These Decca recordings of Vaughan Williams's complete symphonies appear in a boxed set for the first time ever, and they feature such august personages as sopranos Isobel Baillie and Margaret Ritchie, baritone John Cameron and speaker John Gielgud!
Adrian Boult conducts the London Philharmonic Orchestra.
"A triumphant start to what heralds to be one of the best Shostakovich quartet cycles imaginable. (…) Highly recommended." 5/5 ~sa-cd.net
…The recording allows the performance to glow, and as atmospheric and airy as it is in stereo, listening in surround from the SACD layer immerses you in the ambience in the most satisfying way. If to you Zemlinsky is famous more for his pupils' achievements than his own, then this will be a revelatory experience, and I know already that it's one of my discs of the year.
…His overwhelming natural affinity for French music made Charles Munch an ideal conductor for Berlioz’s swirling tour de force Symphonie Fantastique. Perfectly capturing the drama, romance & philosophical angst in which this masterpiece is marinated, Munch takes the Boston Symphony Orchestra on an epic journey of proportions only possible in the human heart & mind. A classic, reborn in vivid Living Stereo.
…I already indicated the excellent qualities of the soloists especially Franziska Hirzel and Birgit Remmert who sing with that important ethereal intensity. Kofman conducts with the ideal tonic and lets the music move along quite magically. The SACD sound comes out trumps on my Sony SACD-11 player and I really have nothing but an unqualified recommendation for this beautiful set.
Happy birthday, Franz Liszt! The Beethoven Orchestra Bonn under its conductor Stefan Blunier and the pianist Claudius Tanski present orchestral works and piano music by this Austro-Hungarian great, including the overture to Goethe’s Torquato Tasso and the Totentanz of 1849, on the occasion of the two hundredth anniversary of his birth. A finely nuanced extra comes in the form of an orchestration of La lugubre gondola by John Adams.
As it turns out, Colin Davis hums. He also moans, groans, and sometimes even grunts. In this enormous but intimate super audio CD, the listener can hear Davis' vocal obbligato as he uses any means necessary to convey his vision to the musicians. (…) Even though Davis does hum, anyone who loves Sibelius will have to hear these performances.
"Originally recorded May (C Minor) and August (Pastoral) 1955 in two-track stereo, remastering supervisor John Newton, along with DSD engineer Dirk Sobotka, has revitalized two of the Charles Munch Beethoven symphonies with astonishing results. (…) The same Living Stereo recording of the Fifth — though not the Sixth — was also on a recent xrcd reissue which we reviewed Here. A/B comparison of the two formats showed the SACD to be sonically superior." ~Audiophile-Audition