Tag Archives: Jean Sibelius

Audiophile HD-Vinyl 24/192 (BIS) Jean Sibelius – Jungfrun I Tornet (The Maiden in the Tower), Karelia Suite Op. 11 (Järvi)

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All thanks for this audiophile rarity go to Mats
Sibelius’ only opera, the one-act “The Maiden in the Tower”, is hobbled by a shallow Swedish libretto that’s basically a recounting of the Rapunzel myth. Like Kullervo and many other early works, it was well received initially by its Northern European audience, but Sibelius soon withdrew it to his desk drawer, discouraging further performances. It’s too bad that the text is so insipid, since there is some interesting music here: a passionate, even overwrought, prayer from the imprisoned Maiden to the Virgin Mary, twice soaring up to a High B. In the next scene the chorus of villagers sings the opera’s most memorable tune, a hymn to spring before they repudiate the Maiden, who they unjustly accuse of being the Bailiff’s prostitute. This scene has hints of the bass pedal points that became one of the composer’s most recognizable fingerprints. The Maiden’s sad prayer returns as an interlude before the scene with her fiancé that leads to the confrontation with the Bailiff and the all-too-neat ending in which the castle-owner’s wife observes the happenings and orders the Maiden freed and the Bailiff arrested.

Composer: Jean Sibelius
Performer: Mari-Ann Häggander,
Erland Hagegård, Tone Kruse, Jorma Hynninen, The Gothenburg Concert Hall Choir
Orchestra: The Gothenburg Symphony Orchestra
Conductor: Neeme Järvi
Vinyl 1984
Number of discs: 1
Format: Flac
Label: BIS
DR-Analysis:
DR 13
Size: 2.03 GB
Scan: yes
Server: FF

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HD-Vinyl 192/96/44 (London) Jean Sibelius – Symphony No. 4/Luonnotar/Finlandia (Söderström/Ashkenazy)

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Another great THANK YOU to Jean-Luc for this gem
If sonic splendour were the sole criterion, Vladimir Ashkenazy’s Sibelius symphony cycle with the Philharmonia would win every prize going. Only the spectacularly natural results obtained by the BIS technicians for Osmo Vänskä and the Lahti SO come close to matching the lustrous realism of these truthfully balanced Decca productions (all except the First and Sixth benefit from the glowing acoustic of London’s much-missed Kingsway Hall). Vladimir Ashkenazy and the Philharmonia Orchestra recorded Sibelius’s symphonies and tone poem works in the 1970’s and 1980’s, and they are all excellent performances and highly regarded. I’ve had this particular disc for many years, and have enjoyed it greatly. Penguin continues to include these performances as one of their ‘recommended’ recordings, saying that ‘Ashkenazy by temperament brings out the expressive warmth, colour and drama of the composer rather than his Scandinavian chill, reflecting perhaps his Slavonic background”, going on to say that the recordings “are full and rich as well as brilliant, most of them still of demonstration quality. A rich and strong, consistently enjoyable cycle”. Penguin concludes that they are their top alternative recommendation, following the cycle from Colin Davis (Sir Colin Davis conducts Sibelius)

Composer: Jean Sibelius
Performer: Elisabeth Söderström
Orchestra: Philharmonia Orchestra
Conductor: Vladimir Ashkenazy
Vinyl 1981
Number of discs: 1
Format: Flac
Label: London
DR-Analysis:
DR 15
Size: 1.85 GB/950 MB/211 MB
Scan: yes
Server: FF

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HD-Vinyl 24/192 (BIS) Jean Sibelius – Symphony No. 2 (Järvi)

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All thanks for this masterwork go to Mats
Here’s a performance of the Sibelius Symphony No. 2 in the same vein as Berglund’s Helsinki recording, also from the mid-’80s — mostly direct and straightforward, and based on my now extensive listening experience, often seemingly bordering on the impetuous. The allegretto first movement flies by with nary a ponderous moment, but with a great deal of sparkle, vim and vigor. The alacrity makes for a most effective transition to the dramatically downshifted andante second movement; here’s where Järvi and company…

Composer: Jean Sibelius
Orchestra: Gothenburg Symphony Orchestra
Conductor: Neeme Järvi
Vinyl 1984
Number of discs: 1
Format: Flac
Label: BIS
DR-Analysis:
DR 14
Size: 1.8 GB
Scan: yes
Server: FF

 

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HD-Vinyl 24/96 (EMI/Melodya) Jean Sibelius – Symphony No. 4 (Rozhdestvensky)

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All thanks for this gem go to Jean-Luc
Gennady Rozhdestvensky and the Moscow Radio Symphony Orchestra recorded the complete symphonies of Jean Sibelius between 1969 and 1974, in remarkably fresh analog sound that’s simply outstanding. Thanks to Melodiya’s original high recording standards, the performances have wide open dimensions, credible physical presence, vibrant timbres, and crisp details that are almost finely preserved. Rozhdestvensky was widely respected for his sympathetic interpretations of Sibelius’ music, and rather than treat the symphonies as cerebral or idiosyncratic essays, he gave them intensely focused and connected readings that always feel as organic and substantial as Sibelius intended them. The Moscow musicians play with alert rhythms (essential in the changing tempos of the later symphonies) and pungent sonorities that give the music a wonderful sense of being performed for the first time, though intonation is an occasional problem in the woodwinds, and the brass are decidedly assertive. In terms of its musical merits, this set has serious competition from the excellent recordings that Colin Davis made with the Boston Symphony Orchestra and Lorin Maazel recorded with the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra, around the same period. As insightful and valuable documents of Sibelius’ symphonies, all three deserve consideration and have fans, but purely in terms of sound, the Rozhdestvensky is a clear winner.

Composer: Jean Sibelius
Orchestra: Moscow Radio Symphony Orchestra, Leningrad Philarmonic Orchestra
Conductor: Gennady Rozhdestvensky
Vinyl 1960-1975
Number of discs: 1
Format: Flac
Label: EMI/Melodya
DR-Analysis:
DR 13
Size: 1.04 GB
Scan: yes
Server: FF

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HD-Vinyl 24/96 (EMI/Melodya) Jean Sibelius – Symphonies 3 & 7 (Rozhdestvensky)

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All thanks for this gem go to Jean-Luc
Rozhdestvensky is one of the later Soviet conductors who was still young enough to have a lengthy post Soviet career. These Sibelius recordings however date from the 1960s and 70s when he was in his 30s and 40s. They have an original conception even though there can inconsistent orchestral execution. One also 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, the interpretations, especially the Symphony 7, deserve to be in the collection of Sibelians. Rozhdestvensky brings an exceptional lyrical impulse to these works…

Composer: Jean Sibelius
Orchestra: Moscow Radio Symphony Orchestra
Conductor: Gennady Rozhdestvensky
Vinyl 1975
Number of discs: 1
Format: Flac
Label: EMI/Melodya
DR-Analysis:
DR 12
Size: 960 MB
Scan: yes
Server: FF

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Audiophile HD-Vinyl 24/192 (BIS) Jean Sibelius – The Lemminkäinen Suite (Järvi)

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Neeme Järvi’s recording of Sibelius’s Lemminkäinen Suite on BIS is one of the more satisfying accounts of this masterpiece in the catalogue. It comes across as structurally tighter than most, and does deliver a sense of inevitability to the music – no meandering here, and every note is taken to be an indispensable contribution to the whole. The end result is sometimes thrilling.
Audiophile factor: High!

Composer: Jean Sibelius
Orchestra: Gothenburg Symphony Orchestra
Conductor: Neeme Järvi
Vinyl (1985)
Number of discs: 1
Format: Flac
Label: BIS
DR-Analysis:
DR 14
Size: 1.87 GB
Scan: yes
Server: FF

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Audiophile HD-Vinyls 24/192 (BIS) Jean Sibelius – Symphony Nr. 7 / Kuolema (Incidental Music) (Neeme Järvi)

front-small-boxsetMany many thanks to Mats for another rare gem of the swedish audiophile label BIS
Neeme Jarvi’s partnership with the Gothenburg orchestra is “a living legend in Nordic music” – Daily Telegraph (London). All the Sibelius masterpieces from a superb orchestra that he himself conducted. He has the measure of Sibelius’s northern sensibilities, but doesn’t overdo the bleakness; on the other hand, there is a forthrightness, even a toughness to his interpretations that well suit a composer who fairly early in his career turned rather decisively from lush romanticism to a more restrained neo-classicism.
Audiophile factor: VERY HIGH!

Composer: Jean Sibelius
Orchestra: Gothenburg Symphony Orchestra
Conductor: Neeme Järvi

Vinyl (1986)
Number of Discs: 1
Format: Flac
Label: BIS
DR-Analysis: DR 14
Size: 2.23 GB
Scan: yes
Server: FileFactory

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Audiophile HD-Vinyls 24/192 (BIS) Jean Sibelius – Symphony Nr. 3 / King Kristian II (Neeme Järvi)

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Many many thanks to
Mats for another rare gem of the swedish audiophile label BIS

Neeme Jarvi’s partnership with the Gothenburg orchestra is “a living legend in Nordic music” – Daily Telegraph (London). All the Sibelius masterpieces from a superb orchestra that he himself conducted. He has the measure of Sibelius’s northern sensibilities, but doesn’t overdo the bleakness; on the other hand, there is a forthrightness, even a toughness to his interpretations that well suit a composer who fairly early in his career turned rather decisively from lush romanticism to a more restrained neo-classicism.
Audiophile factor: VERY HIGH!

Composer: Jean Sibelius
Orchestra: Gothenburg Symphony Orchestra
Conductor: Neeme Järvi

Vinyl (1983)
Number of Discs: 1
Format: Flac
Label: BIS
DR-Analysis: DR 13
Size: 2.03 GB + 261 MB
Scan: yes
Server: FileFactory

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Audiophile HD-Vinyls 24/192 (Proprius) Johan Helmich Roman – 4 Flute Sonatas

front-small-boxsetMany many thanks to Mats for another rare audiophile swedish gem
In the 17th century the German-born Düben family played a key role in Swedish music life. Gustav (c1628-1690) put together a large collection of music from all over Europe. It is ironic that he did not include a single piece by a Swedish composer. The reason seems to have been that at that time there were no Swedish composers. In the first half of the 17th century German composers dominated the music scene, later French and Italian musicians played their part. Johan Helmich Roman, the composer of the sonatas which are the subject of the present disc, is the first composer of Swedish birth in history. He played a major role in the development of music life.

Audiophile factor: VERY HIGH!
You think, you have read somewhere the name PROPRIUS? Oh yeah….think of the Carissimi Oratorium Jefta, Cantate Domino or Händel’s Messiah, only to name some of the most known rips, here at boxset.

Composer: Johan Helmich Roman
Performer: Flute – Penelope Evison, Cello – Olof Larsson, Harpsichord – Eva Nordenfelt

Vinyl (1983)
Number of Discs: 1
Format: Flac
Label: Proprius
DR-Analysis: DR 12
Size: 1.75 GB
Scan: yes
Server: FileFactory

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Audiophile HD-Vinyls 24/192 (BIS) Jean Sibelius – Symphony Nr. 1 / Finlandia (Neeme Järvi)

front-small-boxsetMany many thanks to Mats for another rare gem of the swedish audiophile label BIS
Neeme Jarvi’s partnership with the Gothenburg orchestra is “a living legend in Nordic music” – Daily Telegraph (London). All the Sibelius masterpieces from a superb orchestra that he himself conducted. He has the measure of Sibelius’s northern sensibilities, but doesn’t overdo the bleakness; on the other hand, there is a forthrightness, even a toughness to his interpretations that well suit a composer who fairly early in his career turned rather decisively from lush romanticism to a more restrained neo-classicism.
Audiophile factor: VERY HIGH!

Composer: Jean Sibelius
Orchestra: Gothenburg Symphony Orchestra
Conductor: Neeme Järvi

Vinyl (1984)
Number of Discs: 1
Format: Flac
Label: BIS
DR-Analysis: DR 15
Size: 1.79 GB + 238 MB
Scan: yes
Server: FileFactory

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