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post #241 of 2039
Recording quality matters a lot to people buying their first Mozart Piano concerto or Beethoven symphony. Beginners aren't familiar with conductors or orchestras so all they can pick by is sound. But as time passes and they become more experienced, sound quality fades into the background and performance quality is the most important.
post #242 of 2039
Quote:
Originally Posted by bigshot View Post

Recording quality matters a lot to people buying their first Mozart Piano concerto or Beethoven symphony. Beginners aren't familiar with conductors or orchestras so all they can pick by is sound. But as time passes and they become more experienced, sound quality fades into the background and performance quality is the most important.

For me, performance matters most as well, but being a trumpet player and having sat in and amongst the sound of a full orchestra raging through A Shostakovich symphony, for me, the dynamic impact of such great scale orchestral works also needs to be displayed on playback to appreciate the sheer scale and intent of the composer's vision and old mono recordings can't do that justice, unfortunately. If one is familiar with the work, then those older and less revealing records cash be appreciated of course, but you're not going to get near to the intended aesthetic of the piece.
post #243 of 2039

For getting near to the intended aesthetic of a Shostakovich piece, or in other words  to get in touch with the unspeakable individualisation of the composer as captured in his historical context.. one might want to consider Evgeny Mravinsky..His recordings are pretty good (but not excellent),  he worked closely with Shostakovich himself and with the orchestra the composer presumably had in mind when writing his music.. Doesn't get any closer then that right?

 

On the other hand, the way you experience music sitting in a full orchestra raging through a Shostakovich symphony, the scientific (and materialistic) view suggests the quantity of endorphins which are released in your brain determines your the size of your extasy, which others get from eating tons of cake or running many miles on a rainy day..:D

post #244 of 2039
Quote:
Originally Posted by Quinto View Post

For getting near to the intended aesthetic of a Shostakovich piece, or in other words  to get in touch with the unspeakable individualisation of the composer as captured in his historical context.. one might want to consider Evgeny Mravinsky..His recordings are pretty good (but not excellent),  he worked closely with Shostakovich himself and with the orchestra the composer presumably had in mind when writing his music.. Doesn't get any closer then that right?

On the other hand, the way you experience music sitting in a full orchestra raging through a Shostakovich symphony, the scientific (and materialistic) view suggests the quantity of endorphins which are released in your brain determines your the size of your extasy, which others get from eating tons of cake or running many miles on a rainy day..biggrin.gif

Sure, but the full throated resonance and majesty of the Vienna Philharmonic captured on the Karajan recording at the end of Bruckner's 8th is more likely to release more endorphins for me over the old, yet just as musically valid Furtwangler reading with the same orchestra.

+1 for Mravinsky's Shostakovich though!
Edited by amigomatt - 10/11/13 at 7:41am
post #245 of 2039
Quote:
Originally Posted by Quinto View Post
 

For getting near to the intended aesthetic of a Shostakovich piece, or in other words  to get in touch with the unspeakable individualisation of the composer as captured in his historical context.. one might want to consider Evgeny Mravinsky..His recordings are pretty good (but not excellent)

 

Depends on which recordings you're talking about. Because his earlier recordings I would never call good (sonically). In fact they sound attrocious. (And, as far as I know, they've never received a decent remastering either.) But listening to the recordings of, for example, the 7th (recorded in 1953) or the 8th (recorded in 1947) brings you closer than anything to the heart of those works. Every single person in that orchestra lived through the war in Leningrad and was still living under Stalin's reign of terror. And this all comes through with devastating intensity.


Edited by Drosera - 10/11/13 at 8:38am
post #246 of 2039
Quote:
Originally Posted by Quinto View Post
 

For getting near to the intended aesthetic of a Shostakovich piece, or in other words  to get in touch with the unspeakable individualisation of the composer as captured in his historical context..

 

I love it when you talk dirty!

post #247 of 2039
Quote:
Originally Posted by Drosera View Post
 

 

Depends on which recordings you're talking about. Because his earlier recordings I would never call good (sonically). In fact they sound attrocious. (And, as far as I know, they've never received a decent remastering either.) But listening to the recordings of, for example, the 7th (recorded in 1953) or the 8th (recorded in 1947) brings you closer than anything to the heart of those works. Every single person in that orchestra lived through the war in Leningrad and was still living under Stalin's reign of terror. And this all comes through with devastating intensity.


You are right about his earlier recordings, I can't listen to them..but his later ones are ok enough for me..  and I like Kondrashin :rolleyes:

 

 


Edited by Quinto - 10/11/13 at 12:06pm
post #248 of 2039
Quote:
Originally Posted by bigshot View Post
 

 

I love it when you talk dirty!

Sorry, I have Schlegel on my mind these days :D 

post #249 of 2039

For those who like true Russian Russian music, check out the Svetlanov box sets. Apparently, he made a traversal of complete cycles of all the major Russian composers to create an encyclopedia of Russian music. These are golden, especially the Miyaskovsky symphonies.

post #250 of 2039
Quote:
Originally Posted by bigshot View Post
 

For those who like true Russian Russian music, check out the Svetlanov box sets. Apparently, he made a traversal of complete cycles of all the major Russian composers to create an encyclopedia of Russian music. These are golden, especially the Miyaskovsky symphonies.


+1 on the Miyaskovsky

post #251 of 2039
Quote:
Originally Posted by Drosera View Post

Depends on which recordings you're talking about. Because his earlier recordings I would never call good (sonically). In fact they sound attrocious. (And, as far as I know, they've never received a decent remastering either.) But listening to the recordings of, for example, the 7th (recorded in 1953) or the 8th (recorded in 1947) brings you closer than anything to the heart of those works. Every single person in that orchestra lived through the war in Leningrad and was still living under Stalin's reign of terror. And this all comes through with devastating intensity.

I can't believe that no one has mentioned the later 1982 Mravinsky Shostakovich 8th with the Leningrad Philharmonic on Philips label. It is in modern sound and both terrifying and harrowing, especially how the 1st movement extended climax pans out. There are so many unique details in that performance that I've never heard anyone realise before or since. It may be deleted now and/or you guys may not know about it, but anyone remotely interested in this corner of music (and there's a few people here, judging the thread) should check it out and be both shocked and intimidated by this imposing live performance that ticks the box in sound quality too.
post #252 of 2039

Indeed this is my favorite Shostakovich cd

 

post #253 of 2039
Quote:
Originally Posted by Quinto View Post

Indeed this is my favorite Shostakovich cd



Another stand out Shostakovich recording for me is Oramandy's 1st symphony with the Philadelphia Orchestra. It does sound old, and by that I mean in terms of the playing, not the recording, which is so amazing in the way it manages to capture every detail of the solo players so cleanly and clear, yet still manages to get the whole ensemble in the tuttis with such vividness and power. A great recording indeed. The same guys doing the 4th is also an eye opener in its colourful, almost kaleidoscopic presentation. There's also a later recording of the 4th with Philadelphia and Myung Wa Chung conducting on DG which everybody unanimously raves about. They rave about it understandably because it is a demonstration and model of orchestral virtuosity at the highest level. I appreciate that, but I still keep going back to that old Ormandy one for its sheer brazenness and cheek, as opposed to the Chung, which is totally impressive, yet somewhat detached and lacking in that sense of humanity and wild abandon. All subjective opinions here, of course, but I've done a lot of listening and I think deeply about what I listen to over long stretches of time.
post #254 of 2039

When I saw that set advertised I about choked! I've spent a lot of time and many dollars buying those disks one by one - I'm sure they cost a heck of a lot more than the boxed set. Oh well, that's the way it goes. I've seen this happen over and over in the cd business, I never learned. However: are the disks in that set the SACD versions? I have some of those recordings in regular cd and sacd formats, and the sacd multichannel versions are noticeably better sounding. In any case, I agree: anyone with an interest in classical music should own the Reiner recordings. Few of them have been equaled or surpassed by anyone.

post #255 of 2039
Quote:
Originally Posted by Quinto View Post
 


 and I like Kondrashin :rolleyes:

 

 

Sometimes I think that the Kondrashin cycle is the only thing you actually need to have in the way of Shostakovich symphonies. (Well, perhaps that and Haitink.)

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