Sunday, June 30, 2013

SXL 2012
Grieg Peer Gynt

Oivin Fjeldstad, conductor
The London Symphony Orchestra

Pressing:  ED1 ("Original Recording By")

Condition:  VG++


Performance:  10/10

Sound:  8/10

Comments:  Despite this being one of the early Decca's (and a first pressing for what it's worth), this is one of the outstanding issues in the Decca catalog.  It has just about everything ... a world class performance, excellent sonics, very nice cover art.  There are many dynamic moments in this piece (not the least of which is the climax to In the Hall of the Mountain King) which are quite fun to listen to on a quality stereo system.

In the book "Full Frequency Stereophonic Sound", it is given one of the highest ratings (19/20) and the authors comment:  "The test of time has proven this to be one of the great recordings of this well known masterpiece."  There is a quote from Ivan March from 1960: "'This is one of the very best of all stereo issues, the recording is most natural, the sound spreads out well and has a wide range.  The exotic percussion effects (especially the bass drum) add much to the music without being exaggerated. There is the very slightest of muzziness at the climax of the Death of Ase and again in the Arab Dance but elsewhere the sound is outstandingly good.  The L.S.O. play very sensitively under Oivin Fjelstad and the tender string tone in Solverg's song is quite lovely. In all, a highly recommendable issue - on any gramphone.'"  I think that just about sums it up!  

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