Perhaps This Explains Why This Decca Reissue Sounds So Good

The Music of Claude Debussy Available Now

Reviews and Commentaries for The Music of Claude Debussy

This Decca reissue is spacious, open, transparent, rich and sweet. James Lock was the engineer for these sessions from 1955 to 1962 in Geneva’s glorious sounding Victoria Hall, and his work here is superb in all respects.

It’s yet another remarkable disc from the Golden Age of Vacuum Tube Recording, with the added benefit of mastering using the more modern cutting equipment of the ’70s, 1972 to be exact.

We are of course here referring to the good modern mastering of 40+ years ago, not the mediocre-at-best modern mastering of today.

The combination of old and new works wonders on this title as you will surely hear for yourself on both of these superb sides.

We were impressed with the fact that it excelled in so many areas of reproduction. The illusion of disappearing speakers is one of the more attractive aspects of the sound here, pulling the listener into the space of the concert hall in an especially engrossing way.

Thread It Up and Just Hit Play Already

What might be seen as odd — odd to some audiophiles but not to us — was how rich and Tubey Magical the reissue can be on the best copies.

This leads me to think that most of the natural, full-bodied, smooth, sweet sound of the album is on the tape, and that all one has to do to get that vintage sound on to a record is simply to thread up the master on a good machine and hit play.

The fact that nobody seems to be able to make an especially good sounding record these days makes clear that in fact I’m wrong to think that this approach would work. It seems to me that somebody should be able to figure out how to do it. In our experience that is simply not the case today, and has not been for many years.

Old Tapes, New Tapes

The master tapes were about fifteen years old when this record was mastered.

Compare that to a current cutting which would be made from approximately fifty year old tapes.

Perhaps that explains it.

Or maybe it doesn’t.

Either way it’s pure speculation.

We don’t really feel the need to have reasons for why the records sound the way they do.

We hear the differences, and more importantly our customers hear the differences, and what else could possibly matter.


FURTHER READING

Advice – What to Listen For on Classical Records

Classical – “Sleeper” Top Quality Recordings

Classical – Best Performances with Top Quality Sound

Classical – Demo Disc Quality Recordings

Well Recorded Classical Albums – The Core Collection

Well Recorded Classical Albums from The Core Collection Available Now

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