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Reviews: Prokofiev, Rachmaninov: Piano Concerto No. 3 - Pletnev

Reviews: 4

Review by gonzostick August 28, 2004 (9 of 22 found this review helpful)
Performance:   Sonics:
AWFUL!!! Stay away from this Turkey! Sonics are murky and balances, especially beween soloist and orchestra, provide little piano (which may be a blessing). Worse still, the Rachmaninoff is cut in the last movement, even though Pletnev uses the LONG cadenza in the first movement -- this after blathering at length in the notes about his "special relationship" with this music -- he might have shown some consistency if he had used the short cadenza in movement one.

There is no reason, in the 21st century, for a major virtuoso to use the cuts that were forced on Rachmaninoff by RCA in the days of 78rpm discs at the beginning of the 20th century! Those same idiots at RCA were responsible for his NOT recording all his symphonic works as conductor back then. Even though some sloppy music critics refer to these cuts in the Rach3 as "standard," they completely disfigure and unbalance the great symmetry of this movement AND the whole cyclical nature of the concerto. Lest we forget, it was the master idiots at RCA who sold David Helfgott's spastic, sloppy and unmusical version of Rach3, through the furor of the SHINE film, as a legitimate performance -- it's more akin to a train wreck.

Furthermore, Maestro Pletnev, a major international virtuoso, plays as if he truly doesn't listen to the sounds (or noises) he makes on his instrument. Many are the young piano students who are "boxed upside the head" when they abuse the damper pedal excessively. In this recording, it appears the pianist missed that lesson completely: the pedal gets put to the metal mercilessly as he literally pounds the keys, banging on the piano! It has been years since I have heard such tasteless playing. I wonder if the recording producer at the sessions had any authority or was hired to be a toady...

The result is one of the worst recordings of the Rach3 in many years. SACD adds nothing when a recording is such a musical disaster. The master tapes (or hard drives) of this performance should be erased, then buried next to David Helfgott's performance, and the perpetrators stripped and sprayed. The discs should be made into chains for hanging room dividers or scoops for kitty litter.

What a waste!!! No wonder classical recordings aren't selling! This turkey deserves to be ignored. I deeply regret I spent good cash on this musical miscarriage...

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Review by Gabriel April 23, 2006 (2 of 20 found this review helpful)
I absolutely LOVE gonzostick's review!!!!! It is absolutely SPECTACULAR!!!!! He is absolutely CORRECT!!!!! There are too many pianists that to NOT realize, or FORGET to realize that even the slightest banging of ANY sort whatsoever during the actual "performing process", will do nothing but DISTURB the "listener"!!!!! Any anyone that actually believes that ANY type of cut whatsoever is actually necessary in the RACH3, is totally filled with the purest HORSECRAP!!!!! EVERY single note in the "ENTIRE" RACH3 is absolutely GORGEOUS!!! And therefore, it does nothing but create an absolute CRISIS for the "listener" whenever some ritarded idiot chooses to actually cut that unbelievable beauty "OUT"!!!!! No one in the 21st century needs to deal with this type of HORSECRAP!!!!! Just purchase Jon Nakamatsu's SACD recording of the RACH3. You'll be in heaven.

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Review by audio-grubi April 18, 2008 (12 of 17 found this review helpful)
Performance:   Sonics:    
Sometimes I really can't understand, what some users write here. The best examples are the reviews of "gonzostick" and "Gabriel". I never readed such a s**t here before! I totaly disagree!
I LOVE this recording and and I'm glad, that I have NOT heard one more time on the opinion of other users here on SA-CD.net and nevertheless bought me the relevant recording. In my opinion the interpretations of the two piano concertos are not as bad as the both named users wrote here before and about the sound of the recordings: "gonzostick" and "Gabriel" shold check their HiFi-(or LoFi- ?)equipment very fast! Balance Engineer Prof. Rainer Maillard of the Deutsche Grammophon reached it once again to produce a very well sounding recording with this SACD (stereo/mch: PCM, 24 bit/48 kHz - the Deutsche Grammophon is one of the few companies, that always declares, in which format the original recording originated! - and once again we see, that that PCM [and consequently DVD-Audio in reality] is inside, what sold as DSD ...). The sound-panorama is very warm, wide and the piano is well focused. That's simply wonderfull and a relief for the ears! Many lables and technicans should take it as an example.

Just listen and trust your ears but not (all) reviews of self appointed "experts"!

Highly recommendation!

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Review by mistermahzel November 17, 2013 (3 of 3 found this review helpful)
Performance:   Sonics:  
Since we have very polarizing views of the Rachmaninov my review will be solely for the Prokofiev in the 2 channel stereo SACD layer.

We all know what a challenge this concerto can be as well.
All in all the performance is a very good one. Is it one for the ages? Maybe not, but it is certainly a valid entry.
Rostropovich and Pletnev recorded this with the Russian National Orchestra in Russia and the nationalistic pride does show.
As for the recording, the orchestra in nicely balanced with the piano clear and focused.
Strings are warm, woodwinds are clear and the timpani is sharp and nicely projected.
Overall soundstage is admirably captured.
My interest in purchasing this disc was the Prokofiev and not the Rachmaninov and I am not dissapointed.

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