User Details - Geohominid

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Name:
  John Miller
Details:
  Retired geologist (BSc, PhD) and former Senior Lecturer and Director of Open Studies, Edinburgh University. Published a number of geological research papers, but Classical music has been a life-long love. I played piano and church organ as a youth, bought my first "hifi" at the age of 15 and have been upgrading ever since. I taught music courses in the Edinburgh Adult Education programme for many years, especially social history of music, illustrated studies of composers including Bach, Beethoven, Elgar, Sibelius, Richard Strauss and Mahler. Several courses attempted to introduce people to post-Impressionism musical developments, and I also ran courses on Scottish classical music history. I was particularly interested in the period instrument movement and did extensive research on this. Gave pre-concert talks for the then Scottish National Orchestra in Glasgow and Edinburgh and Festival Lectures on featured composers at the Edinburgh Festival for over 10 years. Despite the classical bias, I have wide tastes in music. Also, I enjoy painting in watercolour, pastel, acrylic and oils.
Location:
  Edinburgh, Scotland
HiFi:
  Having had to take early retirement, I sold my 2800+ CD teaching collection in 2005 to take up high-definition multichannel and begin an SACD and DVD-A collection (much smaller!). Have upgraded several components since then, and present system is approaching personal nirvana... or so I think at the moment.

Oppo BDP 103 with DSD over HDMI (suprisingly superior in SACD to a former Denon DBP-4010 UD Universal Player), Denon AVR-X4000 multichannel receiver.
Magnaplanar MG 1.7 front speakers, Magnaplanar CC3 centre, Magnaplanar wall-mounted LM1 surround speakers, Quad Lite subwoofer. I consistently use the Ultima Signature Mat when playing discs, it helps the transport recover more information and makes an astonishing improvement in definition, ambient information, instrument location and sheer musicality. Power cables - Russ Andrews PowerMax Plus, Interconnects - Chord Active Silver HDMI cables, QED optical cable. Power Conditioning - Monster power block and Russ Andrews 'The Silencer'. QED speaker cables.
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Posts:
  175

 
 
Reviews
Found: 686 show all

  July 2, 2015

Who was Ferdinand Rebay (18801953)? A Viennese composer who wrote over 400 pieces involving a guitar, yet whose splendid work is only just becoming known to concert makers and record companies. How did such a massive investment in time and energy - for an instrument he could not play - appear in a ... more
  June 24, 2015

This isn't the first time that BIS has an attrtactive front illustration which neatly sums up the title or purpose of the disc's programme. This time, fine watercolours of butterflies and caterpillars from 1700 are really about metamorphism, just what Respighi's intention was for in his orchestral ... more
  June 20, 2015

Rows of leaves decorate the front cover of this disc. They are from Ginkgo biloba, a "living fossil" which appeared first 270 million years ago, and is still present, unchanged, and not just in its Eastern native forests but also in gardens planet-wide. The designer of the disc's artwork might have ... more
  June 14, 2015

"Sing with the voice of Melody" is harmonia mundi's title for this, a disc celebrating the 10th Anniversary of their professional mixed-voice choir, Stile Antico. The titular quote is found in Rev. Olusula A. Areogun's "Following the Faith of Abraham", where he advises learning to sing as it gives ... more
  June 4, 2015

Many collectors of Bach's Sacred Music in the epic and recently completed Cantata series by Collegium Japan will be pleased to know that there is more to come. Here is the first of two discs presenting Bach's Lutheran Masses, which date between 1737 and 1748 in the composer's Leipzig period. During ... more

 
 
Latest Posts

Discussion: Respighi: Metamorphosen, Ballata delle gnomidi, Belkis - Neschling
June 26, 2015
Yes, the distant trumpet is played beautifully from the left of the orchestra and a long way back (or up!). It makes a strong contrast with the brutality of the dance. Regards, John ... more
Discussion: The Steinmeyer Organ in Nidaros Cathedral - Draagen
May 26, 2015
I've been in touch with Lawo Classics to see why this problem had emerged. The answer seems quite clear: "The CD was originally produced as CD stereo, and 200 copies were sent out to our international distributor. The recording then proved to be very popular and in demand, so we decided to re-issue it as SACD and print more copies. The CD Stereo ... more
Discussion: Rachmaninov: All-night vigil - Bruffy
April 24, 2015
Thanks for spotting typos - have corrected my review. John ... more
Discussion: The Steinmeyer Organ in Nidaros Cathedral - Draagen
April 14, 2015
Hi, I'm puzzled by the assertion that at least one copy is in stereo. Recently, I was in touch with Lawo's engineer, and was assured that the Steinmeyer Organ disk was recorded in DXD, resampled to DSD for SACD. It is a hybrid, and I can verify that, as I played separately DSD Multichannel 5.0, DSD Stereo and CD for my review. I agree that Lawo ... more
Discussion: Bach: St Matthew Passion - Jacobs
January 4, 2015
I've been through the 174 page booklet looking for photographs of session layout but there aren't any. Bach clearly wrote the St Matthew Passion "with both organs". The first of these organs was for the Great Organ at the West End of the Church. Jacobs discusses the whereabouts of Choir 2 with its organ in St Thomas. There was a second organ in the ... more