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Discussion: Tchaikovsky: Symphony No. 4, Romeo & Juliet - Pletnev

Posts: 28
Page: 1 2 3 next

Post by tailspn March 5, 2011 (1 of 28)
I'm a fan of Pentatone Polyhymnia SACDs for their unfailing correct implementation of the ITU MCH 5.0 recording technique. They pioneered and perfected it, and more importantly to me, consistently deliver spaciously stable and accurate MCH imaging.

But this SACD is something else. It has the MCH sonics close to that of a unprocessed control room monitor mix. Great dynamics, quickness and realism. And best of all, to me, the 4th has the fastest, most frenetic schizophrenic final few bars that of any performance I've ever heard. I thought I had heard it all with Eschenbach and the Philadelphia Orchestra performance at the Proms a few years ago. But Pletnev and the RNO have that beat by a mile. Dial up your pace maker for this one. Highly recommended!

Tom

Post by flyingdutchman March 6, 2011 (2 of 28)
tailspn said:

I'm a fan of Pentatone Polyhymnia SACDs for their unfailing correct implementation of the ITU MCH 5.0 recording technique. They pioneered and perfected it, and more importantly to me, consistently deliver spaciously stable and accurate MCH imaging.

But this SACD is something else. It has the MCH sonics close to that of a unprocessed control room monitor mix. Great dynamics, quickness and realism. And best of all, to me, the 4th has the fastest, most frenetic schizophrenic final few bars that of any performance I've ever heard. I thought I had heard it all with Eschenbach and the Philadelphia Orchestra performance at the Proms a few years ago. But Pletnev and the RNO have that beat by a mile. Dial up your pace maker for this one. Highly recommended!

Tom

Do I bite on this one, though? I feel as if Pletnev has disappointed so many times in this repertoire. The Virgin 6th was great and led me to believe great things would come. I did enjoy the DG Manfred, but the DG set of the numbered symphonies was so terrible and it all had to do with Pletnev's emotionless direction.

Post by chenzl March 6, 2011 (3 of 28)
tailspn said:

I'm a fan of Pentatone Polyhymnia SACDs for their unfailing correct implementation of the ITU MCH 5.0 recording technique. They pioneered and perfected it, and more importantly to me, consistently deliver spaciously stable and accurate MCH imaging.

But this SACD is something else. It has the MCH sonics close to that of a unprocessed control room monitor mix. Great dynamics, quickness and realism. And best of all, to me, the 4th has the fastest, most frenetic schizophrenic final few bars that of any performance I've ever heard. I thought I had heard it all with Eschenbach and the Philadelphia Orchestra performance at the Proms a few years ago. But Pletnev and the RNO have that beat by a mile. Dial up your pace maker for this one. Highly recommended!

Tom

Is the impact of the bass drum in the opening bars of the 1st movement as solid as the legendary Maazel/Cleveland's version on Telarc?

Post by Vaan March 6, 2011 (4 of 28)
There is no bass drum in the opening of the first movement.

Post by tailspn March 6, 2011 (5 of 28)
chenzl said:

Is the impact of the bass drum in the opening bars of the 1st movement as solid as the legendary Maazel/Cleveland's version on Telarc?

No, if we're referring to the same spot. I'm not familiar with the Telarc, but there is no bass drum where you described in this Pletnev. It's a tympani, and sounds as such. Same with the Eschenbach Philadelphia Orchestra SACD. Maazel may have altered the score to include a bass drum, for the effect, or Telarc exaggerated the tymp.

Post by jdaniel March 6, 2011 (6 of 28)
flyingdutchman said:

Do I bite on this one, though? I feel as if Pletnev has disappointed so many times in this repertoire. The Virgin 6th was great and led me to believe great things would come. I did enjoy the DG Manfred, but the DG set of the numbered symphonies was so terrible and it all had to do with Pletnev's emotionless direction.

Same concern here, though the 4th doesn't have the potentially indulgent material of the 5th and 6th, so it may stand Pletnev's "thin-lipped" approach.

The short R & J sample on Amazon sounds absurdly mannered. I despise this new fashion.

Post by hiredfox March 7, 2011 (7 of 28)
tailspn said:

I'm a fan of Pentatone Polyhymnia SACDs for their unfailing correct implementation of the ITU MCH 5.0 recording technique. They pioneered and perfected it, and more importantly to me, consistently deliver spaciously stable and accurate MCH imaging.

But this SACD is something else. It has the MCH sonics close to that of a unprocessed control room monitor mix. Great dynamics, quickness and realism. And best of all, to me, the 4th has the fastest, most frenetic schizophrenic final few bars that of any performance I've ever heard. I thought I had heard it all with Eschenbach and the Philadelphia Orchestra performance at the Proms a few years ago. But Pletnev and the RNO have that beat by a mile. Dial up your pace maker for this one. Highly recommended!

Tom

Thanks for the heads-up Tom. I feel Pentatone Classics do their best to excel in stereo recording quality as well as 5-channel so after your comments, can't wait for this disc to arrive.

The justly famous live Pletnev Tchaikovsky 5 on Philips back in the mid-90's remains one of the best performed and recorded pieces in any format so the potential for outstanding performance is always there with this combo.

Let's hope he is over the distracting setbacks he faced last year.

Post by hiredfox March 7, 2011 (8 of 28)
jdaniel said:

Same concern here, though the 4th doesn't have the potentially indulgent material of the 5th and 6th, so it may stand Pletnev's "thin-lipped" approach.

The short R & J sample on Amazon sounds absurdly mannered. I despise this new fashion.

'Meat & Poison' of course but what do you do as a conductor to bring fresh insight to a well-worn score? Isn't it always a likely outcome "damned if you do, damned if you don't?"

Post by GROOT GELUID March 7, 2011 (9 of 28)
tailspn said:

I'm a fan of Pentatone Polyhymnia SACDs for their unfailing correct implementation of the ITU MCH 5.0 recording technique. They pioneered and perfected it, and more importantly to me, consistently deliver spaciously stable and accurate MCH imaging.
......

Tom

Just to give some background on this (and the still to be released 5th and 6th, and still to be recorded 1st, 2nd and 3rd, with fillers) recording. These are session recordings made in DZZ studio Moscow, where Polyhymnia is now steadily recording with our own recording equipment, for over the last 8 years, for Pentatone with the RNO and Bolshoi and for Caro Mitis, with different ensembles and artists. It is really a special place, with a wonderful acoustic, that allows for a simple microphone set up, and getting great results from the smallest chamber music right up to big operatic stuff. I know of no other place where that is possible.

Last years sessions with the RNO and Maestro Pletnev, treated us to both a conductor and orchestra that were totally at one and completely prepared. There was a 'naturalness' to the performing right from the go start, and without any delay(nor for microphone set up changes or rehearsing) we could start straight away with long performing takes. Musical interpretation is always appreciated in a subjective way, but how well and with what conviction the RNO and Pletnev perform these Tchaikovsky masterpieces is, in my opinion, hard to ignore.

It is interesting to read about the 'bass drum sound' of Telarc. Bass drum sound in the first place depends on the orchestra/conductor, the instrument, the player, the venue and then, of course, also the recording technique. I am sure that with the right playback equipment the bass drum sound on this recording can be spectacular, really low and with big percussive impact. Places that I know really favour a great bass drum sound are the Mariinksy Theatre and the Concertgebouw. Also note that there are great differences in the kind of bass drum, from the very big one sided skinned to smaller double sided skinned instruments, all with very different sound character.

Post by flyingdutchman March 7, 2011 (10 of 28)
hiredfox said:

Thanks for the heads-up Tom. I feel Pentatone Classics do their best to excel in stereo recording quality as well as 5-channel so after your comments, can't wait for this disc to arrive.

The justly famous live Pletnev Tchaikovsky 5 on Philips back in the mid-90's remains one of the best performed and recorded pieces in any format so the potential for outstanding performance is always there with this combo.

Let's hope he is over the distracting setbacks he faced last year.

Since when did Pletnev do a Tchaikovsky for Philips? You're thinking Gergiev.

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