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Reviews: Mahler: Symphony No. 1 - Honeck

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Reviews: 1

Review by hiredfox November 18, 2011 (11 of 12 found this review helpful)
Performance:   Sonics:
With the benefit of DSD recording Exton have not always delivered the goods in recording quality, often delighting their fans but all too frequently disappointing more impartial listeners. Very much the curate's egg.

With this new Mahler recording they have come up trumps with a recording of rare quality that will satisfy even their most ardent critics. It is superb in every respect, in stereo essentially flawless and very much state-of-the-art.

Even acknowledging the superb acoustics of The Heinz Hall this recording is rather special and will still astonish many with it's superbly accurate tonal and spatial realism of this live recording. It is such a complete transformation in form that this listener would not be surprised at the involvement of the Sound Mirror team, although there is no evidence of that presented in the booklet - then again my Japanese leaves rather a lot to be desired. The notes say manufactured and mastered in Japan but is silent on recording detail.

The performance is simply electric, Honeck seemingly having cracked Mahler from the get-go, all of the drama, emotion and tension is satisfyingly measured throughout. With very fine support indeed from the Pittsburgh players Honeck has very clearly made his mark in the sand. For those who think they have collected enough Mahler to last their lifetimes, I say "Think again". This promises to be one of the very best cycles yet and this listener for one cannot wait for the next instalments...

...and "Yes" it is stereo only and "Yes" it does have very much appreciated applause (no shouters) and "Yes" that HQ sticker on the cover means what it says.

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