Mahler magic and much more! Jun 29 by Bill Dodd in Dodd's DSD Discoveries

(The following albums are available with 15% discount using code: DODD19. The offer is valid on the below selection of DSD albums, through July 9, 2017.  Mahler Symphony No.3 is excluded from the promotion due to legal reasons.)

 

Have you heard about it yet? Have you read about it? Ivan Fischer’s new release of Mahler’s Symphony No. 3 is garnering raves from everywhere. This is one of the high points of his superb on-going survey of Mahler symphonies. Yes, there are LOTS of fine recordings of this symphony, but this is one you really must hear. It leaves me speechless. What more can I say!


38817

 

Mahler Symphony No. 3

 

Budapest Festival Orchestra
Iván Fischer, conductor

DSD 64, 128, 256fs
Stereo, Multi

 

Speaking of Mahler, I’ve always enjoyed Mahler’s arrangement of Schubert’s String Quartet #14 in D Minor (Death and the Maiden) more than the original. I felt that the larger string orchestra was more able to express mood and power then a quartet. Well, a new release from The Dragon Quartet, featuring the amazing violinist Ning Feng, has won me over! This Death and the Maiden in it’s original form grabbed me from the first few notes and held me suspended throughout the four movements. The artistry is amazing, and the quartet plays as one.

Also included is Dvorak’s Quartet #12 in F Major (American). Dvorak wrote it in three days while visiting Spillville, Iowa– a community of Bohemian emigrants. Some feel the melodies represent American folk music, others say there is more of a Bohemian feel. I don’t think it matters. It’s lovely. The Dragon Quartet was beautifully recorded in the Dutch Reformed Church in Renswoude, The Netherlands, which offers a perfect atmosphere. Tuneful, delightful— everything you could want from Dvorak.

Listen to the samples:


39417

Dvorák:
String Quartet op.96 ‘American’
Schubert:
String Quartet D.810 ‘Death and the Maiden’

Dragon Quartet

DSD 64, 128, 256fs
Stereo, Multi

 

A very fine version of the Mahler arrangement is also available here:


LSO0786

Schubert (arr. Mahler):
Death and the Maiden
Shostakovich (orch. Barshai):
Chamber Symphony in C minor

London Symphony Orchestra
Roman Simovic
, conductor

DSD 64fs
Stereo, Multi

 

And if you’d like to hear Ning Feng’s violin catch fire with some romantic favorites– and fabulous renditions of two concertos:

 


37916

Apasionado
Lalo, Sarasate, Ravel, Waxman

Ning Feng, violin
Orquesta Sinfónica del Principado de Asturias
Rossen Milanov, conductor
DSD 64fs
Stereo, Multi

 

 


34913

Bruch: Scottish Fantasy
Tchaikovsky: Violin Concerto in D

Ning Feng, violin
Deutsches Symphonie-Orchester Berlin
Yang Yang, conductor

DSD 64fs
Stereo, Multi

 

Ernest Ansermet (1883-1969) was the founder and long-tern conductor of the Orchestre de la Suisse Romande, and his legacy was immense. His recordings are prized by collectors and audio fans who’ve been around for … a while. He premiered many important works and was well known for his Debussy, Stravinsky, Ravel, Rimsky-Korsakov, and others. His Decca recordings are still famous for their superior recording quality. I’ve discovered four albums featuring the Suisse Romande Orchestra conducted by the amazing young Kazuki Yamada. I think that Yamada must be channeling Ansermet, because the results are amazing.

A couple of years back there was an album of wonderful music from Richard Strauss, Korngold, Liszt, Schreker, and Busoni. Last year there was his album of works by Roussel, Debussy, and Poulenc. Then another entitled Russian Dances with music from Tchaikovsky, Glazunov, Shostakovich, and Stravinsky. These are performances which would have made the founder quite proud, with recording quality that recalls, and certainly exceeds those famous older Decca recordings.

And now Yamada again invites comparisons to more of Ansermet’s famous recordings with an album of works by Manuel de Falla: Nights In the Gardens of Spain, and The Three Cornered Hat. Mari Kodama is the pianist in the first, Sophie Harmsen is the mezzo-soprano in the second work and both are excellent.

There was magic in those old Ansermet- Suisse Romande recordings. If you loved them as much as I do these new ones from Yamada and the band are absolutely worthy successors with superior recording quality. I’ll be waiting impatiently for Yamada’s take on Rimsky, Stravinsky, Prokofiev, and Ravel.


PTC5186518


Strauss, Liszt, Korngold
Busoni, Schreker

Orchestre de la Suisse Romande
Kazuki Yamada, conductor

DSD 64fs
Stereo, Multi

 

 


PTC5186558

Roussel: Bacchus et Ariane
Debussy: Six égraphes antiques
Poulenc: Les Biches

Orchestre de la Suisse Romande
Kazuki Yamada, conductor

DSD 64fs
Stereo, Multi

 

 


PTC5186557

Russian Dances
Tchaikovsky, Glazunov,
Shostakovich, Stravinsky

Orchestre de la Suisse Romande
Kazuki Yamada, conductor

DSD 64fs
Stereo, Multi

 

 


PTC5186598

De Falla:
Noches en Los Jardines de Espana
El Sombrero de Tres Picos


Orchestre de la Suisse Romande
Kazuki Yamada, conductor

DSD 64fs
Stereo, Multi

 

 

OK… a mystery post.   I don’t want you to read about this. I don’t want you to be influenced by what anybody thinks about the pianist or his style.   Listen as if you were hearing these for the first time. These recordings will probably not replace your favorites, but… Oh, just listen and make up your own mind:

 


HDTTHSV1

The Himalaya Sessions vol. 1
Pianis Lost: 
Excesses and Excuses

Peter Halstead

DSD 64fs
Stereo, Multi

Bill Dodd

Bill Dodd

Bill Dodd is a retired radio broadcaster who was born and raised near San Francisco, but now lives in the USA’s Pacific Northwest. “Discovery is important to me. Along with finding an exciting new viewpoint of a favorite work, I really love discovering music and composers I haven’t heard before, or haven’t been able to get close to in the past.”

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