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13
4.8 out of 5 stars
Holst: The Collector's Edition
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14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
on 8 February 2013
Excellent value - the only snag for me was that I already had several of these recordings on CD, but, even so, at £7 this was well worth buying to get hold of some of Holst's other pieces that have hardly ever been recorded.

These are mostly recordings from the 1960s and 1970s, but EMI's analogue recording quality was of a very high standard. The more familiar pieces (The Planets, The Perfect Fool music) are included in recordings that are as good as any ever made (conducted by Boult and Previn respectively). There are other great Holst pieces included that are just as good as The Planets but which are relatively neglected (Egdon Heath, Hymn of Jesus, Choral Fantasia, etc.). The unaccompanied choral music is done very well by the "Baccholian Singers" (actually a group of top-notch vocal soloists such as Ian Partridge) - this performance of The Homecoming is one of the few pieces I've heard where the singers are successful in adopting more-or-less plausible regional accents. And the two short operas are also well worthwhile.

I think I would have preferred Mehuhin's recordings (with the ECO) of the short suites (Beni Mora, etc.) to the Sargent performances that are included here, but that's a very minor quibble.

Anyone who likes The Planets and wants to hear other music by Holst should buy this - 6/7 hours at this price is great value.
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41 of 44 people found the following review helpful
A sound and extensive collection of Holst's music.
All of the perfences are alt least good and in many cases truly superb (Boult's The Planets & Choral Symphony, Previn's Egdon Heath, Sargent's Beni Mora and so on).
The sound varies, this is a compilation, but is never less than fine, not least due to using a mixture of new remastering and some of the fine remasters that have appeared over the last decade or so.
At the time of writing it's just £15.99.
The six page essay in the (multilingual) booklet is well written and informative and the one-page timeline is handy.
Recommended to all who love English music and who want to hear more than The Planets and St Paul's Suite.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
On the first CD comes Holst's most popular work played well by the London Philharmonic Orchestra with Sir Adrian Boult, and The ballet music from 'The Perfect Fool' and the work that Holst thought amongst his best ' Egdon Heath' here played by the London Symphony Orchestra with Andre Previn. On CD 2 there are some of the works that portray the 'Englishness' of Holst - A Somerset Rhapsody,St Paul's Suite and Brook Green Suite and A Fugal Concerto. But also there is an Oriental Suite 'Beni Mora' - well worth discovering. For me a unique and wonderful experience is to be had in the 'Ode to Death'. with words by Whitman. I know nothing like it even among the greatest works of Holst. Two fine choral works begin CD 3 - Psalm 86 and a Choral Fantasia, and then lively merrymaking with fantastic military band music - all the instruments are heard at their best from someone who understood the band - four great suites. On CD 4 are some highlights of Holst's music for singers Including 'The Homecoming' words by Thomas Hardy and the prophetic 'A Dirge for Two Veterans' written shortly before the Great War. The Baccolian Singers of London provide deeply moving ensemble and solo singing in Six Choral Folk Songs and Six Choruses from medieval Latin. That CD is finished with church music - superb 'Turn back O man', 'Lullay my liking,' Personent Hodie' and the lovely carol setting - 'In the Bleak Midwinter.' CD5 has some magnificent choral works. The whole edition is accompanied by a very useful booklet. You will probably want to look for some of the words of the choral works and songs. This Holst edition contains a wealth or great orchestal and choral music with depth, played and sung by some of England's greatest musicians of the 20th century.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 16 March 2014
An interesting collection of pieces. The sound quality is good to excellent. Have enjoyed listening to the known and unknown tracks.
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5 of 7 people found the following review helpful
on 11 July 2013
My headline sums up why I chose the rating. I love all the music. Of the pieces I already own and the recordings are not all recent, several are of better quality, to my ear. I know that this is a subjective matter but some seem thin. the sound-stage was vague and presence (that feeling either that its in your own room or you are in the auditorium )is wanting. I chose this compilation however, for the pieces I didn't already have and the price still made it a bargain. So, keeping this brief, I would say that if you want this selection of pieces at a good price and aren't too fussy about the sound recording quality this is a good buy.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on 1 May 2013
My brother's copy of Mars on a 45 was my very early introduction to so called classical music. I knew much of the music in this collection already, but did not have copies of it, while others now languish on vynil. An old school friend of mine was conducted by Sir Adrian Boult, Immogen Host and David Wilcocks. There is not one disc here that does not contan something familiar, but it gives me so much more to explore.
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on 3 February 2014
Prior to getting this set of cd's I knew nothing of Holst's other work. Well worth a listen to, but mostly alone I would think, as much is quiet and lonely stuff.
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Was looking for a good selection of Holst's works and this definitely fits the bill. Also, 7 hours of wonderful music for less than £8 is excellent value.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on 15 March 2013
Inexpensive MP3 purchase. CD version is not that costly but MP3 is a lot cheaper. If you like Holst you will probably like this.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on 28 January 2013
Holst. I purchased this on mp3 as it was a lot cheaper than the physical article. It is well played and the recording is good.
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