Verdi: Requiem & Quattro Pezzi Sacri Import
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Top Customer Reviews
My credentials for saying so are merely my own pair of ears, forty years of listening to this piece live and in recordings and as a collector of thirty-plus versions, most of which I find superior to this one.
First of all, the recording has peaking and overloading problems inherent in the master tape which will not be addressed by another re-mastering; the 1997 engineering is probably the best that can be achieved. It doesn't bother me much but it's there and will be a more important factor for audiophiles.
Secondly, it may be that Giulini takes the more spiritual approach that some require in this work but for me that results in some loss of excitement and tension in what is undeniably a supremely operatic and histrionic treatment of liturgical music. Again, this is not key but other versions are simply more involving and moving.
Thirdly, the soloists are neither uniformly good not necessarily aptly voiced for their roles. I instantly exempt Ghiaurov from that observation; he is simply immense, flawless and a model for all subsequent interpreters. Ludwig is very good but sometimes shrieks and sounds far less comfortable than in her later recording with Karajan; she blends far less well with Schwarzkopf than they did in the Böhm "Così" from around the same time. The real trouble starts with Schwarzkopf and Gedda; she positively screams in the "Salva Me" of the quartet in the "Dies Irae" and too often mews and swoons where solid tone is needed.Read more ›