Aureole etc.




Golden Age singers

Nimbus on-line




Faure songs
Charlotte de Rothschild (soprano);

  Founder: Len Mullenger
Classical Editor: Rob Barnett


Some items
to consider

 


Enjoy the Gothenburg Symphony Orchestra wherever you are. App available for iOS and Android


Tudor 7188


Vaughan Williams Symphony 3 etc.


Lyrita New Recording


Lyrita Premiere Recordings

Lyrita 4CDs £16 incl.postage

Lyrita 4CDs £16 incl.postage


Decca Phase 4 - 40CDs


Judith Bailey, George Lloyd


BAX Orchestral pieces


CASKEN Violin Concerto

Schumann Symphonies Rattle


Complete Brahms
Bargain price

 

 

 

 

REVIEW
BARGAIN OF THE MONTH



Gerard Hoffnung CDs

Advertising on
Musicweb


Donate and get a free CD

New Releases

Naxos Classical

Hyperion

Musicweb sells the following labels
Acte Préalable
Alto
Arcodiva
Atoll
CDAccord
Cameo Classics
Centaur
Hallé
Hortus
Lyrita
Nimbus
Northern Flowers
Redcliffe
Sheva
Talent
Toccata Classics


Follow us on Twitter

Subscribe to our free weekly review listing
sample
 

alternatively
CD: AmazonUK AmazonUS

Franz SCHUBERT (1797-1828)
Die schöne Müllerin D795 (1823)
Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau (baritone); Gerald Moore (piano)
rec. 2-4 December, 1961, Gemeindehaus, Berlin-Zehlenderf, Germany.
German texts and English and French translations included on a PDF file
EMI CLASSICS 9659402 [62:30]

Experience Classicsonline


It seems to be almost a sin that we don’t already have a review of this recording - in one of its previous incarnations - here on MusicWeb International. This is arguably the best recording of this work, and one of the finest of Fischer-Dieskau’s many recordings. I’ve always had a weakness for this work, compared to, say, Winterreise, because of the many beautiful melodies and the overall tone of the work. Sure, it’s a typically German-romantic story of love, loss and suicide, but in spite of this, it remains an immensely attractive group of songs.
 
This version, unlike most recordings, begins with Der Dichter, Als Prolog (The Poet’s Prologue), a spoken text that starts as follows:
 
“Fair ladies, wise gentlemen,
and all who enjoy a good spectacle,
I invite you to a brand-new entertainment
in an absolutely brand-new style.
Simply fashioned, artlessly arranged,
adorned with noble German simplicity,
as jaunty as a lad with his lover’s bouquet;
and there’s also a little pious humility for the audience.
For me that’s enough of a recommendation; if you too like the sound of it, then come in.”
 
It also ends with Epilog, another spoken text summing up the work:
 
“So all that remains for me to do
is to end by wishing you good night.
And if you wish to dream a light dream,
when you shut your eyes for a long night’s sleep,
think of the mill-wheel and the foaming water
until your head whirls;
and if you lead a maiden by the hand,
ask for a pledge of love in parting,
and if today she gives you what she has often denied,
think faithfully of the faithful miller.
At every squeeze of the hand, at every kiss,
at every passionate surge of the heart,
grant him love for his brief sorrow,
grant him lasting bliss in your hearts.”
 
These two texts frame the story quite well, and Fischer-Dieskau reads them in dramatic style to set the tone at the beginning, then sum up the work at the end. Of the recordings I know only this one, and Ian Bostridge’s recording for Hyperion, contain these texts. (Bostridge’s actually contains other poems interspersed with the music as well, read by Fischer-Dieskau.) You may not want to listen to them each time you listen to the work, but it’s important to be aware of them.
 
Fischer-Dieskau was in his prime in 1961, when this was recorded, and this is arguably his finest period. While he may have had greater experience and mastery in the 1970s, when he recorded all of Schubert’s lieder for male voice for DG, the EMI recordings of this era show a singer full of exuberance and energy, forging his style, and refining his technique. When I hear Fischer-Dieskau sing Ungeduld, and particularly the line, “Dein ist mein Herz”, I cannot helped but be moved by the sincerity in his singing. His purity of tone comes through in every song, from the dainty Des Müllers Blumen to the subtle, pretty Pause, where his flexibility highlights the words, or in the rapid, almost pizzicato Der Jäger, where the singer changes from his wondrous pleasure to anger. His wears his emotion on his sleeve in Die liebe Farbe, when he sings of digging his grave in the turf, and the closing Des Baches Wiegenlied is intensely moving.
 
The sound of this recording is good but not great. Even after a re-mastering in 1997 (this version is just a new release of that same disc in a different package and with a different cover), there is a slightly muffled effect overall, with the piano sounding especially weak in the background. The sound-space has Fischer-Dieskau to the right of centre and the piano to the left, which works well on speakers, but not so well on headphones. The sound volume is surprisingly low compared to other recordings, and some of the pauses between songs seem just a bit short.
 
While I have a dozen recordings of this song-cycle, this is the one I return to most often. It’s great to see it put in the forefront again in EMI’s new EMI Masters series, and I hope that those who don’t know this work will discover it through this disc.
 
Kirk McElhearn 

 

 

 

 


 


EXPLORE MUSICWEB INTERNATIONAL

Making a Donation to MusicWeb

Writing CD reviews for MWI

About MWI
Who we are, where we have come from and how we do it.

Site Map

How to find a review

How to find articles on MusicWeb
Listed in date order

Review Indexes
   By Label
      Select a label and all reviews are listed in Catalogue order
   By Masterwork
            Links from composer names (eg Sibelius) are to resource pages with links to the review indexes for the individual works as well as other resources.

Themed Review pages

Jazz reviews

 

Discographies
   Composer
      Composer surveys
   National
      Unique to MusicWeb -
a comprehensive listing of all LP and CD recordings of given works
.
Prepared by Michael Herman

The Collector’s Guide to Gramophone Company Record Labels 1898 - 1925
Howard Friedman

Book Reviews

Complete Books
We have a number of out of print complete books on-line

Interviews
With Composers, Conductors, Singers, Instumentalists and others
Includes those on the Seen and Heard site

Nostalgia

Nostalgia CD reviews

Records Of The Year
Each reviewer is given the opportunity to select the best of the releases

Monthly Best Buys
Recordings of the Month and Bargains of the Month

Comment
Arthur Butterworth Writes

An occasional column

Phil Scowcroft's Garlands
British Light Music articles

Classical blogs
A listing of Classical Music Blogs external to MusicWeb International

Reviewers Logs
What they have been listening to for pleasure

Announcements

 

Community
Bulletin Board

Give your opinions or seek answers

Reviewers
Pat and present

Helpers invited!

Resources
How Did I Miss That?

Currently suspended but there are a lot there with sound clips


Composer Resources

British Composers

British Light Music Composers

Other composers

Film Music (Archive)
Film Music on the Web (Closed in December 2006)

Programme Notes
For concert organizers

External sites
British Music Society
The BBC Proms
Orchestra Sites
Recording Companies & Retailers
Online Music
Agents & Marketing
Publishers
Other links
Newsgroups
Web News sites etc

PotPourri
A pot-pourri of articles

MW Listening Room
MW Office

Advice to Windows Vista users  
Questionnaire    
Site History  
What they say about us
What we say about us!
Where to get help on the Internet
CD orders By Special Request
Graphics archive
Currency Converter
Dictionary
Magazines
Newsfeed  
Web Ring
Translation Service

Rules for potential reviewers :-)
Do Not Go Here!
April Fools






Untitled Document


Reviews from previous months
Join the mailing list and receive a hyperlinked weekly update on the discs reviewed. details
We welcome feedback on our reviews. Please use the Bulletin Board
Please paste in the first line of your comments the URL of the review to which you refer.