Customer Reviews


14 Reviews
5 star:
 (14)
4 star:    (0)
3 star:    (0)
2 star:    (0)
1 star:    (0)
 
 
 
 
 
Average Customer Review
Share your thoughts with other customers
Create your own review
 
 
‹ Previous | 1 2 | Next ›
Most Helpful First | Newest First

24 of 24 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Improved Sound Quality, 7 Mar 2008
By 
Scriabinmahler (UK) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Chopin: Nocturnes (Artur Rubinstein Collection, Vol 49) (Audio CD)
After more than 40 years, Rubinstein's classic account of Nocturnes still sounds so fresh and affecting. This 1999 new remastering with 20 bit / Super CD Encoding has added more body and brilliance to the original, beautifully capturing subtlety and intricacy of his playing.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Definitive version for many collectors, 9 Dec 2012
By 
I. Giles (Argyll, Scotland) - See all my reviews
(HALL OF FAME REVIEWER)    (TOP 50 REVIEWER)   
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Chopin: Nocturnes (Artur Rubinstein Collection, Vol 49) (Audio CD)
This pair of discs contains the 19 nocturnes recorded by Rubinstein between 1965-7. This is slightly fewer than the complete 21 recorded by Ashkenazy or Pires for example and the two missing nocturnes may be regretted by some collectors.

Rubinstein's recordings of Chopin, made over a lifetime and re-visited more than once, were important landmark recordings for many listeners and these became, and remain, definitive recordings for a lot of people. They have a very distinctive style and sound which makes them instantly recognisable but not beyond compare. The very distinctive nature of the recordings underlines the fact that no-one else played them that way then or that way today. Unless it is accepted that it is possible that any one artist can have an absolute monopoly over an interpretation or an interpretive approach (a very questionable view), then it must be accepted that there must be other equally valid ways of interpreting any music, which in the hands of an equally fine musician must inevitably be an equally fine, if different, listening experience.

These particular recordings of the nocturnes are notable for their emotional restraint. Rubinstein plays it as it is, or rather as he sees it as it is. Some have described his playing as like presenting the notes like small gems or jewels for us to admire and enjoy. Others have described his playing as aristocratic and others as autocratic. All of these descriptions have some truth about them. Rubinstein also used his own piano wherever he went. This was because it had been specially prepared to suit his particular way of playing. It had an especially light action requiring a very light touch. This would be ideal for the smaller, more intimate venues and not so suitable for larger halls where more projection is clearly required.

This simple instrumental consideration brings about one of the differences between Rubinstein and Ashkenazy for example. Rubinstein's approach is more intimate, more private, more identifiable with a salon environment. Ashkenazy's approach is less intimate, more public, bigger boned and more identifiable with a larger hall environment. Pires offers a gentler touch but also noticeably warmer than either in her survey. She is not as large scaled, even as masculine as Ashkenazy, but is more intimate, more feminine and more emotionally engaging than Rubinstein. All three of these pianists, and many others of course, are considered very fine on the world stage and I would suggest that they all have a place and something equally valuable to add to our understanding of Chopin.

Finally one must consider the actual sound quality of the recording. The one that is given to Rubinstein is closely miked within rather a dry acoustic. This robs the piano of the tonal depth that more recent recordings have. This, over the years, has become identified as part of the Rubinstein sound. This is not strictly true of course. What we are hearing is Rubinstein's sound through the medium of the recording studio, the engineer's choice of acoustics and balance plus technical equipment. In many ways this seems to fit in with Rubinstein's more intimate approach but it is not his sound as we would hear it in a 'live' situation today.

This set of nocturnes, with all that has been described above, remains a benchmark set of performances given by a unique musician with his own unique way of expressing his view of Chopin. It is not cluttered with extra emotion or exaggeration as regards tempo or dynamics and is greatly to be preferred to more indulgent performances. It requires compromises and understanding to be made considering the actual recorded sound which in turn affects the way Rubinstein's view of Chopin reaches us.

In summary, I would suggest that this is essential listening for any serious collector but that it does not have a complete monopoly over interpretation. I prefer to own this as one of many recordings. It is a safe recommendation as an 'only' purchase but not the only one to be considered as an 'only' buy. There are other, equally valid alternatives which offer different approaches and which will suit different listeners for those different ways. I have used just two contrasting alternatives in the course of this review to indicate what those alternative considerations may include.

Further Note: The 10 disc box set published in 2010 with 24 bit remastering of the whole collection offers a significant improvement on sound in every way on all discs. This can be confidently stated as I own both and have been able to do an A/B comparison. That box set must now be the best possible purchase.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Chopin: Nocturnes, 23 Dec 2010
By 
Spider Monkey (UK) - See all my reviews
(HALL OF FAME REVIEWER)    (TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: Chopin: Nocturnes (Artur Rubinstein Collection, Vol 49) (Audio CD)
When my step-father suggested to me to try Chopin's Nocturnes he insisted that I get this recording of it, saying nothing has come close since. That is until they were remastered! After testing his theory and exploring other performances, this is the one I come back to and have to agree with his initial judgement.

Rubenstein coaxes the most exquisite tones and emotions from his piano and makes the music on offer here soar like you never knew it was quite possible to. The recordings are clear and crackle free and the remastering has been done with respect and a light touch, rather than some of the over compressed recordings I have on my shelves.

This is beautiful music played by a master and it is one to sit back and savour at regular intervals. Truly the recording of Chopin's Nocturnes to buy and simply sublime.

Feel free to check out my blog which can be found on my profile page.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A must buy, 4 May 2010
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Chopin: Nocturnes (Artur Rubinstein Collection, Vol 49) (Audio CD)
Seriously, this is a fantastic CD. Rubinstein really did capture the essence of Chopin's music in these pieces. His recordings of Chopin's Piano concertos 1 & 2 are also excellent.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


16 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Splendid, 19 Oct 2010
By 
This review is from: Chopin: Nocturnes (Artur Rubinstein Collection, Vol 49) (Audio CD)
I must admit that I was very impressed by this recording. The sound quality is great. It's almost impossible to hear that these recordings are 45 years old. The sound of the piano is warm, gentle and velvety.

Listening to Rubinstein, one really understand that these interpretations are hard to conquer.

This is THE recording of the Chopin Nocturnes you should have in your library.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Rubinstein the great, 16 May 2011
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Chopin: Nocturnes (Artur Rubinstein Collection, Vol 49) (Audio CD)
This can be listened to over and over again and each time there is something new. The clarity and sensitivity are beautiful. The tops!
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant, 8 Aug 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Chopin: Nocturnes (Artur Rubinstein Collection, Vol 49) (Audio CD)
Rubinstein does a weird thing here. He manages to produce a really sensitive touch but plays in a very masculine style. I have played piano for 30 years and can't even get close to what he does here. Will be buying more of his recordings.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great playing and great sound, 7 Aug 2012
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Chopin: Nocturnes (Artur Rubinstein Collection, Vol 49) (Audio CD)
I compared 3 sets of the Nocturnes - that of Arrau on Philips that of Leonskaja on Teldec and this set with Rubinstein - To my taste Arrau is too slow over-serious and often lacking natural flow - Leonskaja plays beautifully with great feeling but the piano sound is too metallic-glassy - the Rubinstein set sounds and feels just right - to me the best of the three sets - the one I will keep -Highly recommended!
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Rubinstein rocks!, 4 Oct 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Chopin: Nocturnes (Artur Rubinstein Collection, Vol 49) (Audio CD)
Artur Rubinstein interprets Chopin beautifully. I used to own a complete collection of Chopin played by Rubenstein on vinyl, so listening to this is like meeting an old, much-loved friend for me.The recording is excellent and I have really enjoyed it.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing it's available, 8 Aug 2014
This review is from: Chopin: Nocturnes (Artur Rubinstein Collection, Vol 49) (Audio CD)
This is one of those rareities in the music world: A phenominal old recording that shines in today's high performance capable electronics reproduction, by arguably the most genuine authoritative Chopin expert of the last 50 years. Amazing it's available, but I guess that tells you something! Cannot speak too highly of it.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


‹ Previous | 1 2 | Next ›
Most Helpful First | Newest First

This product

Chopin: Nocturnes (Artur Rubinstein Collection, Vol 49)
Chopin: Nocturnes (Artur Rubinstein Collection, Vol 49) by Arthur Rubinstein (Audio CD - 2000)
Add to basket Add to wishlist
Only search this product's reviews