Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Just in ...

The latest to land on my CD playlist at the office ... Mozart's Symphonies 28-41, with the  Staatskapelle Dresden conducted by Sir Colin Davis, in a nice boxed set from Decca.  These recordings were originally recorded and released between 1982 and 1991 (I guess around the same time that Harnoncourt recorded his series of Mozart's late symphonies with the Royal Concertgebouw) and were compiled in this collection in 2007.  As you can tell from my blog last month on Klemperer, I've been in a bit of a Mozart symphony phase, so I couldn't resist to check this reissue out when David Hurwitz recently cited these recordings as a reference on Classicstoday.com. 

Will keep you posted on how these sound ...

Monday, June 25, 2012

Who's been frequenting my playlist for the last couple of weeks?

Ivan Fischer and the Budapest Festival Orchestra!

Yes, indeed.  I just recently picked up several of their releases on the Channel Classics label, including award winning recordings of Mahler's 2nd symphony, Rachmaninov's 2nd symphony, Brahms' 1st, Dvorak's 7th, Beethoven's 7th, and Beethoven's 4th and 6th.  I'm pleased to say that I've really enjoyed these performances from a wonderful orchestra under the direction of an inspired conductor.  They all benefit from excellent recording engineering, and while I unfortunately have not had the setup to listen to the SACDs in multi-channel surround sound, the stereo 2-channel versions are a real pleasure to listen to, either in the comfort of my home or in the car on my drive to work.  Their most recent recording released is an album of Stravinsky, including the Rite of Spring and the Firebird, which is a lot of fun.  I'm a big fan of the Rite of Spring and am always open to hearing a new interpretation.  Although this one didn't quite grip me viscerally as did the release by Andrew Litton and the Bergen Philharmonic from last year, it is growing on me.

Stephane Deneve's Debussy album named a Recording of the Month!

Musicweb International just listed Stephane Deneve and the Royal Scottish National Orchestra's latest recording on the Chandos label, a double SACD set of Debussy orchestral works, as a recording of the month!  In addition to this, David Hurwitz of Classicstoday.com gave it a 10/10 rating. 

This is totally deserved, in my opinion.  These are beautiful performances in wonderfully recorded sound (and I'm only listening to this in two channel stereo ... I'd love to be able to hear it in multichannel), and this CD will most likely be on my top 10 list for the year.  In my opinion, this album may be on its way to attaining reference status, alongside such great Debussy interpreters as Ernest Ansermet, Paul Paray, Charles Munch, Jean Martinon, and Jean Martinon.