TAS Rated 4/5 Music, 4/5 Sonics in the April 2013 Issue of The Absolute Sound!
Audiophile XRCD24 Mastered from the Original Analogue EMI Master Tapes!
Can Be Enjoyed On Any CD Player!
Sir Thomas Beecham's influence on classical music during a span of several decades across the twentieth century was unparalleled.
"The first thing I noticed in the comparison was that the Hi-Q disc sounded slightly smoother, with slightly better definition and separation of instruments. Next, I noticed that the Hi-Q product was slightly firmer and clearer overall; it was slightly less veiled, as though removing a fine layer of gauze from the sonics. I also noticed that the Hi-Q sound was slightly stronger in dynamic range and transient impact, with slightly more-extended highs and slightly tauter bass." - John J. Puccio, Classical Candor
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The Norwegian Poet and Playwright Henrik Ibsen wrote Peer Gynt in 1867, but it was not until 1876 that an abridged version, with incidental music by Edvard Grieg, was produced at the Christiania Theatre. Peer Gynt, fashioned from Norwegian folkfore, is a Poetic Fantasy based on a character of the same name, who appears in the role of a great hunter, and slayer of Trolls in Absjornsen's "Norwegian Fairy Tales".
Edvard Grieg, intensely nationalistic and saturated with Norwegian folk-music, had already made his mark in the musical world with his Piano Concerto in A minor, and his delightful songs and small scale works, for which he had a particular genius. The two orchestral suites made from the Peer Gynt music soon took their place amongst the popular in the world. (Although not everyone knows the fantastic adventures of Peer Gynt, every music lover knows the music written for him.)
The first concert music to be heard by Sir Thomas Beecham was that of Edvard Grieg. He became devoted to this composer's music making his recordings unequalled. This album contains perhaps the most glorious performances of Peer Gynt music ever recorded.
"The interpretation oozes the usual Beecham charm, long one of my favorites in this music, and the sound is obviously better than ever... What Beecham brings to the table is his characteristic twinkle, lighting up the music with enchantment and charisma aplenty... Hi-Q have remastered it using JVCs XRCD24/K2 processing, a technology Ive described in the past that is meticulous, time consuming, and costly. It results in the best possible transfer of information from a master tape to a compact disc... The Hi-Q packaging, too, is first-rate. The disc comes housed in a Digipak-type container, with a cardboard cover and back, bound text and pictures in the center, the CD fastened to the inside back cover. With its glossy coating and original cover art, the package couldnt look better." - John J. Puccio, Classical Candor, January 15, 2013
"[S]limmed-down glossy cardboard boxes... exude the perfectionist nature of the product... These are thoroughly engaging readings that never seem self-consciously 'expressive.' ...The two selections with solo soprano, 'Solveig's Song' and the concluding 'Wiegenlied,' are exquisite. The chorus is naturally integrated into the sonic picture and percussion details - tambourine, triangle - are easily heard over full orchestra, as they would be in life. There's a terrific sense of all the singers and players breathing the same air on stage.. [O]rchestral color is vividly presented..." - Andrew Quint, The Absolute Sound, April 2013, 4/5 Music, 4/5 Sonics
Recorded at Studio No. 1, Abbey Road, London on 5, 18, 21 & 29 November and 1 April 1957.
Mastered from the Original Analogue EMI Master Tapes!
Superior Audiophile XRCD24
XRCD24 is a standard "Red Book" CD and can be enjoyed on any CD player
Ilse Hollweg, soprano
Beecham Choral Society
Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
Sir Thomas Beecham, Bart., C.H., conductor