This is a Minty looking Shaded Dog RCA Living Stereo LP with Very Little Sign of Play (VLSOP). The record plays about Mint Minus, very quiet for these old Shaded Dogs. Although this is not the best copy we’ve ever played, on this copy you still get some of the most beautiful string tone you’ve ever heard, courtesy of the Decca engineers who recorded this music. The performances of these shorter, lighter, more entertaining pieces are excellent as well, some of the best we’ve come across.
“Raymond Agoult conducts the New Symphony Orchestra of London performing selections by: von Suppé, Louis Joseph Ferdinand Hérold, Adolphe Charles Adam, and Daniel François Espirt Auber. Glorious Kingsway Hall recording.”(more…)
This is a SUPERB SOUNDING Columbia Masterworks LP of favorite overtures, energetically conducted by Leonard Bernstein. It’s exceedingly rare to find a Columbia pressing with sound like this: there’s tons of tubey magic; the string tone is surprisingly good; there’s huge amounts of depth and the overall presentation is tonally rich, sweet, and correct in the best golden age tradition.
There’s a bit of compression in the loudest passages, especially on side two. But this is a small price to pay for an otherwise wonderful sounding, beautifully mastered and pressed Columbia 360 Label LP.
Carl Stern plays the cello solo on the piece by Suppe and the sound is to die for, every bit as good as the famous Mercurys and RCAs we know so well. Truth be told, the quieter passages on this record are the most wonderful. The sense of real musicians playing in space is palpable, especially on side one.
The other pieces on this record are Zampa Overture, Mignon Overture, Raymond Overture and Poet and Peasant Overture.
One of the better Speakers Corner Deccas. We haven’t played a copy of this record in years, but back in the day we liked it, so let’s call it a “B” with the caveat that the older the review, the more likely we are to have changed our minds.
This is a very early stereo recording, which means it is spacious and open, with little spotlighting. But what is especially memorable is the choice of material, with a few of the more obscure overtures really brought to life here, such as the opening piece by Adam on side one: Si j’etais roi. Although not long, every second is packed with color and energy, exactly what a good overture needs. And it even has a glockenspiel! How can you go wrong?