Tag Archives: Vinyl

HD-Vinyl Mono 24/96 (EMI) Ludwig van Beethoven – Violin Concerto (Menuhin/Furtwängler)


Made when Menuhin was 37, this recording catches him at his incomparable peak. His technique is effortless, smooth, and almost perfect, but it is his tone that is truly breathtaking in its intensity, radiance, purity, and personal expressiveness. The low register glows warmly, while the top has a celestial shimmer. Playing from deep inside the music, he emphasizes the music, making it dreamy, warm, urgent, ecstatic, ethereal, and almost too romantic. The Concerto, has …..

Composer: Ludwig van Beethoven
Performer: Yehudi Menuhin
Orchestra: Philarmonia Orchestra

Conductor: Wilhelm Furtwängler
Vinyl 1953
Number of discs: 1
Format: Flac
Label: EMI
DR-Analysis: DR 14
Size: 406 MB
Scan: yes
Server: FF

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HD-Vinyl 24/96 (Unicorn Records) Andrzej Panufnik – Sinfonia Sacra, Sinfonia Rustica (Panufnik)


These performances have the benefit of performance with the composer himself conducting. Sinfonia Sacra and Sinfonia Rustica were recorded in the mid 1960s and the sound quality is showing its age. Even so the performances are spirited. These early symphonies express more overt Polish nationalism than his later works but show his skills in the tight organisation of material. Rustica uses folk like material throughout but this is harmonically stretched – possibly as far as he could go under the Polish communist regime. Sinfonia Sacra is a stirring piece and his most famous – celebrating Polish nationhood and Catholic faith. Although there are reservations about the sound quality this stands as an excellent survey of his earlier symphonies so comes warmly recommended.

Composer: Andrzej Panufnik
Orchestra: Monte Carlo Opera Orchestra

Conductor: Andrzej Panufnik
Vinyl 1967
Number of discs: 1
Format: Flac
Label: Unicorn Records
DR-Analysis: DR 11
Size: 916 MB
Scan: yes
Server: FF

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HD-Vinyl 24/96 (Philips) Milko Kelmen – Composé, Floréal, Changeant, Hommage á Heinrich Schütz, Surprise (Alfons & Alois Kontarsky)


The Kontarsky Brothers for my friend Trottar
“Hommage à Heinrich Schütz,” a choral work written in 1964, was inspired by study of motels by Schütz. The basic idea of the composition is the evolution from speech sounds to mixtures of sung tone organized vertically and horizontally, and back again to the wide spectrum of sound produced by whispering.

Composer: Milko Kelmen
Performer:  Yvonne Cianella, Siegfried Palm, Saschko Gawriloff, Alfons & Alois Kontarsky
Orchestra: Südwestfunk Orchester, Norddeutscher Rundfunk Symphony Orchestra, Westdeutscher Rundfunk Symphony Orchestra, Gächinger Kantorei, Radio Symphony Orchestra Berlin
Conductor: Ernest Bour, Jochem Slothuwer, Christoph von Dohnány, Helmut Rilling, Milko Kelmen
Vinyl 1967
Number of discs: 1
Format: Flac
Label: Philips
DR-Analysis: DR 13
Size: 983 MB
Scan: yes
Server: FF

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HD-Vinyl 24/192 (CBS) Gustav Mahler – Songs Of A Wayfarer, Rückertlieder, Two Songs From Des Knaben Wunderhorn (von Stade)


Many thanks to Eddie for this classic!

Frederica Von Stade’s performance of the ‘Lieder eines fahrenden Gesellen’ with the fine collaboration of Andrew Davis and the London Philharmonic Orchestra is a true gem. It is a matter of taste as to whether the mezzo or the baritone version is preferred, but with this illuminating interpretation by Von Stade the scales tip toward the mezzo soprano sound. Hers is a rich, glowing tone with impeccable enunciation of text. Both of these performances rank among the finest available on recordings. Highly Recommended.

Composer: Gustav Mahler
Performer: Frederica von Stade
Orchestra: London Philharmonic Orchestra

Conductor: Andrew Davis
Vinyl 1979
Number of discs: 1
Format: Flac
Label: CBS
DR-Analysis: DR 11
Size: 1.59 GB
Scan: yes
Server: FF

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HD-Vinyl Mono 24/96 (Cetra) Magda Olivero – Recital


Many thanks to Budachris for this pearl

Magda Olivero suffered a crushing verdict at her audition by Ugo Tansini in Turin; “the girl has neither a voice, nor musicality, nor personality. She has nothing.” Either Tansini was having a bad day or Olivero’s subsequent teacher Luigi Gerussi did something astonishing with her, other than insisting she “sustain, sustain!” The results, as this disc demonstrate, show her to have been a consistently impressive musician whose sole complete commercial recording, of Turandot in 1938, surely deserved to be augmented. Partly this may have had to do with a premature retirement in 1941 but it doesn’t explain why, a decade later on her return to increasingly wide appreciation, she wasn’t taken into the recording studios with at least some degree of frequency. Throughout the accompaniments are accomplished, not least from one Ugo Tansini who had clearly repented of his earlier judgement enough to conduct the Turin radio orchestra for her in 1939 and 1940. One hopes he felt thoroughly chastened.

Composer: Francesco Cilea, Giacomo Puccini, Alfredo Catalani, Arrigo Boito, Giuseppe Verdi
Performer: Magda Olivero
Orchestra: Orchestra Lirica Della Cetra, Orchestra Sinfonica di Torino della RAI
Conductor: Ugo Tansini, Arturo Basile, Alfredo Simonetto, Franco Ghione
Vinyl 19?? (1980)
Number of Discs: 1
Format: Flac
Label: Cetra
DR-Analysis: DR 11
Size: 453 MB
Scan: yes
Server: FF

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HD-Vinyl 24/192 (RCA) Richard Strauss – Don Quixote, ‘Der Rosenkavalier’ Waltzes (Reiner)


Many thanks to Jean-Luc for this beauty
This is a very good reading of ‘Don Quixote’. The music is played nearly to perfection, and it is all done in a masterful fashion. To me, Strauss is about a sort of fireworks and indulgence of the orchestra, yet at the same time giving deep meaning through the music.

Composer: Richard Strauss
Orchestra: Chicago Symphony Orchestra
Conductor: Fritz Reiner
Vinyl 1960 (1971)
Number of discs: 1
Format: Flac
Label: RCA
DR-Analysis: DR 12
Size: 2.05 GB
Scan: yes
Server: FF

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HD-Vinyls 24/96 (CBS) Jules Massenet – Le Cid (Domingo, Bumbry, Plishka)


This recording has been around for fourty years and now that I’ve acquired it I wonder why I didn’t do so earlier. Still, the plot is uncomplicated, the synopsis adequate, and the cues clear – so if you have a bit of French to boot you won’t be lost. There isn’t, to my knowledge, an alternative version, but with a performance and recording of this quality you won’t need one: the three principals are in magnificent voce – especially Bumbry – and the opera is packed with stirring emotion, lovely melodies and dramatic confrontations. Some of the triumphal music is redolent of “Aida” and Massenet once again manages to do what so many French composers seem to be capable of, and inject an authentic Spanish atmosphere into his score. You would hardly guess that it was a live, concert performance – the Carnegie Hall audience is very well behaved and the soloists sing faultlessly. Both the second soprano, Eleanor Berquist, and the baritone, Arnold Voketaitis, are singers unknown to me but they are estimable artists; she, in particular, has some beautiful music and sings both powerfully and sweetly. But the two not-of-this-world-stars are Mrs Bumbry and Mr Domingo.
The highest possible recommended!

Composer: Jules Massenet
Performer: Grace Bumbry, Placido Domingo, Jake Gardner, Paul Plishka
Orchestra: The Opera Orchestra Of New York
Conductrix: Eve Queler
Vinyl 1977
Number of Discs: 3
Format: Flac
Label: CBS
DR-Analysis: DR 12
Size: 3.15 GB
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Server: FF

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HD-Vinyl 24/96 (Melodya) Peter Tchaikovsky – Piano Concerto No. 2 (Zhukov)


Many thanks to Urbanox for this pearl

Igor Mikhaylovich Zhukov (31 August 1936 – 26 January 2018) was a Russian pianist, conductor and sound engineer. He was born in Nizhny Novgorod in 1936 but his family moved to Moscow in the following year. Four years later, they were evacuated to Vyatka (then known as Kirov) as a result of the Second World War. After the war, they returned to Moscow, where Zhukov studied in the Conservatory in 1955, studying first with Emil Gilels and then, in 1955, with Heinrich Neuhaus. He graduated in 1960, having won second prize in the Long-Thibaud Piano Competition in Paris. Apart from a career as a pianist, Zhukov also conducted his own ensemble, the Moscow Chamber Orchestra until his retirement from conducting in 1994, and was the pianist of the long-running Zhukov Piano Trio which was founded in 1963 and continued performing until 1980. (The other members were the violinist Grigory Feighin and cellist Valentin Feighin.) The trio was noted for its “Historic Concerts” which featured repertoire spanning the 17th to the 20th centuries. Zhukov made recordings on the Melodiya/CBS label, among others (e.g. the complete Scriabin sonatas). Zhukov also had a passionate interest in recording, and said of himself “I’m the best pianist among recording engineers, and the best recording engineer among pianists.”

Composer: Peter Tchaikovsky
Performer: Igor Zhukov
Orchestra: Moscow Radio Large Symphony Orchestra
Conductor: Gennadi Rozhdestvensky
Vinyl 1969
Number of Discs: 1
Format: Flac
Label: Melodya
DR-Analysis: DR 12
Size: 865 MB
Scan: yes
Server: FF

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HD-Vinyl 24/192 (Columbia) Gustav Mahler – Symphony No. 4 (Raskin/Szell)


Many thanks to Eddie for this pearl

The 4th is Mahler’s least neurotic symphony and if Szell’s precisely played, warm and generous approach can find a home anywhere in the Mahler canon, it is here. Mahler was among the most sentimental composers of them all. Tchaikovsky and Rachmaninov are the rare symphonists who approach Mahler on the sentimental turf. There is a lot of weeping, cursing, heaving, huffing and getting lost in guilt trips across the Mahlerian landscape. Into that landscape enters George Szell, one of the most non-sentimental conductors that ever recorded. Disciplined, calculated, pre-meditated, say what you will, the man still had feeling in his music making. It opens delightfully, with the shimmer of the Cleveland Orchestra setting an easy going pace. The woodwinds are forward and the horns typically have a forceful punch. Just a couple of the attributes that mark Szell’s style. The adagio is pure and beautiful, scoring over Klemperer, who moves things along just a tad fast. Szell captures the imagination in the slow music as much as any romantic such as Bernstein. The finale also succeeds with the soprano soloist Judith Raskin. This is an account that has stood the test of time and still comes highly recommended.

Composer: Gustav Mahler
Performer: Judith Raskin
Orchestra: The Cleveland Orchestra
Conductor: George Szell
Vinyl 1965
Number of Discs: 1
Format: Flac
Label: Columbia
DR-Analysis: DR 15
Size: 2.18 GB
Scan: yes
Server: FF

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Audiophile HD-Vinyls 24/192 (Decca) Antonio Vivaldi/Thomas Wilbrandt – The Electric V. (The 4 Seasons)


Sorry, there was a digital error on “L’Autunno” – Please, DL the fixed track and replace the old one.

Revisited, after 6 years…now with the benefits of the Black Bird and the AR SP15…and in 24/192
Wilbrandt adds to the two concertos, and has written variations on them, using synthesizers and taped sounds in addition to the Philharmonia Orchestra. Still, Vivaldi’s masterpiece is very much present in this unique work; Wilbrandt has expanded it and taken it to new heights of ecstasy. Someone once said that writing about music is akin to dancing about architecture. There just aren’t words to properly convey the experience. This disc especially leaves me struggling for words. Wilbrandt illuminates, expands, and opens up Vivaldi’s original work without detracting from it in any way. Portions remind me of Isao Tomita’s genius on his classical albums, but this is definitely not a Tomita knock-off. It is unique, beautiful, and an album I never would want to be without.

Composer: Antonio Vivaldi, Thomas Wilbrandt
Vinyl 1982
Number of Discs: 2
Format: Flac
Label: Decca
DR-Analysis: DR 15
Size: 3.3 GB
Scan: yes
Server: FF

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