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on 19 April 2014
It is a very fine compilation Richard J. Bradburn and Lyndon Jenkins have done with this Sargent Box. I don't think Malcom Sargent is in the same class as Barbirolli, Beecham and Boult - but he was generally a good conductor and sometimes in choral works among the greatest. When we are speaking about choral works it would have been good to have also the Messiah and Elijah from the fifties with Morrison, Lewis etc. and also the old Gerontius with Heddle Nash as Gerontius. The sound is very fine in Messias and Elijah, but not better than Mike Duttons CDs - I remember Mike Dutton told me when he produced the Messiah that he had a lot 78 records to listen to for finding the best copy, and his mother at last said that now she has heard Messiah too much for a time ! Isobel Baillie and the other soloists are very fine and Sargent conduct both orchestra and choir in the best way - the choral sound in the forties was special and it's a joy to listen to these old recordings. I also like "Flash Harrys" (as Beecham called him) Holst performances, "The Perfect Fool and Beni Mora" are very fine and I have always find it strange, that Waltons First Symphony not had a better reputation, I like it better than Previns performance. The other items are also very good, Eroica, the Sibelius symphonies and all the English music by Bax, Bliss, Vaughan Williams and Rubbra are really good performances, and Lyndon Jenkins notes in the booklet is, as always, very fine. For me Sir John Barbirolli was the greatest conductor England has produced, JBs way with Elgar and Vaughan Williams is second to none, and he was also a very fine Mahler, Bruckner, Sibelius and Nielsen conductor - but there is a lot of Beecham, Boult and Barbirolli CDs in the cataloque - so it is good now at last also to have this fine Malcom Sargent Box - The Promenaders loved Flash Harry and listening to this box one can understand why !
Steen Bichel, Hundested - Denmark
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on 16 April 2014
Sargent's recorded legacy has always felt somewhat sidelined; it's wonderful to see this diverse cross-section of his work. The variety of works on offer is very appealing; Sargent's specialities - the famous 1947 Messiah, Elijah, Belshazzar's Feast) rub shoulders with lesser known gems - the Rubbra and Bliss piano concerti, Coleridge-Taylor's Hiawatha's Wedding Feast, etc. The recordings - even those in mono - come across very well - Bax's "Morning Song" with Harriet Cohen is sublime and the 1958 "Belshazzar's Feast" packs a punch. Though Beecham was the king of Delius, Sargent's sensitive "A Song before Sunrise" and "Songs Of Farewell" are quite lovely. The booklet is very good, and at the price - less than £2 per CD - this box is an absolute steal.
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on 24 March 2015
I remember Malcolm' Sargent for the proms, on his last night a very young Colin Davis stood at his side, a very emotional situation to end a concert,and now we have lost Colin Davis,the good news is Simon Rattle is to take up with the LSO . More good news is that this box set is
Surely the best value yet? I was convinced that Marris jannsons Beethovens third was the best ever,listen to Sargent with the RPO I loved
Every note re mastered old recordings are a delight some going back over fifty years ,EMI like many others,their engineers must love the work
They do, and it shows definitely in this box set get it in a FLASH which was the great mans nickname.
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on 4 June 2014
Let me say straight away that I have about seven eights of this set on individual Cd's and LP's,and have known the recordings for many decades.
I do think that Sargent is up there with Beecham and Boult. While Beecham took safety in America,during WW2,Sargent remained and toured,at great risk to himself and his players. I think it was Neville Cardus,the late music critic,who once said that if a foreign conductor had done performances half as well as Sargent,he would have been cheered to the rafters. OK,so Malcolm was a showman,like Stokowski,but he also looked and acted a gentleman,and nobody could beat him at choral music.
I only wish that this set had gone back to his earlier career and included his Coleridge Taylor recordings made during the 1930's in the Royal Albert Hall,and his recordings with the RCS. And isn't it about time that his Decca 'Planets' suite was reissued,on CD?
It is a pity that we have no great British conductors around these days,apart from Rattle.
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on 25 June 2014
Some great recordings that I have on LP. Sound great digitally remastered.Well done warner/emi.Dissapointed that Gilbert & Sullivan Overtures, Strauss waltzes, & Dvorak's Cello concerto with Tortellier were not included.
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on 17 February 2015
If you like Sir Malcolm Sargent then this boxed set is a must have.
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on 13 March 2015
Great service and excellent value. Thank you.
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on 7 December 2014
Exactly as described.
A very worthwhile box.
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on 14 April 2014
Who are the composers whose music is on these discs?? Of course the cognoscenti will know most of them, but it's just rubbish to call a track 'Allegro moderato' unless you have previously said what composer and which symphony. I hop nobody buys this until the track listing shows the main work titles as well as the composers. 2 CDs are given over to Handel's Messiah, but neither 'Handel' or 'Messiah' is mentioned anywhere! Idiots!!
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