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  PentaTone Classics -
  PTC 5186 105
  Mozart: Horn Concertos - Civil/Marriner
  Mozart: Horn Concertos, Rondo in E flat

Alan Civil (horn)
Academy of St. Martin in the Fields
Neville Marriner (conductor)
Track listing:
  1-2. Horn Concerto in D, KV 386b (412/514)
3-5. Horn Concerto in E flat, KV 495
6. Rondo in E flat, KV 371
7-9. Horn Concerto in E flat, KV447
10-12. Horn Concerto in E flat, KV 417

Total time: 59:35
  Classical - Orchestral
Recording type:
Recording info:
  Recorded in London, Walthamstow Town Hall - September 1971

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Reviews: 3

Review by flyingdutchman July 1, 2003 (1 of 1 found this review helpful)
Performance:   Sonics:
An absolute delight. This is perhaps one of my favorite recordings on SACD. The sound is rich and full, the horn playing technically correct and assured. This is my first introduction to the Pentatone label and if the others recordings are anything like this one, I'll be back for more.

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Review by vonwegen December 13, 2003 (0 of 1 found this review helpful)
Performance:   Sonics:
Very nice, surprisingly agile playing from Alan Civil, but I have to say that Mozart did not typically compose for the French Horn (in German: Waldhorn) as lead instrument for a very clear reason--listening to Mr. Civil, a very impressive player who sometimes guested on Beatles album cuts, play W. A. Mozart's rapid-fire flurries of notes is like watching an elephant do the mambo--it is possible, but it doesn't come easily.

To my ears, it's clear that other instruments, like the trumpet or piccolo trumpet would have been better suited to this style of symphony. The French horn, by contrast, lends itself much better to longer, more sustained notes where its large, dignified tones can resonate, rise and swell as a clarion call--or to ominously foreshadow a darker passage.

Hence, it may be that Mozart himself was commenting on that very clumsiness of the instrument by dedicating these pieces to renowned French Horn player Joseph Leitgeb, writing that he "has taken pity on Leitgeb, ass, ox and jester..." At times, the French Horn here does low like an ox and sound a bit like a donkey in other passages. (This is my pet theory, though, so feel free to shoot it all to pieces with impunity...)

The quad sound is nice--you really don't miss the center channel in terms of imaging. As expected, there is not much low end in this 1971-vintage recording to waken the subwoofer from its slumber, but Pentatone has done a nice job with this--definitely recommended.


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Review by beardawgs November 20, 2003
Performance:   Sonics:
We have almost all Pentatone RQR discs. Acoustically, this is the best one. It is also the most natural surround recording in all our collection. The original analogue quadro recording is warm and full of detail, and the space is literally palpable. DSD MC transfer was made without any interference from the original 4 channel tape to a stunning effect.

The playing is superb, solo horn focused and warm. Itís difficult to say more, as this is such a perfect recording. Go for it, especially if you listen to your music in surround!

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Works: 5  

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart - Horn Concerto No. 1 in D major, K. 412-514/386b
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart - Horn Concerto No. 2 in E flat major, K. 417
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart - Horn Concerto No. 3 in E flat major, K. 447
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart - Horn Concerto No. 4 in E flat major, K. 495
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart - Rondo in E flat major, K. 371