outstanding cellist of our time.
It is a great sin, not to know, who she was. Click here ! or you will be damned forever.
When I heard the news that Jacqueline du Pré had passed away – 30 years ago – I was saddened. I’d never met her, or even seen one of her live performances. But I’ve heard her recordings, and completely was absorbed in the way she made her instrument come to life. I was hoping that her music could still stay alive. These old recordings with her husband as Conductor are a great tribute to her love of music and how it speaks to us. I’ve always enjoyed listening to the Haydn Cello Concerti, and the way they are performed with majesty in these recordings will always speak to me
.

Composer: Joseph Haydn, Luigi Boccherini
Performer: Jacqueline du Pré

Orchestra: English Chamber Orchestra
Conductor: Daniel Barenboim
Vinyl 1967
Number of Discs: 1
Format: Flac
Label: EMI
DR-Analysis: DR 12
Size: 1.88 GB
Scan: yes
Server: FileFactory

Continue reading Super HD-Vinyl 24/192 (EMI) Joseph Haydn/Luigi Boccherini – Cello Concerti (Du Pré/Barenboim)

HD-Vinyl 24/96 (Philips) Hector Berlioz – Complete Songs With Orchestra Including “Les Nuits D’Ete” (Davis)

front-small-boxset
Many thanks Trottar for this rarity

Now, really, the Berlioz-Davis-cycle is completed.
These works are unusual for different reasons. This is the only version of Nuits D’ete that I know that employs multiple soloists rather than one soprano or mezzo.
This is a wonderful peformance. Variety per se might not have worked with different soloists. But all four seem perfect to me. Sheila Armstrong had been a favorite singer since her “Let the Bright Seraphim ” near the end of Karl Richter’s “Samson”. She sings her two songs again with a bright clear soprano. Josephine Veasey sang much Berlioz including “Les Troyens” and captures the emotional depth of ‘Spectre”. I had not heard Frank Patterson before this recording, but he sings with a powerful and penetrating voice recalling the singer in “The Dead”, and John Shirley-Quirk is equally good, though his timbre might be an acquired taste-such as the one that hasn’t fully occurred for me in the case of Lelio. Its melange of spoken narrative soliloquy, tenor/piano Goethe lieder, baritone/male chorus Brigand’s aria et al contain (in my view)some quite
attractive music which dramatizes/animates thoughts/ideas of the narrator.

Composer: Hector Berlioz
Performer: John Shirley-Quirk, Sheila Armstrong, Frank Patterson, Josephine Veasey

Orchestra: London Symphony Orchestra
Conductor: Sir Colin Davis
Vinyl 1970
Number of Discs: 1
Format: Flac
Label: Philips
DR-Analysis: DR 13
Size: 1.17 GB
Scan: yes
Server: FileFactory

Continue reading HD-Vinyl 24/96 (Philips) Hector Berlioz – Complete Songs With Orchestra Including “Les Nuits D’Ete” (Davis)

HD-Vinyl 24/192 (Philips) Ludwig van Beethoven – String Quartets Op. 132 (Quartetto Italiano)

front-small-boxset
A great great “THANK YOU” to our friend Jean-Luc for this gift

In the late quartets Beethoven continued to evolve many of his compositional techniques: he manages to add to the harmonic rules of before and does new things in the way of tonality and form. These quartets have a sound world all of their own, and create a small-scale effect quite different from the massive-sounding works that came before, such as the “Hammerklavier” sonata and the 9th Symphony. It would be fair to say that no other artist has ever mangaged to reach such spiritual heights. The Quartetto Italiano give superbly polished performances which are able to express the refined tones of these works. Compare their well-rehearsed renditions that come close to perfection with the more ruffled recordings of the Vegh Quartet, for example, and one really appreciates the way in which they are able to sustain the superhuman requirements of these pieces. With the Vegh team we hear 4 human beings, with these recordings we hear Beethoven’s unique vision.

Composer: Ludwig van Beethoven
Performer: Quartetto Italiano
Vinyl 1967
Number of Discs: 1
Format: Flac
Label: Philips
DR-Analysis: DR 14
Size: 1.83 GB
Scan: yes
Server: FileFactory

Continue reading HD-Vinyl 24/192 (Philips) Ludwig van Beethoven – String Quartets Op. 132 (Quartetto Italiano)

HD-Vinyl 24/96 (Philips) Joseph Haydn – Complete Piano Trios, Vol. 2 (Beaux Arts Trio)

front-small-boxset
All thanks for this beauty go to Jean-Luc
The first and only recording made of the entire piano trios, performed by the legendary Beaux Arts Trio. Haydn’s piano trios deserve far more attention than they receive. As music lovers know, they are every bit as rewarding as his symphonies and string quartets, and also very numerous. They are not, however, true trios as we understand the term now. Essentially, Haydn took the sonata for violin and piano and added a cello part to strengthen the weak bass of contemporary pianos. This doesn’t inhibit the quality of the music in any way, but it has prevented modern piano trios from taking them up since the cellist usually wants something more exciting to do. All praise, then, to the Beaux Arts Trio for understanding that musical quality is more important than instrumental display. –David Hurwitz

Composer: Joseph Haydn
Performer
: Beaux Arts Trio
Vinyl 1977
Number of discs: 5
Format: Flac
Label: Philips
DR-Analysis:
DR 14
Size: 4.29 GB
Scan: yes
Server: FF

Continue reading HD-Vinyl 24/96 (Philips) Joseph Haydn – Complete Piano Trios, Vol. 2 (Beaux Arts Trio)

HD-Vinyl 24/192 (DGG) Ludwig van Beethoven – Complete Ouvertures (Karajan)

front-small-boxset
Recorded when the Berlin Philharmonic and Herbert von Karajan were in their plush phase, but under a full head of steam, these polished performances of the Beethoven overtures are a visceral delight. The sensuous, bass-heavy textures and glistening gut-strung string playing are still something to marvel at. So are the outstanding solos in the winds and the potent proclamations of the brass, which had become impressively secure at this point in Karajan’s reign, even though their tuning was still problematic. At times the treatment may seem just a bit Prussian and overbearing, and premeditated in effect rather than spontaneous. But the Olympian grandeur of the conceptions and the sense of festive sweep Karajan brings to the readings make this a set one can live with. The sound is boomy in the louder passages, but there is excellent atmosphere in the quiet ones. –Ted Libbey

Composer: Ludwig van Beethoven
Orchestra:  Berlin Philarmonic Orchestra
Conductor: Herbert von Karajan
Vinyl 1970
Number of Discs: 2
Format: Flac
Label: DGG
DR-Analysis: DR 13
Size: 3.76 GB
Scan: yes
Server: FileFactory

Continue reading HD-Vinyl 24/192 (DGG) Ludwig van Beethoven – Complete Ouvertures (Karajan)