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  71 094
  Berlioz: Symphonie Fantastique - Bertini
  Berlioz: Symphonie Fantastique, Romantic Carnival Overture Op. 9, Benvenuto Cellini (overture)

Cologne Radio Symphony Orchestra
Gary Bertini (conductor)
Track listing:
  Classical - Orchestral
Recording type:
Recording info:

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Reviews: 2

Site review by Polly Nomial September 10, 2006
Performance:   Sonics:  
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Review by hiredfox January 25, 2009 (6 of 7 found this review helpful)
Performance:   Sonics:  
I found this recording at my local record store, discounted in a sale. I would not have bought it otherwise in view of the very negative review posted on here recently.

The disc is problematic. Technically it is not one of the best sounding SACD's available often sounding harsh and brittle. In view of the recording dates for the various pieces it may be concluded that the original was recorded as a PCM disc, although the SACD does not say so; clearly indicating a DSD recording. Whether the new version came from a PCM or even original digital tapes, the restricted band-width and dynamic range issues emerge so that although SACD confers some volume to the sound field it never really convinces.

This is the not the best or worst Symphonie Fantastique available. Some of the playing in the early movements is ragged and too long drawn out, overall a very laid back interpretation which is perhaps a reflection of Bertini's age at recording. The march to the Scaffold has some drama and more committed playing but lacks the elemental tension that causes the hairs on your neck to stand up. The final movement is quixotic! I couldn't quite make sense of it.

On the other hand the Carnival Romaine is utterly beguiling, beautifully played and wonderfully taught so all is not lost.

I guess this is really an historic release.

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Works: 3  

Hector Berlioz - Grande ouverture de Benvenuto Cellini, H 76B
Hector Berlioz - Le carnaval Romain: ouverture caractéristique, H 95
Hector Berlioz - Symphonie fantastique, H 48