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Grieg: Piano Concerto in A minor; Prokofiev: Piano Concerto No.3 in C major (Nikolai Lugansky)
Grieg: Piano Concerto in A minor; Prokofiev: Piano Concerto No.3 in C major (Nikolai Lugansky)
Price: £14.33

5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Concerto disc of the year!, 3 Nov. 2013
Where were Decca, DG and EMI when Lugansky was up for grabs?

Here we have the finest recorded interpretations of Prokofiev 3 and the Grieg Concerto. Stunning, masterly playing full of thought and individuality. Listen to how Lugansky separates those chords in the last movement of the Grieg, 4 bars before letter B making the music sound more nostalgic than ever.

Kent Nagano's perfect conducting, discreet and alert is what made their earlier Tchaikovsky 1 disc such a winner.

Bruckner: Symphony No. 6 / Weber: Overtures
Bruckner: Symphony No. 6 / Weber: Overtures
Price: £9.25

0 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A love affair with Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Stein/VPO, 11 Oct. 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Ok, not convinced? Just try track 2, the slow movement of Bruckner's 6th Symphony played miraculously here by THE Bruckner orchestra, the Vienna Philharmonic. It is the most beautiful performance ever recorded. Those Horns! Those Strings! WOW!!!

Don't Look Now (Special Edition) [Blu-ray] [1973]
Don't Look Now (Special Edition) [Blu-ray] [1973]
Dvd ~ Donald Sutherland
Price: £9.99

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Looking great on blu ray, 24 Sept. 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Looking absolutely superb on blu ray. Haunting score by the great Pino Donaggio and lovely early 1970s Venice. Very, Very atmospheric.

Mahler - Symphony No 8
Mahler - Symphony No 8

1 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Magnificent Mahler 8!, 19 Sept. 2013
This review is from: Mahler - Symphony No 8 (Audio CD)
This is one of the finest Mahler 8s ever put down. I would put it higher than Tennstedt in all his recordings. In fact had Wyn Morris had Solti's soloists, this would be THE top recommendation. Unfortunately Solti doesn't let the music breathe like Wyn Morris. Morris totally understands this score and Mahler.

The playing of the Orchestra is top notch. The recording is superb.

Inbal, Tennstedt, Solti, ( soloists only ) Abbado, Bernstein, Ozawa and Stokowski have all recorded amazing Mahler 8s, but none more memorable than Wyn Morris's version.

This should be re-released.
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: May 9, 2014 6:18 PM BST

Symphony No.9
Symphony No.9
Price: £16.95

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A magisterial interpretation, 21 April 2013
This review is from: Symphony No.9 (Audio CD)
Mr Nott does an incredible job of keeping the first movement sounding and feeling homogeneous. Listen to the way he balances the textures, in turn the harmony at 24:49. It's a lesson of how not to overcook sections in this movement which will make it topple over.

The sound is amazing. This is a fantastic achievement and a Mahler 9 I'll be returning to.

Symphonie No.8
Symphonie No.8
Price: £11.87

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Poor singing, odd balance, 14 April 2013
This review is from: Symphonie No.8 (Audio CD)
If you've got singers who can sing the notes correctly you might be half way there. Not here. Strained, flat singing, off key. It's happening with nearly all the modern Mahler 8's coming our way now. What's wrong with the singers these days??

We should go back to Solti for a near perfect cast, unfortunately he ruins the piece by rushing it. Wyn Morris and Tennstedt also do a pretty good job and so does Bernstein in Vienna.

Nevermind how great this SACD sounds in terms of SACD, the balance of the instruments is terrible - where was that solo violin in part 2? Stenz doesn't quite make the piece a whole. Jovanovich ain't Kollo and some of the female voices are just wooly. I'm not projected to the ecstatic as I am in Inbal, Ozawa, Tennstedt, Abbado, Bernstein and Wyn Morris's recordings. Stenz's Mahler 8 fails as it does not do justice to Mahler's genius creation.

Hearse [DVD] [1980] [Region 1] [US Import] [NTSC]
Hearse [DVD] [1980] [Region 1] [US Import] [NTSC]
Dvd ~ Trish Van Devere

5.0 out of 5 stars Great film + Trish Van Devere, 25 Mar. 2013
This is a great horror film filmed on America's west coast, San Francisco + north. Trish Van Devere as always is superb, giving yet another vital role. She has a wonderful three dimensional quality all of her own

Very atmospheric!

Sir William Walton: Collected Works
Sir William Walton: Collected Works
Offered by Fulfillment Express
Price: £8.28

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Previn's Symphony No 1. Good, but not as great as the composer!, 9 Feb. 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Previn's performance of Walton's first Symphony is amazing and the first movement has unbelievable tension and tautness, but there are some worrying lapses of concentration on Previn's part.

This performance does not surpass Walton's own electrifying 1951 recording. Walton knew what he wanted and his own performance is truly haunting. It's the performance I return to for this work.
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Mar 28, 2015 10:50 AM GMT

Mahler: Symphony No. 7
Mahler: Symphony No. 7
Price: £24.52

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Finally! Masterpiece of interpretation in demonstration sound., 30 Jan. 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Mahler: Symphony No. 7 (Audio CD)
Zdenek masterfully points up the harmonies in the spellbinding intro - Mahler's most inspired opening. The Tenor Horn soloist is beyond magnificent with the correct attack on the first semiquaver, every nuance and colour exposed.

I cannot describe the playing of the Czech Philharmonic, those horns are unbelievable, each soloist magnificently virtuosic.

Zdenek takes us to the Austrian Alps where Mahler found his inspiration for this music. The sound from Exton is the finest I have ever heard.

Bruckner: Symphony No.5
Bruckner: Symphony No.5

2 of 4 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Awful!, 29 Jan. 2013
This review is from: Bruckner: Symphony No.5 (Audio CD)
This performance has acquired high praise and some have said it's possibly the greatest Bruckner 5.

I am DEEPLY disappointed, I wanted it to be great!

The Concertgebouw - encouraged to chop into the music have played better than this - Haitink's La Mer, for example. The sound is so-so, it's smudged, bass light and dull.

Bruckner writes Adagio, he writes Allegro. In this performance adagio is simply far too slow and allegro is too fast. The two extremes employed by Jochum simply don't work! When the music is slow, Jochum can't hold any interest, the music falls apart, is lifeless. You run the risk of playing Bruckner at this extreme slowness of totally ruining the music and that's what has happened here. Then we get the very fast rushing speeds, almost embarrassingly as if realisation has set in that it was too slow. That wouldn't be so bad, but this is repeated. The first movement is ruined.

All movements in this performance suffer from this extreme. The scherzo is played without any kind of love, the beautiful ländler melody is just thrown away. There is some horrible mannered timpani playing and an accelerando near the start of this movement that is simply unconvincing!

As for the finale, it's just as bad. Some reviewers have mentioned how great the last moments are in this recording, but to me it all sounds like an add on and doesn't fit with the rest of the performance, in fact the whole performance doesn't fit together at all. It's as if somebody has collected a whole winter's worth of snow and dumped it on your house. it all sounds pointless and over the top. This is a mismanaged interpretation, Jochum got everything wrong.

I prefer Wand - DVD NDR Sinfonieorchester and Franz Welser-Möst with an excellent LPO and perhaps the great Furtwangler.
Comment Comments (2) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Apr 29, 2014 8:27 AM BST

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