Customer Review

11 of 25 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Not worth the five year wait................., 12 Aug. 2013
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This review is from: Verdi (Audio CD)
UPDATE: After having another reviewer { M. E. OUTLAW } confirm there were no issues with his CD I bought track 2 in Studio Master Quality FLAC from linnrecords dot com and can confirm that there is nothing wrong with the actual recording, it appears to be a badly pressed or faulty disc I received. I can also say that the Studio quality FLAC plays with a wider sound stage and is more 'open' and better to listen to than the CD version. IMHO if you want to buy this recording and you can play back 24bit 96khz FLAC files then I would consider the more expensive download. May I suggest visiting this site and listening to the samples of each track prior to purchase.

>>>>>"I am giving this disc only one star because the disc I have been supplied seems to have intermittent quality issues with some 'crackling' and noise which only lasts a second or two but should not be there. Also the disc sounds compressed with a narrow stage. Even on headphones this recording does not sound very good, as if it is out of phase. Perhaps I should try swapping my speaker cables to see if it improves the sound. I am going to contact amazon for a replacement but my concern is I will get one from the same batch." <<<<<

The repertoire itself is very much a matter of taste, if this disc is aimed to show us how Anna's voice has become richer and darker over the past few years then it succeeds but I'm afraid the contents of this disc will have minority appeal. Obviously if you know exactly what you are buying then fine, however if you hope her first studio album in five years will contain popular songs then think again. With regards to her voice I must say that I preferred her earlier work from the late 90's to the mid 2000's as although she has developed a more dramatic, deeper and richer toned voice it does sound IMHO to be strained and somewhat forced. Please note that this is my own opinion only and seems to be at a disagreement with many professional reviewers.

Wouldn't it have been a real treat for the vast majority of Anna's fans to at least release a studio recording that they would like to listen to more than once rather than as a demo disc of the current development of her voice in technical terms. This album is self indulgent and aimed at a minority of fans. I am a huge fan of Anna Netrebko, I think I have just about every CD and DVD including some from Russian TV. I can honestly say that this is the worst CD of hers I have ever bought, however I am sure the critics will love this disc.
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Showing 1-3 of 3 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 14 Aug 2013 09:05:35 BDT
G. Wrigley says:
I would be interested to know whether you have tried playing this CD on another drive. If so, are you getting the same problems? What you are describing sounds very much like a problem I had several years ago, where I found that a new CD was behaving as if it was damaged, and then other CDs that had not previously caused problems also started misbehaving. Most of them, however played without a problem. Eventually, the problem was traced to a fault that had developed in the spindle motor of the drive, and once fixed, all of my CDs then played flawlessly. I mention this, because it could be that your drive has developed some fault that makes it unable to play some CDs properly.
However, if the same faults are occurring on at least two different drives, then I agree that your copy must be faulty, and Amazon should replace it.
And I trust that you will revise your rating, now that you have established that there is nothing wrong with the recording.

In reply to an earlier post on 14 Aug 2013 09:16:26 BDT
Trev-R says:
Many thanks for taking the time to write your comments. I first tried the disc on my Denon CD player and this is when I noticed the issue listening through my speakers. I then hooked up my headphones and the faults were more pronounced. I ripped the CD to FLAC on my PC which replicated the fault and because I had set it to upscale it actually made it sound worse. I guess any product that is mass produced will have a small percentage of failures. Regarding my one star rating, I will have to think about this because the more I have listened the more disappointed I feel and the less I like it. When the disc is replaced I am going to drop it in to a local charity shop as I will never listen to it again.

Posted on 13 Dec 2013 07:39:08 GMT
Last edited by the author on 13 Dec 2013 07:44:48 GMT
Abert says:
"This album is self indulgent and aimed at a minority of fans."
Even though you are a huge fan of Anna, I must say that you do not represent the majority of Anna's group of aficionado.
I myself find this to be among Netrebko's finest output to-date.
Yes, people got used to listen to her 'early' repertoire. I do NOT find any of those really top-notch. If you say Netrebko is a coloratura, then listen to Damrau. Miles ahead of La Trebka. If you say Netrebko is a light lyrical, then listen to Christine Schafer. Again miles ahead of Netrebko. If you say Netrebko is a full lyrical, please seek out Dorothea Roeschmann, again miles and miles ahead of Netrebko.
Schafer and Damrau both have sung great Gildas in Rigoletto. Netrebko flopped dismally in this role.
In La Traviata, Malis Peterson is way ahead of Netrebko vocally, not to mention the lyrical spinto soprano Anja Harteros.
If you say Netrebko is a great Manon or JUliette, then you must have NOT yet heard of the really great ones.
And it aches to compare Netrebko's Lucia with the likes of Mariella Devia, or even Diana Damrau more recently.
Yes, good sopranos are relatively few these days, but it does not mean that there is none.
However, in Verdi, at least I would vote for Netrebko over Angela Gheorghiu and Karita Mattila. And this speaks a lot.
It may have little to do with Netrebko's strengths in pure terms - only in comparative degree. For I find that there is virtually NO truly competent Verdian sopranos around these years, and Anna Netrebko's joining in this repertoire is more than welcome. As for bel canto, she simply cannot find her way to the top with her smudged coloratura, unclear enunciation and dicey pitch.
Netrebko's real strength? Well, these days, may be it is in Russian operas. But back in the days of her 'Russian Album', I found her singing to be elementary and unrefined.
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