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Discussion: Handel: Messiah - Jacobs

Posts: 19
Page: 1 2 next

Post by rosenkavalier817 November 8, 2006 (1 of 19)
Can any of the three who recommended this recording tell us anything about it? How do you compare it to the other Messiahs on SACD? Many thanks!

Post by Polly Nomial November 9, 2006 (2 of 19)
rosenkavalier817 said:

Can any of the three who recommended this recording tell us anything about it? How do you compare it to the other Messiahs on SACD? Many thanks!

Will be posting reviews shortly but in summary, I would compare Jacobs to being an evangelical preacher and Harnoncourt a rather restrained vicar; I much prefer the evangelical approach in this piece. The recording itself, whilst admirably balanced & clear, is also very "vivid" and at a higher level than Harnoncourt's. I would also say that the solo singing is more consistently of a high standard (AL on Harnoncourt sounds as though she might not have been in the best of voice when they taped the Messiah for SonyBMG).

Post by jgr November 9, 2006 (3 of 19)
I spent last evening listening to this SACD - Stereo and found the performance almost 'operatic' in it's intensity. When we remember that Handel was an operatic composer par excellence, Jacobs recreates some of the sheer dramatic power of the score. My favourite RBCD is Pinnock, the bass in particular, John Tomlison, in his tone, diction and power has few rivals.

All in all an excellent recording by Jacobs and his recording team.

Linn have a new release of the Messiah coming out soon too.

Post by TT November 10, 2006 (4 of 19)
jgr said:

I spent last evening listening to this SACD - Stereo and found the performance almost 'operatic' in it's intensity. When we remember that Handel was an operatic composer par excellence, Jacobs recreates some of the sheer dramatic power of the score. My favourite RBCD is Pinnock, the bass in particular, John Tomlison, in his tone, diction and power has few rivals.

All in all an excellent recording by Jacobs and his recording team.

Linn have a new release of the Messiah coming out soon too.

i dont think this a such a good sacd. in fact i think it is the worst sacd from jacobs and his recording team. when you turn the soundlevel up, in higher frequencies you can hear some rustles and no clear sound. the performace per se is great, but i dont like this counter-tenor zazzo.

Post by jgr November 10, 2006 (5 of 19)
TT said:

i dont think this a such a good sacd. in fact i think it is the worst sacd from jacobs and his recording team. when you turn the soundlevel up, in higher frequencies you can hear some rustles and no clear sound. the performace per se is great, but i dont like this counter-tenor zazzo.

I have listened to several track again [with Stax ear speakers], I do not ear any rustles, unless the odd score page is being turned. I do not understand what you mean by 'no clear sound' - the sound stage is just as good as Jacobs 'Figaro' on my equipment. I only listen in stereo not MC.

Post by TT November 10, 2006 (6 of 19)
jgr said:

I have listened to several track again [with Stax ear speakers], I do not ear any rustles, unless the odd score page is being turned. I do not understand what you mean by 'no clear sound' - the sound stage is just as good as Jacobs 'Figaro' on my equipment. I only listen in stereo not MC.

i listened to it on my sony cd discman with sennheiser earphones in stereo and turned the soundvolume up to 93, the voices were distorted. with rustles i mean this sound you can hear when on a cd voices are distorted just as you hear it when you play a normal cd with f.e. dessay on a high volume. this sacd sounds on high volumes just as a normal cd. the figaro set does not produce this distorted voices, nor does the abbado-don giovanni set. - perhaps the high frequencies are not well recorded here?!

Post by Karlosak November 10, 2006 (7 of 19)
TT,
did you listen to this SACD only on a discman with headphones? Have you heard the SACD layer?
I don't want to question the validity of your rating, but with such a sound equipment, it's not surprising that some shortcomings appear.

Post by Windsurfer November 10, 2006 (8 of 19)
TT said:

i listened to it on my sony cd discman with sennheiser earphones in stereo

TT

Are you telling us that there is a discman that actually plays the SACD stereo layer of a hybrid SACD? What model is that and where did you obtain it?

I wonder about the quality one could expect from a discman even if it were equipped with a DSD A to D converter. Nevertheless with custom moulded in-the-ear-canal headphones, and sufficient attention to the analog stages, it conceivably could be a real winner.

Post by TT November 11, 2006 (9 of 19)
of course i listened to the sacd mc layer too. the discman plays the cd layer only, but this recording was done in dsd, so also the cd layer should be of better sound quality than a cd layer not recorded in dsd.
i dont doubt the quality of this recording, its first class. but i just want to mention, that THIS sacd produces this sound-problem (alas in the soprano part or in parts of higher frequencies) and all the others jacobs sacd dont produce such problems - although there are high frequencies too. i just wonder why.

Post by jgr November 11, 2006 (10 of 19)
TT said:

of course i listened to the sacd mc layer too. the discman plays the cd layer only, but this recording was done in dsd, so also the cd layer should be of better sound quality than a cd layer not recorded in dsd.
i dont doubt the quality of this recording, its first class. but i just want to mention, that THIS sacd produces this sound-problem (alas in the soprano part or in parts of higher frequencies) and all the others jacobs sacd dont produce such problems - although there are high frequencies too. i just wonder why.

With the various comments that there have been, I spent a couple of hours listening to this recording again, and still I cannot hear any problem with this recording, SACD or CD layer. I use Nu-vista SACD and amplifcation, a SACD player from which, in the last year or so, has more than fully justified it's hefty price tag, and some recordings that I have read comments about on this site, have played with tremendous clarity, spaciousness and just 'pure' musicality - a real joy to listen too. This Messiah is one of them.

Whilst I cannot comment on the equipment being used by other correspondents, and respect their opinion, my set up and ears are telling me something very different.

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