- This superb classical release makes its Hot Stamper debut here with outstanding Double Plus (A++) sound or BETTER throughout
- The orchestra is big, rich and tubey here, yet the dynamics and transparency are first rate
- Some old record collectors (like me) say classical recording quality ain’t what it used to be – here’s all the proof anyone with two working ears and top quality audiophile equipment needs to make the case
Sonic Grade: B
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. Not sure if we would still agree with what we wrote back in the ’90s when this record came out, but here it is anyway.
One of the best Deccas — superb sound and music that belongs in your life!
This performance also includes Franck’s “Variations Symphoniques” and Litolff”s “Scherzo from Concerto Symphonique, Op. 102”.
ASD 3093. EMI Postage Stamp Label LP with DEMO QUALITY SOUND and a performance to match! I can’t remember when I’ve enjoyed these pieces more.
[This was written long ago, and in the meantime we have heard many amazing recordings of excellent performances of these works. Please visit the site to see them.]
The energy of the playing complements the dynamic, powerful and rich sound. A great EMI.
Recorded by the Two Christophers, this record features selections from Tchaikovsky and Rimsky-Korsakov.
CS 6055. Demo quality. Incredible sound. The piano is heard surrounded by the hall. This is much more natural than the usual spotlight. Ferocious brass. I love it. Blueback pressing.
- As good as the Mendelssohn is on side one – with Double Plus (A++) sound it would have to be excellent indeed – the crowning glory of this disc is the Scottish Fantasy on side two
- It’s some of the best sound we have ever heard for the work, right up there with our longtime favorite, the Heifetz on Living Stereo (LSC 2603)
- One of the truly great 1959 All Tube Kenneth Wilkinson “Decca Tree” recordings in Kingsway Hall, captured faithfully in all its beauty on this very disc
- Referring to the Mendelssohn, Gramophon noted: “[Campoli’s] virtuosity in the finale are as self-evident as is the excellence of the accompaniment under Sir Adrian Boult. There are many felicitous touches and the distinguished soloist plays magnificently throughout.”
If you want an outstanding Mendelssohn Violin Concerto and an out of this world Scottish Fantasy, this is the copy for you!
The Bruch brings to mind some of Tchaikovsky’s works. It’s so sweet and melodic, it completely draws you into its world of sound. This is a work of unsurpassed beauty, music that belongs in any serious music collection.
As we noted above, Kenneth Wilkinson engineered in the legendary Kingsway Hall. There is a richness to the sound of the strings that is exceptional, yet clarity and transparency are not sacrificed in the least.
It’s practically impossible to hear that kind of string sound on any recording made in the last thirty years (and this of course includes practically everything pressed on Heavy Vinyl). It may be a lost art but as long as we have these wonderful vintage pressings to play it’s an art that is not being lost on us.
It’s also as wide, deep and three-dimensional as any, which is, of course, all to the good, but what makes the sound of these recordings so special is the timbral accuracy of the instruments in every section.
I don’t think the Decca engineers could have cut this record any better — it has all the orchestral magic one could ask for, as well as the resolving power, clarity and presence that are missing from so many other vintage Golden Age records.
This is the kind of record that will make you want to take all your heavy vinyl classical pressings and put them in storage. They cannot begin to sound the way this record sounds. (Before you put them in storage or on Ebay please play them against this pressing so that you can be confident in your decision to rid yourself of their unforgivable mediocrity.) (more…)
This 1967 recording of the work has one very special quality that’s not often heard on classical vinyl — THE FEEL OF LIVE MUSIC. This is also something you will not often hear us say about EMI recordings from the late ’60s and ’70s. (Unlike HP and most audiophiles in the ’70s, we find EMI’s recordings leave a lot to be desired, lacking in warmth, with a thin, sour, overly clear presentation. Great for muddy equipment but bad news on higher resolution modern rigs.)
Super Hot Stampers on both sides means this Planets can take on any pressing you have of the piece and show you what you’ve been missing out on all these years.
(There are a LOT of bad Planets out there. With its monstrously large orchestra and chorus, it’s not an easy work to capture on tape.) (more…)
- This stunning London Blueback LP presents the complete Mendelssohn Violin Concerto with the best sound we have ever heard for the work
- Side one here earned a Shootout Winning Triple Plus (A+++) sonic grade, beating all comers for sound, including the performances by Heifetz, Ricci, Rybar and others that’s we’ve been enamored with in the past
- The glorious sound of one of the truly great 1959 All Tube Kenneth Wilkinson “Decca Tree” recordings in Kingsway Hall is captured faithfully in all its beauty on this very disc
- “[Campoli’s] virtuosity in the finale are as self-evident as is the excellence of the accompaniment under Sir Adrian Boult. There are many felicitous touches and the distinguished soloist plays magnificently throughout.”
As can be seen from the grades above, The Scottish Fantasy on side two was not remotely as good sounding as the Mendelssohn on side one. The best pressings for that work came on the London Stereo Treasury label surprisingly enough. As good as those later British pressings were, the best of which earned the full Three Pluses for its side two, none of them had quite the magic of the Mendelssohn found here. (more…)