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Reviews: Smetana: Má vlast - Davis

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Reviews: 5

Site review by Polly Nomial November 1, 2005
Performance:   Sonics:    
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Review by Windsurfer December 15, 2005 (4 of 8 found this review helpful)
Performance:   Sonics:  
I found a great deal of pleasure in this release. While the Barbican sound is excessively dry - would it not have been wonderful to have had this recorded in the Concertgwbouw? I still sat transfixed through the entire performance. I am, unfortunately, influenced by what I know is possible and can therefor, only say it is a four star performance in four+ stars sound - but I am really glad I bought it.

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Review by theaudiohiffle September 29, 2006 (7 of 8 found this review helpful)
Performance:   Sonics:  
First Rate Ma Vlast on SACD

This is an excellent performance of Smetana's six-movement tone poem, IMO the best available today on SACD. I'm really happy to have the complete work, rather than just "the Moldau". Sir Colin's conducting is lithe and dance-like where called for; appropriately dark and dramatic when required; never lagging. The LSO plays very well for a non-Czech orchestra, and the sound is among the best I have heard on SACD albeit dry as all the LSO's seem to be. I listen in multichannel, and perhaps because of that, it doesn't sound so dry as to destroy the sense of beauty in the piece, and the orchestra sound is very naturalistic.

Highly recommended.

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Review by hiredfox February 11, 2009 (2 of 4 found this review helpful)
Performance:   Sonics:  
An excellent recording although a bit slow to warm up as evidenced by not entirely convincing individual playing in the first two of the tone poems. After that it is astonishingly atmospheric bearing in mind all the usual reservations surrounding the Barbican Hall.

Thoroughly enjoyable, thoroughly recommendable. A superb achievement by all involved in it's production and a 'must have' in any collection.

The reason they don't use Watford Town Hall surely must be cost, LSO Live is a budget label and I for one will forgive this world-class orchestra a few sins for keeping their prices on a par with naxos AND producing SACD's at that cost as well.

People may snipe at so-called production-line labels but it means that users of this site get main repertory in SACD from a (the?) leading orchestra for the cost of a couple of pints of beer..

LONG may it continue and "Thank You" LSO Live for this and many other great discs.

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Review by john563 July 6, 2009 (5 of 8 found this review helpful)
New highs for recording techniques.

By pure coincident I put on a CD called 'James Levine dirigert' from Deutsche Grammophon the night before I received the LSO disc in the mail. On the CD from DG there is a recording of Die Moldau (Vltava) from 1987 which I had forgotten all about. DG is known for good recordings also, but when I heard the new version the next day in SACD multichannel, it was almost as it is not the same music. The recording techniques have improved so much over the last few years to capture much more of the dynamics in the music, and the multichannel surround adds more space and transparency to it. If you still not have a SACD player,you proberbly don't know what you're missing. Don't hesitate to buy one - the prices are for everyone to afford now. Just a hint :-)

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