£16 post free World-wide

 


555 sonatas 9Cds mp3 files
Only £22


 


Benjamin: Written on Skin £16

Search
What's New
Previous CDs
Concerts
Jazz
Nostalgia
Composers
Resources
Announce
Labels index


Every day we post 10 new Classical CD and DVD reviews. A free weekly summary is available by e-mail. MusicWeb is not a subscription site. To keep it free please purchase discs through our links.

  Classical Editor Rob Barnett    



Some items
to consider


BRAHMS Complete Edition
58CD £95.22


Shostakovich 14 Petrenko


Rachmaninov #3
Prokofiev #2

 


Dunedin Consort

Peter Grimes

Hymn of Jesus: Sea Drift

Complete Mozart Edition
Mozart complete edition

Vaughan Williams Symphonies 5 & 8 £11

Weiner, Klepper, Bloch, Schulhoff £12 post free


Available again

REVIEW



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
CDAccord
Centaur
Hallé
Hortus
Lyrita
Nimbus
Northern Flowers
Redcliffe
Sheva
Talent
Toccata Classics


Follow us on Twitter

Subscribe to our free weekly newsletter
 

 

Availability
CD and Download: Pristine Classical

Pyotr Ilyich TCHAIKOVSKY (1840-1893)
Symphony No 6 in B minor, Pathétique Op. 74 [43:02]
Maurice RAVEL (1875-1937)
Pavane pour une Infante Défunte
[6:21]
Gioachino ROSSINI (1792-1868)
La Gazza Ladra
- Overture [8:50]
Philharmonia Orchestra/Guido Cantelli
rec. 22 (Rossini) 24, 28 & 30 (Tchaikovsky) 24 & 25 (Ravel) October 1952, Royal Festival Hall, London
PRISTINE AUDIO PASC269 [58:13]

Experience Classicsonline



These recordings offer proof - if proof were needed - of what a great conductor was the tragically short-lived Guido Cantelli (1920-1956). I’ve had these Tchaikovsky and Ravel recordings in my collection for many years on Testament CDs (SBT 1316 and SBT 1017 respectively).
 
I presume those Testament discs came from EMI masters, since they were issued under licence from EMI. The source of these Pristine transfers is rather more unusual and I think it’s worth reproducing Andrew Rose’s note on the subject. 

“The recordings here, all of which were generously lent by [Cantelli biographer] Keith Bennett for the purposes of this release, were drawn largely from a rare and unusually high quality source. During the 1950s, His Master's Voice recordings could be purchased on disc, normally both 78rpm shellac and, from 1952 onwards, on the quickly popular 33rpm vinyl format. However, they also ran a short series of "High Fidelity Tape Recording" issues, the "HTA" series, and at the time the highest-priced issue format the company offered. Each tape consisted of a 7-inch spool of 1/4 inch EMITAPE with two mono tracks, one on each side, running at 7.5 inches per second. A printed paper inlay contained the sleeve notes, and a small slip which referenced the Batch Number was hand-initialled by the tape operator, an inspector and a packer. Despite their undoubted high fidelity, especially when replayed as here on a modern, broadcast-standard Studer tape recorder, these tapes failed to attract much public attention at the time, quite possibly as a result of their exorbitant cost. It has to be said that they have been a pleasure to work from - offering the highest quality of any domestic medium I've encountered from the era.”
 
The resulting transfers are excellent though I have to say that I couldn’t detect a great deal of difference between the Pristine and Testament issues, except, perhaps - and this is a very minor matter - the tiniest suspicion of hiss around the 1:40 mark in the Ravel recording on the Pristine transfer. However, anyone wanting these recordings can invest in Andrew Rose’s transfers with complete confidence.
 
If you appreciate great conducting then you should want these recordings for, as recorded performances they are superb. Cantelli was a very fine conductor of Tchaikovsky and I admire his recording of the ‘Pathétique’ enormously. These recordings were all set down in conjunction with concerts that Cantelli gave with the Philharmonia and, experimentally, they were recorded in the same venue as the concerts, the recently-opened Royal Festival Hall. In a fascinating note about these recordings the aforementioned Keith Bennett points out that in his entire - and short - career Cantelli performed this symphony just six times; he then goes on to point the contrast with Karajan who alone made seven commercial recordings! Perhaps that’s why Cantelli’s recording, though undoubtedly scrupulously prepared, sounds so fresh and unalloyed. The big melancholy tune in the first movement is judged to perfection; it’s expressive but not overwrought. The interpretation is aided by some fabulous playing by the Philharmonia who, collectively, are on sovereign form - the woodwind principals are superb. The allegro vivo (8:44) is trenchant and full of drive yet it never tips over into hysteria as lesser interpretations can do. The 5/4 waltz is nicely turned and is gracefully played. The march is tightly controlled and the Philharmonia’s articulation is razor-sharp. In the finale Tchaikovsky’s marking, lamentoso, if not the music itself, invites the wearing of the heart on the sleeve. Cantelli, however, is dignified. He’s ardent too, however, and delivers a reading that is powerful without tipping over into sentimentality. This is, in fact, one of the finest recorded performances of the Pathétique that I know.
 
Apparently the recording of Ravel’s exquisite Pavane required many takes to satisfy Cantelli’s exacting standards. Not that you’d know that from the performance that we hear, which has a lovely, natural flow. The great Dennis Brain is the principal horn and the wonderful wind soloists match his excellent playing. The performance is beautifully judged and balanced and there’s great clarity. The string playing can only be described as silken. This is a wonderful recording.
 
For dessert, if you like, Cantelli serves up a keen, sprightly performance of the Rossini overture.
 
This is a most desirable collection of performances by a great conductor. Since the sound quality is fully worthy of the playing and interpretations, what more could one ask? 

John Quinn

Masterwork Index: Tchaikovsky Symphony 6 


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


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.