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Discussion: Beethoven: Triple Concerto, Brahms: Double Concerto, Violin Concerto - Oistrakh

Posts: 27
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Post by canonical April 16, 2012 (1 of 27)
My copy just arrived today.

Just took the Beethoven Triple for a spin ... I had this superb performance on LP for many years, so feel I know it very well. And I am actually rather impressed by the SACD ... I haven't compared to the CD layer yet ... but even so, the sound is really very impressive, irrespective of how they got there. I prefer it to the LP which never had much definition.

Smart packaging too ... the 2 disc sets are are a little taller than a regular CD, but can still be filed into the same slot on my racks. ... with nice pictures of the original LP covers, photos of the tapes, excellent notes on how the transfer was done ... really quite smart. Quite impressed.

P.S. The Brahms Oistrakh 1st mvmt is a bit scratchy / brittle / harsh /// ... don't have the original of this, so can't compare.

Post by Claude April 16, 2012 (2 of 27)
I was underwhelmed by this.

To compare the mastering differences alone, I ripped the Great Recordings CD and the CD layer of the SACD for the Beethoven Triple concerto and A/B'ed the last movement using the foobar2000 ABX plugin.

My conclusion is that the CD sounds a bit veiled compared to the redbook layer of the SACD. The difference is quite subtle though.

The hi-rez layer doesn't really bring a huge benefit to the sonics of this recording, where the solo instruments sound too close and the orchestra rather bland.

Post by seth April 16, 2012 (3 of 27)
canonical said:

My copy just arrived today.

P.S. The Brahms Oistrakh 1st mvmt is a bit scratchy / brittle / harsh /// ... don't have the original of this, so can't compare.

As I've noted in other threads, the sound of the GROTC version has these characteristics plus some pretty bad overload distortions (I'm surprised more people don't notice this).

Post by canonical April 16, 2012 (4 of 27)
seth said:

As I've noted in other threads, the sound of the GROTC version has these characteristics plus some pretty bad overload distortions (I'm surprised more people don't notice this).

Well, I am noticing lots of distortion in the Brahms disc ... and finding the sonics *most* unpleasant here. Didn't notice it in the Beethoven ... more to explore.

Post by dcramer April 16, 2012 (5 of 27)
seth said:

As I've noted in other threads, the sound of the GROTC version has these characteristics plus some pretty bad overload distortions (I'm surprised more people don't notice this).

Yes, the overload distortions were also noticeable on the LP, although to a lesser degree. I've always liked these performances though, and I appreciate the additional clarity even though it makes the warts a bit more evident. I didn't expect any miracles since the master tapes are what they are, and find these SACDs to be the best versions of these venerable performances to date. I really don't find the faults the least bit distracting to my musical enjoyment, but maybe that's just me. I'm a satisfied customer and am extremely thankful for these releases. Keep them coming! P.S., I think the DuPre Elgar is a knockout.

Post by canonical April 16, 2012 (6 of 27)
Can't take the Brahms anymore - time to try some Schubert lieder ...

Post by seth April 16, 2012 (7 of 27)
dcramer said:

Yes, the overload distortions were also noticeable on the LP, although to a lesser degree. I've always liked these performances though, and I appreciate the additional clarity even though it makes the warts a bit more evident. I didn't expect any miracles since the master tapes are what they are, and find these SACDs to be the best versions of these venerable performances to date. I really don't find the faults the least bit distracting to my musical enjoyment, but maybe that's just me. I'm a satisfied customer and am extremely thankful for these releases. Keep them coming! P.S., I think the DuPre Elgar is a knockout.

I also really like the performances, but given the distortions, I'm fine to stick with the CD version.

Post by Polarius T April 16, 2012 (8 of 27)
dcramer said:

I...find these SACDs to be the best versions of these venerable performances to date. I really don't find the faults the least bit distracting to my musical enjoyment, but maybe that's just me. I'm a satisfied customer and am extremely thankful for these releases. Keep them coming!

+1.

I find the improvements these new remasterings bring to be really quite salient, and am enjoying many of these performances with fresh ears, as if they were new to me again. Such a joy, that experience.

-PT

Post by Claude April 16, 2012 (9 of 27)
It's difficult to generalize.

Some masterings are much better, others barely sound different. If the same mastering engineer worked with the same tapes 10 years ago for the CD reissue, it's not likely he can top that now, except for the benefits of the hi-rez format.

The Bruckner 8 sounds dramatically better than the 1993 CD I got, which has added artificial reverb. It's as good as the best Living Stereo SACDs.

Among the japanese EMI SACDs, the Mahler Lied (Klemperer) also sounds a lot better than the GRoC CD, but for the Mahler 9 (Barbirolli) it is very close.

Post by jazz1 April 18, 2012 (10 of 27)
This morning I received the first 2 EMI I ordered, namely the Beethoven triple concerto with the Brahms double and violin concerto
and the other one the Bruckner no 8 and 9

The first disc I put in was the Beethoven triple concerto.
These are first impressions and final judgment will be made after a few listens
(I also only played only one movement of each work)

The triple concerto is amazing, both on the audio side and the performance then again how can you beat this line-up
Oistrakh, Rostropovich, Richter, Karajan, and the Berliner Philarmoniker, mind blowing playing, so intense. The 3 solo instruments
are very well recorded, they do not get lost in the mix, maybe in modern term the violin is a little closed miked but I like it
it give more body to the sound, which is really big, a la "Living Stereo" sure it has a little vintage coloring but I do not mind, in actual fact
I am partial to it.
The violin concerto, is a legendary performance and their is not much to say about it, on the audio side it is not as good as the Beethoven triple but
still a good, 3 1/2 * would be my rating, and remember I rarely give 5 stars
The Double concerto is a little disappointing audio wise, definitely the weakest of the 3 pieces, but still OK
I still prefer my Living Stereo

Bruckner 8th and 9th,
These are excellent all-round, I cannot really fault them, I am not an expert on Bruckner and I only heard 1 movement of each symphonies
Sound wise a good 4 * I will make further comments at a later stage.

All in all I am very happy, I like the BIG vintage sound, and the playing is mind blowing, I am sure that you can get better recordings audio wise
but I don't think better ones musically which is what counts

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