Stunning Recordings

Posted by: Mojo

Stunning Recordings - 03/28/07 11:41 PM

Now that I have my Epic80 system installed, I feel like I have re-discovered music. Can anyone suggest exceptional music that will make this system shine? For example, Mark Knopfler's "A Ragpicker's Dream" is absolutely stunning with a wide, deep and tall presentation.
Posted by: SirQuack

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/28/07 11:47 PM

What type of music do you enjoy?
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/29/07 01:29 AM

Well Mo, I'll suggest a little package of music that may not be a re-discovery for you, but should be a rather stunning new discovery(it certainly is on my Axioms, using DPLII): The Planets , Swan Lake and Symphonic Dances . Amounts to about $22 with free shipping.
Posted by: MarkSJohnson

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/29/07 07:06 AM

You may want to check out this thread or this one.
Posted by: danmagicman7

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/29/07 08:10 AM

This thread has its moments too.
Posted by: Mojo

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/29/07 08:44 AM

Quote:

What type of music do you enjoy?




I enjoy classical, 60s/70s/80s rock, some hard & alternative rock, jazz, blues, swing, Latin, middle eastern, folk, blues and modern Greek, worldbeat and anything with finger-style guitar. With this system, I am finding that I enjoy anything that has a stunning presentation.
Posted by: PeterChenoweth

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/29/07 09:19 AM

Check out Chesky Records. I own a couple of their SACD's at the recommendation of a friend, and have listened to several of their regular CD's on my system. Really beautifully recorded stuff. Absolutely stunning. They claim to take great care in making their recordings as perfect as possible, and I believe it from what I've heard.

Their selection is somewhat limited, but if you like the types of music they sell, you can't go wrong. My personal favorite (so far) is this one. I don't speak of word of Spanish, but it doesn't matter because her voice combined with the assorted drums, flute, and guitar on this album are absolutely hypnotic and make my M80's sing! Highly recommended, if you like the genre.
Posted by: medic8r

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/29/07 09:24 AM

Good call on the Mark Knopfler disc. All of his are well-recorded, as are the later Dire Straits albums.

If you like 1980s synth Rush, then try 1985's "Power Windows". It was their first all-digital recording.

I find the vocals and solo piano on Coldplay's "Parachutes" and "A Rush of Blood to the Head" to be very pleasing.

If you haven't already, you may want to open up a whole new can of worms and get some DVD-Audio and/or SACD albums. The REM DVD-As are very good.

Enjoy!

P.S. Dan, increase your medication! I'll PM you the directions
Posted by: danmagicman7

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/29/07 09:30 AM

Quote:

P.S. Dan, increase your medication!




Which one?
Posted by: dllewel

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/29/07 11:34 AM

Quote:

...and anything with finger-style guitar. With this system, I am finding that I enjoy anything that has a stunning presentation.




It sounds like you may enjoy Irish-Flamenco-Accoustic-Metal then. It's good stuff.
Posted by: duckman

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/29/07 08:45 PM

I keep coming back to this for a SQ fix. If you dig acoustic guitar you'll love it.
Posted by: barilkobart

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/29/07 10:04 PM

Anything Mark Knopfler is great.

Check out any of the Sheffield Labs recordings.
Drum and Track Record
Tower of Power Direct
are my favourites
Lots of different music, for anybodys tastes.
All VERY well recorded.

BarilkoBart
HK DPR-2005
Axiom M60 VP150 QS8 AX1.5
SVS PB10
Posted by: DL30

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/30/07 10:40 AM

The Police - Synchronicity Excellent album and the recording is top notch.
Posted by: CosmicVoyager

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/30/07 12:58 PM

Pink Floyd Pulse is an excellent recording.
Posted by: Mojo

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/30/07 01:34 PM

Thanks very much everyone. I've ordered about 60 CDs based on all of this information. I'll be experiencing "music over-load" I'm sure.
Posted by: sidvicious02

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/30/07 01:58 PM

You couldn't count me as a tremendous fan, but the recording of Norah Jones' - Come Away with Me is breathtaking.
Posted by: Mojo

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/30/07 02:28 PM

Quote:

Check out any of the Sheffield Labs recordings.




Apparently, Sheffield Labs is sold out of everything and is not taking any more orders.
Posted by: PeterChenoweth

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/30/07 03:01 PM

Quote:

Thanks very much everyone. I've ordered about 60 CDs based on all of this information. I'll be experiencing "music over-load" I'm sure.




60 just based on this thread? Whoa! Enjoy!
Posted by: Mojo

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/30/07 03:42 PM

Quote:

Quote:

Thanks very much everyone. I've ordered about 60 CDs based on all of this information. I'll be experiencing "music over-load" I'm sure.




60 just based on this thread? Whoa! Enjoy!




Yes. This thread is multi-threaded .
Posted by: dllewel

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/30/07 04:07 PM

Quote:

You couldn't count me as a tremendous fan, but the recording of Norah Jones' - Come Away with Me is breathtaking.




I'll second that.
Posted by: thyname

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/30/07 04:15 PM

Quote:

You couldn't count me as a tremendous fan, but the recording of Norah Jones' - Come Away with Me is breathtaking.




The regular CD or the multichannel one?
Posted by: dllewel

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/30/07 04:38 PM

I have heard both the standard CD and the SACD. They are both excellent. The standard CD sounds so good that you may forget that it is not hi-res audio.
Posted by: Mojo

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/30/07 09:30 PM

Quote:

Good call on the Mark Knopfler disc. All of his are well-recorded, as are the later Dire Straits albums.




Wow! Track 6 (Ride across the river) of Dire Straits: Brothers in Arms is absolutely incredible! I still can't believe that 2-channel stereo can sound this deep and wide. What about multi-channel recordings? Is there a site that offers some? I listened to Alan Parsons: On Air and was completely blown away.
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/30/07 09:43 PM

Mo, if I knew that you were willing to order as many as 60 CDs, I'd have suggested 57 more!
Posted by: HomeDad

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/30/07 11:25 PM

Dire Straits: Brothers in Arms on SACD is one of my favorites, I believe it won best multi-channel recording last year on the Music Awards. I shop at CD Universe, there are many online sites that sell SACD and DVD-A's.
Posted by: Mojo

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/30/07 11:36 PM

Quote:

Mo, if I knew that you were willing to order as many as 60 CDs, I'd have suggested 57 more!




Bring them on! I just can't stop listening to this system. I haven't been at work for three days !
Posted by: Mojo

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/30/07 11:42 PM

Quote:

Dire Straits: Brothers in Arms on SACD is one of my favorites, I believe it won best multi-channel recording last year on the Music Awards.




Thanks a lot. I just bought it but it's back-ordered.
Posted by: duckman

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/30/07 11:45 PM

Brothers in arms is available on both dvd-a and sacd. Somehow I wound up with both. Ordered one from Amazon then found the other on amazon ca., then couldn't change the first order due to being cheap(free shipping option). I've found several titles on Amazon ca. that weren't on amazon.com.
I never got the cd version, already had the lp and never got around to it.
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/31/07 08:05 PM

All right then here's a few more: Romero, Spanish Guitar ; Symphonie Fantastique ; Stravinsky Coll. ; Bolero, etc. ; Ma Vlast ; Carmina Burana ; Shostakovich Symphony No. 5 ; Dvorak Slavonic Dances ; Daphnis et Chloe ; Brahms Hungarian Dances ; Rachmaninoff Piano Concertos ; Ilya Murometz ; Scheherazade ; Respighi, Roman Festivals . Khachaturian Coll. ; Prokofiev Romeo and Juliet ; Rachmaninoff 2nd Symphony ; Strauss Waltzes ; Rimsky-Korsakov Coll. ; Sibelius Symphonies ; Shostakovich Symphony No.7 ; Ravel Coll. ; Coppelia ; Debussy Coll. ; Copland & Bernstein ; Dvorak Symphonies ; Sylvia ; Beethoven Symphony No.9 ; Gershwin Coll. ; Dvorak Cello Concerto ; Rachmaninoff Piano Concertos ; Tchaikovsky 4th Symphony .
Posted by: HomeDad

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/31/07 08:42 PM

John somehow I get the impression you love classical music.
Posted by: CV

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/31/07 10:08 PM

As well as semicolons and hyperlinks.
Posted by: Mojo

Re: Stunning Recordings - 04/01/07 12:16 AM

Quote:

All right then here's a few more




My wife is so upset with me. We were supposed to go over-seas for a summer vacation with the little ones. Instead, I blew our vacation budget on Axioms, Samsung, CDs...and a few other "must-haves". And JohnK's posts aren't helping the situation.
Posted by: bridgman

Re: Stunning Recordings - 04/01/07 09:46 AM

When JohnK is posting links to all these great CDs (the recommendations I have purchased ARE top notch recordings) does anyone else think about the huge pile of BAD classical recordings he must have in the basement somewhere ?

Even JohnK could not find all those winners with research alone; he MUST have bought some turkeys along the way
Posted by: KlipschGuy

Re: Stunning Recordings - 04/01/07 11:56 AM

Quote:

Quote:

All right then here's a few more




My wife is so upset with me. We were supposed to go over-seas for a summer vacation with the little ones. Instead, I blew our vacation budget on Axioms, Samsung, CDs...and a few other "must-haves". And JohnK's posts aren't helping the situation.




This is too funny, I like you already MoJo. Maybe we can start a collection to get your wife and kiddies over to Europe? Nah, its just full of Old buildings and foreigners anyway

Chris
Posted by: PDXGuy

Re: Stunning Recordings - 04/01/07 12:02 PM

I love threads like this; so many great ideas and suggestions.

I notice you like hard rock. If you want to see (hear) how good Ian is at engineering loudspeakers, I highly recommend track 5 (“Beating Around the Bush”) from AC/DC's Highway to Hell CD. A sub-woofer really helps with this one, but not required.

A detached, single family home is also recommended.
Posted by: KlipschGuy

Re: Stunning Recordings - 04/01/07 12:51 PM

Hey all, I am going to add some DVD concerts that have excellent SQ. Here are a few of my favs:

Eagles HFO...ok, you all know that one.

Eagles Farewell One Tour...Top notch DTS sound and almost HD video.

UB 40...Live from Holland. Stereo track sounds incredible...Got bass?..this is sick.

Doobie Brothers, "Live from Wolf Trap" DD sounds the best to me, almost HD video,,,awesome!

Boz Scaggs, Live on DVD, DTS track is stunning, this is HD as far as video goes..10/10. Great content too, did you know this is a blues man? I didn't.

Phil Collins Farewell tour "live from Paris"...great DTS and video, 2 discs, well done.

next i will post some Cd's

Chris

Chris
Posted by: Robert_W

Re: Stunning Recordings - 04/01/07 07:51 PM

John, your listing of these classical CD's has again renewed my interest and love for this music. Thank you! I have slowly been adding to my classical collection over the years but as of late I find myself leaning more and more in that direction. There is very little new music these days that peaks my interest and even less still that has all aspects of quality, (music, engineering, musicianship, originality etc)....not to mention paying $15-20 for a CD. The Tower Records site is also nice. Being able to preview a wide variety of classical is rare on the net. Between your list and links and suggestions I had to stop at about 20 CD's! That ought to keep me listening for a while anyway.
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 04/01/07 09:20 PM

Yeah John, I have about a thousand classical CDs(which is by no means an extremely large collection)and there are a few that I wish that I didn't have. It's very few however, and I've tried to listen before buying and getting at least two professional reviews first. Needless to say, I don't recommend anything here that I don't personally like and think would appeal to most listeners. Of course, conductors have a degree of subjectivity in their performances although they generally have the same score in front of them, and some listeners won't care for their slant, but one of the nice things about this great music is that there are often dozens of choices for each work available.

Mo, women generally love to save money at a good sale, so tell her that at these prices they're almost giving this great music away. Although your wife won't be enjoying April in Paris, maybe some Ravel right at home will do(or maybe not)?
Posted by: Mojo

Re: Stunning Recordings - 04/02/07 06:19 PM

Quote:

Although your wife won't be enjoying April in Paris, maybe some Ravel right at home will do(or maybe not)?




She's into something called Disco .
Posted by: SkiTaos

Re: Stunning Recordings - 04/02/07 09:26 PM

A couple of my favorite recordings are:
Yello-One Second (First track is my favorite-La Habanera)
Don Ross-Passion Session (Fingerstyle Guitar) Wonderful!!
Posted by: Rodney

Re: Stunning Recordings - 05/06/07 12:09 AM

Quote:

Well Mo, I'll suggest a little package of music that may not be a re-discovery for you, but should be a rather stunning new discovery(it certainly is on my Axioms, using DPLII): The Planets , Swan Lake and Symphonic Dances . Amounts to about $22 with free shipping.




John,

Do you listen to a lot of stereo using DPLII? I enjoy classical and may buy a couple of those CDs, even though I don't have Axiom's flagship mains.

Regards,
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 05/06/07 01:04 AM

Rodney, when I'm listening on a setup that has surround speakers available it makes sense to use them fully and I always use DPLII(or occasionally Neo:6 or Neural Surround)with stereo sources. The two front channels have surround ambience mixed into them(there was nowhere else to put it)in varying amounts which originally came more from the sides and back rather than the front. The DPLII or similar processing extracts this from the front channels and directs it to the surrounds where it belongs. The result is a little closer to the reality of the original performance.

My M22s do a superb job with my classical CDs and I'm sure that yours will as well. No need to deprive yourself of the great world of classical music that's waiting for you out there because you don't have "flagship" speakers(which title I've claimed for the M22s anyway). Enjoy.
Posted by: Rodney

John, the Tower links are dead - 06/09/07 07:28 PM

Quote:

All right then here's a few more: Romero, Spanish Guitar ; Symphonie Fantastique ; Stravinsky Coll. ; Bolero, etc. ; Ma Vlast ; Carmina Burana ; Shostakovich Symphony No. 5 ; Dvorak Slavonic Dances ; Daphnis et Chloe ; Brahms Hungarian Dances ; Rachmaninoff Piano Concertos ; Ilya Murometz ; Scheherazade ; Respighi, Roman Festivals . Khachaturian Coll. ; Prokofiev Romeo and Juliet ; Rachmaninoff 2nd Symphony ; Strauss Waltzes ; Rimsky-Korsakov Coll. ; Sibelius Symphonies ; Shostakovich Symphony No.7 ; Ravel Coll. ; Coppelia ; Debussy Coll. ; Copland & Bernstein ; Dvorak Symphonies ; Sylvia ; Beethoven Symphony No.9 ; Gershwin Coll. ; Dvorak Cello Concerto ; Rachmaninoff Piano Concertos ; Tchaikovsky 4th Symphony .




Well, John,

I have this thread as a favorite. I was finally ready to go to Borders and get a few of these, but Tower changed their website and all the links are dead. Therefore, I don't know what label released them, and I'm sure some recordings are worse than others... Bummer. If you get a chance... Well, I don't really dare ask.

What I am also really bummed about is I had created an account on Tower the day I saw your post, and put ALL the CDs you suggested in a wishlist, but now I cannot log in there either. I know I have my email address right, but when I try forgot password link, I put my email address in, but it says no such email in our system. Surely, they migrated their databases from dotnet to what now seems to be a ColdFusion-driven website.

Arghh.

So much for listening to a new classical cd tonight while kids have a babysitter.

Regards,
Posted by: Rodney

Re: John, the Tower links are dead - 06/09/07 09:56 PM

Thanks to history from Firefox, I am able to find the recordings. No one may care, but since I am finding the CDs for myself on Tower, I will post the links when done, in case others are interested.
Posted by: JohnK

Re: John, the Tower links are dead - 06/09/07 10:14 PM

Yes, Tower has changed their site effective June 1st and although they say that a "new and improved" classical section will be forthcoming, there're at least two problems now. The first, as you discovered, is that the old CD numbering has been changed so that the numerous links that I've given in the past few years aren't usable. Whether any of the old data, including your wish list, can be retrieved is unclear; possibly you might drop an e-mail to classical@tower.com to inquire(indicating of course that you were ready to buy dozens of their CDs that were linked on your audio discussion board).

The second problem, which I suspect will change even if the old numbers are gone forever, is the present lack of sound samples.

Yes, don't go to Borders or anyplace else and just grab a CD because it happens to contain that same musical composition. Many works have dozens of different recordings available which differ significantly in the quality of conducting, playing and sound.

I'll be glad to give you currently usable Tower links for what you think you may be especially interested in. I'd prefer not to re-do that entire list now, which would be a bit tedious. Possibly you have in mind a few that seemed especially attractive, or I could give a short starter list.

Edit: Rodney I was away from the computer briefly and sent my reply without looking at your latest. Some of what I said is now moot, but yes, posting the new links would be helpful. If you want me to check your Borders for what's currently in stock, I'd do that, although I suppose you could do it yourself if you have specific items that you want.
Posted by: Rodney

Re: John, the Tower links are dead - 06/09/07 10:40 PM

Thank you, John.

Here are (some of) the CDs. I think I picked the correct ones:
Basic 100 Vol 24 - Berlioz: Symphonie Fantastique / Munch

Acoustic Highway Craig Chaquico

Beethoven: Symphony no 9 / Wiens, Hartwig, Lewis, Wand

Bol‚ro - Symphonic Poems / Kitayemko, et al Bolero - Symphonic Poems / Kitayemko, et al

Brahms: Hungarian Dances / Bog r, Budapest SO BUDAPEST SYMPHONY/BOGAR

Debussy: La Mer, etc / Giulini, Tilson Thomas, BSO, LA PO Debussy

Dvorak: Symphonies no 7 & 8 / Jansons, Oslo PO Dvorak

Eloquence - Holst: The Planets / Mehta, LA Philharmonic, etc Eloquence - Holst

Gershwin: Rhapsody in Blue, Cuban Overture, etc/ Dorati, etc Gershwin

Prokofiev: Alexander Nevsky, Lieutenant Kij‚ / Abbado Prokofiev

Prokofiev: Romeo and Juliet (Excerpts) / Salonen, Berlin PO Prokofiev

Rachmaninov: Symphonic Dances, etc / B tiz, Royal PO Rachmaninov

Rachmaninov: Symphony no 2 / Ormandy, Philadelphia Orchestra

Ravel: Orchestral Works / Previn, Royal PO

Respighi: Symphonic Poems / B tiz, Royal Philharmonic

Spanish Guitar Virtuoso - Torroba, Albeniz, et al/ A. Romero

Tchaikovsky: Swan Lake - Highlights / John Lanchbery, etc

Tchaikovsky: Symphony no 4, etc / Solti, Chicago SO

Phew! John, now I appreciate even more your work of posting these links.

Regards,
Posted by: JohnK

Re: John, the Tower links are dead - 06/09/07 11:09 PM

Okay, I checked them. The second item, "Acoustic Highway", is an unknown and the Brahms Hungarian Dances is the right performance(really excellent), but it's a cassette and they don't appear to have the CD listed. Yes, those links can get a bit tedious, but I'm glad to do it to help spread the word about the great world of music that's waiting for us out there.

What I noticed in checking are that most of their current prices are really good if you'd care to order some. If you'd care to identify your Borders I could check what might be in stock if you want to pick something up immediately.
Posted by: Rodney

Re: John, the Tower links are dead - 06/09/07 11:19 PM

John,

You are too kind. Now that I got the list, I can get on Borders and check.

I didn't realize the Brahms Hungarian Dances was a cassette...

Regards,
Posted by: SirQuack

Re: John, the Tower links are dead - 06/10/07 12:28 AM

Don't forget "The Planets"
Posted by: Mojo

Re: Stunning Recordings - 06/12/07 10:22 PM

For those of you that are interested in giving your system a great work-out, get this CD, turn your volume wayyyyy up and play track 4, Night on a Bare Mountain by Modest Mussorgsky as performed by the Cleveland Orchestra.

Strap on your Depends and have a defibrillator handy . Absolutely amazing transients and stunning sound quality. I swear that the orchestra is right there in my room!

If anyone else is familiar with this style of music, kindly let us know of any others like it.
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 06/13/07 12:55 AM

Yes, Night on Bare Mountain is in one of the classical areas that I like and several of my CDs include performances of it. It's a bit hard to really say what someone else might consider to be "like it", but here're some of my ideas: Prokofiev's Scythian Suite and Bartok's Miraculous Mandarin on a CD that's one of my favorites was out of print but has now been reissued by Arkiv ; Stravinsky's Rite of Spring ; Respighi's Roman Festivals ; the Malambo from Ginastera's Estancia .
Posted by: Mojo

Re: Stunning Recordings - 06/13/07 08:12 AM

Thanks, JohnK. I've put them on order.
Posted by: Rodney

Swan Lake - 06/22/07 12:48 AM

Well, John, I got 10 CDs and it took them 8 days to get here.

I started to listen to Planets, and on the first track, "Mars, the bringer of war," my 3yr old says, "Daddy, that music is scary." I haven't gotten to enjoy it yet.

Then on the first track on the Swan Lake CD, she said, "Daddy, that music is sad." Geez! I need to quit listening to my music with her in the room.

I did get to listen to the whole Swan Lake CD. I so enjoyed it. Track 2, "No 1. Scene (Allegro giusto)" was breath-taking. My speakers need a little tweaking, I think, but I could "see" so many instruments all over the (sound)stage.

I can't wait to listen to all the CDs.

Thanks again, John, for recommending these great recordings.

Regards,
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Swan Lake - 06/22/07 01:19 AM

3yrs old, eh? Those music critics start young these days.
Posted by: pmbuko

Re: Swan Lake - 06/22/07 08:00 AM

Sounds like somebody's ready to listen to Peter and the Wolf.
Posted by: Mojo

Re: Stunning Recordings - 06/27/07 11:31 PM

Since the time I created this post, I've listened to over 200 stereo CDs selected from this post and others. I found that these works represent the best of the best for sound quality. By sound quality I mean soundstage and imaging...not just clarity. The dynamics on all of these albums have been preserved without any apparent compression.

By far, the most incredible album I've heard is Mark Knopfler's The Ragpicker's Dream. I wish all artists would record like him. When listening to this album in 2-channel, it fools people into thinking the surrounds are on (also the center but that's not unusual for any recording on my system). Also, the M80s simply disappear. There is only one other instance where I experienced this and that is on the Persuasions album listed below. On this track (I think #5), you'd swear that there's a guy 3 feet to the left and 2 feet forward from the left speaker. When I first heard this, I had my eyes closed, lights off and I completely freaked out thinking that someone was in the room with me .

All other titles that I list below have a wide, deep and tall presentation but not to the extent of Knopfler's. The problem with listening to albums with this kind of quality is that I don't want to listen to all the other crappy albums in my collection because I am now spoiled .

JohnK, The Planets and other classicals that you suggested did not make my cut. Don't get me wrong - they are great to listen to. But they just didn't "jump out" at me like all these others did. With the exception of the one classical I listed below, all others sounded like the orchestra was 2 feet high off my floor even when turned up loud. I also tried all my multi-channel modes and turning it up very loud to no effect. I found this strange but I don't think it has anything to do with my system or environment. And I also tried 5 or 6 recordings of The Planets. If you have any ideas about why this may be happening, I'd love to know.

Enjoy!

Mark Knopfler - The Ragpicker's Dream
Pink Martini - Hang on Little Tomato
Molly Johnson - Any
Govi - Andalusian Nights
Lisa Ekdahl - When did you Leave Heaven
Acoustic Alchemy - Against the Grain
Philip Glass - Koyaanisqatsi *
The Persuasions - Sing U2
Plastikman - Closer *
Craig Chaquico - Any
Godsmack - Other Side
Mark Knopfler - Any
Higher Octave Music - Evolution
Don Ross - Music for Vacuuming
Patricia Barber - Any
Guitarisma
Marta Gomez - Entre Cada Palabra
Johny Frigo - Live from Studio "A"
Olatunji Babatunde - Love Drum Talk
Eliades Ochoa - Y El Cuarteto Patria
Porcupine Tree - Stupid Dream
John Butler - Sunrise Over Sea
Modest Mussorgsky - Classic Creepies **

* Incredible bass
** Turn track 4 up loud to give your system the ultimate work-out.
Posted by: CV

Re: Stunning Recordings - 06/28/07 12:03 AM

Thanks for that list, Mojo. I'll probably check at least a couple of those out whenever I have money for that stuff again. I do like that Marta Gomez album. Some of the other names have come up as recommendations by Amazon.com.
Posted by: Mojo

Re: Stunning Recordings - 06/28/07 12:10 AM

There's always the public library. If you like it, you can buy it. If you don't, you can put your money towards a second 600. Speaking of which, how is yours sounding?
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 06/28/07 12:24 AM

Mo, I'm not familiar with any of the discs or performers that you listed, but the few pop CDs that I've borrowed and listened to for various reasons in the past seemed to share two characteristics: they were recorded at a higher sound level(presumably correctible by turning down the volume a bit)and the microphones were much more close-up. Don't know if this is the primary factor in your "jump out" comment, but most classical recordings are specifically intended to give a sense of distance and hall-effect, the effect being more that of what a listener some rows back would experience, rather than what the conductor hears.
Posted by: CV

Re: Stunning Recordings - 06/28/07 12:43 AM

The 600 is sounding pretty good. I still have more experimenting to do. I haven't figured out good test material for gauging how quickly and tightly it is performing. Over the coming weekend, I'll put more time into playing with settings and going through my music collection. And thanks for the suggestion on the second 600. Wouldn't you know I've already been thinking about that. The basement plan keeps changing, but right now it's looking like a big wall will come down, making for a larger space than I'd planned on before. It's an eventuality, but I could see getting another 600 after all of the other stuff is done. Ha ha.
Posted by: Mojo

Re: Stunning Recordings - 06/28/07 08:00 AM

Hi JohnK,

By "jump out" I didn't mean loudness. I meant presence. Imaging on these classical recordings is very good and so is soundstage width and depth. But for whatever reason, I am missing the height. The best way I can describe it is that it sounds as if I'm listening from high above the orchestra. Do the orchestras sound like they are 2 feet tall on your system?
Posted by: pmbuko

Re: Stunning Recordings - 06/28/07 08:42 AM

CV, do you have any CDs featuring the cello or upright bass? I find that these instruments in particular are a very good way of testing a sub, especially if you're familiar with the instruments in a live setting. A good sub will get the attack, reverberation, the visceral feeling of the low notes right without any bloat or coloration. My EP500 handles these very well.
Posted by: CV

Re: Stunning Recordings - 06/28/07 04:38 PM

I'm sure I have SOMETHING with cello, which I'll have to locate. I actually did notice the upright bass on one of my live DVDs. He plays a bass guitar for most of the concert, but then switches to an upright for at least one song. I'll have to try that track out again and see how good I can get it to sound. Thanks for reminding me of that.
Posted by: Mojo

Re: Stunning Recordings - 06/28/07 04:53 PM

Upright bass is in Diana Krall: Love Scenes, right? My 600 does an amazing job on that one on track 11.
Posted by: CV

Re: Stunning Recordings - 06/28/07 05:49 PM

I don't have any Diana Krall yet. I wasn't too into samples I listened to a long time ago, but compressed samples played on a much weaker system are so hard to go by. You mentioned the public library in another thread, and I haven't been to my local one in probably a decade. I should go see what they have.
Posted by: Mojo

Re: Stunning Recordings - 06/28/07 07:07 PM

Here in Canada, we don't actually have to go anywhere including the library as long as we are connected to the WWW. We can search and put material on hold at any branch in our cities and we receive e-mails when our selections are in. Then, we send our kids to pick the goodies up.

.
Posted by: CV

Re: Stunning Recordings - 06/28/07 07:22 PM

Ha ha, I need some Canadian kids. Your library system sounds super-advanced compared to what we have locally. Of course, maybe it's come a long way since I've paid attention to it. I know they got money to expand. Maybe services like those are in the budget.
Posted by: Mojo

Re: Stunning Recordings - 06/28/07 07:40 PM

I find the Diana Krall CD that I mentioned above absolutely awesome to listen to especially when the fireplace is on and my wife is giv...I better not go there .

By the way, the bassist is Christian McBride (who apparently is one of the best on the planet) and his 4-string bass plays down to 40Hz. I was just listening to it and it even sounds great with the 600 turned off. The 600 however adds some real deep depth to the sound.
Posted by: CV

Re: Stunning Recordings - 06/28/07 07:59 PM

I will put it on the list.
Posted by: tomtuttle

Re: Stunning Recordings - 06/28/07 08:12 PM

Quote:

adds some real deep depth...




as opposed to that annoying shallow depth we were experiencing in the Paris Hilton thread.


Posted by: Mojo

Re: Stunning Recordings - 06/28/07 09:09 PM

Yes, I better be more careful with my typing. Thoughts of my wife were distracting me .
Posted by: Mojo

Re: Stunning Recordings - 06/29/07 08:13 AM

Two others that I neglected to mention are Oscar Peterson: We get Requests and Eric Clapton: Unplugged.

By the way, the Oscar Peterson CD has a really wide soundstage in 2-channel and when I switch to Neo6: Music, the soundstage gets extended about 2 feet to either side. In PLII: Music, the sound wraps around you. I like the Neo effect better for this particular title.
Posted by: DSQ

Re: Stunning Recordings - 06/29/07 12:56 PM

Another interesting jazz recording (which I was able to borrow from the local public library in Mississauga, ON) is Walk On - Ray Brown Trio

Disc 2 has several tracks which were recorded before a live audience where Ray Brown, Christian McBride and John Clayton all play acoustic bass - with no other instruments. The timbral differences between the three bassists' instruments, as well as the soundtage where you can pinpoint each performer's location on stage make it a really interesting disc to listen to.

Incidentally, John Clayton is the bass player in the superb rhythm section on Diana Krall's "Live in Paris" CD/DVD.
Posted by: Mojo

Re: Stunning Recordings - 06/29/07 06:01 PM

Thanks for that. The libraries here don't have it although they appear to have every other Ray Brown title. Why are you guys in Ontario so special? Oh right, I forgot. You receive more transfer payments than the west .
Posted by: Rodney

Oscar Peterson - 06/30/07 12:02 AM

Mojo,

Which release of 'Oscar Peterson : We Get Requests' do you have? I looked it up on Amazon and there are several.

Thanks,
Posted by: Mojo

Re: Oscar Peterson - 06/30/07 12:45 AM

This one.

Enjoy!
Posted by: Rodney

Re: Oscar Peterson - 06/30/07 02:03 PM

Thanks, Mojo.

I bought Ragpicker's Dream today, and while I couldn't really listen to it with two kids around, the vocals were so crisp and centered and upfront. I'm looking forward to listening to it louder and with no kids.

Regards,
Posted by: Mojo

Re: Oscar Peterson - 06/30/07 03:58 PM

Hi Rodney,

Let us know what you think after you've had a good listen. Toe your speakers in if they're not already for better imaging.
Posted by: Mojo

Re: Stunning Recordings - 06/30/07 09:35 PM

Someone mentioned on these posts that Dead Can Dance: Into the Labyrinth had incredible SQ. Now I can certainly attest to that.

For those of you that might be interested in this, there is a lot of middle eastern influence...very melodic. I bet that if I blind-folded someone and brought them into my 4,000 cubic room and made them listen to track 3 in Neo 6: music, they would swear that they were in a cathedral.

Track 4 has some very, very smooth bass somewhere north of 24Hz and south of 40Hz. I know it's more than 24 because my fireplace doesn't rattle. And I know that it's less than 40 because even at a "loud" volume, you can barely hear a very slight pounding from the 80s. But the 600 does an absolutely amazing job. No pounding at all but rather a smooth and rhythmic ebb and flow even when I set the sub volume at the lowest possible level on my Denon. I connected my old Sony sub just for fun to see what it would sound like on this track and I got some good pounding. The difference is absolutely incredible! Pounding bad...smooth and rhythmic good .

There's also very good separation of all instruments in this work.
Posted by: Mojo

Re: Stunning Recordings - 07/31/07 11:06 PM

Steely Dan: Two against nature. And I know I've mentioned Patricia Barber before but definitely make sure you get her "Companion" CD.
Posted by: LHawes

Re: Stunning Recordings - 08/14/07 07:49 PM

Thanks SO much for The Ragpicker's Dream suggestion.

I'm no audiophile but I know a good recording and that is one GREAT recording and a GREAT selection of tunes. I sit at my computer in the corner of my living/listening room and when each new song came on I would look up at my speakers (Revel M22's) a bit startled - like Mark was in the room - weird and I'm not making that up.

Very similar experience with this album

Quote:

When I first heard this, I had my eyes closed, lights off and I completely freaked out thinking that someone was in the room with me




The down side is I'm spoiled now and worried about playing anything inferior.

Another recording I like is Jack Johnson's Curious George. Some of his guitar work will also make you think his guitar is being played on your couch.
Posted by: Mojo

Re: Stunning Recordings - 08/14/07 08:14 PM

You're welcome.

Is this the recording that you mentioned?

Curious George Sing-a-longs and Lullabies [sound recording] : music from the original motion picture.
Posted by: LHawes

Re: Stunning Recordings - 08/14/07 09:44 PM

Quote:

You're welcome.

Is this the recording that you mentioned?

Curious George Sing-a-longs and Lullabies [sound recording] : music from the original motion picture.




Yeah that's it. I just read a review that called it 'kid stuff' but my wife and I leave it on all day long and I think the recording is great.
Posted by: Mojo

Re: Stunning Recordings - 08/14/07 09:46 PM

LOL! Ok. I've requested it through the library.
Posted by: pmbuko

Re: Stunning Recordings - 08/15/07 12:16 AM

We have that disk and the whole family likes it.
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 09/11/07 11:42 PM

Another thread today in which I mentioned some of my music listening reminded me that I should discuss my most recent acquisition. Another church member had asked me about a recommendation for a CD with music for liturgies or services in Church Slavonic. I first checked Dr. Morosan's very informative site at musicarussica.com and got a lead to Roman Hurko. Mr. Hurko is a Canadian composer who has composed several items for church services and in particular a beautiful Vespers service about two years ago. I ordered two copies which arrived yesterday and can certainly suggest that anyone who appreciates beautiful choral singing should consider this.
Posted by: Mojo

Re: Stunning Recordings - 09/16/07 02:14 PM

Curious George was certainly recorded well but it's not my cup of tea. The rest of the family likes it though.

Now here's two more: The Quicksilva Collection: Volume 2 Vivaldi, Purcell, Handell, Bach and Canadian Brass: Sacred Brass. Absolutely amazing. It would be great if these were offered in DTS.

Now for these selections, I didn't listen at a half watt per channel. I find for classical I have to turn it right up to about 20W nominal so I had very little headroom. They sounded great with no clipping...at least none that I could hear. If I had a few hundred watts I'd definitely turn it up more although I'm not sure how that would sound in my room. They also sounded great in PLIIx with the fronts turned down about 5dB to give a greater sense of depth.

Wid, you would have been proud of me .
Posted by: Wid

Re: Stunning Recordings - 09/16/07 02:36 PM


I don't normally read this thread but happen to take a glance this time.

I am impressed
Posted by: RickF

Re: Stunning Recordings - 09/16/07 07:00 PM

I'll have to throw in Buddy Guy's Blues Singer CD into the mix of this thread..."Lucy Mae Blues" is exceptional.
Posted by: Mojo

Re: Stunning Recordings - 09/20/07 11:20 PM

Vespers Service is amazing for those that really love this kind of stuff. It reminded me of when I was growing up in the old country. I'd attend these services and I had no idea what the heck they were chanting about. Last year I took a trip back there and I still had no idea what they were chanting about. So I asked a few of my relatives and they had no clue either but they are convinced that if they listen to the chanting, they'll go to heaven.
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 09/20/07 11:27 PM

Mo, your relatives may be wise indeed(although I don't recall that any of my CDs advertise that as an additional benefit).
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 10/29/07 10:45 PM

Since it certainly qualifies for the "stunning" description, I'll again bring to your attention the most beautiful vocal collection that I've ever heard. The Moffo/Stokowski disc wasn't available at reasonable cost for about two years, but now Arkiv has an authorized reissue. The beautiful voice of Anna Moffo gives continual listening pleasure in the Canteloube and Villa-Lobos selections and especially in the concluding Rachmaninoff Vocalise.
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 12/03/07 10:21 PM

A complete Nutcracker makes a great Christmas gift to buy for yourself or others. I'll specifically suggest the thrilling and well-recorded performance by Gergiev , available for $10.99 at Tower .
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 01/08/08 09:51 PM

To increase the stun factor in the new year get one of my favorite vocal recordings, the CD of selections from the finest American opera, Porgy and Bess , featuring Leontyne Price and her husband William Warfield. Stunning indeed is Price singing "Summertime" and "My Man's Gone Now", with Warfield joining her in "Bess, You Is My Woman Now".
Posted by: Mojo

Re: Stunning Recordings - 01/08/08 10:14 PM

John, I'm afraid these recordings have too much dynamic range for me \:\) .
Posted by: EFalardeau

Re: Stunning Recordings - 01/08/08 10:21 PM

Tex, just byte the bullet and get a A1400 if you want a proper d-range...
Posted by: Mojo

Re: Stunning Recordings - 01/08/08 10:28 PM

Oh don't worry. I will be buying one. And if it doesn't give me the bang I want at a half watt, I'll be the first one to send it back \:\) .
Posted by: EFalardeau

Re: Stunning Recordings - 01/08/08 11:11 PM

You will NOT send it back (they change their address with every shipment)! BTW, you are very close to your first Axiom anniversary, I guess. Didn't you buy your system around this time last year?
Posted by: Mojo

Re: Stunning Recordings - 01/08/08 11:34 PM

I purchased the Epic 80-600 February 20, 2007. I will celebrate the one year anniversary by purchasing an A1400 \:\) .
Posted by: jakewash

Re: Stunning Recordings - 01/08/08 11:35 PM

Thanks for the tip! I will keep my eyes open on the 22nd!
Posted by: CV

Re: Stunning Recordings - 01/08/08 11:47 PM

I hope it actually makes a significant difference for you, just so your money stays spent. \:\)
Posted by: EFalardeau

Re: Stunning Recordings - 01/09/08 04:40 AM

I will add this to my calender!
Posted by: terzaghi

Re: Stunning Recordings - 01/09/08 08:40 AM

wow, I just realized that mojo has accumulated all of those posts in less then a year.

I better start posting if I want to catch up \:\)
Posted by: jakewash

Re: Stunning Recordings - 01/09/08 12:19 PM

You will never catch up. He lived here for quite some time.
Posted by: pmbuko

Re: Stunning Recordings - 01/09/08 05:02 PM

It took me almost 5 years -- has it really been that long? -- to get to where I am. He's beating my average.
Posted by: jakewash

Re: Stunning Recordings - 01/09/08 06:53 PM

So how many shares will Axiom give you when you reach 10,000?
Posted by: Mojo

Re: Stunning Recordings - 01/09/08 09:20 PM

I find that it's like a disease. I could be making money right now but instead...oh well \:\) .
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 02/05/08 12:14 AM

Okay, time to bring to your attention another one in my collection that should leave you stunned and babbling after hearing it over your Axioms. The Stravinsky collection on this disc includes The Rite of Spring, Petrouchka and Fireworks, all in vigorous performances with excellent sound and at a bargain price. At the 1913 premier of The Rite in Paris, the gentle French music lovers in attendance rioted(maybe they were expecting Mozart?), so if you get this try to keep yourself under reasonable control.
Posted by: Murph

Re: Stunning Recordings - 02/05/08 02:14 PM

Agreed!
This is one of the ones I bought on John's recommendations. The sound is simply amazing on this CD. Totally immersive sound stage.

I can't say that "The Right of Spring" were my favorite passages musically but I didn't riot or throw vegetables at my Axioms or anything. There is lots of variety in the other sections to balance, in any case.

That being said, it is definitely the CD I pull out when a classical lover wants to hear how the Axioms perform. More impressive as a demo than even the old standby, "The Planets", so often mentioned here. I think, anyways.

A delayed thanks John.
Posted by: real80sman

Re: Stunning Recordings - 02/05/08 06:40 PM

O.k. I clicked on the link, and the price is $7.97!!!! This goes to prove that a high quality recording can be produced inexpensively. If the major labels priced "popular" music in this range, I bet it would greatly reduce the amount of piracy that they cry about all the time. BUT, the quality must go hand in hand as well.
Posted by: hempy

Re: Stunning Recordings - 02/13/08 01:18 PM

Some recent favorites:

Fionn Regan - The End of History: Mostly finger-picking-style guitar, this kid has some SERIOUS talent. This album grabs you at about 3 seconds in, it's that good.

Bonnie "Prince" Billy - The Letting Go: Pretty mellow, but lush, goes from sparse to huge crescendos even within a single song. Really nice male/female vocal harmonies as well.

Medeski, Martin and Wood - Tonic: 100% acoustic live recording of a fine jazz trio. Some of their improvised stuff won't be everyone's cup of tea, but when they get rolling they make some of the best live jazz I've ever heard. Because this one was recorded through mics on the stage and not through the board, you hear every stool creak and audience noise, and it sounds great in 5.1.

Harry Manx - Road Ragas: Some great live blues and a few ragas to get your groove on. There are a couple fantastic covers on this one, like BB King's "The Thrill is Gone".

I've been driving my local library crazy picking up a lot of the stuff recommended here, so thanks everyone!
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/11/08 09:29 PM

The disc that I'll bring to your attention now is Ottorino Respighi's Roman Trilogy (Roman Festivals, Pines of Rome, Fountains of Rome)by Batiz with the Royal Philharmonic, which should certainly be stunning to our members of Italian ancestry(plus Slavic, French and all other ancestries). From the violence of the Circus Games in Roman Festivals to the gentle beauty of The Fountain of Valle Giulia at Dawn in Fountains of Rome, this is terrific music in excellent sound, all available at a bargain price(e.g., $6.99 at Tower ).
Posted by: danmagicman7

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/17/08 01:56 AM

If you're into instrumental music, give Nine Inch Nails Ghost's I-IV a try. It is very well recorded...and with this album they are changing the music industry.

http://ghosts.nin.com/
Posted by: zhimbo

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/17/08 08:39 AM

I'll second the "Ghosts" recommendation. First, I just had to support Trent Reznor, even though it's been years since I regularly listened to NIN: $5 for almost 2 hours worth of CD quality downloads? Let's see more of that! You can download the first set of tracks for free to get a taste.

And while a largely electronic recording may not exactly qualify as a "stunning recording" in the same sense as a recording of, say, an orchestral performance, it certainly does sound great - not overly compressed like so much contemporary music.

Reznor really improved upon the Radiohead download model - Radiohead only offered 160kbps mp3's, and the original recording is not all that great-sounding to begin with (although the songs, in and of themselves, are quite good, IMO).
Posted by: donaldekelly

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/20/08 11:28 AM

John K

Do you like Respighi's Airs and Dances? I heard it once and think I should buy it now, but which one? I don't mind spending 12 or 14 USD for a really good version. Naxos version gets good reviews as well.
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/20/08 11:35 PM

Sure Don, I like the Ancient Airs and Dances, especially the Bergamasca in the 2nd Suite. I like his Three Botticelli Pictures even more and would suggest that any disc that you get should include both. A bargain Respighi collection that I got some time ago includes both in excellent performances plus other items such as the Pines and Fountains(the Batiz disc suggested above is a bit better for Pines and Fountains and also includes Roman Festivals). You can get that 2-disc set for about $8.00 plus shipping from several sellers at Amazon .
Posted by: donaldekelly

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/21/08 03:24 PM

I actually bought that disc at Borders yesterday, but am thinking of taking it back unopened - after listening to the samples on Amazon. Not my style I guess.

Thanks anyway, JohnK. Where to you type from, anyway? Just curious.

Don
Posted by: donaldekelly

Re: Stunning Recordings - 04/05/08 08:39 PM

I found a cheaper and well reviewed cd of Respighi's Airs and Dances at the cd store near my house - it is actually pretty good. I should just listen when JohnK recommends cds.

Then I picked up Respighi's Roman trilogy (2 parts of it) by Reiner - also good. The one he recommended seems, from reviews, to be just as good and is significantly cheaper.

Anymore recommendations? This is one of the main threads I check at the Axiom forums - since I like my M22s and don't see upgrading speakers anytime soon.

Respighi, Knopfler, what else am I missing out on?
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 04/05/08 11:27 PM

Yes Don, you certainly should just listen to my recommendations(what about the Three Botticelli Pictures that I emphasized along with the Ancient Airs?). Just to start with, the Batiz Roman Trilogy that I suggested as a "stunner" is significantly better than the Reiner in both performance and sound, is cheaper, and of course includes all three compositions, which is an absolute necessity.

You're missing out on a whole bunch more of great music that's waiting for you out there at amazingly low prices. To be continued.
Posted by: donaldekelly

Re: Stunning Recordings - 04/06/08 11:52 PM

The Lopez-Cobos Ancient Airs cd also has the Botticelli Pictures on it.

But, I stand corrected.
Posted by: donaldekelly

Re: Stunning Recordings - 04/07/08 12:23 AM

JohnK

Well, I am overcoming my reluctance to venture outside of chamber music and have put a number of the cds you listed on my Amazon wish list. I will probably own most of your list in a few months!

Judging from the Amazon reviews your picks are pretty good, indeed.
Posted by: myrison

Re: Stunning Recordings - 04/07/08 09:45 AM

Given that this thread is 9 pages long, I'm not sure if this has been mentioned yet or not, but I've really been enjoying the Mugzy's Move CD. It's big band music and was mentioned in the Audioholics review of the Axiom system.

Apparently it is one they use for demoing audio systems they review. I picked it up and find that it really shows off all of the best qualities of the Axioms. Admittedly, it's a far cry from chamber music, but IMHO it makes for very enjoyable listening if you enjoy Big Band music. \:\)
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 04/07/08 10:07 PM

Now it's time for some stunning exotic Latin American musical adventures, including the Chavez Sinfonia India, Revueltas's Sensemaya and Ginastera's Estancia with its riotous concluding Malambo. Michael Tilson Thomas conducts an all-star student orchestra sounding absolutely world-class and in superb sound; available from several sellers on Amazon U.S. and Canada for about $10-$12.
Posted by: donaldekelly

Re: Stunning Recordings - 04/12/08 11:20 PM

I will add one - heard this on the radio and bought it right away. I have a real soft spot for violin and for Vivaldi - so take this recommendation with a grain of salt.

http://www.amazon.com/Vivaldi-Concertos-...08056600&sr=8-9

"Five Vivaldi violin concertos that have never before been recorded. Giuliano Carmignola, backed by the Venice Baroque Orchestra led by Andrea Marcon."
Posted by: donaldekelly

Re: Stunning Recordings - 04/12/08 11:23 PM

I just ordered:

Stravinsky: Rite Of Spring, Fireworks, Petrouchka / Ozawa, Tilson Thomas, Chicago Symphony (hope that was the one JohnK recommended)

Art of Segovia 2 cd set [Original recording remastered] since I enjoyed his remastered box set so much.

Funny - there was one cut in the box set that made my left Qs4 rattle - never heard that before or since. I think it was an old mono recording that wasn't done very well.

Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 04/12/08 11:41 PM

Don, this is the Stravinsky collection that I suggested.

Yes, I've enjoyed Carmignola's recording of the Vivaldi Four Seasons. As far as these being five Vivaldi concertos that have "never before been recorded", it reminds me of the composer who remarked a bit sarcastically that Vivaldi didn't write 500 concertos, but rather wrote one concerto 500 times!
Posted by: CV

Re: Stunning Recordings - 04/13/08 01:30 AM

Oooh, burn!
Posted by: donaldekelly

Re: Stunning Recordings - 04/13/08 08:19 PM

 Originally Posted By: JohnK
Don, this is the Stravinsky collection that I suggested.

....Vivaldi didn't write 500 concertos, but rather wrote one concerto 500 times!


I ordered the right Stravinsky

I guess I like all of Vivaldi's many versions of the same concertos! Some of them do sound similar.
Posted by: Murph

Re: Stunning Recordings - 04/21/08 03:35 PM

In keeping with Stunning recordings, how would one best put together a collection of the 9 Beethoven symphonies so I can put to rest the jokes of a good friend of mine who is on the board of directors for the PEI Symphony Orchestra. He says he will stop criticizing my measly classical collection if I at least get all 9 Beethoven's. I will then continue to criticize him for having only 1 Pink Floyd CD in his collection. After all, classics are classics. heh heh

Formats I can do are CD, DVD, DVD-A, and SACD.

I currently only have #9 in this board recommended version.
Beethoven: Symphony no 9 / Wiens, Hartwig, Lewis, Wand, etc

I believe this collection was once recommended as a low cost introduction to the complete collection.
Beethoven - 9 Symphonies and 1st Movement of 10

or would I be happier in gathering over time, individual recordings of one or two symphonies at a time on a more highly recommended disk.

I most interested in obtaining the best sound per recording. I am not classically educated enough to get into multiple interpretations of the same piece. That can come later as the library grows into enough of the essentials that I can begin to explore variations.

Thanks for your help.


Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 04/22/08 10:15 PM

Well, Andrew, your friend is apparently a bit more of a Beethoven enthusiast than I am, but this certainly is distinguished music. For a low-cost collection of all nine, the Mackerras set has fine performances and sound, rather than the set you list.

Sure, individual discs are better(but also more expensive). Your Wand 9th is excellent and the next individual pick should be the acclaimed Kleiber 5th & 7th (also on SACD). For 3 & 8 the Vanska SACD is suggested. 1, 2, 4 & 6 remain, and two really good sleepers are the Fey 1&2 and 4&6 .
Posted by: Murph

Re: Stunning Recordings - 04/28/08 03:44 PM

Thanks John, I've added those to my wishlist spreadsheet I've been keeping. I think I'll go the individual rout vs. the collection. No reason other than it makes it more fun.

And Yes, he is a bit overboard on Beethoven. I discovered the board has nicknamed him Schroeder, from the Peanut's Gang. His birthday is coming up and I found a nice, small, blue fleece blanket I intent to wrap up for him along with a copy of one of your recommendations.

As always, thanks for taking the time to help out.
Posted by: donaldekelly

Re: Stunning Recordings - 05/10/08 09:03 PM

Hey John

I just looked through the thread again to see if you recommended a Mussorgsky: Pictures at An Exhibition cd. I didn't find any mention - maybe I missed it.

Some people seem to say that Karajan's version is the best http://www.amazon.com/Mussorgsky-Pictures-at-Exhibition-Berman/dp/B00004Z1AL $4.77

Others (the often criticized Penguin guide) like the Reiner version http://www.amazon.com/Mussorgsky-Picture...10467724&sr=1-1 $5.24

Any recommendations? I just heard Reiner's version on the radio and thought it was very good, but maybe there is better.
Posted by: donaldekelly

Re: Stunning Recordings - 05/10/08 09:10 PM

Oh - I just searched and found that you recommended this one in another thread:

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0001XP1OQ/

Kuchar, National Symphony Orchestra, SACD, $7.11

Thanks again
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 05/10/08 11:14 PM

Yeah Don, Kuchar and his Ukrainians are my top choice despite the fine versions by Karajan and Reiner that you link(Szell would be another excellent older version). Note that the Kuchar is also available on regular CD at even lower price.
Posted by: Chris Mc

Re: Stunning Recordings - 05/12/08 11:02 PM

Brian Wilson Smile \:\)
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 05/19/08 09:42 PM

Today's stunner is the 2-disc set containing both the gorgeous music that Prokofiev composed for Cinderella and Glazunov's The Seasons. Terrific playing and sound at a bargain price(around $12 up). An even better price is available at Buy.com if Google Checkout is used with a $10 credit, making the net price $5.88.
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 08/04/08 10:09 PM

Noticed that Tower has a half-price sale($8.59)on this disc of beautiful and exciting music Khachaturian composed for a couple of Soviet-era ballets. The ballets themselves have typically dreary story lines(e.g., a collective farm struggling to meet its quota, spiced up with a bit of romance: girl loves boy, boy loves his tractor), but Khachaturian, again typically, uses this as a vehicle to display his gifts in using national dance themes to create a world of wonderful sound .
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 09/17/08 10:10 PM

British conductor Vernon Handley passed away last week, as was announced at the Proms concert that day. I have quite a few of his recordings and after some thought I'll add this one to this thread. It's a fine overview of the music of Vaughan Williams, containing has most gentle symphony, the 3rd, his most vigorous symphony, the 4th, and some of the music he composed based on folk themes. All excellent performances in sound of demonstration quality, and offered at a bargain price.
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 10/28/08 10:00 PM

British conductor Sir Charles Mackerras is especially noted for his performances of compositions by Czech composers. An outstanding example at a bargain price is his 2-disc set with the Dvorak 7th, 8th and 9th symphonies plus the Symphonic Variations and Romance. The best price appears to be from MDT for about $9 US.
Posted by: CV

Re: Stunning Recordings - 10/28/08 11:30 PM

You'd better Czech yourself before you wreck yourself?
Posted by: MarkSJohnson

Re: Stunning Recordings - 10/29/08 08:44 AM

LOL!
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 11/25/08 09:33 PM

In the spirit of upcoming Black Friday audio bargains, a bargain CD to play on them would be Sir Simon's performances of the majestic Prokofiev Symphony No. 5 and the savage Scythian Suite, all in excellent sound.
Posted by: St_PatGuy

Re: Stunning Recordings - 12/08/08 12:15 AM

 Originally Posted By: JohnK
In the spirit of upcoming Black Friday audio bargains, a bargain CD to play on them would be Sir Simon's performances of the majestic Prokofiev Symphony No. 5 and the savage Scythian Suite, all in excellent sound.


John, thanks for the recommendation. My CD arrived in the mail yesterday.

On a side note, and I've mentioned this in the past, almost all my driving time is accompanied by the lone classical music station in Southern California, KUSC. Tonight, I had dinner with my folks and my mom commented on how nice the music was when we drove to pick the food up.
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 12/08/08 09:16 PM

Very good, Sean. I'd suspect that you were a bit startled by the opening of the Scythian Suite, especially if the volume was fairly high.

Yeah, KUSC is one of my favorites for listening online, and I typically listen to Jim Svejda's program every weekday evening.
Posted by: St_PatGuy

Re: Stunning Recordings - 12/08/08 11:29 PM

I've learned with some classical discs to have the volume remote handy. The dynamic jumps on some works can be quite startling.


Also, I've been really enjoying discovering opera on KUSC while driving around Sunday mornings.
Posted by: Larry7995

Re: Stunning Recordings - 12/18/08 12:28 AM

Steely Dan - Two Against Nature (both the cd and the dvd), Gaucho, Aja, and Donald Fagen The Nightfly
contemporary bluegrass such as Blue Highway, Mountain Heart, Grascals, Carrie Hassler, Caitlin Cary etc really sounds excellent all the acoustic instruments are totally revealed
Steve Miller Book of Dreams
The Very Best of Crowded House
Techno stuff Paul Van Dyk, Tiesto, Thrillseekers, Crystal Method
Tower of Power, Earth Wind and Fire, Kool and the Gang
Roomful of Blues (blues band with a horn section)
some contemporary country sounds really good like Sara Evans Real Fine Place
Joe Pass and the Pizzarelli father and son on jazz guitar
Derailers
Allman Brothers Band
Norah Jones
Posted by: gary135r

Re: Stunning Recordings - 12/23/08 12:16 PM

I got hooked on Chesky recordings from the recomendations here (especially Marta Gomez). a question for all you Canadians out there. Where is the love for Sarah McLachlan? she is a fav of mine
Hope everyone has a safe and happy holiday. Merry Christmas.
Posted by: Ken.C

Re: Stunning Recordings - 12/23/08 12:34 PM

I like Sarah McLachlan in small doses.
Posted by: Murph

Re: Stunning Recordings - 12/23/08 01:59 PM

Me too. A truly amazing talent and I have a few CDs but not a regular choice in my playlist. I have to be in the mood.
Posted by: CV

Re: Stunning Recordings - 12/23/08 02:10 PM

I bought her live DVD, Mirrorball, but I haven't been able to make myself watch the whole thing. For some reason it turns me off. I have to say I really love her song and the scene it supports in Toy Story 2, though.
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 01/05/09 10:08 PM

Most of my suggestions involve works for full orchestra, but there's been some beautiful music composed for smaller forces(generally referred to as "chamber music"). Debussy and Ravel each composed only one string quartet, but they got it right the first time, and their quartets are regarded as among the most beautiful ever written. They're featured along with Debussy's haunting Syrinx for solo flute and Ravel's Introduction and Allegro which adds a clarinet and harp to the ensemble for added gorgeousness, on this scandalously low-priced disc , recorded fairly close-up, but with nice ambience added by the church recording venues(and best heard with the ambience extracted to the surrounds where it belongs with DPLII, etc.).
Posted by: St_PatGuy

Re: Stunning Recordings - 01/05/09 10:20 PM

It still kills me how most classical stuff can be picked up for dirt cheap. A bargain for me, though!!
Posted by: Zimm

Re: Stunning Recordings - 01/17/09 03:08 PM

DAMN! I love Dire Straits and was fully aware of the quality of Brothers in Arms. But bouncing around this thread for some new ideas I realized I had not run this album in my new room. SH#$%#$#$#T. The re-mastered version is so clean it is one of very few albums I can run at -00 db on the dial and not pick out a flaw. And the bass is insanely accurate. "Ride Across the River" should be a sample track sent by any company that really thinks their gear packs the goods. The other tracks are just as good, but that track covers every inch of audio ground from soft and subtle to bottom of the sub terrainian depths at full throttle. Mark Knopfler must have one incredible set up at home. He sure pays attention to sonic details in his recordings (even at 102 db at my ears). Thanks Mark.
Posted by: Zimm

Re: Stunning Recordings - 01/17/09 04:20 PM

Ok, I just hit 107 db on Pink Floyd "Another Brick in the Wall". Heard a "burp" or two so i had to bring it down, but all in all the re-mastered P Floyd is pretty tight. A bit of noise but, at 100+ you won't notice. And it is a subwoofer test worth adding to your weekend if you have not felt you chair move on anything but a LFE movie score lately.

Enjoy.
Posted by: BoB/335

Re: Stunning Recordings - 01/17/09 06:42 PM

You don't have your sub listed.
Posted by: fredk

Re: Stunning Recordings - 01/17/09 11:46 PM

He dosn't need one with the rare earth levitating wires.
Posted by: fredk

Re: Stunning Recordings - 01/17/09 11:47 PM

Or maybe he sold it to pick up a 500 crystal changer. ;\)
Posted by: BoB/335

Re: Stunning Recordings - 01/18/09 12:30 AM




Oh!
Posted by: Zimm

Re: Stunning Recordings - 01/18/09 11:39 AM

 Originally Posted By: BoB/335
You don't have your sub listed.

Sub is Bowers & Wilkins (B&W) ASW 600. Small and tight 10". Rocks hard in my small theater, but met its match with Floyd. The Dire Straits tracks worked it hard, but I have it crossed over at 40 hz so all of its work goes to accurate thumping and it stayed in control, while dripping in sweat! I honestly thought I might be thrust into the market for a new sub after yesterday.

And don't listen to Fred, he is just jealous because his cable just lays flaccid on the ground, and he keeps his crystals in an old crusty box. You got your crystals, right Bob? They are the key to accurate sound. I'm sure you covered that before splurging on better speakers.
Posted by: CV

Re: Stunning Recordings - 01/18/09 12:02 PM

Just think how great the acoustics are in Superman's Fortress of Solitude.
Posted by: fredk

Re: Stunning Recordings - 01/18/09 12:33 PM

My cables are not flaccid! I got a perscription for that.
Posted by: St_PatGuy

Re: Stunning Recordings - 01/18/09 12:34 PM

Fred, all you gotta do is wear something a little sexier next time you watch a movie. Cables like a little romance.
Posted by: CV

Re: Stunning Recordings - 01/18/09 12:35 PM

J.P.'s shirt?
Posted by: St_PatGuy

Re: Stunning Recordings - 01/18/09 12:39 PM

Bingo.
Posted by: fredk

Re: Stunning Recordings - 01/18/09 12:47 PM

Well I tried a pink nightie... um
Posted by: Zimm

Re: Stunning Recordings - 01/18/09 01:28 PM

Fred, Try fondling the crystals as you stimulate the cables with 100 watts of electricity - I hear that makes it sing.
I'm sure there are how-to guides on a different forum.
Posted by: BoB/335

Re: Stunning Recordings - 01/18/09 07:14 PM

 Originally Posted By: JohnK
Most of my suggestions involve works for full orchestra, but there's been some beautiful music composed for smaller forces(generally referred to as "chamber music"). Debussy and Ravel each composed only one string quartet, but they got it right the first time, and their quartets are regarded as among the most beautiful ever written. They're featured along with Debussy's haunting Syrinx for solo flute and Ravel's Introduction and Allegro which adds a clarinet and harp to the ensemble for added gorgeousness, on this scandalously low-priced disc , recorded fairly close-up, but with nice ambience added by the church recording venues(and best heard with the ambience extracted to the surrounds where it belongs with DPLII, etc.).


I took advantage of that link and ordered Ravel: String Quartet in F; Debussy: String Quartet in G minor; Syrinx. I'll let you know how I like it.
Posted by: gary135r

Re: Stunning Recordings - 01/26/09 11:08 AM

2nd disc of the SACD Tommy, the deluxe edition. nice recording quality. some hidden gems too.
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/03/09 09:34 PM

MDT Music is having a sale on Universal(Decca, DG, Philips)2-disc sets which lets us get these for about $7.80 plus about $1.10 shipping. At these almost give-away prices many of the sets are highly attractive, but at this time I'll specifically recommend an excellent Dvorak collection which includes the Slavonic Dances, American Suite, Czech Suite and others, performed by Dorati with the the Detroit Symphony and Royal Philharmonic. Over two hours of glorious music.
Posted by: davidsch

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/05/09 07:31 AM

 Originally Posted By: JohnK
MDT Music is having a sale on Universal(Decca, DG, Philips)2-disc sets which lets us get these for about $7.80 plus about $1.10 shipping. At these almost give-away prices many of the sets are highly attractive, but at this time I'll specifically recommend an excellent Dvorak collection which includes the Slavonic Dances, American Suite, Czech Suite and others, performed by Dorati with the the Detroit Symphony and Royal Philharmonic. Over two hours of glorious music.


Thanks John. I may have to get that one. When my wife and I were on our honeymoon in Vail about 11 years ago, we floated down the Arkansas river with several members of the Detroit Symphony. They were very nice to us and gave us free tickets to their performance that night.
Posted by: Zimm

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/10/09 10:49 AM

Finally decided to upgrade my Dire Straits collection after much abuse to the CDs. Last night I got my order in, so now I have the remastered version of every Dire Straits CD. Started with Alchemy last night, and as always with DS, was very impressed with the quality of the live recording. I'm still struck by the quality that is possible on CD (even from very old tracks - wait [does some quick math and comparison to DOB], just old \:\( ). Why are so many modern CDs so damn bad when a poor band in '78 could lay tracks that sound pure today? I've heard that even the old tape tracks exceed CD quality, so how come Velvet Revolver used an MP3 player to record their tin can sounding albums????

As this is a "Stunning Recordings" thread, I will also mention something I expressed in another area. I compared Dave Mathew at Radio City on Blu-Ray (via PS3 optical) versus the CD version (via cheap Sony DVD via coax) both into my Denon AVR 3300. I worked out the timing and volume [but did not calibrate] and compared the Blu-Ray in both stereo and Dolby Digital to the CD in stereo. In short, I was blown away. I had difficulty finding the differences as my daughter switched sources without my knowledge. I would have bet my system that the two would be easily distinguishable, but not so. In 5.1 the crowd was a give away, but the front image was only slightly wider than the CD. In stereo mode, only the slightest sound stage expansion was detectable - and I was working hard to find differences.

This one A/B test did more to destroy my faith in many of the myths I hold held so dear, than any number of threads or articles on the subject. Really surprising, and must put the Dave Mathews CD in the list of best recorded CDs given that the Blu-Ray is often considered reference material. Give it a try if you have both disks, and report back. I'd love to hear if some systems can easily discern the source, or if certain CD players and BluRay players are just getting more out of the source material than I am. Let's call it homework. ;\)
Posted by: Adrian

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/10/09 04:43 PM

 Originally Posted By: Zimm
Why are so many modern CDs so damn bad when a poor band in '78 could lay tracks that sound pure today?
To me, it's mainly because groups used to put the music first(in general terms) where today they make celebrity and a fast buck their priority.
Posted by: Zimm

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/10/09 08:09 PM

Come on, not the "those damn kids" defense! Celebrity and a fast buck have attracted the popular kids back to the biblical age. Human nature.
Posted by: Adrian

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/10/09 10:38 PM

Perhaps I should say that it is the corporate big shots who promote mediocrity. All bands needs promotion of course, but the biggest difference is that years ago, bands generally worked hard paying their dues in the clubs and bars, then were offered a record deal if they were lucky. Now, if you have the "look" or have "celebrity" they will manufacture that person into whatever THEY want for $$. Not saying this hasn't been around before, but it's certainly the main ingredient these days....THOSE DAMN KIDS!!
Posted by: davidsch

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/11/09 07:54 AM

 Originally Posted By: Adrian
Perhaps I should say that it is the corporate big shots who promote mediocrity. All bands needs promotion of course, but the biggest difference is that years ago, bands generally worked hard paying their dues in the clubs and bars, then were offered a record deal if they were lucky. Now, if you have the "look" or have "celebrity" they will manufacture that person into whatever THEY want for $$. Not saying this hasn't been around before, but it's certainly the main ingredient these days....THOSE DAMN KIDS!!


As Dire Straits said many years ago, "Money for nothin' and your chicks for free!".
Posted by: Zimm

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/11/09 04:44 PM

 Originally Posted By: davidsch
[quote=Adrian]
As Dire Straits said many years ago, "Money for nothin' and your chicks for free!".

That was a slick hijack rescue. \:\)
Posted by: Zimm

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/28/09 03:45 PM

Anybody around here list to Shelby Lynn? I found the CD after years out of the rotation so I gave it a whirl. Damn good recording. If you like small arrangement folk/blues type music this has a great image and her voice is pretty unique. Willie Nelson helped her get her foot in the door, and she has that kind of sound if that helps explain it.

Anywho.
Posted by: Murph

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/30/09 09:34 AM

The sound of a foot in the door?
Would that be the dull thud sound or the resulting yelp?
Posted by: Zimm

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/30/09 01:33 PM

;\)
Posted by: Zimm

Re: Stunning Recordings - 04/02/09 03:59 PM

This is far enough off the beaten path that I thought I would mention it for 90's music fans. Last night I listened to Alice in Chains live acoustic CD. I was surprised how good the recording was. The instruments are very distinct and layering in the image is great. Plus, they use a lot of acoustic bass guitar, and you can feel the cords vibrate long after the they are plucked. You can also hear the picks working on several song and pick out each instrument and vocal location. Always fun to pull out an old CD and find a surprise jewel.
Posted by: Ken.C

Re: Stunning Recordings - 04/02/09 07:06 PM

Cool. I'll have to pick that album up sometime.
Posted by: Zimm

Re: Stunning Recordings - 04/03/09 12:32 PM

Likely a cheap-buy used, not exactly as popular as Nirvana unplugged, but same vintage and actually sounds better in terms of SQ. And now that the lead singer of A&C is gone, his music really does seem more inspired. oldest trick in the book.
Posted by: Ken.C

Re: Stunning Recordings - 04/03/09 01:53 PM

If you've ever heard Mad Season, you'll know that he didn't have to kick the bucket to seem inspired. That was one fantastic group.
Posted by: Zimm

Re: Stunning Recordings - 04/03/09 04:46 PM

Mad Season "Above" is on my short list of the best music made in that era - still in the rotation. My wife picked up a Pearl Jam bootleg while in Spain in the 90s. It was nothing great, but it had a few live tracks of Mad Season (in some form or another) which was a cool surprise.
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 04/15/09 09:32 PM

Smetana's Ma Vlast(My Country)is a grouping of six tone poems expressing with colorful and emotional music the Czech landscape and legends. It's always the feature presentation at the Prague Spring Festival and never fails to bring forth patriotic fervor and often copious tears.

A disc that I've included in suggested collections a few times in the past certainly also deserves individual consideration here. Excellent performance by the superb Dresden State Orchestra directed by Berglund and in fine sound, all at a bargain price, it's my overall favorite of the six Ma Vlast's that I own and dozen more that I've listened to. Available from several sources of course, but the best buy at this time appears to be from the Buy.com sellers for as little as $6.50 shipped.
Posted by: CV

Re: Stunning Recordings - 04/16/09 03:56 AM

John, out of curiosity, do you plan on stepping into Blu-ray anytime soon? As more classical concerts get released onto the format, it would be nice to have someone like you giving recommendations on which ones to get. I think having the visual aspect of the performance would help me appreciate the music that much more.
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 04/16/09 10:26 PM

Not really, Charles. I don't put much emphasis on the visual aspect of orchestral performances. Although I've looked at a few on regular DVD, I don't own even one. Any suggestions that I'd make about them would be based on the performance quality without consideration of the video.

One area of classical performance that relies much more heavily on the visual aspects is the ballet, and I have a collection of the classical ballets(Cinderella, Nutcracker, Romeo and Juliet, Sleeping Beauty, Swan Lake, etc.)on DVDs. A few months ago I did view an excellent Swan Lake on Blu-ray at a colleague's home. Although I wasn't so overwhelmed(my whelm threshold is fairly high)that I felt compelled to rush out and buy a Blu-ray player, I can certainly recommend this Kirov performance to those with players.
Posted by: PTPlayers

Re: Stunning Recordings - 04/27/09 01:06 PM

Lyle Lovett "step inside this house "

disc 2 flyin shoes .

well produced and good imaging .
Posted by: Argon

Re: Stunning Recordings - 05/01/09 07:55 AM



John,
A general question - after years of listening to mainly pop and rock, I have discovered that I really like listening to Classical. Most of these links are not functioning - I would not ask you to repost as I can search the site. The thing is that most searches bring back multiple options. Would I be ok in picking any of the options or are there specific CD's that are the "better" recordings?.........Rob
Posted by: Argon

Re: Stunning Recordings - 05/01/09 07:59 AM

 Originally Posted By: Robert_W
John, your listing of these classical CD's has again renewed my interest and love for this music. Thank you! I have slowly been adding to my classical collection over the years but as of late I find myself leaning more and more in that direction. There is very little new music these days that peaks my interest and even less still that has all aspects of quality, (music, engineering, musicianship, originality etc)....not to mention paying $15-20 for a CD. The Tower Records site is also nice. Being able to preview a wide variety of classical is rare on the net. Between your list and links and suggestions I had to stop at about 20 CD's! That ought to keep me listening for a while anyway. <img src="/boards/images/graemlins/grin.gif" alt="" />


OK....By now it should be obvious that I am reading through this for the first time. THIS post echoes my feelings exactly!....Rob
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 05/01/09 10:49 PM

Rob, as you saw later on in the thread, the Tower links were originally all good, but most were changed when the Tower site changed ownership a few months later. If you haven't read this post by Rodney, he'd corrected some of the links(with the two exceptions I noted in reply to him)and most of the items are still available from Tower.

A more compact selection of ten CDs were recommended to Mike Drew here at his request. I'd suggest the same list to you now. Mike specifically wanted Amazon, but some of them are available at lower prices from Tower or elsewhere.

If you have some specific questions let me know. And no, it isn't generally a good idea to pick a CD simply because it happens to include a composition which was suggested. Some have dozens of different versions available which may differ greatly in performance or sound, and buying at random could result in disappontment.
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 06/11/09 09:27 PM

Strauss is said to have gotten the inspiration for his Alpine Symphony from a mountain climb he made when he was a young man. It's a mammoth work, requiring about 150 musicians(not to mention wind and thunder machines for the storm on the mountain), including 12 horns offstage playing in the background in one passage. The performance by Andre Previn with the Vienna Philharmonic is thrilling and is delivered in demonstration quality sound, including the famous(infamous?)Telarc bass drum. Available for around $9 from Amazon sellers and other sources.
Posted by: St_PatGuy

Re: Stunning Recordings - 06/11/09 09:31 PM

Added! Thanks, JohnK.
Posted by: CV

Re: Stunning Recordings - 06/12/09 02:23 AM

Man, another one that I have to get.
Posted by: medic8r

Re: Stunning Recordings - 06/12/09 09:28 AM

grumble, grumble.
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 07/14/09 09:31 PM

Bela Bartok traveled around Hungary and neighboring countries studying the folk music which the people played and sang. He often used this as a base for his classical compositions and many of the tuneful dances which resulted are included in this disc. The major composition on the disc however, is no folk dance, but the fierce music for the lurid ballet The Miraculous Mandarin. This was a winner of the Gramophone Magazine orchestral recording of the year award and offers music varying from playful to sinister, all in sound of demonstration quality. Available for around $12 from various Amazon sellers and other sources.
Posted by: Murph

Re: Stunning Recordings - 07/15/09 08:41 AM

I don't think my wishlist has ever been so long as it has been since I met JohnK here on the board. Thanks again!!
Posted by: Olderbutwiser

Re: Stunning Recordings - 07/15/09 09:23 AM

I think I need a second job to pay for my CD habit.
Posted by: Randall

Re: Stunning Recordings - 07/17/09 07:20 PM

Hold the presses!

I have come across a stunning recording.

I think this may be more appropriate for a "Stunning Recordings" thread in Home Theater section since it has great "serround sound" and LFE as well as terrific Blu-ray pic quality.

However, there is no such thread in that section so I'm hoping you'll accept it here.
Posted by: Murph

Re: Stunning Recordings - 07/17/09 09:38 PM

MmmmmmmOK what is it?

We can only stop the presses for so long.
Posted by: Randall

Re: Stunning Recordings - 07/17/09 09:58 PM

Lol... Ok, so my lame attempt to build suspense kinda fell flat.

"The Berlin Concert: Live from the Waldbuhne"

http://www.amazon.com/Berlin-Concert-Liv...47881372&sr=1-2

When Placido is the weak link (not really), you know you have something great.

Netrebko is so beautiful and talented its painful.

I don't think I could make it through a whole opera but these selections are just right for the casual listener who can appreciate great instrumental and vocal talent. No matter the genre.

Ok, so this is not exactly brand new- but I didn't see it listed and thought it should be.

It has literally changed the way I look at music. (so to speak)

If you try this one I think you will enjoy.

(Sorry I didn't research how to make a proper link.)
Posted by: St_PatGuy

Re: Stunning Recordings - 07/17/09 10:00 PM

Cool, thanks for the recommendation, Randall.

I've been trying to get into opera. I'll add it to my cart!
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 07/17/09 10:02 PM

Very good, Randall; with that lineup I suspect that it'll stun me!
Posted by: Randall

Re: Stunning Recordings - 07/18/09 09:58 AM

Anna Netrebko in this concert is the very definition of stunning so its particularly rewarding that the quality of the recording conveys that so wonderfully.

Let me add another stunning recording that also has top notch Blu-ray audio/pic quality as well as talent and material.

The Pyongyang Concert: New York Philharmonic w/ Lorin Maazel

Very nice, fun renditions of Dvorak's "From the New Word," Gershwin's "An American in Paris" and Bernstein's "Candide Overture."

I hope you all enjoy these as much as I have; I can play them over and over, enjoying them each time more than the last.
Posted by: Randall

Re: Stunning Recordings - 07/18/09 10:02 AM

o yea... here's the link:

The Pyongyang Concert: New York Philharmonic w/ Lorin Maazel

http://www.amazon.com/Pyongyang-Concert-...47925642&sr=8-2
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 08/18/09 09:43 PM

Amazon classifies it as an "Essential Recording" and that's certainly no hype. The classic Bernstein performances of Copland's Appalachian Spring, Billy The Kid and Rodeo have an energy and excitement which aren't matched by other fine versions. Remastered in clear, close-up sound for a thrilling listening experience.
Posted by: Adrian

Re: Stunning Recordings - 08/18/09 10:27 PM

Did you notice, if you order now, you can save $0.01 !!

Certainly has many positive reviews.
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 09/22/09 10:26 PM

Conductor Eugene Ormandy and the Philadelphia Orchestra, both at their peak, recorded the Shostakovich 1st Symphony in the presence of the composer. A very energetic performance of the remarkable symphony he'd composed when he was only 18 resulted, much to Shostakovich's approval.

The remaining items, which might be considered to be Shostakovich Lite, are a collection of colorful, very vigorous dance-like items from ballets and films, conducted by Andre Kostelanetz.

Available from various Amazon sellers , but the best price for a new copy at this time would appear to be from MDT , about $6.90 plus $1.20 shipping.
Posted by: rvrrat

Re: Stunning Recordings - 10/06/09 10:59 PM

Steely Dan-Gaucho (the dts digital surround version.) Stunning. The recording is extreemely clean and the surround work is awesome!
Posted by: Joebob

Re: Stunning Recordings - 10/07/09 06:25 PM

 Originally Posted By: rvrrat
Steely Dan-Gaucho (the dts digital surround version.) Stunning. The recording is extreemely clean and the surround work is awesome!


I have to agree on this one, it is one of my favorites!

Also good for an older recording is the Elton John Honky Chateau SACD.
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 11/04/09 09:52 PM

I've previously suggested my favorite recording of my favorite cello concerto to some members who asked for cello suggestions. Several of them now own it with apparent satisfaction, and since it certainly qualifies for this thread, I'll add it here.

Cellist Pierre Fournier joined conductor George Szell and the Berlin Philharmonic in a stunning performance of the Dvorak Cello Concerto. I consider the Dvorak to be the finest cello concerto ever written, and going much farther, one of the Amazon customers states in his review that he views it as "the best piece of music ever written by mankind".

Also included are two shorter pieces based on Jewish themes: the dramatic and haunting Schelomo, and the Kol Nidrei.

Offered at Amazon and other sources at almost give-away prices, this is certainly a disc to buy and enjoy.
Posted by: MarkSJohnson

Re: Stunning Recordings - 11/05/09 07:00 AM

Added to my Wishlist...., Thanks John!
Posted by: Murph

Re: Stunning Recordings - 11/05/09 07:56 AM

Me too. John's picks are consistently good and I love the cello. I can't lose.
Here is the Amazon.ca link for us Canadian folks.
Dvorak: Cello Concerto; Bruch: Kol Nidre; Bloch: Schelemo

Posted by: pmbuko

Re: Stunning Recordings - 11/05/09 09:27 AM

Just ordered it. Thanks for the tip, John. My little brother (freshman in college) is studying cello at the University of Arizona, so I may send another copy to him for his birthday.
Posted by: JaimeG

Re: Stunning Recordings - 11/05/09 12:30 PM

Dvorak cello concerto is remarkable, love the French horn solo at the intro of the 1 movement, later done by the cello as well…
Saint-Saëns Cello Concerto No. 1 is remarkable as well, my favorite cello concert; it really showcased the cello in all its possibilities. I can’t really point to any particularly good quality recording of it. Most likely any recording performed by Rostropovich is a sure bet, although sound quality might not be the best.
Posted by: Argon

Re: Stunning Recordings - 11/05/09 06:14 PM

 Originally Posted By: JohnK
I've previously suggested my favorite recording of my favorite cello concerto to some members who asked for cello suggestions. Several of them now own it with apparent satisfaction, and since it certainly qualifies for this thread, I'll add it here.



I bought it on your recommendation - after I ordered my Axioms and before I received them. It was on the short list for the initial audition of the new speakers. I'll have to say that you know your classical music. It is a stunning recording.
Posted by: Emzdogz

Re: Stunning Recordings - 11/10/09 08:44 AM

I would like to add something to the stunning recordings thread. Only thing - I doubt it is available except maybe as a DVD.

There was a sports special recently on Showtime, kind of a miniseries about the rise of the AFL and how it became the AFC etc.
GREAT show!
and crazy crazy music to go with it!
I don't even know how to describe it, genre-wise. Some of it is what I'd call 50's ultra light and ultra commercial jazz. i.e. made for TV sounding jazz tinged. But tasty in a retro sort of way.
But then during some of the very expertly filmed football shots (action stuff), OMG, the orchestral stuff just goes berserk.
Crazy sound all over the place. Very different.
Makes me wonder if there is one cohesive soundtrack to the thing.
Lets put it this way, the music on a FOOTBALL documentary was good enough to a. grab my attention and b. make me rave (even if only quietly to myself)
Here is a link to the show.
http://sports.sho.com/full-color-football.html


If you see it, I'd like to know what you thought of the sound. Especially the last episode, I'd say, is when it really caught my attention.
Posted by: pmbuko

Re: Stunning Recordings - 11/17/09 09:40 AM

 Originally Posted By: JohnK
I consider the Dvorak to be the finest cello concerto ever written

I'm going to have to agree with you here, John. I received my disc late last week and I've been listening non-stop ever since. It's simply amazing, and the second movement blows me away. Thanks for helping me expand my classical collection.

Unfortunately, I've yet to have the time to give it a proper listen on my Axioms, so it's been living in my car.
Posted by: CatBrat

Re: Stunning Recordings - 11/30/09 04:01 PM

Wow. I've never heard of SACD until just now. (Super Audio CD). Will this play on any BD player, or does it take a special player for it?

BTW, yes, I have been living under a rock.

I see that the Oppo BDP-83 player offers SACD, but not all BD players do. I also noticed that the Denon 4308ci had hdmi inputs for SACD. I suppose this is for just a SACD player.

Posted by: Adrian

Re: Stunning Recordings - 11/30/09 06:19 PM

I only have one Hybrid CD, Darkside O T Moon, but gotta say it's awesome. I don't know about south of the border, but SACD's haven't really caught on up here.
Posted by: rvrrat

Re: Stunning Recordings - 11/30/09 08:10 PM

I have several SACD's and I wish they would catch on more! A well made SACD is spectacular and eye opening. Favorites of mine include Steely Dan, Elton John, Pink Floyd, Diana Krall, Patricia Barber. Not all SACD's are hybrid (plays on SACD player and standard CD player) Also not all SACD's are 5.1 sound. Some are only stereo (ie most of Mobile Fidelity's SACDs) Actually one of my favorite 5.1 recordings is not SACD at all. Steely Dan Gaucho DTS version...fantastic. I have the 5.1 SACD version of this also, but I have to say the DTS is better. It has more of an "analog" sound to me. Smoother, richer sound than the SACD 5.1 version.
Posted by: CatBrat

Re: Stunning Recordings - 11/30/09 08:15 PM

Well, so far, my favorite music CD to listen to on the M22's is "guitarra romantica" by Jose Luis Encinas.

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00005A...E6VC8FM88938Z44

Sorry about the long link. I haven't learned how to associate a phrase/word with a link here yet.
Posted by: ClubNeon

Re: Stunning Recordings - 11/30/09 08:16 PM

SACD is basically a dead format, don't expect to see anyone new "catching on". I just wish those artists who did make DVD-Audio and/or SACD releases would jump on Blu-ray Profile 3.0. I'd buy Bjork's, Beck's and David Bowie's catalog again.
Posted by: CatBrat

Re: Stunning Recordings - 11/30/09 08:25 PM

Hmmm. I'll be studying the Blu-ray 3.0 audio only format. Thanks.

Here's a quote I got off of a different board,

"While high definition audio is not a new idea, the war between DVD-A and SACD effectively killed the formats, preventing them from becoming mainstream."
Posted by: ClubNeon

Re: Stunning Recordings - 11/30/09 08:35 PM

Yep, that sums things up pretty well. Hopefully the pull of BD, will get some artists releasing HD audio again. Blu-ray 3.0 is actually just 1.0 or less, but with the guarantee that it doesn't have lots of disclaimer screens up front, and will start playing automatically upon insertion. It can offer menus and other features, but the ability to be played without a display is key.
Posted by: MarkSJohnson

Re: Stunning Recordings - 11/30/09 10:18 PM

In my opinion, I don't think it was a format war that stalled the formats, but rather very poor marketing to the MP3-loving crowd. I remember asking people that WORKED in the music department about SACD and DVD-A discs, and they didn't know anything about them...despite having a display of them in their own department!
Posted by: Adrian

Re: Stunning Recordings - 12/01/09 02:06 PM

I had the same experience with a music store here, asked one of the staff if they had any SACD's..."What?"...I explained to them what they were so he then asked another clerk who more-less gave the old "if we have them they're on the floor somewhere".
Posted by: St_PatGuy

Re: Stunning Recordings - 12/22/09 09:57 PM

 Originally Posted By: JohnK
I've previously suggested my favorite recording of my favorite cello concerto to some members who asked for cello suggestions. Several of them now own it with apparent satisfaction, and since it certainly qualifies for this thread, I'll add it here.

Cellist Pierre Fournier joined conductor George Szell and the Berlin Philharmonic in a stunning performance of the Dvorak Cello Concerto. I consider the Dvorak to be the finest cello concerto ever written, and going much farther, one of the Amazon customers states in his review that he views it as "the best piece of music ever written by mankind".

Also included are two shorter pieces based on Jewish themes: the dramatic and haunting Schelomo, and the Kol Nidrei.

Offered at Amazon and other sources at almost give-away prices, this is certainly a disc to buy and enjoy.


John, I listened to this CD this afternoon and thoroughly enjoyed it. Will be taking it with me while I drive back to CA tomorrow for some road music.
Posted by: CV

Re: Stunning Recordings - 01/02/10 07:40 PM

I've been listening to two of my favorite discs for showing off my system, and I figured I should put them in this thread, though I've mentioned them elsewhere before.

Bat for Lashes - Two Suns

Emily Wells - The Symphonies: Dreams Memories & Parties

Two Suns just sounds big, even when the songs are quieter or more simple. I still prefer their first album for just casual listening, but this album brings out a little bit more from my system. "The Big Sleep" was the standout for me today.

The Symphonies: Dreams Memories and Parties has a lot going on. Lots of textures, and overall just very pleasant to listen to on a nice system.

I probably prefer the music on Emily Wells' album, but the Bat for Lashes album might be the most gorgeous recording I have of the artists I consider among my favorites.
Posted by: CatBrat

Re: Stunning Recordings - 01/02/10 08:09 PM

Thanks for sharing Emily Wells. I never heard of her before. I like her music.
Posted by: terzaghi

Re: Stunning Recordings - 01/02/10 08:26 PM

John Mayer's new album, Battle Studies, Sounds pretty decent on my m80's. I am not sure if I would call it "stunning", but the recording quality is pretty good IMO.
Posted by: CV

Re: Stunning Recordings - 01/02/10 10:45 PM

 Originally Posted By: CatBrat
Thanks for sharing Emily Wells. I never heard of her before. I like her music.


Hey, no problem. I'm glad you liked her music!
Posted by: Murph

Re: Stunning Recordings - 01/04/10 01:08 PM

Just a note for JohnK:
Just before Christmas I finally received a copy of your recommended version of Braham's - Hungarian Dances. This is the first classical music CD that I have ever played that my wife actually enjoyed along with me.

Normally she just tolerates my classical choices. This time she actually asked me to play it again. I wonder if it's festive nature gave her a Christmas feeling that inspired her to actually 'listen', as I find you must do to truly enjoy this genre.

In any case. Great recommendation.
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 01/05/10 10:00 PM

Very good, Andrew; that's definitely one of my "Desert Island" discs. I'll also mention that Dvorak's Slavonic Dances are similar in character to the Hungarian Dances and listeners who like one usually like the other, so you might consider one of the recommended versions.
Posted by: audiosavant

Re: Stunning Recordings - 01/06/10 01:50 AM

Jellyfish's 'Bellybutton' and 'Spilt Milk' are two of the finest recorded/produced/performed recordings in the pop/rock genre.

Many well known audio engineers use these two discs to check studio monitors.

As do I... \:\)
Posted by: Murph

Re: Stunning Recordings - 01/06/10 08:34 AM

All three added to my "list".
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 02/02/10 09:28 PM

Following up on my recommendation of my favorite Dvorak Cello Concerto, I'll bring to your attention a terrific recording having two of my favorite violin concertos. Sergey Khachatryan was the winner of the prestigious Sibelius Violin Competition when he was 15 years old(the youngest winner ever), playing among other pieces the Sibelius Violin Concerto. Three years later he recorded that concerto in Warsaw with the fine Polish Sinfonia Varsovia and also did the Khachaturian Violin Concerto for the disc. Beautiful, romantic playing, very well-recorded, and certainly a disc to be added to your collection.
Posted by: pmbuko

Re: Stunning Recordings - 02/02/10 10:49 PM

That's pricier than your normal recommendations, John. But on your recommendation, I think I'll get it.

EDIT: Hey, cool. I still had an ~$8 gift card balance on Amazon, so the price is nicer. \:\)
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 02/02/10 11:22 PM

Peter, some of the Amazon sellers offer it at a significantly lower price.
Posted by: pmbuko

Re: Stunning Recordings - 02/02/10 11:25 PM

I must not be thinking clearly. I always check the sellers links. Except for today. \:\(

Oh well, I'll get it by Thursday, at least.
Posted by: davidsch

Re: Stunning Recordings - 02/03/10 07:14 AM

 Originally Posted By: JohnK
Following up on my recommendation of my favorite Dvorak Cello Concerto, I'll bring to your attention a terrific recording having two of my favorite violin concertos. Sergey Khachatryan was the winner of the prestigious Sibelius Violin Competition when he was 15 years old(the youngest winner ever), playing among other pieces the Sibelius Violin Concerto. Three years later he recorded that concerto in Warsaw with the fine Polish Sinfonia Varsovia and also did the Khachaturian Violin Concerto for the disc. Beautiful, romantic playing, very well-recorded, and certainly a disc to be added to your collection.


Thanks for the recommendation.
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/09/10 10:40 PM

Today is the 100th anniversary of the birth of American composer Samuel Barber in West Chester, Pennsylvania. Barber was one of the 20th century composers who never stopped composing beautiful melodious music which was sometimes derided as "old-fashioned" by snobbish critics.

I'll bring your attention to his gorgeous violin concerto in a performance by young Canadian violinist James Ehnes from Brandon, Manitoba with the Vancouver Symphony. This disc, which also includes the concertos by Korngold and Walton, two other composers who gave us beauty in sound rather than sterile academic exercises, won a Grammy in 2008, as well as the Canadian Juno award for Canadian artists.

This superb disc, which I'm listening to as I type, is available from Amazon and the other usual sources to give you a lifetime of listening pleasure.
Posted by: bigwill2

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/09/10 11:24 PM

Never heard of the guy. The samples were nice. Lush, slow-moving pieces and a gallop away on your pony song. Thanks John.
Posted by: St_PatGuy

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/10/10 12:14 AM

I finally found a classical music station out here today on my way home from work and they were featuring his music. Heard Mr. Barber singing, too!
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/10/10 12:50 AM

Sean, I also heard that program. I suppose you listened to KBAQ at 89.5.
Posted by: St_PatGuy

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/10/10 08:19 PM

Yes! That's the station. Gave the dial a turn to start at the beginning and hit the seek button, and boom, it was right there.
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 04/07/10 09:57 PM

Now for something a bit heavier: Mahler's mammoth Symphony No. 2, "Resurrection". I listened again to this at Easter, although Mahler's theme wasn't the Resurrection of Christ, but the journey of mankind through life, death and resurrection, as he saw it. These vast themes called for the full resources of the finest orchestras to be employed to the max, and my favorite version is by Zubin Mehta, who whips up the Vienna Philharmonic to play with more intensity than customary for them. Excellent remastered sound to match the intensity of the performance, and as is common, again we find no correlation between quality and price, available from Amazon sellers and other sources at bargain prices.
Posted by: St_PatGuy

Re: Stunning Recordings - 04/08/10 12:22 AM

Thanks, John. I added it.
Posted by: davidsch

Re: Stunning Recordings - 04/08/10 07:30 AM

 Originally Posted By: St_PatGuy
Thanks, John. I added it.


I will get it with my next batch of CDs from Amazon as well. Thanks John.
Posted by: Murph

Re: Stunning Recordings - 04/08/10 10:07 AM

Just was about to order 3 CDs from Amazon, what's a fourth. Added and ordered.
Posted by: ClubNeon

Re: Stunning Recordings - 04/09/10 07:15 PM

Always on the lookout for well recorded popular music, I was completely surprised that Dido's newest (well 2008), Safe Trip Home, actually has minimal compression, but does seem to have the mid-range fattened up with some EQing. The drums kick nicely. If you like adult contemporary, female singers, check it out.
Posted by: rvrrat

Re: Stunning Recordings - 04/09/10 10:22 PM

The current favorite of mine is a SACD by Diana Krall titled "The Girl In The Other Room" It is very well recorded, has a little bit of jazz and a little bit of blues and it will give your sub a workout. Every now and then I run across a recording that I have trouble getting out of my Oppo. This is one of them. I hope Elvis and Diana make another some day that is this good.
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 05/12/10 09:48 PM

My favorite solo piano music is Albeniz's highly colorful Iberia, picturing in sound various aspects of his homeland. The wonderful source material led to later composers orchestrating various sections and in recently looking for a disc containing the orchestrated selections, I ran into a bit of a surprise discovery. One of my favorite CDs is the terrific Berglund recording of Smetana's Ma Vlast(My Country) with the superb Dresden State Orchestra, one of the 3 or 4 finest in Europe. This has been recommended before in group listings and as a "Stunning" selection, and those who don't have it should certainly consider it. I'd never heard Dresden's "second" orchestra, the Dresden Philharmonic, before, but judged by this wonderful Spanish collection it's also a virtuoso group. Colorful Albeniz, DeFalla and Ravel selections, energetically performed in fine sound.
Posted by: Rock_Head

Re: Stunning Recordings - 05/13/10 06:29 PM

Which Oppo player do you have?
I am trying to decide which one to buy.
Posted by: CatBrat

Re: Stunning Recordings - 05/17/10 06:02 PM

Here's a new blu-ray concert that came out last month, that I haven't heard anything about yet. It's a jazz/soul band called Incognito, that I wasn't aware of until today.
Posted by: bdpf

Re: Stunning Recordings - 05/24/10 12:04 AM

My favorite right now is Dave Matthews and Tim Reynolds at the Radio city Hall on Blu ray. The picture is just amazing and sound quality is the best I've heard so far. Simple, 2 acoustic guitars in perfect harmony.
Posted by: CatBrat

Re: Stunning Recordings - 05/24/10 09:21 AM

That is also one of my favorites. It's hard to believe that so much good sound can come from 2 people and 2 guitars.

Edit: Another one I really like is "Songs From the Heart" by Celtic Woman. (I thought it was blu-ray, but it looks like it only comes in DVD).
Posted by: bdpf

Re: Stunning Recordings - 05/24/10 10:54 AM

I'll check it out thanks.
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 06/22/10 10:02 PM

I have several sets of the symphonies of Rachmaninoff, my favorite composer, and the performances by Eugene Ormandy with the great Philadelphia Orchestra have special authority because of the close association the composer had with Ormandy and the Philadelphia. As shown here with them studying the score at a rehearsal, Rachmaninoff's last orchestral composition, the Symphonic Dances, was dedicated to Ormandy and the Philadelphia.

These beautiful and thrilling symphonies together with the orchestral version of the Vocalise, performed with authority in fine remastered sound, are available again in a 2-disc set for about $10 shipped from Amazon sellers , and shouldn't be missed.
Posted by: SirQuack

Re: Stunning Recordings - 06/22/10 11:34 PM

The Rach, would have been a great movie, not to be confused with The Rock. \:\)
Posted by: Dave B

Re: Stunning Recordings - 07/06/10 01:09 AM

Tons of great stuff here that lightened my wallet quite a bit. Thanks to all.

Three completely unrelated questions:

1) Does anyone know of any pipe organ CDs that are superb quality?
2) Is anything that Rammstein has ever released of reference quality?
3) Can SACDs be ripped into Apple Lossless or any other lossless format and played without an SACD player? (I currently use AppleTV because of its optical digital out, but that's cause I bought it before I realized there were many excellent USB DACs out there)
Posted by: Ken.C

Re: Stunning Recordings - 07/06/10 02:19 AM

3) I don't think anyone's ever been able to rip SACDs; certainly not to Apple Lossless.
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 07/07/10 01:51 AM

Sure, Dave; two terrific pipe organ recordings which I've suggested here in the past are Organ Blaster Sampler , and this 2-disc Bach collection .
Posted by: DreamTheater

Re: Stunning Recordings - 07/08/10 12:29 AM

For a regular CD, I really love the acoustic guitar playing of Rodrigo y Gabriella - 11:00. Just 2 acoustic virtuosos, very cool sounding music and I think it was recorded very well.
Posted by: dllewel

Re: Stunning Recordings - 07/10/10 02:42 AM

I think RyG 11:11 sounds great too. Their first album is great as well, although I do hear some minor distortion in their first recording at times. But their talent is fantastic and sounds great on a good system.
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 08/25/10 10:08 PM

The dramatic and beautiful music which Prokofiev composed for Romeo and Juliet should be in every collection. Michael Tilson Thomas conducts the San Francisco Symphony in a very energetic performance in excellent remastered sound, available from sellers here and from other sources for just a few dollars.
Posted by: MarkSJohnson

Re: Stunning Recordings - 08/26/10 05:56 AM

Added to my cart at Amazon. Thanks, John!
Posted by: Dave B

Re: Stunning Recordings - 08/27/10 10:27 PM

OK, I know this is always listed as one of the best recordings, but just in case anyone has missed it:

The Pizza Tapes.

It absolutely, 100%, lives up to the hype, quality-wise. For as good as Knopfler and others here are, it is still head and shoulders above that level.

Yes, it's Jerry Garcia and the Dead isn't for everyone. But this is bluegrass and a lot of traditional tunes. Even if you hate that genre I'd imagine you could tolerate this. Especially when it shows you just how good your speakers can sound.

(BTW, thanks to John and others who recommended some good organ music. I cranked Toccata and Fugue in D Minor at 50 the other day and had one of those cartoon eyes bulging out of their sockets moments when the low end kicks in. That's just plain awesome.)
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 10/19/10 09:25 PM

I've suggested stunning recordings of the symphonies of my favorite composer, Rachmaninoff, and it's time to recommend a recording of his great piano concertos which should be part of every collection. The late Earl Wild, who passed away earlier this year at age 94, recorded very high-powered performances of the four concertos plus the Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini with the Royal Philharmonic, which has been re-issued in excellent remastered sound. Power and beauty abound here, and the 2-disc set is available for about $17 plus shipping from the usual sources.
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 11/18/10 10:03 PM

Something a bit different here. Brazilian composer Heitor Villa-Lobos had composed some material to be used as the score of a film flop titled "Green Mansions". Most of it wasn't used, and the material has been restructured into an exotic set of tone poems with a Latin American flavor. Played and sung(including gorgeous selections by soprano Renee Fleming)excitingly, this is a recent discovery by me of stuff buried deeply in the classical catalog which makes for great listening. Available here for around $10 shipped.
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 12/13/10 11:02 PM

I've suggested this disc before, but it certainly also deserves to be added to Mojo's "Stunning" thread. Dvorak composed his Slavonic Dances when his publisher, Simrock, suggested that he might compose something on dance themes, which Brahms(also a Simrock client)had recently done with great artistic(and financial)success in his Hungarian Dances. He came up with different, but equally delightful, gems which should be part of every collection. Levi's Telarc disc is outstanding in both performance and sound and is available from sellers here for around $9 shipped.
Posted by: Da_Gimp_Pimp

Re: Stunning Recordings - 12/14/10 08:44 AM

John, I really enjoyed these two performances ( 1 , 2 ) and thought you'd like them as well.

Is that maestro highly esteemed? I've seen him in a couple different performances.
Posted by: pmbuko

Re: Stunning Recordings - 12/14/10 09:55 AM

Originally Posted By: wheelz999
Is that maestro highly esteemed?

Mr. Ozawa spends at least esixteen minutes inside his esauna prior to each performance so, yes, I would call him highly esteemed.
Posted by: Da_Gimp_Pimp

Re: Stunning Recordings - 12/14/10 10:20 AM

Apparently he is a very highly regarded, peripatetic, maestro. Link.
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 12/14/10 10:33 PM

Very good, Cam; watched those and enjoyed them. There are 14 other Slavonic Dances besides the 2nd and 7th on the YouTube clips, and you might consider getting the Levi disc for a lifetime of enjoyment of all of them.

Ozawa is a reasonably well-regarded conductor, but there's a surprising amount of negativity about many of his performances. I recall reading a favorable review of one of his Ravel recordings in which the reviewer characterized him as "second-rate" in most repertoire other than the French. The one CD of his that I'd strongly recommended here was his Stravinsky collection .
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 01/12/11 09:55 PM

Reinhold Gliere, born in Kiev, took as inspiration the legendary Ukrainian folk hero Ilya Murometz to compose his massive 3rd Symphony, a gloriously melodic and dramatic work which serves to set the teeth of certain snobbish classical critics on edge. Ilya was said to have been a weakling, sitting motionless for 30 years, until emissaries of God endowed him with supernatural strength to combat the enemies of Ukraine. His exploits in doing so, including defeating an army of a thousand men while armed only with a boot, are depicted in gorgeous sound by Gliere.

I have several versions of this symphony, one of my favorites, and those who don't have it(you're really missing something)should consider getting this exciting performance , available from various Amazon sellers for just a few dollars.
Posted by: cb919

Re: Stunning Recordings - 01/13/11 11:03 AM

Thanks John, listening to it on Napster now as I work. Good timing as I felt like listening to something different than my usual work play lists but couldn't make a decision.

Cheers!
Posted by: Henry66

Re: Stunning Recordings - 01/27/11 09:04 PM

OK, this one I have to add to the list of Stunning Recordings:

Roxy Music - Avalon (on SACD). Amazon.com Wikipedia

I bought it used on Amazon marketplace for $80. It is out of "print" and highly sought after, hence the price. I got my copy today and now I understand why. I had to pick my jaw up off the floor.

(Everyone has different musical tastes, so I would not recommend spending this much money unless you know you like Roxy Music.)

Can't wait till I get my QS8s so I can listen to it in surround sound.
Posted by: CV

Re: Stunning Recordings - 01/28/11 02:01 AM

Holy crap. I have the SACD. Someone on here sent it to me a while ago. ihifi? Sorry if my memory sucks! I don't think it was going for that much back then. At least, I hope not. I should listen to it again sometime and remind myself what my impressions were.
Posted by: St_PatGuy

Re: Stunning Recordings - 01/28/11 07:41 AM

Dude, me too! I have no recollection of buying it?

Looks like I'll be listening to it this weekend.
Posted by: oldskoolboarder

Re: Stunning Recordings - 01/28/11 01:47 PM

I'm stretching the 'recording' definition here, but for me, this is one best recorded web videos I've heard and on top of that it's Jake.

http://www.ted.com/talks/jake_shimabukuro_plays_bohemian_rhapsody.html
Posted by: Artisan

Re: Stunning Recordings - 02/05/11 07:06 PM

Jake is a musical badass. I also like the one of him playing in Hawaii, While My Guitar Gently Weeps. There's quite a bit of background hiss in this one, probably due to being recorded outside, but his playing is phenomenal.



Jake - Weeping Ukulele
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 02/15/11 11:19 PM

A mention the other day in another thread of the influence of classical music in film scores reminded me of Bernard Herrmann's eerie/beautiful music that added so much to the original 1951 The Day The Earth Stood Still. I've mentioned this in passing a couple times in the past, but it certainly belongs in Mojo's Stunning Recordings thread.

This is the original 1951 score, but re-recorded in high class sound that will give audio systems, especially subs, a good workout. As with so many film scores, arguably better than the films themselves, and fully able to stand on its own and supply enjoyable listening. Available for about $12 plus shipping from various Amazon sellers .
Posted by: BobKay

Re: Stunning Recordings - 02/16/11 12:12 AM

Originally Posted By: JohnK
Available for about $12 plus shipping from various Amazon sellers .


Shameless shiller!
Posted by: CV

Re: Stunning Recordings - 02/16/11 12:12 AM

I have that one in my Saved For Later, but I haven't yet committed to purchasing it. I look forward to hearing it at some point, though. I've still never even seen the movie.
Posted by: Dave B

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/15/11 03:25 AM

Anyone have any good new recommendations for female vocal-based HQ recordings?

I pulled an Allison Krauss and Robert Plant disc down from HDTracks and also found a Diana Krall Christmas disc that is just phenomenal quality. Would love some non-seasonal equivalents.

My sister recommended Ingrid Michaelson, but I was saddened to find out that despite her great voice, the recording quality was crap. What a letdown. Right now outside of the two listed above and a couple of Norah Jones albums, I am seriously lacking in quality female vocals. I have even less of that than I have jazz.
Posted by: Murph

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/15/11 08:02 AM

If you like Celtic sounds, anything by Loreena McKennitt. She owns her own recording studio and does a great job of producing her own unforgettable voice.

I'll call it World Music. Someone here introduced me to Pink Martini. I can't recall which CD I have but it catches my ear for stunning quality and another unique female voice every time it comes up on my random setting.

Holly Cole Trio - Don't Smoke in Bed is another that catches my ear, so to speak, and Ella Fitzgerald is another name I recall seeing mentioned a few times here as well but I do not own anything by here so can't recall the exact CD.
Posted by: Adrian

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/15/11 09:08 AM

Murph, a little background on LM's own recording studio...when she started out, a major record company heard some of her music and wanted to sign her up so they sent her a rather large cheque and asked her to record some tracks for them. She and her group proceded to record a number of songs for the record label to demo and after listening to them they contacted her and asked her to change this, modify that ect....she sent the cheque back to them and said she wasn't interested. Class.

She also had a #1 album on some New Age chart, don't know if it was Billboard or other, but she called them and asked them to kindly remove it since she doesn't play "New Age".

Aside from enjoying her music, I appreciate her ethics which seem rare in the industry.
Posted by: Murph

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/15/11 10:54 AM

Cool story. I'll add even another notch on my respect meter for her.
Posted by: Ken.C

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/15/11 01:03 PM

I'm really enjoying Erin McKeon and Lucy Kaplansky lately, but I'm not sure how good their recordings are. Great songs, though.
Posted by: davidsch

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/15/11 01:21 PM

Sarah McLachlan's Cds are well recorded and I highly recommend Fumbling Towards Ecstasy and Surfacing.
Posted by: Henry66

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/15/11 03:21 PM

Three female singer albums that I have that are very high quality recordings:

Susanne Vega - Solitude Standing
Tori Amos - Little Earthquakes
Tracy Chapman - Tracy Chapman

(Note: none of these can be categorized as "uplifting music", although Vega is relatively benign.)
Posted by: Dave B

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/15/11 03:33 PM

I can't tell you how happy that makes me that Tracy Chapman is of good quality. Every once in a while I'll hear one of her songs and think "damn I bet that'd sound good on a good system" but then get distracted before I get around to buying it.

I knew Suzanne Vega's brother. If you're familiar with Blues Traveler's smoking cat logo, IIRC he is the one that drew it.

Edit: Somehow my previous post disappeared. I thanked Murph because I love celtic music, and I mentioned that while Afterglow (Sarah McLachlan) was once a demo I used during amp selection, I find that the overall quality of the recording pales compared to a bunch of others that I have. (Sure beats the crap out of the Ingrid disc though.)
Posted by: MarkSJohnson

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/15/11 03:34 PM

I think of her "Crossroads" CD to be reference quality.....
Posted by: alan

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/15/11 03:57 PM

Hi DaveB and Henry66,

We used the "Fast Car" track from the Tracy Chapman album for many years of loudspeaker blind listening tests at the National Research Council in Ottawa. It was one of our standard test tracks and I think Dr. Sean Olive still uses it at Harman's listening facility in L.A.

The a cappella version of "Tom's Diner" by Suzanne Vega from the Solitude Standing album was one of the standard test selections for audio codec listening tests in Canada, the U.K. and Australia. I participated in the Ottawa tests for several days. If the data rate went below 320 kbps with virtually all of the lossy codecs, her voice would get a bit metallic and sibilant sounding. That track was very revealing of compression artifacts.

Cheers,
Alan
Posted by: Dave B

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/15/11 04:16 PM

Thanks Alan!

Good to know my snap judgement was a good one smile

And.... ordered.

I downloaded some Louise Rogers from HDTracks this morning. It's pretty good if you can stand a little bit of scatting. Not Scatman level scatting, but there's some of it.
Posted by: Adrian

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/15/11 04:19 PM

Alan wanted to use Motorhead, but the other guys voted him down. wink
Posted by: alan

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/15/11 04:54 PM

It was either Motorhead or "Last Song" with Larry Evoy and Edward Bear. . .ha, ha.

Alan
Posted by: donlboy

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/15/11 09:54 PM

Try Marta Gomez 'Entre Cada Palabra' if you like South American jazz. Try Sophie Milman 'Take Love Easy' for straight vocal jazz. Or I like Dave's True Story 'Unauthorized' for funky offbeat but very nice female vocals. All are on HDtracks.
Posted by: Dave B

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/15/11 10:37 PM

Thanks.

Among my HDTracks shopping spree today were Jane Monheit and Louise Rogers. Both are some nice upright bass based jazz and a very high quality female voice. Good for showing off.
Posted by: Adrian

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/15/11 10:40 PM

I have a Jane Monheit recording, excellent.
Posted by: davidsch

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/16/11 08:10 AM

Originally Posted By: MarkSJohnson
I think of her "Crossroads" CD to be reference quality.....


+1
Posted by: St_PatGuy

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/18/11 10:52 AM

I keep thinking of Alan sneaking in some Motorhead during a listening session. The look on his colleagues' faces would be priceless!
Posted by: medic8r

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/18/11 12:24 PM

Saw Lemmy as the limo driver in the Foo Fighters' new video, "White Limo". Good stuff.
Posted by: Adrian

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/18/11 12:54 PM

A Lemmosine?
Posted by: medic8r

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/18/11 01:23 PM

laugh
Posted by: Murph

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/18/11 03:24 PM

Love it. I'd hire him just to hear him ask where we are headed in that gruff voice.
Posted by: fredk

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/20/11 02:19 PM

Originally Posted By: Henry66
Three female singer albums that I have that are very high quality recordings:
...
Tracy Chapman - Tracy Chapman
...

I listened to this one the other day and and that was the first thing I thought: wow, well recorded.
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 04/27/11 10:35 PM

I'll suggest a great one from one of the smaller areas of my collection(Broadway musicals). Lerner & Lowe composed a masterpiece of beauty and romance to bring Brigadoon to life. Story of two Americans vacationing in the Scottish Highlands who get lost and stumble upon the village of Brigadoon on the one day in each century when it comes to life. Romance develops, but they leave when the day ends and Brigadoon vanishes. Tommy can't forget Fiona though.

Of the six versions that I own or have heard, my clear favorite is this one , featuring Janis Kelly as Fiona and George Dvorsky as Tommy. Beautiful, romantic songs, wonderfully performed, notably Kelly in "Waitin' For My Dearie" and their duets in "The Heather On The Hill"(my favorite)and "Almost Like Being In Love". Available from various Amazon sellers for about $12 up.

Tommy had to return to Scotland, where the power of his love brought Brigadoon back to life and reunited him with Fiona forever. I return to this recording often to experience the emotions of this great show.
Posted by: PTPlayers

Re: Stunning Recordings - 05/11/11 08:08 AM

I have a Korean pressing of Jennifer Warnes Famous Blue rain Coat and yesterday i picked up the 20th anniversary numbered edition which plays on 45 speed and wow , i couldn't believe that it sounds even better .
Posted by: Dave B

Re: Stunning Recordings - 05/14/11 10:30 AM

This doesn't entirely fit the theme of this thread, which why it's such a shame...

Has anyone heard Adele's new release, 21? I guess the first track has been getting a lot of publicity.

What a voice. And what a song.

And what a waste - the recording is no better than your run of the mill CD.

So much potential with that voice, the piano, the bass... all wasted.

It makes me mad. Are there no good studios in the UK?
Posted by: MarkSJohnson

Re: Stunning Recordings - 05/14/11 02:01 PM

I don't think there are good studios ANYWHERE producing Rock and Pop. It makes me mad, too. They ruin art by gearing it to the poorest quality of playback: iPods, internet radio and FM.
Posted by: J. B.

Re: Stunning Recordings - 05/14/11 02:23 PM

i know nothing about iPods or internet radio, but FM can be excellent; i used to have a Technics ST-G7, one of the best ever made, and regularly listened to CBC live concerts and piano competitions, and it was excellent, and the noise floor was so low i could not hear it, even with headphones.
...but this was the exception in a sea of average quality FM stations who murdered the sound with heavy compression.
Posted by: MarkSJohnson

Re: Stunning Recordings - 05/14/11 02:59 PM

Quote:
but this was the exception in a sea of average quality FM stations who murdered the sound with heavy compression.

Yeah, the capability was there. I had a massive Kenwood KT-815 tuner that offered great sound quality with the right station, but unfortunately, most station managers (and record producers) are more concerned with "loud" than "good".

It really is a peeve of mine.


Posted by: davidsch

Re: Stunning Recordings - 05/19/11 07:30 AM

Originally Posted By: MarkSJohnson
I don't think there are good studios ANYWHERE producing Rock and Pop. It makes me mad, too. They ruin art by gearing it to the poorest quality of playback: iPods, internet radio and FM.


I find that the Black Eyed Peas music is very well recorded. They seem to be an exception, though.
Posted by: DanielBMe

Re: Stunning Recordings - 05/19/11 03:51 PM

Adele's new cd is the cd getting the most playback in my home at the moment. I agree what a voice!
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 05/23/11 09:46 PM

If you don't have a recording of Scheherazade in your collection(??)then you've been missing out on the gloriously exotic and exciting music Rimsky-Korsakov composed to bring to musical life the story of Scheherazade and the Sultan from Tales of the Arabian nights. Even if you do, certainly more than just one is necessary and the thrilling performance with Reiner driving the Chicago Symphony players to extraordinary feats of orchestral execution should be added.

Stravinsky's Song of the Nightingale is also included in a performance of similar color and vigor. Excellent re-mastered sound in SACD and an essentially equally good CD layer, both being especially impressive when used with a mode such as DPLII to listen in realistic surround ambience.

Available from various Amazon sellers here
for around $10 up, shipped.
Posted by: bruceg

Re: Stunning Recordings - 05/23/11 10:13 PM

OK, it's orded.
Thanks
Posted by: Murph

Re: Stunning Recordings - 05/26/11 01:41 PM

A Classical Recap....

I've been keeping a spreadsheet of recommended "Stunning Recordings". It is by no means complete. I have missed many during periods that I wasn't watching the boards or had no time to copy links. I only recorded the ones that interest me in most genres but the classical list is the 'most' complete as I had the least knowledge of this genre but a keen interest to try out it's many styles and periods. Therefore I didn't discriminate.

If it's a help to anyone, here is the list from my classical tab of my spreadsheet. I couldn't seem to cut and past in any method that retained the columns so forgive the formatting. I couldn't spare the time to format manually.

In no particular order.....

Submitter Composer Conductor Title
JohnK Aaron Copland Leonard Bernstein Bernstein Century - Copland: Appalachian Spring, Rodeo, etc / Bernstein, New York PO
JohnK Alan Hovhaness Dennis Russell Davies Alan Hovhaness: Symphony No. 22 ("City of Light"); Cello Concerto
Efalardeau Bach Goebel or Dantone Bach's Brandenburg concertos (with Goebel or Dantone
Efalardeau Bach Harnoncourt Bach's solo cello suites (Harnoncourt, Casal)
Efalardeau Bach Harnoncourt or Leonhardt Bach's cantata (from Teldec with Harnoncourt or Leonhardt)
JohnK Bach Heinrich Schiff Bach Cello Suites
Mojo Bach Bach and Canadian Brass: Sacred Brass
Efalardeau Bach French suites by Bach (played on cemballo, ideally with Gustav Leonhardt or Tom Koopman)
JohnK Beethoven Gunter Wand Beethoven Symphony No. 9(Wand)
JohnK Beethoven Harnoncourt Beethoven - Nine Symphonies
Spiffnme Beethoven Klieber Beethoven Symphonis 5 & 7
Spiffnme Beethoven Perahai / Haitink Beethoven Piano Concerto No.5
Efalardeau Beethoven Beethoven's string quartet from the middle period (7-11) (Italiano)
Efalardeau Beethoven Middle or late period string quartets by Beethoven (ideally played by Quartetto Italiano)
JohnK Bela Bartok Ivan Fischer Bartók: The Miraculous Mandarin; Hungarian Peasant Songs; Rumanian Folk Dances
JohnK Berlioz Munch Berlioz Symphonie Fantastique(Munch)
BobK Bernard Herrmann Joel McNeely Day the Earth Stood Still
Efalardeau Borodin Barenboim Borodin's Symphonies 2&3 (Barenboim)
JohnK Brahms Bogar Brahms Hungarian Dances(Bogar)
Efalardeau Brahms Brahms quintet for piano (Grumiaux)
JohnK Brahms / Schumann Andrew Constatine Brahms: Double Concerto, OP. 102 / Schumann: Cello Concerto, OP. 129
Efalardeau Debussy La Mer and other orchestral work by Debussy
Efalardeau Dukas La Peri Dukas's Symphony (La Peri and L'apprenti sorcier)
JohnK Dvorak Kubelik Dvorak Slavonic Dances(Kubelik)
JohnK Dvorak Pierre Fournier Dvorak: Cello Concerto: (Pierre Fournier )
JohnK Dvorak & Bloch & Bruch George Szell & Alfred Wallenstien Dvorak: Cello Concerto; Bruch: Kol Nidre; Bloch: Schelemo
Randall Dvorak, Gershwin, Bernstein Lorin Maazel The Pyongyang Concert: New York Philharmonic w/ Lorin Maazel
Peter C Gershwin Rhapsody in Blue by Gershwin
JohnK Holst Mehta Holst Planets(Mehta)
JohnK Khachaturian Temirkanov Gayaneh & Spartacus Suites
Peter C Mansel Clint Mansel, soundtracks for "Requiem for a Dream" and "The Fountain."
JohnK Mendelssohn Mendelssohn: String Quartets, Vol. 2
Efalardeau Mozart Charles Mackerras Mozart Symphonies 38 Through 41
Efalardeau Mozart Donald Runnicles Mozart: Symphonies 39 & 41 ("Jupiter")
Efalardeau Mozart Gordan Nikolic Mozart Serenade in D Haffner (K.250) & March in D (K.249)
Efalardeau Mozart Harmoncourt Mozart's Requiem (Harnoncourt)
JohnK Mozart Neville Marriner Mozart: The 4 Horn Concertos; Rondo in E flat
Efalardeau Mozart Nikolaus Harnoncourt Mozart: Requiem in D Minor, K. 626
Efalardeau Mozart Peter Oundjian Mozart: Clarinet Concerto & Quintet
Efalardeau Mozart Rene Jacobs Mozart - Le nozze di Figaro / Gens, Ciofi, Kirchschlager, Regazzo, Keenlyside, Concerto
Peter C Mozart Sharon Bezaly Mozart Flute Concertos; Rondo; Andante - (Sharon Bezaly)
JohnK Orff Muti Orff Carmina Burana(Muti)
JohnK Prokofiev Ashkenazy Prokofiev Cinderella(Ashkenazy)
Efalardeau Prokofiev String Quartets Nos. 1 & 2 and Cello Sonata, Op. 119
JohnK Rachmaninoff Ashkenazy Rachmaninoff Symphonies, etc. (Ashkenazy)
JohnK Rachmaninoff Symphonic Dances ®
JohnK Ravel Dutoit Ravel Daphnis et Chloe(Dutoit)
JohnK Ravel Martinon Ravel: Orchestral Works (Martinon)
JohnK Reinhold Gliere Donald Johanos Gliere: Symphony 3
JohnK Respighi Batiz Respighi Roman Festivals(Batiz)
JohnK Richard Strauss André Previn Richard Strauss: Eine Alpensinfonie
JohnK Rimsky-Korsakov Batiz Rimsky-Korsakov Scheherazade (Batiz)
JohnK Rimsky-Korsakov & Stravinsky Fritz Reiner Rimsky-Korsakov: Scheherazade; Stravinsky: Song of the Nightingale [Hybrid SACD]
Efalardeau Schumman Harmoncourt Schumman's Symphonies no 3&4 (Harnoncourt)
JohnK Shostakovich André Kostelanetz Shostakovich: Symphony No. 1; Ballet Suites 1 & 2
Efalardeau Shostakovitch Shostakovitch symphonies
Efalardeau Shubert lieders Schubert's Impromptus for piano or his Moments Musicaux
Efalardeau Shubert lieders Schubert's Die Schone Mullerin or Die Winterise (lieders)
JohnK Smetana Berglund Smetana Ma Vlast(Berglund)
JohnK Strauss Andre Previn Einne Alpinsymphonie
JohnK Stravinski Ozawa Stravinsky Rite of Spring(Ozawa)
JohnK Stravinsky Jansons Stravinsky: L'oiseau de feu; Le sacre du printemps
JohnK Tchaikovsky Lanchberry Tchaikovsky Swan Lake(Lanchbery)
JohnK Tchaikovsky Muti Tchaikovsky Symphonies, etc.(Muti)
JohnK various Carol Rosenberger Water Music of the Impressionists - Carol Rosenberger
Mark Johnson various Claudio Abbado Prokofiev: Alexander Nevsky, Lieutenant Kij‚ / Abbado
JohnK Various Wallenstien Dvorak: Cello Concerto; Bruch: Kol Nidrei; Bloch: Schelomo
JohnK Various Barber collection (Schippers)
JohnK Various Latin American collection(buy from Amazon seller)
Mojo Various The Quicksilva Collection: Volume 2 Vivaldi, Purcell, Handell
JohnK Various Vocalise
JohnK Vaughan-Williams Bakels Vaughan Williams Symphony No. 2(Bakels)
JohnK Vivaldi Gil Shaham Vivaldi: Le quattro stagioni (the Four Seasons)
PeterChenoweth Vivaldi Janine Jansen Vivaldi's Four Seasons - (Janine Jansen)
ibmack Vivaldi Ottavio Dantone Antonio Vivaldi's L'Estro Armonico op.3 Volume II: Concertos Nos. 7-12.
Efalardeau Vivaldi Concerti by Vivaldi
Efalardeau Zoltan Zoltan Kodaly's sonata pour solo cello opus
Alan Eiji Oue Exotic Dances from the Opera. Minnesota Orchestra, Eiji Oue, conductor (Reference Recordings RR-71CD) ®
Randall Lorn Mazel The Pyongyang Concert - New York Philharmonic & Lorin Maazel
Efalardeau El Amor Brujo from Manual de Falla (ideally the 1915 version, but they are all good)

Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 05/26/11 11:39 PM

Very good, Andrew; now go get 'em all! But seriously, some of the items need a further description to be actually identifiable, so I'll specifically mention again the most beautiful vocal recording that I've ever heard(listed just as "Vocalise"), described on Amazon , but on sale direct from Arkiv . Also, the listing "Latin American collection" refers to the excellent Tilson Thomas disc available from Amazon sellers here for cheap.
Posted by: Murph

Re: Stunning Recordings - 05/27/11 07:41 AM

You are correct John.

In the actual spreadsheet, most of the items include the URL built into the title, specially for most of your suggestions as you are always kind enough to provide a link. Without the URL to point you to the specific recording, you may not end up with the quoted "stunning" version.

If there was interest, I will post the actual spreadsheet on a file sharing sight somewhere. However, I still do not promise enough precise information in the ones that do not have a URL and I certainly can't promise to keep the list maintained.

My goal was just to get people thinking and maybe searching a few out, as you have often inspired us to do.

FYI,
My classical collection now consists of a meager 20 or so selections from this actual list and perhaps another dozen or more I came across independently. But you have to start somewhere, right?

Posted by: davidsch

Re: Stunning Recordings - 05/27/11 07:45 AM

Thanks for the consolidated list, Andrew!
Posted by: Murph

Re: Stunning Recordings - 06/06/11 08:22 AM

I think this one was mentioned before but I'll bring it up again as I picked it up over the weekend in a sale bin. I found it on Amazon for reference.

A 'Mercury Living Presence' recording of "Tchakovsky's 1812 Festival Overture & Cappriccio Italien and Beethoven's Wellington's Victory" Dorati -- Tchakovsky's 1812 Festival Ove...ngton's Victory

It's an old re-master of an even older 1950s recording so you still hear the analog hiss but the sound quality is excellent. Of particular interest is an interesting commentary on the recording of the cannon fire and samples of how they recorded it several times to get the most realistic effect. The difference in the samples is more than obvious.

There is also commentary on the recording of the very stunning bell work and on Wellington's Victory but I haven't made it that far yet.

Between the cannon fire and the bells, your system will get a real workout.

Warning to the feint hearted:
Click to reveal..
There is a bit of a pause after the 1812 Overture and just when you are getting up to see why the next track isn't playing.... BOOM!!!! Cannon fire. I don't often jump but I'll admit to a pretty good twitch. wink


Posted by: Captain4105

Re: Stunning Recordings - 06/09/11 01:32 AM

Murph: That Dorati recording was also remastered in a SACD format but I have yet to find one...it's very rare but it does exist...just a FYI.
Posted by: Captain4105

Re: Stunning Recordings - 06/09/11 02:17 AM

OOPS..my bad re: the post above.... Apparently Decca had planned to release Dorati's recording in SACD (http://www.stereophile.com/news/081604mercury/) but they instead released it as part of their "Original Series" but not in the SACD format.
Posted by: Captain4105

Re: Stunning Recordings - 06/09/11 02:32 AM

Here are a few more for your consideration:

Strauss "Also Sprach Zarathustra" (2001 theme but the complete tone poem) Karajan, Berlin Philharmonic SACD (http://www.amazon.com/Richard-Strauss-Al...0872&sr=1-5)

Rimsky-Korsakov et al, Dorati, London Symphony SACD (http://www.amazon.com/Rimsky-Korsakov-Bo...1052&sr=1-8)

Shostakovich Symphony #5, Bernstein, New York Philharmonic SACD
(http://www.amazon.com/Shostakovich-Symph...1139&sr=1-3)

Mahler Symphony #5, Bernstein, Vienna Philharmonic (http://www.amazon.com/Mahler-Symphony-No...695&sr=1-10)

Bruckner Symphony #9, Skrowaczewski, Minnesota Orchestra, [Enhanced Recording] (http://www.amazon.com/Bruckner-Symphony-...799&sr=1-11)

I have all these in my collection and have resounding sonics not to mention their ultimate musicality and deeply emotional and moving arguments. There are so many more possibilities. If anyone is interested in certain genres, moods, styles...I am sure the knowledgeable folks on this forum can give great recommendations.


Posted by: William T-Basil

Re: Stunning Recordings - 06/09/11 06:22 PM

Originally Posted By: alan

The a cappella version of "Tom's Diner" by Suzanne Vega from the Solitude Standing album was one of the standard test selections for audio codec listening tests in Canada, the U.K. and Australia. I participated in the Ottawa tests for several days. If the data rate went below 320 kbps with virtually all of the lossy codecs, her voice would get a bit metallic and sibilant sounding. That track was very revealing of compression artifacts.

Cheers,
Alan

Hi Alan,
This may not be appropriate here but I have tried almost everywhere and i need help.
I bought the Onkyo TXNR609 because it has a USB input to be able to playback FLAC files.
1. I am disappointed to find that the play back of the ripped FLAC (44.1/16), via USB into Receiver, is not as good as the original CD.
2. My equipment: LG HL-DT-ST DVDRAM GMA-4020B ripping drive, Cambridge Audio 650BD DVD/CD player, Onkyo TXNR609 Receiver (with USB input having 192/24 DACs but only plays up to 96/24 FLAC files via USB).
Q1:Which is the weak link in the rip/playback chain? (a) Ripper drive, (b) EHD/USB output to Receiver or (c) receiver? I would personally discount (c). But I do not have enough knowledge to say which of the other two links. The track ripped by EAC gives a confidence 2 and ripped by dBpoweramp gives an accuracy of 2. Does this show I may need something like Plextor 230A or similar for ripping to a high accuracy? Or is there another reason? I need to eliminate the cause before I rip all my CDs.
The track used as a test is U2, The Joshua Tree, Where the streets have no name.
Any help will be most appreciated.
Regards
William
Posted by: tomtuttle

Re: Stunning Recordings - 06/09/11 07:52 PM

William, I am very interested in your question.

Did they re-release a remastered Joshua Tree? Because I thought the original CD sounded absolutely awful.
Posted by: MarkSJohnson

Re: Stunning Recordings - 06/09/11 08:01 PM

Tom: http://www.amazon.com/Joshua-Tree-Remast...4057&sr=1-2
Posted by: tomtuttle

Re: Stunning Recordings - 06/10/11 12:22 PM

Fine. It's only been out for three years. How am I supposed to keep up with all of this?!?!

As to William's question, I suspect b or c.
Posted by: Ken.C

Re: Stunning Recordings - 06/10/11 12:23 PM

Hi William,

I hate to be the bearer of stereotypical response, but how have you determined that the quality isn't as good? Have you done any blind testing?
Posted by: William T-Basil

Re: Stunning Recordings - 06/10/11 01:55 PM

Originally Posted By: tomtuttle
William, I am very interested in your question.

Did they re-release a remastered Joshua Tree? Because I thought the original CD sounded absolutely awful.


MarkSJohnson has given the link for the reissue. I have the 1987 Island Records copy. I had not heard this album but saw it on the Bio channel and was taken by the "The tune creeps in - building, building, building - then it bursts out of the speakers with this stunning chiming trailblazing guitar work and Bono's impassioned growl and lyrics" as one reviewer put it. I like it. I am going back to vinyl and bought the 180gm LP to compare-not done it yet.
Reissue link with reviews. http://www.amazon.co.uk/Joshua-Tree-Ltd-Reissue-U2/dp/B000ECY2YO
Posted by: William T-Basil

Re: Stunning Recordings - 06/10/11 07:25 PM

Originally Posted By: Ken.C
Hi William,

I hate to be the bearer of stereotypical response, but how have you determined that the quality isn't as good? Have you done any blind testing?

Ken,
You are right in asking. My firend and I did a hearing test. The CD sounds more detailed than the FLAC played from the EHD.
it appears to me that since the Receiver (c)is the common equipment in playing both the CD and the FLAC, it is either (a)or (b)that is suspect. Would you have an opinion,accepting that there is a difference?
Posted by: Ken.C

Re: Stunning Recordings - 06/10/11 08:44 PM

And you made sure the volume levels were matched?
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 06/10/11 09:56 PM

William, welcome, but you put your question into a thread where it was probably least likely to be noticed by our members who have major experience in such matters. A new thread in Technical Questions may have yielded a different response.

As to "accepting that there is a difference?", that isn't generally the way we operate, especially in an area so clearly defined as not being audibly different as ripping to FLAC. Your listed equipment appears to be excellent and no "weak link" appears to be present.
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 07/27/11 09:50 PM

Alexander Borodin, Russian chemist and part-time composer, had a gift for melodious compositions combining Russian and oriental themes. One indication of this is that almost 70 years after his death he was awarded a Tony for his music which was adapted for the exotic Broadway production Kismet.

His three symphonies aren't as well-known as their quality justifies and as this remastered disc of the excellent performances directed by Loris Tjeknavorian clearly demonstrates. Chock-full of gorgeous melodies, note in particular that the rarely-played two movements of the unfinished 3rd Symphony have a theme in the first movement which, once heard, is hard to get out of your mind. Available for about $5 up from various Amazon sellers.
Posted by: pmbuko

Re: Stunning Recordings - 07/28/11 09:46 AM

You just made another sale, John. Have you considered moonlighting as a classic music album liner notes writer?
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 07/28/11 09:23 PM

Yeah Peter, and I'm compiling a lexicon of words and phrases that can be plugged into almost any review. What grabbed you more, "chock-full" or "hard to get out of your mind"?
Posted by: pmbuko

Re: Stunning Recordings - 07/28/11 10:16 PM

I think it was "gorgeous melodies", actually.
Posted by: Murph

Re: Stunning Recordings - 08/08/11 12:09 PM

I assumed a "chemist" would have access to many, ahem, inspirational recipes and took an interest as to what it might sound like.

Seriously, I think "JohnK" is the key marketing term here. So far he has not led me astray and his usual descriptors are very accurate.

Added to my wish list.
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 09/08/11 10:06 PM

Following up on my previous recommendation of a recording with the three Borodin symphonies, his two string quartets are notably beautiful and several of the themes were adapted for the Broadway production Kismet, because of their melodious nature. In particular, a theme from the second movement of the 2nd Quartet became "Bobbles, Bangles and Beads" and one from the third movement "And This is My Beloved". As I mentioned before, this resulted in Borodin being awarded a Tony for his music almost 70 years after his death.

An outstanding recording of both quartets performed by the eponymous(finally got a chance to use that word!)Borodin String Quartet is now available on a Musical Heritage Society disc here at very low cost from several Amazon sellers. Although it isn't apparent from the Amazon description, this is the same recording that was previously available on EMI and it's more fully described and reviewed here .

Posted by: Henry66

Re: Stunning Recordings - 10/12/11 09:50 PM

The Pink Floyd album "Dark Side of the Moon" on SACD has already been mentioned on this thread. Well, today I got my copy of the DSOTM "Immersion Box", which comes with a Blu-ray disc[*]. One of the things on this Blu-ray disc is the album (audio only) in 5.1 channel surround sound in 24 bits 96 kHz uncompressed PCM format.

It is quite stunning. Better, I would say, than the SACD.

[*It also comes with a scarf and some marbles.]
Posted by: MarkSJohnson

Re: Stunning Recordings - 10/13/11 05:08 AM

Awesome. I lost mine a ways back and could use some more!
Posted by: Murph

Re: Stunning Recordings - 10/13/11 01:35 PM

I'd like to be able to buy the BR edition separately to try it out but the only separate version I see from the Immersion pack of a gigabillion new versions is the remastered CD.
Posted by: bdpf

Re: Stunning Recordings - 10/13/11 01:54 PM

What he said.
Posted by: BobKay

Re: Stunning Recordings - 10/13/11 02:18 PM

Originally Posted By: Henry66
DSOTM "Immersion Box"


Didn't Michael Jackson sleep in one of those?

Speaking of sensory deprivation (or depravation, if you like), Immersion Box used to be a classroom language unit for elementary grades. When did it became an object of R & R desirability? Sounds kinda facist.

And speaking of desirablility, Immersion Box is also slang for
Posted by: jakewash

Re: Stunning Recordings - 10/15/11 02:19 AM

I am putting that PF album on my Xmas list smile
Posted by: exlabdriver

Re: Stunning Recordings - 10/15/11 01:50 PM

Greetings from Vancouver Island. I am a long time Axiom listener (since Feb 1991) who has been lurking here for sometime. So I decided that it was time to submit my first post to the Forums.

My current favourite is Eric Clapton's CD from the fall of 2010 simply named 'Clapton' (Reprise 2-525325). It is the most richly recorded CD in my large collection & represents the way that all music should be recorded IMHO. This one makes 95% of my other CDs sound downright anemic. The more I play it, the better I like it.

Bass extension is impressive so watch the initial volume settings.

While there are several excellent examples of EC's signature blues tracks, many of the 14 songs represent quite a departure from his normal fare. This CD is decidedly jazzy with wonderful recordings of guitars, piano, horns (including a fine tuba), strings & drumkit with nice, subtle brushes. As I'm becoming an old fart now, track #14 'Autumn Leaves' actually invokes an internal emotional reaction inside me - not many songs have ever done that.

I take this one to our local music stores to audition the latest sound systems that are available here in our small town. I must admit that my fine Axiom AX2s paired with a vintage Velodyne F1000 10" sub still sound as good if not better to me than most anything that I've heard out there lately. I think that I'll keep them around a bit longer as with me being the original owner with the required paperwork, my AX2s are still under warranty, ha!!

Tom, Comox BC
Posted by: MarkSJohnson

Re: Stunning Recordings - 10/15/11 01:55 PM

Welcome! I have to admit to reading your name initially as Ex-Lax-Driver. Sorry 'bout that! smile

Thanks for the tip on the Clapton CD...I'll add it to my Amazon Wishlist!
Posted by: Henry66

Re: Stunning Recordings - 10/15/11 03:15 PM

I think the Clapton album "461 Ocean Boulevard" also deserves a mention on this thread. It can be found in many formats, but the two that I know are good are the SACD and the high-def download from HDTracks.com.

The sound quality on this album is superb. Track 3, "Willie And The Hand Jive", in particular, has a fantastically wide dynamic range and will impress people if you put it on and crank it up.
Posted by: exlabdriver

Re: Stunning Recordings - 10/15/11 04:08 PM

Mark:

My moniker comes from the fact that I am a retired Canadian Military pilot. While I flew jets in NORAD when I was a young buck during the Cold War, most of my 36 career was spent flying Search & Rescue choppers. Over the years I was based from Gander Newfoundland, through Trenton Ontario, to Edmonton Alberta & finally to Comox, BC where I finally retired in 2002.

We flew a small fleet of the venerable Boeing CH113/A tandem rotor machine from the 1960's that we named the 'Labrador'. Hence, I'm an Ex Labrador Driver. The US version - H-46 - can still be seen on the news supporting operations around the world as well as in heli-logging in steep terrain. Certainly a tough old bird...

Tom
Comox, BC
Posted by: fredk

Re: Stunning Recordings - 10/15/11 04:27 PM

And here I thought you were a retired dog herder. wink
Posted by: BobKay

Re: Stunning Recordings - 10/15/11 04:52 PM

Grettings and welcome. Thanks for articulating so well your thoughtful listening experiences. It's always great to have people here who are willing to share those.
Posted by: tomtuttle

Re: Stunning Recordings - 10/17/11 12:04 PM

Greetings and welcome from another Pacific Coast Tom. Thanks so much for sharing your story, and especially the listening recommendation.
Posted by: Jc

Re: Stunning Recordings - 10/17/11 04:16 PM

Hi,
Seeking stunning recordings ? You want to demo and/or experience multi-channel music in a phenomenal fashion your answer is
AIX RECORDS

Their "Stage" mode (7.1) is incredible and the quality of the recording absolutely unbelievable.

The following gives you an idea of what can and should be done for multi-channel recording.
AIX Records BD HD Sampler IV
Posted by: Brent

Re: Stunning Recordings - 10/17/11 07:47 PM

JC - I have a sampler from AIX - just awesome - they still going?
Posted by: Jc

Re: Stunning Recordings - 10/17/11 07:54 PM

Brent,
Yes, they have now added Blu-ray with 7.1 Dolby TrueHD. They are out of this world.
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 11/30/11 09:37 PM

French composer and music critic Paul Dukas saved his most severe criticism for his own work, to the extent that before his death he destroyed nearly all of his compositions. He might have been almost forgotten had it not been for Mickey Mouse, prancing about a few years later in Disney's Fantasia to his music for The Sorcerer's Apprentice.

The small amount of music which survived is exceptional and most of it can be enjoyed on one well-filled disc. In addition to The Sorcerer's Apprentice and his lone surviving symphony, the highlight is the majestic brass fanfare followed by the beautiful and exotic melodies of La Peri. This very well-played and recorded collection is available dirt-cheap for a few dollars from several sellers here on Amazon(Amazon samples are incorrect).
Posted by: dakkon

Re: Stunning Recordings - 11/30/11 10:04 PM

JC, John, Do you guys know of any Blu-Ray/HD Lenny Kravitz disks?

Or do you know of a place to recommend that would have similar artists with a high quality recordings?
Posted by: Murph

Re: Stunning Recordings - 12/01/11 08:17 AM

Not Kravitz, but obviously one of his major influences and also while not Bluray, I was Very pleasantly surprised at the excellent sound quality of Jimi Hendrix - Live at Woodstock Not just because it was recorded in tech from the year I was born but it is actually great sound vs. even most modern outdoor concert videos.

In BD, I'd also be interested to know if anyone has The Jimi Hendrix Experience- Live at Monteray in the Bluray version and could say that it might be an improvement over the DVD.
Posted by: exlabdriver

Re: Stunning Recordings - 12/07/11 10:40 PM

For electric blues fans:

Ronnie Earl/Duke Robillard - the Duke meets the Earl

This is a gem recorded by Stony Plain Records in Alberta -

http://www.stonyplainrecords.com/Web/home.asp

Excellently recorded with rich, full sound. Mostly instrumental guitar work by two masters with some wonderful vocals. It has 72 minutes of material with long, long tracks ranging from 4:25 up to 15:53 minutes.

No 3 minute commercial stuff here, the way that blues should be....

Tom
Comox, BC
Posted by: MarkSJohnson

Re: Stunning Recordings - 12/07/11 10:50 PM

Thanks, Tom! That one has been in my Amazon basket for quite awhile!
Posted by: dakkon

Re: Stunning Recordings - 12/09/11 08:31 PM

Murph, Amazon has live at woodstock in Blu ray also.

Actually, today i was at 1/2 price books looking for vinyl records of by Kravitz and hendrix.... came home with nada!... grr... i think i will order these two disks after the holidays.


Thanks!
Posted by: dakkon

Re: Stunning Recordings - 12/11/11 08:40 PM

Murph, i just ordered "The Jimi Hendrix Experience- Live at Monteray" in Blu ray, i will post here how i like it after i get some time to enjoy it.
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 01/11/12 10:50 PM

EMI has recompiled select items from its extensive catalog of Debussy performances into an outstanding bargain of a 2-disc set. Included are performances acclaimed as among the best available, e.g., Karajan's very sensuous Prelude to the Afternoon of a Faun and Giulini's La Mer and Nocturnes. 2 1/2 hours of gorgeous French impressionism available from Amazon sellers here for remarkably low prices about $4 up.
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 02/14/12 09:30 PM

Albeniz's epic masterpiece "Iberia", which is said by pianists to be fiendishly difficult to play in spots, is my favorite work for solo piano in the entire classical catalog. The intricate rhythms he poured out in tribute to his native land are wonderfully realized in Jean-Francois Heisser's performance which is now available at a bargain price(about $7.30 plus about $1.95 shipping), from my favorite UK dealer, MDT . This is a special clearance sale(ordinarily this disc is around $20)in limited quantities, so if you're interested, don't delay.


It's also available from several Amazon sellers here for around $16. This is the same recording which was previously on Erato, and is shown here with some Amazon customer reviews.
Posted by: Lampshade

Re: Stunning Recordings - 02/14/12 09:46 PM

I will give it a try. I ordered it from MDT.
Posted by: Lampshade

Re: Stunning Recordings - 02/16/12 08:30 PM

Dang. Ordered but long term back ordered. MDT sent me an email today saying they cancelled my order because they could not provide the disc. My loss.
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 02/16/12 09:35 PM

Well, when I mentioned "limited quantities", I didn't expect that the limit would be zero! Seriously though, MDT is a reputable outfit which I've dealt with several times with complete satisfaction. Although it's disappointing, maybe it's not too surprising that they have no more at that offer price.

Nevertheless, the music and performance are indeed stunning, and I'd suggest considering the Amazon sellers for about $16 mentioned above.
Posted by: FrankeeD

Re: Stunning Recordings - 02/18/12 05:46 PM

For those of you who enjoy organ music and who have the subwoofer to handle it, the album Poulenc: Organ Concerto; Widor: Symphony No. 5; Guilmant: Symphony No. 1 played by Ian Tracey (organ) and the BBC Philharmonic at Liverpool Cathedral (Chandos 9271), is a real treat.

The organ at Liverpool is huge (the largest in the UK with more than 9,700 pipes including a 64' pedal). The recording is well done given the challenges of combining an organ and orchestra in a large reverberant cathedral.

If you want to give your system, especially the subwoofer, a good workout, this is the CD to try.
Posted by: dakkon

Re: Stunning Recordings - 02/18/12 06:35 PM

Frank, this cd?
http://www.amazon.com/Poulenc-Organ-Concerto-Symphony-Guilmant/dp/B000000AUI

Do you know if they have it in SACD/Blu ray?
Posted by: dakkon

Re: Stunning Recordings - 02/18/12 06:43 PM

Originally Posted By: FrankeeD
For those of you who enjoy organ music and who have the subwoofer to handle it,



That would be me for one.

I have been looking for something worth buying. I found a link to the CD you referenced.

I have also read about this SACD. However, i dont know if i want to buy it just yet..
http://www.arkivmusic.com/classical/album.jsp?album_id=90654
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 02/18/12 11:04 PM

Frankee, I'm not familiar with that disc; thanks for bringing it to our attention. I don't know the Guilmant at all, but the samples sound interesting. Of course I'm well-familiar with the Widor, and I'll point out that many may have heard its Toccata section being used as a recessional at formal weddings, or perhaps at the conclusion of the Midnight(now evening)Mass at Christmas from the Vatican.
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 02/18/12 11:19 PM

Alex, I don't completely share Mr. Hurwitz's quoted enthusiasm for the Munch Saint-Saens 3rd as still being the best ever performance(incidentally, his complete and slightly less enthusiatic review and rating is here ).

For an excellent and inexpensive recording of the Saint-Saens 3rd(and a fine Phaeton)I'd suggest that you consider this one .
Posted by: St_PatGuy

Re: Stunning Recordings - 02/19/12 09:55 AM

Originally Posted By: dakkon

I have also read about this SACD. However, i dont know if i want to buy it just yet..
http://www.arkivmusic.com/classical/album.jsp?album_id=90654


Dakkon, I have that SACD and, to me, it is somewhat lacking. For an SACD the recording is a bit muddied, not dynamic, clear, and punchy. The performance itself kinda puts me to sleep. The whole thing never gets off the ground.

You're better off going with JohnK's suggestion.
Posted by: FrankeeD

Re: Stunning Recordings - 02/19/12 10:19 AM

Dakkon, that's the one. As far as I know it's available only in standard CD format.
Posted by: dakkon

Re: Stunning Recordings - 02/19/12 03:53 PM

Ok, so i ordered Frank's recommended CD, as well as Johns... i Amazoned them, so they should be here on Wed (prime account)...
Posted by: SBrown

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/18/12 11:20 PM

Stuart Hamm "the Urge"

edit: if you like good bass
Posted by: Adrian

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/19/12 10:10 AM

Check out Joe Satriani's live concert in San Fransisco if you're a Stuart Hamm fan, SB.
Posted by: SBrown

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/19/12 04:36 PM

Thanks Adrian....will do!
Posted by: exlabdriver

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/27/12 05:20 PM

Whilst wandering around Costco (Canada) I came across a couple of gems in their CD department that provide a lot of music for a low price - $12.99 CAN.

'Classic Rock - Driving Hits': Not exactly stunning but it is a 3 CD set (3 hours) that contains a wonderful collection of rock songs that I have lost over the years with the demise of 8-Track (yes, 8-Track, ha!), Reel to Reel Tape & Cassettes. Recording quality is variable, but that is to be expected with the recording technology from years gone by. Great party collection.

'Summer Salsa!' - I consider this one to be stunning. I've always loved latin music as I listen often to Cuba on my collection of Shortwave Radios. Due to iffy SW reception, the quality is sometimes poor; however, Radio Rebelde on 5025 Khz plays authentic Cuban music for domestic consumption. It is a bonus for me to receive it so far away. I've never owned any salsa music because I didn't know what to buy but this 3 CD collection fills the bill nicely. Recording quality is top notch & the material is wonderful with great vocals, hot latin percussion with congas/drums, horns & piano. Again great for parties with 3 hours of music for $12.99.

I highly recommend both collections. Lots of bang for the buck...

TAM
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/29/12 09:32 PM

Gershwin's Porgy and Bess has been called the greatest American opera, and colorful and moving songs such as "Summertime", "My Man's Gone Now", "Bess You Is My Woman", etc., have great appeal even for those who don't really care for European opera. This collection of highlights featuring sensational singing by the incomparable Leontyne Price, joined in duets by William Warfield, playing the crippled Porgy, was selected by RCA for 24/96 remastering for its "High performance" series, and the performances and sound certainly justify that title. Available from several Amazon sellers here for about $7 up.
Posted by: St_PatGuy

Re: Stunning Recordings - 04/06/12 08:36 PM

With the recent SACD talk here about prices soaring on some hard to get discs, I decided to browse through Amazon just to see what was out there.

Came across 6- and 12-String Guitar by Leo Kottke. Had a chance to listen to it last night and was fairly amazed at how good it sounded. It sounds like he's got twenty fingers plucking and strumming his steel-string guitar. Sounds like the microphone was very close to the instrument--all sorts of nuances of the strings vibrating and his fingers working the fret come through.

Didn't try it in multichannel, just stereo.
Posted by: pmbuko

Re: Stunning Recordings - 04/06/12 10:43 PM

I have the standard version of that album. First CD I bought when I started at Berkeley, actually. Leo is really something. He can't play nearly as fast these days, and he sings. Kinda.
Posted by: St_PatGuy

Re: Stunning Recordings - 04/06/12 11:01 PM

Maybe he sounds better when he's in the shower?
Posted by: CV

Re: Stunning Recordings - 04/07/12 12:20 AM

Originally Posted By: St_PatGuy
Maybe he sounds better when he's in the shower?


Have any musicians actually recorded an album in the shower with its superior acoustics?
Posted by: St_PatGuy

Re: Stunning Recordings - 04/07/12 12:24 AM

I recorded my favorite armpit opera in there once.


Very rare CD.
Posted by: MarkSJohnson

Re: Stunning Recordings - 04/07/12 07:50 AM

Sean, you should really release that in SACD to enable every nuance. But please, no multichannel. I don't want to hear any accompanying instrumentation, if you get my drift.

I just bought that Leo Kottke CD last week funny enough. I always crave a good acoustic guitar recording when critically listening to my system. I thought it would be good for when I "re-setup" my system this weekend... though that likely won't happen now anyway.

Great guitarist, very nice recording.... but the song choice isn't really the type of music I'd sit and listen to over and over.

I didn't know there was an SACD. I probably would have bought that if there were only another 10% of detail, based on my "demo" use for the disc.
Posted by: J. B.

Re: Stunning Recordings - 04/07/12 08:04 AM

Originally Posted By: CV
Originally Posted By: St_PatGuy
Maybe he sounds better when he's in the shower?


Have any musicians actually recorded an album in the shower with its superior acoustics?


i haven't done any recordings in the shower, but i do have my Axiom speakers in there; the sound is "out of this world".
Posted by: MarkSJohnson

Re: Stunning Recordings - 04/07/12 08:39 AM

Sean, I just checked your link and realized that the SACD was only a couple of dollars more than I paid for the Redbook.

Damn- I never even thought of checking before I bought it!
Posted by: St_PatGuy

Re: Stunning Recordings - 04/07/12 10:11 AM

Originally Posted By: MarkSJohnson
Sean, you should really release that in SACD to enable every nuance. But please, no multichannel. I don't want to hear any accompanying instrumentation, if you get my drift.



I've also been working on the 1812 Overture, but the cannon fire at the end is proving to be problematic.
Posted by: St_PatGuy

Re: Stunning Recordings - 04/07/12 10:14 AM

Originally Posted By: MarkSJohnson
Sean, I just checked your link and realized that the SACD was only a couple of dollars more than I paid for the Redbook.

Damn- I never even thought of checking before I bought it!


Yeah, the difference between the two made trying the SACD easy. There are some pretty good deals out there. I just typed in "SACD" in the Amazon search function and started scrolling through everything. Quite a few reasonably priced discs out there.
Posted by: pmbuko

Re: Stunning Recordings - 04/07/12 11:14 AM

Originally Posted By: St_PatGuy
I've also been working on the 1812 Overture, but the cannon fire at the end is proving to be problematic.

I can imagine it has occasionally resulted in you doing the waffle stomp.
Posted by: St_PatGuy

Re: Stunning Recordings - 04/07/12 11:25 AM

Originally Posted By: pmbuko

I can imagine it has occasionally resulted in you doing the waffle stomp.


No, I leave it there as acoustical treatment.
Posted by: MarkSJohnson

Re: Stunning Recordings - 04/08/12 02:01 PM

Sean showing me up with an SACD purchase for a few dollars more than my Redbook CD purchase made me spend a little time searching for SACD and multi-channel discs. (Well, that and the fact that the VP160 will likely open up new enjoyment of multi-channel audio).

I don't remember any reviews here of Moving Pictures - Deluxe Edition [CD + Blu-ray]. A search didn't turn up anything either. I would think Neil Peart in surround would have had tongues wagging here.

Also, I never knew that Steely Dan- Aja was released on SACD. It's been one of my favorite albums of all time and despite the exorbitant price, I might treat myself!

Jeeez, I wish hi-rez, multichannel, well-mastered stuff would start coming out in Blu-Ray. The hardware installation is in place...just release the damn discs! I think everything that has already gone through remastering for SACD and DVD-A multi-channel could easily be released on Blu-Ray without much of an effort. The work has been done.

Release them now, dammit!
Posted by: Ken.C

Re: Stunning Recordings - 04/08/12 02:23 PM

Why would they? No one's gonna buy them, that's why SACD and DVD-A failed. No one bought it.
Posted by: MarkSJohnson

Re: Stunning Recordings - 04/08/12 02:29 PM

Certainly, the vast majority of the market wants convenience over fidelity.

But one of the failures of the previous formats...in my opinion... is that they required a special player that was SACD or DVD-A capable. The players that most would buy at Best Buy didn't even allow you to play those formats.

If they stick to the B-D standard, ANY B-D player will play them. No add'l hardware investment required.

Now certainly, the discs not going to sound as good on a $500 HTIB setup, but they can at least still be played. And, if you have a $500 HTIB, you're either satisfied with the sound or not willing/able to invest more anyway.

I'm not saying that people will beat a path to the door selling them, but the work...remastering into multi-channel... has already been done.

So, not huge sales numbers... but hardly more investment either.

Posted by: CV

Re: Stunning Recordings - 04/08/12 02:30 PM

Hardware proliferation was more of an issue with those formats. I think lacking a visual component is an issue, too, though, so what I think would work is combining a high-res multichannel recording of the album with a concert from the supporting tour. This release would come out well after the CD/download releases, of course, so the companies can have their double-dip, and the people who want the multichannel recordings don't have to feel totally taken advantage of, since they're getting a bonus concert to go with it. Of course, this mainly works on new releases, so they would have to figure out a way to add some accompanying video content to the classic albums being referred to, if they wanted to stay consistent. I'd be game to buy audio-only Blu-ray releases, but it would be a lot easier for me to justify if they also came with CD-quality FLAC versions or a CD itself so I could still rip the music for portability.
Posted by: MarkSJohnson

Re: Stunning Recordings - 04/08/12 02:33 PM

Charles nailed it. Just include the CD.
Posted by: St_PatGuy

Re: Stunning Recordings - 04/08/12 02:50 PM

Originally Posted By: MarkSJohnson

Also, I never knew that Steely Dan- Aja was released on SACD. It's been one of my favorite albums of all time and despite the exorbitant price, I might treat myself!


Mark, if it's one of your favorite albums go ahead and get it. it'll probably just keep going up in price and you'll be kicking yourself for not grabbing it when you did.

There are certain albums you just gotta treat yourself to. Price and sensibility be damned!
Posted by: MarkSJohnson

Re: Stunning Recordings - 04/08/12 03:15 PM

I really WAS thinking that way, Sean. But the deeper I read the reviews, the less amazing it seems the remastering is. Many said it was only a bit of an improvement. frown
Posted by: St_PatGuy

Re: Stunning Recordings - 04/08/12 03:20 PM

As I remember it, the redbook version is still considered an outstanding reference.
Posted by: MarkSJohnson

Re: Stunning Recordings - 04/09/12 08:08 PM

So, no one has the Rush: Moving pictures Multi-channel Blu-Ray to offer a thumbs up or down?

Yes, I know the Amazon reviews are good, but I trust the more refined tastes of those here!
Posted by: Wid

Re: Stunning Recordings - 04/09/12 08:14 PM

Originally Posted By: MarkSJohnson
So, no one has the Rush: Moving pictures Multi-channel Blu-Ray to offer a thumbs up or down?

Yes, I know the Amazon reviews are good, but I trust the more refined tastes of those here!


I'd be interested in it too.
Posted by: jakewash

Re: Stunning Recordings - 04/09/12 08:19 PM

I posted about it a little while ago (possibly a couple months ago) in the "what are you listening to" thread and it is a big thumbs up. The original is a reference CD for sure but the Multichannel and higher resolution does add a little more refinement, I feel it is worth spending money on again.
Posted by: MarkSJohnson

Re: Stunning Recordings - 04/09/12 09:29 PM

Thanks, Jason!

I was going to order some HDMI right-angle adapters for when I wall-mount the TV, and thought I would just throw that in the basket as well. I didn't want to be disappointed, though! smile
Posted by: CV

Re: Stunning Recordings - 04/12/12 02:49 AM

Emily Wells makes such great-sounding albums. I've already included her other two (well, her other two that you can actually get your hands on) in this thread, and I'm finding her new album just as intoxicating on a nice system. Mama has a lot of fine detail to savor, and the subtlety in her compositions demands my full attention. I've really enjoyed listening to it as an album at a respectable volume. While I'd still recommend The Symphonies: Dreams Memories & Parties as her most accessible if you're inclined to try her out, I'm impressed by the new paths her music is taking, and I simply have to comment on how GOOD her albums sound.

In any case, I bought the CD from Amazon.com, but iTunes has an exclusive bonus track version with an acoustic version of one of the songs ("Darlin'"). I bought that single track from them to go with my CD rip. I love both versions of the song.
Posted by: Murph

Re: Stunning Recordings - 04/12/12 11:31 AM

Originally Posted By: MarkSJohnson
So, no one has the Rush: Moving pictures Multi-channel Blu-Ray to offer a thumbs up or down?

Yes, I know the Amazon reviews are good, but I trust the more refined tastes of those here!


I do, but I don't have a non BR version to compare it to. Both the multi-channel and the stereo versions on it are excellent though. I don't have the info to recommend it as an upgrade but I can recommend it as the version to get if a first time purchase.
Posted by: MarkSJohnson

Re: Stunning Recordings - 04/12/12 11:43 AM

I ordered it.... UPS should be here with it momentarily!

I anticipate a renewed interest in multi-channel audio with the VP160!
Posted by: St_PatGuy

Re: Stunning Recordings - 04/19/12 11:35 PM

After always enjoying his work on the classical music station I listen to while driving, I finally got around to buying an Aaron Copland. The music should be instantly recognizable and it's quite accessible to classical newcomers (of which I still am). I'm not sure if these are the best interpretations of Copland's music, but the dynamics on this CD are exceptional. The opening drums on "Fanfare for the Common Man" will knock you down if you are not prepared.
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 04/20/12 12:20 AM

Sean, I'm familiar with that disc. Lane's performances are exciting and compare well with the somewhat different Copland collection conducted by Bernstein which I recommended here before. The sound quality is spectacular, including moments for the famous(infamous?)Telarc bass drum.

Available at ridiculously low prices of a few dollars up, there should be no hesitation on anyone's part in joining you in adding it to their collection.
Posted by: St_PatGuy

Re: Stunning Recordings - 04/20/12 12:39 AM

Thanks, John. I'll add that Bernstein CD to my cart. Expecting soon the Debussy selection you recommended.
Posted by: MarkSJohnson

Re: Stunning Recordings - 04/20/12 07:14 AM

Thanks, Sean. I'll add that Copland CD to my cart. Expecting soon the clown makeup you recommended.
Posted by: St_PatGuy

Re: Stunning Recordings - 04/20/12 08:34 AM

For what it's worth, there is an SACD version of it for 20 bucks or so. For half that price, the redbook version sounds excellent!

And, for that matter, EVERYTHING sounds better when wearing clown makeup.
Posted by: Lampshade

Re: Stunning Recordings - 04/29/12 09:03 PM

JohnK,
I bought this one: Camille Saint-Saëns: Symphony No.3 "Organ"/Phaéton

Getting to know it. What is a Phaeton?
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 04/29/12 09:56 PM

Chris, Phaeton is a figure in Greek mythology. Supposedly his father was the sun god and let him drive the sun chariot one day, but he screwed up and drove so close to the earth that he nearly burned it to a crisp. The other gods weren't amused and did him in to save the earth.

Incidentally, you also should have taken a second shot at the Albeniz Iberia disc which was sold out when you tried to order before. Really fine piano music, and several are available(though not at that special sale price)from sellers on Amazon.
Posted by: Lampshade

Re: Stunning Recordings - 04/29/12 10:27 PM

The big organ at 15 minutes into the second movement.....is that his demise?
Posted by: MarkSJohnson

Re: Stunning Recordings - 04/29/12 11:08 PM

Ewww. What a way to go!
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 04/29/12 11:42 PM

You may be referring to the symphony rather than Phaeton(with Mark around, watch those "big organ" comments), but in any case, composers tend to leave details to the imagination of the listener.
Posted by: RNB127

Re: Stunning Recordings - 05/03/12 09:50 PM

Any one has tried FIM Ultra HD, 32 Bit Mastering?

I own Producer's Choice I & The TBM Sounds (LIM UHD 048).

They sound awesome even from my DVD player. An affordable way to enjoy HI FI Musics without spending much on hardwares.
Posted by: whippersnapper

Re: Stunning Recordings - 05/04/12 12:13 PM

I'd suggest that Transatlantic's "The Whirlwind" might belong in the Stunning Recordings category. If you really want to see what your system is capable of, put on their cover of Santana's "Soul Sacrifice" on Disk 2 and listen to the percussion solo. I just did that very thing and it was breathtaking, even with "mere" M-22s, a VP150, and QS8s. My Klipsch sub was rockin'.

Boy, it sounded good. The toms are rich and full. The thud of the driving kick drum centers in your diaphragm. No vocals, keys or guitars to get in the way. Just polyrhythmic splendour at floor-shaking SPLs. Whoof!
Posted by: exlabdriver

Re: Stunning Recordings - 05/06/12 08:44 PM

I spent this afternoon listening to my birthday present (today I'm 1 year short of being an official 'Senior Old Phart') from my daughter - Wynton Marsalis & Eric Clapton 'play the blues' CD. It comes as a CD & DVD set & contains different genres of the blues (all selected by Clapton) with big band, jazzy themes.

This CD definitely qualifies as stunning - highly recommended. It was superbly recorded over 3 live concerts at The Lincoln Center in April 2011 featuring outstanding musicians playing superbly throughout. It sounds really fine through my tube amp with no digital harshness whatsoever. Why can't they produce all CDs this way?

The standout track for me is a long version of 'Layla' featuring Clapton's vocals & wonderful guitar surrounded by horns of all kinds - absolutely brilliant. I never thought that I'd hear that tune being played that way.

One nice thing about live recordings such as this, is that the selections all end properly instead of fading out as is found far too often on normal commercial recordings.

Now, I have to fire up the DVD, watch the concert, shake the house & have some birthday cake with ice cream...

TAM
Posted by: Henry66

Re: Stunning Recordings - 05/06/12 09:44 PM

Lyle Lovett - Joshua Judges Ruth

Although I had read several times that this album is really, really good, I never got around to buying a copy because I am not a country music fan. I finally pulled the trigger last week for $2.99 from an Amazon marketplace seller.

Well, this album certainly deserves its reputation. It is a stunning recording. Even though there is only one track that I really like musically (track 3, She's Already Made Up Her Mind), I listened to the whole album and just marveled at the incredible sound quality.
Posted by: pmbuko

Re: Stunning Recordings - 05/07/12 02:34 AM

I have the Joshua Judges Ruth SACD. The surround mix is a little much for some tracks -- "Church" puts the choir all around you, and "North Dakota" has the drums panning strangely -- but the audio quality is really stellar.
Posted by: CV

Re: Stunning Recordings - 05/07/12 02:45 AM

I have the DTS 5.1 release of Joshua Judges Ruth. It's been a long time since I listened to it, but it's a great album. I wouldn't claim to like country, either, but Lyle Lovett hardly blends easily into the genre. As distinctive in his own way as Johnny Cash.
Posted by: pmbuko

Re: Stunning Recordings - 05/07/12 05:05 AM

Hmm. Now you have me thinking I have the DTS5.1 version and not the SACD. I'll have to verify when I get home.
Posted by: davidsch

Re: Stunning Recordings - 05/07/12 01:17 PM

Originally Posted By: exlabdriver
I spent this afternoon listening to my birthday present (today I'm 1 year short of being an official 'Senior Old Phart') from my daughter - Wynton Marsalis & Eric Clapton 'play the blues' CD. It comes as a CD & DVD set & contains different genres of the blues (all selected by Clapton) with big band, jazzy themes.

This CD definitely qualifies as stunning - highly recommended. It was superbly recorded over 3 live concerts at The Lincoln Center in April 2011 featuring outstanding musicians playing superbly throughout. It sounds really fine through my tube amp with no digital harshness whatsoever. Why can't they produce all CDs this way?

The standout track for me is a long version of 'Layla' featuring Clapton's vocals & wonderful guitar surrounded by horns of all kinds - absolutely brilliant. I never thought that I'd hear that tune being played that way.

One nice thing about live recordings such as this, is that the selections all end properly instead of fading out as is found far too often on normal commercial recordings.

Now, I have to fire up the DVD, watch the concert, shake the house & have some birthday cake with ice cream...

TAM



I listened to that CD last night as well. Good stuff!
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 05/07/12 09:52 PM

Tom, a belated Happy Birthday!

As to recording quality, there are certainly those which are "harsh" because of the original performance or the mixing and mastering applied to it, but there's no such thing as "digital harshness". Digital sampling can only reproduce what it's given; it can't add harshness or any other quality.

If you're looking for more consistent(although certainly not uniform)good quality, many of the classical recordings suggested here might be of interest.
Posted by: exlabdriver

Re: Stunning Recordings - 05/07/12 11:49 PM

John:

Ref 'digital harshness' - I suppose that you are right; however, there are many, many listeners out there that swear that it exists due to inadequate sampling rates, etc, etc, & that analogue (vinyl & tubes) is somehow smoother sounding. I think that there may be some truth to those theories, but the actual recording methods/equipment, mixing & compression have the most impact on how the actual product sounds.

In my CD collection that goes back to the very first CD releases, there are some really poor renderings out there, especially in some of the older ones. Several are almost painful, even through tubes...

TAM
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 05/08/12 12:34 AM

I assume that you're aware, as has been common knowledge for years, that some of the early CDs(rather incredibly)used the same bass cut and treble boost which was applied to LPs to compensate for their weaknesses. The RIAA LP equalization of course applied bass boost and treble cut when LPs were played, to achieve a balanced output. Those CDs when played back without LP equalization naturally were deficient in bass and had excess treble, resulting in a harshness which started the "digital harshness" myth which still hangs on today among those who aren't adequately informed about modern audio technology.
Posted by: Lampshade

Re: Stunning Recordings - 05/08/12 12:53 AM

Dire Straits- Brothers in Arms (remastered)

Ride Across the River is incredible on this disc.
Posted by: exlabdriver

Re: Stunning Recordings - 05/08/12 02:31 AM

Yup, I'm aware of what happened back then.

More recent poor digital recordings (and there are many from the 80s, 90s & later) may have been misguided efforts on the part of some sound engineers. Or perhaps they just liked their sound that way - bright (harsh?) with recessed bass & minimal dynamics. No wonder that the CD often got a bad rap that manifested itself as 'digital harshness' to many.

Suffice it to say that these 'Marsalis & Clapton' concerts do not suffer from any of these foibles...

TAM
Posted by: exlabdriver

Re: Stunning Recordings - 05/09/12 06:23 PM

I finally made my jump to SACDs to play on my 2-Channel audio only system using my Denon player through my tube amp to my AX2s/Velo speakers.

Generally I am very pleased with their sound & I believe from what I've heard, SACDs are a step up from CDs. Whether it is due to their higher sampling rate & DSD or just more care is taken in recording & mixing the material, I don't know. Perhaps it is a bit of both.

So far I have 5 SACDs with a couple more coming in the mail:

- Tito Puente 'Goza Mi Timbal' - Great Latin music with wonderful mids & highs featuring great rhythms; however, the bass is a bit recessed;

- The Allman Brothers 'Eat a Peach' - Excellent recording of live concerts. Incredibly smooth sound considering that it is live;

- Albert King 'I'll Play the Blues for You' - Great blues material from 1972 that exhibits wonderful sound. Quite amazing considering the age of the original recording;

- Spyro Gyra 'Wrapped in a Dream' - Really nice fusion that is easy to listen to. Great full sound; and

- John Hammond 'Rough & Tough' - 15 tracks of solo acoustic blues featuring some nice resonator guitar throughout. Well recorded but I found that the harmonica was often shrill.

All are recommended IMHO.

It is interesting to see the distribution of SACDs through out the spectrum. The classical genre vastly dominates with all others in the minority. Several artists seem to have embraced the SACD format more than all of the others - 'The Kinks', 'Bob Dylan', 'The Rolling Stones' & 'Stevie Ray Vaughan'.

TAM
Posted by: exlabdriver

Re: Stunning Recordings - 05/14/12 08:25 PM

I've received another ebay SACD - this time a nice rendition of big band & swing.

Got Swing - a wonderful collection (14 Tracks, 65 minutes) of big band favourites that was most ably recorded by the now defunct 'Telarc' team. Huge dynamics with a big, soundstage. I could have done without some of the vocal selections, but all in all, a great SACD, especially at $12...

TAM
Posted by: exlabdriver

Re: Stunning Recordings - 05/16/12 02:08 PM

My SACDs are still trickling in - 2 more still in the mail.

I continue to be impressed with the SACD format & all of my discs so far have been well worth purchasing.

Latest one:

Vivino Brothers 'Blues Band' - These blues guys (previously Conan's house band) were unknown to me but I took a chance on their SACD. Absolutely excellent material & recording with full bass extension. It's nice to have a sax with guitar in the blues mix.

Highly recommended; however, watch out for the prices. I got this brand new one from ebay for $6 + shipping for a total of $11 - an absolute steal. I see the same one on ebay now for $60!!!! (with free shipping, ha!)

Some of the vendors on ebay amaze me at times...

TAM
Posted by: MarkSJohnson

Re: Stunning Recordings - 05/16/12 02:17 PM

Yeah, but you don't have to pay for shipping.

So, it's like, good, right?
Posted by: spiffnme

Re: Stunning Recordings - 05/16/12 02:22 PM

When my PS3 died, my ability to playback SACD died with it. frown
Posted by: Murph

Re: Stunning Recordings - 05/16/12 03:01 PM

Me too....Me too. sigh
Posted by: spiffnme

Re: Stunning Recordings - 05/17/12 04:54 AM

Seems crazy. Sony finally had a product in the PS3 that made SACD playback simple for the average user. :~(
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 05/21/12 09:39 PM

Bela Bartok traveled through Hungary and neighboring countries as a young man, collecting ideas for his musical compositions. The results reach the level of masterpieces in some instances and are never less than folksy, entertaining melodies.

Sir George Solti conducts with special vehemence where called for(e.g., the savage Miraculous Mandarin)and eases up a bit for folk-inspired items like the Hungarian Sketches and Romanian Folk Dances. A very nice 2-disc collection of the best Bartok, played by the superb Chicago Symphony Orchestra and in excellent sound.

This should be a must for your collection if you have no Bartok, or to add thrilling performances to what you have. The 2-disc set is available at almost give-away prices around $7 up from several Amazon sellers here .
Posted by: spiffnme

Re: Stunning Recordings - 05/22/12 04:09 AM

Listened to some Jim Croce this weekend. Plain amazing. Truly sad that he died so young. Just think of all the other amazing songs he could have written.
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 05/22/12 11:51 PM

I often mention that "several" Amazon sellers have a certain item available, and have been asked if I could be more specific. First let me say that in nearly 100 transactions in the past few years I've had no problem with any of them for either new or used classical discs. Any of the used items described as "very good" or better have had essentially perfect disc surfaces.

For the Bartok collection suggested above I can recommend the one I've dealt with most frequently because of excellent service, i.e., "blowitoutahere" who's offering the 2-disc set for $7.24.

I'll also list those I've had multiple dealings with: Classical Music Superstore; importcds; newbury_comics; mbischel3; MovieMars.
Posted by: St_PatGuy

Re: Stunning Recordings - 05/23/12 12:28 AM

I've bought quite a few used CDs from Amazon sellers, as well. newbury-comics and MovieMars for sure, and will second JohnK's recommendation. Haven't had problems at all with the sellers and have found, in all but one case, the CDs arriving as described. The one CD was described "Like New" but looked like it had been slid across a coffee table. This one CD was NOT from the above sellers.
Posted by: CV

Re: Stunning Recordings - 05/23/12 12:34 AM

I think I've only had one issue buying music from third-party sellers, and I believe it was -importcds. They sent me the wrong item, and they expected me to pay return shipping back, and then they would send the correct item when they got the incorrect item back. I think they were going to reimburse me for shipping, but I didn't like being saddled with the hassle of doing that when they should really have a prepaid label system in place.
Posted by: Murph

Re: Stunning Recordings - 05/28/12 11:10 AM

No issue with third party sellers yet. I don't keep track of the ones I use. Oddly enough, some of the quickest shipments I have ever received, came from the UK.
Posted by: BobKay

Re: Stunning Recordings - 05/28/12 11:33 AM

Originally Posted By: St_PatGuy
I've bought quite a few used CDs from Amazon sellers, as well. newbury-comics and MovieMars for sure, and will second JohnK's recommendation.


Newbury Comics is a Southern New England (So Neng, Ken?)
brick and mortar chain with about 15 stores. One is 3 miles from my house and I (too frequently) frequent another 5. It's great fun to flip through all that stuff in-the-flesh and be surprised from time to time.

From Amazon, I have never had any problems with the actual used cd's, though the jewel cases may have been abused.
Posted by: Ken.C

Re: Stunning Recordings - 05/28/12 11:57 AM

Hey, I didn't make up the term, I just moved here.
Posted by: BobKay

Re: Stunning Recordings - 05/28/12 07:22 PM

Then rebuke it!
Posted by: Murph

Re: Stunning Recordings - 06/04/12 08:11 AM

If any other Hosers want to order the Bartok collection Johnk mentions above, I received a new copy from "ScreamingCD" in Ontario in just 3 days. Pretty good for basic delivery.

It was a couple of dollars more than the US and UK sellers but I like to order Canadian when I can. Now that last weeks travels are done, maybe I will get a chance to listen to it.


Posted by: J. B.

Re: Stunning Recordings - 06/26/12 08:59 AM

Has anyone heard this cd and what do you think of it?
http://www.amazon.com/Revolutionary-Bonu...carpenter+organ

it's available either in CD or SACD; does SACD give a better quality sound?
Posted by: J. B.

Re: Stunning Recordings - 06/27/12 01:27 PM

has anyone ever compared the same recording on CD and SACD?
can differences between them, if any, be heard?

i've never listened to a SACD, much less done comparisons.
Posted by: CatBrat

Re: Stunning Recordings - 06/27/12 01:48 PM

Originally Posted By: J. B.
has anyone ever compared the same recording on CD and SACD?
can differences between them, if any, be heard?

i've never listened to a SACD, much less done comparisons.


I've been wanting to do this comparison also, but got sidetracked by redoing all my equipment first. I bought 2 SACD's. They sound very good, but I don't have the regular CD to compare with. One of these days, maybe. It also probably depends a lot on the recording quality of both.
Posted by: exlabdriver

Re: Stunning Recordings - 06/27/12 03:01 PM

JB:

Thanks for the headsup on this SACD. Although I love organ music, I'd never heard of Cameron Carpenter until now. I watched his performance on YouTube (from the included DVD I expect) & was very impressed. I've never seen footwork like that.

I ordered the SACD+DVD from Amazon.com for less than $25 CAN shipped to Canada. Being a Telarc recording, the sound no doubt will be very good.

Of my small collection of recent SACD purchases (about a dozen so far), I find that the overall quality has been superb. Whether it is the '1 bit DSD Format' that is used ( https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Super_Audio_CD ) or the extra care taken while engineering & mixing for this fine audiophile format, I don't know; however; so far, I've been very impressed with SACDs.

TAM
Posted by: St_PatGuy

Re: Stunning Recordings - 06/27/12 08:32 PM

Originally Posted By: exlabdriver
JB:

Thanks for the headsup on this SACD. Although I love organ music, I'd never heard of Cameron Carpenter until now. I watched his performance on YouTube (from the included DVD I expect) & was very impressed. I've never seen footwork like that.

I ordered the SACD+DVD from Amazon.com for less than $25 CAN shipped to Canada. Being a Telarc recording, the sound no doubt will be very good.

Of my small collection of recent SACD purchases (about a dozen so far), I find that the overall quality has been superb. Whether it is the '1 bit DSD Format' that is used ( https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Super_Audio_CD ) or the extra care taken while engineering & mixing for this fine audiophile format, I don't know; however; so far, I've been very impressed with SACDs.

TAM


I ordered the CD this morning, as well. Can't remember how I came across it, but I remember watching a program about Cameron Carpenter. Don't know if someone posted a link to it here, or what?
Posted by: St_PatGuy

Re: Stunning Recordings - 06/27/12 08:37 PM

Originally Posted By: J. B.
has anyone ever compared the same recording on CD and SACD?
can differences between them, if any, be heard?

i've never listened to a SACD, much less done comparisons.


J.B.

I've got a few to choose from. I'll give them some comparative listens this weekend.

Elton John
Death Cab For Cutie
Beck
Bob Dylan
Rolling Stones
Aimee Mann
Peter Gabriel
The Who
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 06/27/12 09:34 PM

If you're interested in music rather than just showmanship, a better example of highlights for the organ, played as written and in excellent sound is available here .

Although SACDs don't necessarily sound better than CDs(it's been shown that converting excellent-sounding SACDs to the CD standard made no audible difference), many do because of superior recording, mixing or mastering(even on hybrid discs the mastering for the layers isn't necessarily done equally).
Posted by: Murph

Re: Stunning Recordings - 06/28/12 08:07 AM

Thanks John, for two things.

1. Your selections are always guaranteed to exactly as you describe them. I'm not a fan of the organ sound but I'll be ordering this one to try it out as a new experience.

2. When I opened the link and read the title, I came close to spitting out my coffee from suppressing a giggle.
Posted by: J. B.

Re: Stunning Recordings - 06/28/12 09:03 AM

in case some of you haven't seen "the making of" of Carpenter's "Revolutionary" album, here's some interesting reading and some photos too:
http://www.rotarywoofer.com/telarc/telarc%20carpenter%20recording.html

i just ordered Revolutionary on SACD, and "An Organ Blaster Sampler".

it is while reading about the Thigpen Rotary sub that i saw a link to Carpenter's recording.

sadly, i will not hear "all" the music on this album as my sub goes down to only 11-12 Hz.
Posted by: J. B.

Re: Stunning Recordings - 07/09/12 04:10 PM

a couple of days ago i received the SACD of Cameron Carpenter: Revolutionary.
i start at -10 dB re. Reference Level/Multi Channel:5.1 and, as time goes, i increase the gain,half dB by half dB, until the moment where the music is so all pervasive and crystal clear and enveloping and oh so beautiful, that it is like the grandest spectacles of nature, like Aurora Borealis, and you find yourself bathed in extraordinary music that envelops you, invades you, and takes you away... to bliss and ecstasy.


if you have the SACD, and you'd like to try the immersion (it's good for your health), use multi channel in, and a 5.1 system with many hundreds of watts available, and a Volume of +4 db over Reference Level.

then, tell us what you think. i, for one, will love reading your comments about it.

Edit: i think that the M80's are truly great speakers; their sound quality is extraordinary, to my ears. it's easy to see or hear, with sound like that i heard playing this SACD.
Posted by: exlabdriver

Re: Stunning Recordings - 07/09/12 06:55 PM

My SACD must be coming by Pony Express; however, my M3s & brackets should be here tomorrow if all goes well...

TAM
Posted by: J. B.

Re: Stunning Recordings - 07/12/12 07:35 AM

A few days ago i gave my impressions on Cameron Carpenter's Revolutionary SACD recording, and i did not write it in the "Stunning recordings" thread for nothing; it IS a stunning one; and a few people here do own this CD.

How about giving your impressions, what you think about it?
this is a great quality recording that puts you right in the church where the recording was made; it's got the excellent Telarc sound.

Or maybe it is taboo here to talk about feelings brought about by listening to good music on excellent speakers?
Isn't music all about feelings!

The volume level i recommended is not out of the ordinary for Telarc recordings, all of those i own play well at Reference Level or a few dB above that.
this one is just right at +4 dB.


Posted by: Murph

Re: Stunning Recordings - 07/12/12 08:20 AM

I don't have that one but I have at least one other Telarc recording.Richard Strause, Eine Alpensinfonie, Andre Previn & Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra
It is indeed in the "Stunning" category.
Posted by: J. B.

Re: Stunning Recordings - 07/12/12 08:32 AM

i might very well buy that one by Straus.
thanks! :-)
Posted by: J. B.

Re: Stunning Recordings - 07/12/12 08:38 AM

Murph, re. your signature, check this one up:
http://paintmewet.deviantart.com/gallery/12050720?offset=48#/d2r8fj9
Posted by: exlabdriver

Re: Stunning Recordings - 07/12/12 01:25 PM

The Pony Express finally brought my SACD yesterday; however, I haven't been able to get to it yet as I was setting up & testing my new M3 setup. Furthermore, we have a new princess white feline arriving today to add to our collection, ha!

I'll give it a go soonest with my tube-amp/AX2s/Velo system...

TAM
Posted by: J. B.

Re: Stunning Recordings - 07/12/12 02:49 PM

that should be interesting reading.
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 07/12/12 11:59 PM

Since Telarc recordings have been brought up and Andrew discusses the Strauss Alpine Symphony disc I suggested a couple years ago, I'll specifically mention one more of the numerous excellent Telarcs. As I told Andrew some time ago when he marvelled that even his wife enjoyed his Brahms Hungarian Dances CD, it's highly likely that the similarly delightful Dvorak Slavonic Dances would also be enjoyed. They're available in excellent performances with great Telarc sound here at absurdly low prices from several sellers.
Posted by: exlabdriver

Re: Stunning Recordings - 07/14/12 12:23 AM

I listened to Cameron Carpenter 'Revolutionary' SACD on my Tube-Amp, AX2s & Velodyne 10" sub. Very impressive.

Not only is he an outstanding young organist who demonstrates great skill & artistry with this awesome instrument, the Telarc crew also did a great job in capturing it in all its glory (even though it is a virtual/digital organ). To tell you the truth, I can't tell the difference between a genuine pipe organ & this one. Many purists don't like it or him, but I sure do.

There are several passages the shook my couch with blasts of low end content. My vintage speakers were certainly put to the test today. Highly recommended.

I also received my other SACD as well - Spyro Gyra 'Good to Go-Go'. I listened only to the first track so far - quality, full sound with deep percussion. I think that I'm going to like this one as well...

TAM
Posted by: J. B.

Re: Stunning Recordings - 07/14/12 06:25 AM

thanks a lot for your comment; you sure write critiques better than me.
:-)
Posted by: exlabdriver

Re: Stunning Recordings - 07/14/12 12:37 PM

JB:

That comes from 36 years in the Air Force of assessing pilots (officers) in my flight. While composing PERs (Personnel Evaluation Reports) annually was a herculean task & a complete PITA for a guy who would rather be flying, it allowed me to become somewhat competent at 'wordsmithing'...

TAM
Posted by: dakkon

Re: Stunning Recordings - 07/14/12 12:40 PM

Originally Posted By: exlabdriver
JB:

That comes from 36 years in the Air Force of assessing pilots (officers)


Damn, the Air Force is much more polite than the Navy... Our assessments were, well MUCH less politically correct at times.... Even when they were good ones.
Posted by: exlabdriver

Re: Stunning Recordings - 07/14/12 02:56 PM

In our 'socially-just, touchy-feely' world up here, we long ago adopted & perfected political correctness.

Drives me crazy...

TAM
Posted by: exlabdriver

Re: Stunning Recordings - 07/15/12 02:24 AM

Tonight I watched the Telarc DVD on my HT system that accompanies this SACD. Cameron is simply amazing.

While listening to the SACD is great, he has to be seen playing to be believed. Along with his phenomenal footwork on the pedals, he often plays 2 keyboards at the same time with the same hand - quite incredible - watch for it. I don't know if that is standard technique, but I've never seen it before. I'm rather glad that he annoys the purists as he puts on quite a show both musically & visually. I'll have to look for more of his works on DVD or Blu Ray.

BTW, that organ has more knobs, switches & controls than any aircraft cockpit that I've ever seen...

TAM
Posted by: exlabdriver

Re: Stunning Recordings - 07/16/12 12:21 AM

If you like fusion, Spyro Gyra's 'Good to Go-Go' is excellent. This is my second SG SACD & I really have come to enjoy their work.

Really well recorded with strong percussion that can be felt even at reasonable levels. It is recorded very hot so be careful with the volume control on your initial play.

My only quibble is: Do these selections not have real endings? Why do we have to put up with fade out endings in most of the tracks? If disc space is a problem then give me 1 less tune on the album but make sure that the rest have proper endings.

Really annoying, grrrr...

TAM
Posted by: J. B.

Re: Stunning Recordings - 07/16/12 07:36 AM

there's a good critique of Cameron's Revolutionary cd here:
http://www.sanfranciscosentinel.com/?p=17408
Posted by: exlabdriver

Re: Stunning Recordings - 07/16/12 12:54 PM

JB: Really great review by the art critic Mr Martinfield, His prose is certainly a cut above mine!

In my comments above, I'm quite distressed that I completely missed his points of: 'unending bravado, and teasing eroticism', ha!!

TAM
Posted by: J. B.

Re: Stunning Recordings - 07/16/12 02:16 PM

i missed that too, but then i've listened to the cd only once;
which does not mean i would have caught it after 10 hearings! it's stressing me now...
Posted by: Murph

Re: Stunning Recordings - 07/17/12 10:25 AM

Originally Posted By: J. B.
Murph, re. your signature, check this one up:
http://paintmewet.deviantart.com/gallery/12050720?offset=48#/d2r8fj9


Funny and fitting.
Posted by: Murph

Re: Stunning Recordings - 07/17/12 10:27 AM

Originally Posted By: JohnK
Since Telarc recordings have been brought up and Andrew discusses the Strauss Alpine Symphony disc I suggested a couple years ago, I'll specifically mention one more of the numerous excellent Telarcs. As I told Andrew some time ago when he marvelled that even his wife enjoyed his Brahms Hungarian Dances CD, it's highly likely that the similarly delightful Dvorak Slavonic Dances would also be enjoyed. They're available in excellent performances with great Telarc sound here at absurdly low prices from several sellers.


Thanks John. That one has been on my wishlist for a while. For under 7 dollars, it just got promoted to 'ordered'.
Posted by: J. B.

Re: Stunning Recordings - 07/19/12 08:10 AM

exlabdriver, about the purists you talked about a few posts above, you can read a bit of what i think about them here:
http://gellidius.deviantart.com/gallery/?offset=48#/d2kn0xl
Posted by: exlabdriver

Re: Stunning Recordings - 07/19/12 01:33 PM

Purists often irritate me, not only in music but in other things as well.

How they can slam Cameron for being somewhat flashy (personally I don't think he is based on the videos that I've seen) & not playing those pieces exactly the way that the composer intended?

How do they know how the composer would have performed them? The masters have been gone for centuries & there are no recordings of the original works. I give credit to any artist who does their own thing, within reason of course.

Look what Eric Clapton did with Robert Johnson's wonderful blues compositions from the 1930s. Listen to RJ's original acoustic recordings then EC's modern electric adaptations. Although I appreciate RJ's original performances, I know what I prefer to listen to...

TAM
Posted by: J. B.

Re: Stunning Recordings - 07/19/12 02:17 PM

that brings to mind Stravinsky's The Rite of Spring conducted by the composer himself.
it was the worst i've ever heard.

the best one i heard was played by students at a university's music school in Toronto in the late 70s. it was a year end show. By the time i could get up and applaud, the musicians were leaving...

as the french (in France) say: c'était le délire!
Posted by: J. B.

Re: Stunning Recordings - 07/19/12 04:43 PM

Originally Posted By: exlabdriver
Purists often irritate me, not only in music but in other things as well.

How they can slam Cameron for being somewhat flashy (personally I don't think he is based on the videos that I've seen) & not playing those pieces exactly the way that the composer intended?

How do they know how the composer would have performed them? The masters have been gone for centuries & there are no recordings of the original works. I give credit to any artist who does their own thing, within reason of course.

Look what Eric Clapton did with Robert Johnson's wonderful blues compositions from the 1930s. Listen to RJ's original acoustic recordings then EC's modern electric adaptations. Although I appreciate RJ's original performances, I know what I prefer to listen to...

TAM


not only the composers have long been dead, but since then, the instruments have evolved, as also mentality and tastes.
Posted by: Murph

Re: Stunning Recordings - 07/20/12 07:43 AM

Agreed. Music is as subject to style and period as readily as any other art form. A purist who discounts this is showing a lack of musical education, not endorsing their selves as they may think that they are.

It would be wonderful to have opportunity to hear classical pieces or any song exactly as they were composed. We can often enjoy this now, on newer works, since the age of modern recording began. However, I imagine that if everyone insisted that they hold perfectly true to the original, then many of the classics would be lost over time as people would simply lose interest in hearing them.

Style refreshes, inspires discussion and renews interest over the generations. The 'Purists' have their place to help preserve the originals where possible but to insist that this is 'the only way,' shows a shallowness that lowers their staure in my books, rather than raises it.

Just my own uneducated opinion.
Posted by: J. B.

Re: Stunning Recordings - 07/22/12 06:37 PM

Ooooh Boy! WOW squared ! isn't this Cameron Carpenter's Revolutionary SACD impressive !!!
I just listened to the first 2 pieces, played at movie Reference Level (which is the "realistic" level for this recording).

The recording quality is excellent, crystal clear, with natural acoustics from the church - it images very well, as if you were really in the church; it is well balanced and enveloping, with low tones seemingly coming from ground level, and highs up there, in the gallery, at different places.
it is all so impressive and so full of beauty and grandeur.
It is a very moving recording.

if you listen to it, and you have a good audio system, please try it at movie Reference Level. It's quite a treat you won't soon forget; it will show to their full advantage the quality of Axiom speakers.
Posted by: Murph

Re: Stunning Recordings - 07/24/12 09:30 AM

John, hide your eyes for a minute. wink

Last night a friend brought over a BR of Metallica's "Français Pour Une Nuit". It is their concert held in The Arena of Nimes in France.

The superb production quality in both sound and the video is definitely as good as it gets for an outdoor venue. Any venue actually! The performers display what 31 years of playing together gets you... effortlessly demonstrating why they always gain universal respect for their musicianship, even from non-metal critics.

I was so impressed, I immediately went online to buy it but it is out of print and now going from used sellers for hundreds of dollars. However, if you are looking for demo material to impress your metalhead friends, this BR is THE ONE.
No reference to "The One" intended but it is a good segway for a clip. Although Youtube can hardly compare to the BR quality.

OK, you can open them again, John.
Actually, from a musical standpoint, Metallica has some very interesting and often complex music (when they were not in their thrash phase.) Some of these songs have been covered by orchestra and other classical artists, like these rather famous, classical 'retires' that I'll submit as you may be interested in listening to it as an "experiment." Nothing Else Matters
Posted by: Rock_Head

Re: Stunning Recordings - 07/24/12 03:17 PM

I am looking forward to the Metallica show in Vancouver, August 24th. They are evidently filming (3D movie) both nights. They are bringing back the monster stage which fills the floor of the arena. Should be a sonic and visual feast!
Posted by: J. B.

Re: Stunning Recordings - 08/09/12 10:22 AM

a group i've been listening to for a while now and find that they're extraordinary is Madredeus:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Madredeus

try this one (O Paraiso) on YouTube to get an idea if you never heard them:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cPnAXCrQY2o&feature=related

if anyone wants to listen to their "best", you should get their album titled "Antologia".
for best sound, it should be played with Dolby PLIIx Music at around room filling volume. you'll bathe in voluptuous sound when you've found the right vol. level.

the recording engineer has done an excellent job on this.


Posted by: J. B.

Re: Stunning Recordings - 08/21/12 06:56 AM

anyone likes Brass bands?

this group here is the tops, have a listen to Boban Markovic Orkestar:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R4iin8-IPVk

playing them on your system at home is quite an event.

for more info about the man and the group:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Boban_Markovic


Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 09/13/12 09:38 PM

My two favorite Dvorak Symphonies, the 7th and 8th, full of wonderful Slavic melodies, are performed here by the superlative Cleveland Orchestra in great sound. Available from Amazon sellers from about $8.
Posted by: whippersnapper

Re: Stunning Recordings - 09/13/12 10:16 PM

Thanks, John. I've been meaning to pick up a copy of those fine symphonies and now I know a good version to pick.
Posted by: DanielBMe

Re: Stunning Recordings - 10/22/12 03:34 PM

Hopefull this is the right spot to ask. I'm looking for some good recordings of mellow jazz. I'd prefer non vocal. I do have Kind of Blue and a bunch of Diana Krall (which is obviously non vocal). There are some evenings where I just feel like throwing on something mellow but I realize my collection is somewhat limited.

Anyone have any recommendations? One cd that I have been given as a recommendation is Bill Evans Explorations.
Posted by: pmbuko

Re: Stunning Recordings - 10/22/12 04:30 PM

Try some McCoy Tyner on for size -- particularly this one that features bassist Stanley Clarke:
http://www.amazon.com/McCoy-Tyner-Stanley-Clarke-Foster/dp/B000044TZB/

I was lucky enough to see this combination live at Yoshi's in Oakland, CA. So good.

Also, if you don't have any Dave Brubeck, fix it now.
http://www.amazon.com/At-Carnegie-Hall-Dave-Brubeck/dp/B00005AWMW/
Posted by: DanielBMe

Re: Stunning Recordings - 10/22/12 07:42 PM

Oops noticed a boo boo in my previous post. Obviously Diana Krall is vocal..

I actually have Brubeck's Time Out CD. I'll check out your recommendations.
Posted by: FrankeeD

Re: Stunning Recordings - 10/27/12 05:13 PM

Try the Paul Desmond Quartet Live. In addition to Desmond's alto sax, you also have Ed Bickert on guitar. Mellow but not boring. I bought this as a double album on vinyl back in the mid 70s. It been re-released on a well-filled (79 minutes) CD. You can listen to preview tracks on iTunes to get an idea of what it's like.
Posted by: fredk

Re: Stunning Recordings - 10/28/12 02:15 PM

You could also look at something from the Oscar Peterson Trio. Canadiana Suite is pretty mellow.

Also check out Jeff Healey. He did a lot of 20s Jazz. Really upbeat stuff.
Posted by: DanielBMe

Re: Stunning Recordings - 10/28/12 06:28 PM

I downloaded some high quality flac from HDTracks on the weekend. I downloaded Bill Evans' Waltz for Debbie and Moonbeams. Both are excellent!
Posted by: Boltron

Re: Stunning Recordings - 10/28/12 08:29 PM

Waltz for Debbie, awesome.
Posted by: pmbuko

Re: Stunning Recordings - 10/31/12 04:43 PM

10 jazz albums to listen to before you die
Posted by: MarkSJohnson

Re: Stunning Recordings - 10/31/12 05:52 PM

::choke, chock:: ::ACK!::

I wish you had posted this 10 minutes earlier!
Posted by: AdrianD

Re: Stunning Recordings - 10/31/12 07:53 PM

Originally Posted By: DanielBMe
I downloaded some high quality flac from HDTracks on the weekend. I downloaded Bill Evans' Waltz for Debbie and Moonbeams. Both are excellent!

+1 for Bill Evans; indeed a wonderful engineered album.

I am currently listening to another HDTracks album that I find absolutely amazing. I highly, highly recommend it: Paquito D'Rivera - Portraits of Cuba.
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 11/08/12 10:17 PM

Even enthusiasts for the thrills of Orff's Carmina Burana aren't generally aware that he composed it as part of a trilogy he labeled "Trionfi", with Catulli Carmina and Trionfo di Afrodite being the other two.

An unusual two disc set including all three features a Carmina Burana that's as exciting as any of the twenty or so that I've heard, in excellent sound. Catulli and Trionfo, although probably not overall matching it in interest, are a substantial bonus.

Available from Amazon sellers at bargain prices around $8 up for the two disc set.
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 01/15/13 09:53 PM

Shostakovich composed his 10th Symphony in 1953 following the death of the leading classical music critic in the U.S.S.R., a certain J. Stalin, who had made life dangerous for him with "reviews" of his work. The symphony is said by many to be a commemoration of that event and the violent second movement in particular is characterized as portraying the murderous atmosphere Stalin created.

This composition is generally viewed as his greatest symphony and belongs in every collection. An exciting performance, especially of the second movement, is available in notably great sound here from Amazon sellers for about $5 up.
Posted by: Captain4105

Re: Stunning Recordings - 01/16/13 01:59 AM

Hi Whippersnapper: If you are interested in a complete set of Dvorak Symphonies may I suggest those conducted by Otmar Suitner with the Berlin Staatskapelle on Berlin Classics. This conductor and orchestra are not well known in the West as they were located in East Berlin during the "Cold War." These recordings sound natural and full with wonderful wind playing...a kind of "reedy-woody" tone just perfect for Dvorak. In fact the entire orchestra was made to play these symphonies. I have this set, and others by Kubelik, Szell, Dohnányi, Jansons, Previn, Davis, Chung, Kertesz and more. A small symphony 2CD set containing Nos. 7-9 by Kubelik on DG cannot be beat for the price of $7.99 on Amazon. I promise you, these versions are like no other and their artistic merit is universally praised. When I first heard the Kubelik recordings I was in awe, and I know these works intimately. Of course this my own subjective opinion. So for the same price as John's recommendation you also will have the 9th as a bonus...an unmissable deal which will not disappoint!
Posted by: Captain4105

Re: Stunning Recordings - 01/16/13 02:08 AM

Hi John: Frank Shipway is not a well known conductor in North America. He is a very fine conductor....I have his Mahler 5th...a great recording (SACD), but I haven't heard his Shostakovich 10th. Have you heard Neeme Jarvi on Chandos or Stanislaw Skrowaczewski with the Halle on IMP? Two very outstanding recordings and I think much better sounding than the consensus of most reviewers who seem to lean toward Haitink and Karajan....Lee
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 01/16/13 02:37 AM

Lee, I'm planning to get the Shipway Mahler 5th, although I haven't been able to borrow it from the over 100 public and college libraries I have access to. I was able to borrow his Shostakovich 10th, and felt confident to get it and recommend it here. Yes, I listened to the Jarvi disc(not the Skrowaczewski)and liked it, but I like the 1981 Karajan a lot and got it.
Posted by: Captain4105

Re: Stunning Recordings - 01/17/13 12:40 AM

I had owned the Karajan and thought it too dry, lacking in ambiance. It bothered me enough so that I was distracted from Karajan's interpretation. I haven't heard his analogue recording which I understand is quite good and promises to be a better recording for my tastes. Regarding the Mahler, as good as Shipway is with the 5th, I think there are better recordings: Chailly, Barbirolli and Karajan. I recently went through all my Mahler 5ths including Bernstein, Zander, Bertini, Shipway and the three mentioned above. I favor Chailly's with the Concertgebouw as the most satisfying, with Barbirolli as the most dramatic and detailed, and Karajan treats Mahler differently and almost sounds like a different kind of Mahler to me. It is very fine and unique. Shipway's on SACD certainly has the best sound and is a great recording, straightforward and solid. The other three however are exceptional. All the recordings I have have merit, so I hesitate to rid myself of any of them. Regards...Lee
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 01/17/13 01:08 AM

As I've mentioned, I always listen to 2-channel music in surround, using DPLII, etc., to extract the ambience(always present to some degree)and send it to the surrounds where it belongs. Your comment inspired me to listen to Karajan's 10th now and rapidly switch between surround and stereo. There really is a major difference and the stereo does give it an excessively flat and dry character, which surround pretty much corrects.

Incidentally, your mention of Skrowaczewski's 10th led me to search my resources. I found a small college library which had a 2-disc set of his 5th and 10th performances, which I requested and should get in 3-4 days.

Edit: I might also mention Mehta's Mahler 5th with the LA Phil, which I have.

Posted by: Captain4105

Re: Stunning Recordings - 01/17/13 01:43 AM

Its curious, the L.A. Phil is my hometown orchestra and I have several childhood friends in it. The tympanist in this recording was my mentor before I went to New York City to further my musical education. I have also heard that it is an excellent recording...I will seek it out. Mehta was such a dynamic conductor when he came to L.A. The L.A. community of music lovers adored him. His Mahler was (and is) very fine. I recall begging my dad to take me to hear Mahler's "Resurrection" as a kid. My dad really didn't want to go, but he relented and when he heard it, in person, he thanked me. Since then, I've heard several live performances and relished the chance to play it, but the opportunity hasn't presented itself to me...maybe in the next life.
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 01/17/13 01:52 AM

Interesting. Yes, check it out. Speaking of his Mahler 2nd, his Vienna Phil disc is probably my favorite.
Posted by: Captain4105

Re: Stunning Recordings - 01/18/13 02:35 AM

I've heard it...still a classic. BTW, the Shostakovich 10th (and 5th) you've requested is a later recording than the one I mentioned which he recorded when he was conductor of the Halle some years back. So many versions of recordings we've discussed can be found on Rhapsody for $5.00 per month. In fact I was very surprised that some of the most interesting and recently released recordings are on that site and it is so cheap! One example is the new "complete" Bruckner 9th with Rattle and the Berlin Philharmonic. Apparently, according to the reviewers in Gramophone magazine, this is the definitive complete Bruckner 9th around. But then again, Skrowaczewski is a master of Bruckner and his 9th (the traditional 3 movement version) with the Minnesota Orchestra on "Reference" is masterful with fantastic sound and to me absolutely the best version around. The 2 symphonies by Shostakovitch you've requested are also on Rhapsody, as is the Shipway version of his 10th. I was able to hear a few minutes of the beginning of the Shipway 10th today while at work. I was impressed with what I heard. His tempo seems to be a little faster than most others...I enjoyed it and look forward to hearing the whole symphony in one sitting. Shipway's Mahler 5th and Mehta's 5th with the LAPO are also there....Cheers...Lee
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 01/18/13 03:47 AM

Haven't received the Skrowaczewski CDs yet, of course, but I do note from the Amazon images that the IMP issue you referred to has the same playing time of 51'37" as the 10th(1990 recording)on the 2-disc set.
Posted by: Captain4105

Re: Stunning Recordings - 01/19/13 12:45 AM

Ah, I see. After reading further info on the double CD issue, it is stated that the "Halle Concert Arts Society" reissued the original IMP release. This is a good thing, now it will be an apple to apple comparison of our impressions of the interpretation. Some negotiation must have occurred with IMP (or whoever has the recording rights). Maybe the Halle Society will be able to manage to reissue some of the excellent Barbirolli recordings with the Halle.
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 01/21/13 11:23 PM

Picked up the CDs and listened to the Skrowaczewski 10th straight through first and then began switching quickly between it, Karajan and Shipway at various points. On sound, I'd rank them Shipway, Skrowaczewski, Karajan, although as I said, the Karajan sound is quite satisfactory in surround.

As to interpretations, I thought that Skrowaczewski was a bit less violent in "Stalin", where I liked Shipway best. Attempting to pick movements I liked best, I favored Karajan in 1 and 4 and Shipway in 2 and 3. Although Skrowaczewski wasn't my favorite for any particular movement, it certainly is a fine performance that leaves a good impression overall.

Shipway and Karajan are in my first grouping and I'd add Skrowaczewski to Jarvi and Petrenko as runners-up.
Posted by: Captain4105

Re: Stunning Recordings - 01/22/13 12:06 AM

I'll listen to the Shipway. If the rest of the symphony is as good as the first few minutes I heard, then I think it will be a stand-out. I have yet to hear Petrenko's, but it received great reviews and people seem to like it. BTW, I have Mehta's Mahler 2nd on a DVD-A with the Israel Phil. It seems to have received very fine reviews. Unfortunately I cannot yet hear it in surround since I don't yet own an up-to-date receiver, but I am getting close to making a decision. In stereo the sound is rather poor (I think that is due to the mixing for DVD-A, and it is also issued separately in pure stereo, which will most likely is much better, frustrating!). But his interpretation did sound consistent with the VPO recording and I am likely to buy the Decca Legends issue because the performance is better, more precise and with a superior orchestra. How was the Shostakovich 5th? I've only heard his ultra dry Mercury recording with the Minneapolis Symphony recorded 50 years ago.
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 01/22/13 01:29 AM

Okay, just listened to the 5th now. I prefer a little quicker tempi, especially in the final movement. My favorites are the first Bernstein and Jarvi.

Actually the Skrowaczewski I like best is something he might not be considered "idiomatic" in(he was born about 80 miles from my father's village), i.e., the old Ravel recordings on Vox, which are still available.
Posted by: Captain4105

Re: Stunning Recordings - 01/26/13 01:34 AM

I have a Vox recording with him conducting 2 Mozart piano concertos...it is outstanding. Heard the Shipway Shostakovich 10th. I would term it Shostakovich "lite." Listening critically (and subjectively), it is a consistent performance, but there were some things in the performance that were disappointing to me. Skrow's 10th is Shostakovich "heavy." I still favor Jarvi. I have Bernstein's Shostakovich 5th, (the digital recording when the NYPO was touring in Japan, c. 1979). Better sound than the older recording (c. 1959). I too agree Bernstein's is hard to beat and is very similar to Mravinsky's, who premiered the 5th. Have you heard Bernstein's Rite of Spring? The older Sony recording was hard for me to find but ebay had it for a good price some years ago. I hear things in that recording not present in others I've heard, including his London recording of the Rite....Cheers, and happy listening.
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 01/26/13 03:29 AM

Yes, I know and greatly like Bernstein's savage NY Phil(not London or Israel)Rite, which has been reissued by Arkiv. My favorite Stravinsky recording though, is the remastered Rite and Petrouchka done here by the young Ozawa.
Posted by: Captain4105

Re: Stunning Recordings - 01/28/13 02:42 PM

Just heard the Ozawa "Rite." Very impressive, very quick and precise...a recording worth having. I heard Chicago with Solti do it at Carnegie Hall and I wasn't impressed. It was sloppy, the orchestra seemed to fall apart...perhaps they had jet lag. I'll listen to Petrushka next.
Posted by: J. B.

Re: Stunning Recordings - 02/08/13 04:34 PM

hey, all you people who would like to play Cameron Carpenter's Revolutionary SACD at the right (realistic) volume the first time you try, i finally had enough time and the occasion to find it.

try +2.0 dB re. movie Reference Level
and i guarantee you an unforgettable experience, whether
you like organ music or not.

please come back with your comments; most appreciated.
Posted by: brwsaw

Re: Stunning Recordings - 02/08/13 09:52 PM

Wheres the best place to buy SACD's?
Posted by: exlabdriver

Re: Stunning Recordings - 02/08/13 10:09 PM

I started buying SACDs about 8 months ago & now have about 20. Many were priced the same or less than equivalent CDs - the so-called 'rare' ones can get really pricey though.

Most of mine came from ebay vendors - it has the biggest selection out there & I've never had a problem. I even got one directly from China & it was here in no time. Prices vary widely from seller to seller, for example I bought a Vivino Brothers blues SACD (excellent BTW) from a vendor in the US for $7 + $5 shipping at the same time that an Ontario seller had his listed at $50 + $7 for shipping!!

If you buy more than 1 a time you can often get a break on shipping costs on multiple items & as long as the total price isn't too high, the customs man won't bother you for sales taxes...

TAM
Posted by: CatBrat

Re: Stunning Recordings - 02/08/13 10:44 PM

Wow. That is a great source for sacd. I've just been looking on Amazon and they are high.
Posted by: brwsaw

Re: Stunning Recordings - 02/09/13 01:00 AM

I've never heard one.
Now that I've listened my M80s for a while I know its time to start. I've heard some amazing recordings and some that I'd delete/through out if I had better copies.
Best $1500 I ever spent.
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/05/13 09:48 PM

The most frequently recorded of the major compositions of Berlioz is his Symphonie Fantastique, but Harold in Italy, not quite a Viola concerto, although giving that instrument many passages of beauty and excitement, has comparable attractions.

Of the dozen or so recordings of it which I've listened to, I'd suggest the thrilling performance led by Charles Munch with the Boston Symphony for anyone who doesn't currently have this in their collection. High-powered performances of four Berlioz overtures are also included, making for a superb overall Berlioz collection. This was selected for remastering for SACD in the "Living Stereo" series and the compatible disc also has an excellent quality CD layer. Available here from several Amazon sellers at typically bargain prices.
Posted by: Captain4105

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/07/13 12:42 AM

Ditto to John's recommendation...I have found the Primrose/Munch partnership the most exciting and satisfying of all versions I've yet heard (pretty good sound in SACD as well). Its a wonderful piece, so imaginative and colorful and very beautiful, expressive...a tone poem for viola and orchestra by a master of invention who was musical boundary breaker.

Which "Fantastique" do you favor John?
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/07/13 04:34 AM

Lee, as you say, Berlioz was certainly a "musical boundary breaker" and made a decided turn in the way classical music sounded, compared to his predecessors such as Beethoven.

As to the Symphonie Fantastique, I like both the 1954 and 1962 Munch performances and also include Muti in my top group.
Posted by: Captain4105

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/08/13 12:24 AM

Yes, its hard to believe that Berlioz and Beethoven were just a generation or two apart. His Romeo et Juliette Dramatic Symphony is a wonder as is his Requiem. I've heard both Munch recordings and once owned the SACD but never took to it. I am still trying to find my ideal. I am now listening to Abbado's Chicago recording (with the optional coronet part), it is quite good but not as clear as it could be for this piece, but I am listening to it for the first time through my M80's and it sounds much better than I recall from my old speaker system. I have Muti's, very enjoyable, and I very much like Maazel's Cleveland recording especially with the outstanding Telarc sound engineering. Bernstein is also very good (the first he made with the N.Y Phil in the early 60's). Markevitch with the Lamoureux is a childhood favorite, but the sound stage is rather shallow on his DG recording (LP). I also have Solti's and it is an uncharacteristic version given his penchant of dramatics, this interpretation is quite mild, so is Dutoit's Montreal recording. Paray's is much too fast for my taste, a real "trip," quite like Munch but a bit freakier. In any case my search continues....regards to you.
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/08/13 12:37 AM

Since you didn't mention it, I'll suggest the earlier of Solti's two recordings, i.e., this one , for a borrow and listen. Quite a high-powered performance in good sound.
Posted by: Captain4105

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/09/13 01:16 AM

John: I have the other one. I bought it not for the Berlioz but for the Liszt Les Preludes that accompanies it and that's why I still have it. I haven't heard the earlier version...Rhapsody doesn't have it online but I'll give the library a try. From what I've read about this recording it seems to be more the Solti of drama, crazyness and flare that this symphony needs. Thanks for the tip.
Posted by: St_PatGuy

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/09/13 09:20 AM

Originally Posted By: JohnK
The most frequently recorded of the major compositions of Berlioz is his Symphonie Fantastique, but Harold in Italy, not quite a Viola concerto, although giving that instrument many passages of beauty and excitement, has comparable attractions.

Of the dozen or so recordings of it which I've listened to, I'd suggest the thrilling performance led by Charles Munch with the Boston Symphony for anyone who doesn't currently have this in their collection. High-powered performances of four Berlioz overtures are also included, making for a superb overall Berlioz collection. This was selected for remastering for SACD in the "Living Stereo" series and the compatible disc also has an excellent quality CD layer. Available here from several Amazon sellers at typically bargain prices.


Ordered the SACD this last week and thoroughly enjoyed the disc. Thanks for the recommendation!
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/09/13 09:48 PM

Enjoy, Sean.
Posted by: whippersnapper

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/10/13 09:10 PM

I guess I should mention this album in this thread, too.

Steve Wilson's "The Raven That Refused to Sing".

I'm referring specifically to the blu-ray version. I've been listening primarily in the 24/96 5.1 surround mode and the sonics are simply awesome.
Posted by: J. B.

Re: Stunning Recordings - 05/06/13 09:37 AM

i'm thinking about buying Bizet's Carmen on Blu-ray and would like to read your recommendation as to the quality of interpretation, and also video and audio quality.
Posted by: fredk

Re: Stunning Recordings - 05/06/13 10:18 PM

Originally Posted By: whippersnapper
I guess I should mention this album in this thread, too.

Steve Wilson's "The Raven That Refused to Sing".

I'm referring specifically to the blu-ray version. I've been listening primarily in the 24/96 5.1 surround mode and the sonics are simply awesome.

Checked out a couple of tracks. Amazing stuff. I've tried to like Porcupine Tree, but could never get into them. This, on the other hand, I love.

Thanks for posting it.
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 05/06/13 11:17 PM

Jacques, I don't watch much music on video discs. The relatively small collection I have is composed of ballets(Nutcracker, Swan Lake, Cinderella, etc.)where the visual element is obviously highly important. There apparently are six Carmens on Blu-ray and I haven't seen any of them. I did see the excellent Garanca/Alagna performance about three years ago on PBS and if I was going to get a Carmen Blu-ray, that's the one I'd pick.

A sample of the Final Scene is on YouTube here ,and Garanca sings Carmen's Gypsy Song in a concert setting here .
Posted by: J. B.

Re: Stunning Recordings - 05/07/13 07:10 AM

thanks John, i did some reading about the one you recommended and
i ordered it just now.

thanks again. :-)
Posted by: Boltron

Re: Stunning Recordings - 05/07/13 10:42 AM

I just ordered Steve Wilson's "The Raven That Refused to Sing" Bluray, can't wait!

Thanks for sharing.
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 05/21/13 09:37 PM

Every collection should include recordings of the beautiful and thrilling music Tchaikovsky composed for the three great ballets, The nutcracker, Sleeping beauty and Swan Lake. I've suggested in the past a disc of highlights from Swan Lake, but a 2-disc set of this glorious music in its entirety is available at bargain prices from about $6 up from various Amazon sellers .

Note that this is in fact a 2-disc set of the complete music, not a disc of the highlights. It's the great performance that the first Amazon reviewer(a symphony orchestra oboist)was willing to pay $105 for six years ago when it was out of print.
Posted by: CatBrat

Re: Stunning Recordings - 05/21/13 11:54 PM

I'm rather fond of Jim Morrison and the Doors, and Eric Burdon and the Animals myself. Oh yeah and Lady Gaga, and Shakira. Never could get into orchestra music much except for background music in a movie.

There was a Russian opera album I really liked once. Don't recall who or what.
Posted by: Hellcommute

Re: Stunning Recordings - 05/26/13 05:37 PM

Not sure if this has been mentioned yet but the new Vampire Weekend Album Modern Vampires in the city is very good. Excellent Vocals live and present sound. etc. Vampire Weekend Rules.

The New Daft punk Album Random Access Memories was intentionally made with the highest production and recording technology available to breath life back into "real" music for the ipod generation. Check it out.
Posted by: Hellcommute

Re: Stunning Recordings - 06/09/13 01:30 PM

Tame impala is a great band from australia that plays 60s/70s style psychedelic rock. Think beatles harmonies meets fat Hendrix guitar licks. Lots of reverb, space and artful distortion use.

Their newest release Lonerism is a must buy imo.

They have a great single called "elephant" that is making the rounds. Check it out! cool

For the serious listener this disc is one I would consider reference quality to show off three dimensional sound from 2 speakers. The first track, gotta be above it, has sounds bouncing well outside of the width of the speakers in my setup. Fantastic mixing and production from a playback perspective. An exciting listen. smile
Posted by: St_PatGuy

Re: Stunning Recordings - 06/10/13 10:10 PM

Thanks for the recommendation, Hellcommute. I've had Tame Impala in my Amazon wish list for some time. I'll give 'em a bump to the cart.
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 09/10/13 09:59 PM

One of the highlights of the BBC Proms which concluded on Saturday was a performance of Janacek's Sinfonietta, opening with stirring brass fanfares and then alternating with fierce and beautiful passages. The most exciting recording of the Sinfonietta, of the many I've heard, is the Ancerl Gold edition with the superb Czech Philharmonic. This also includes two rather exotic rarely heard pieces by Martinu, which makes this disc fascinating listening in its entirety. Available from several Amazon sellers at absurdly low prices for music of this quality, from about $5 up.
Posted by: PatCase

Re: Stunning Recordings - 09/12/13 10:59 AM

John, this should interest you. I just took delivery of an Archiv recording of Handel's masses transcribed by Mozart. Unfortunately, this morning, I have only had the time to listen to side on of the Messiah. I'll post a longer review when I have a chance to listen some more. Initial impressions are amazement. Having had it played in my home since I was too young to even remember, the Messiah is part of my life blood. Hearing it sung in German is incredible!
Posted by: PatCase

Re: Stunning Recordings - 09/13/13 08:47 PM

FYI

Grigorian, in Toronto, is having a sale. Of social note is the sale of Decca recordings.

http://www.grigorian.com/webstore/main.php
Posted by: PatCase

Re: Stunning Recordings - 09/14/13 07:51 AM

" of special note"
Posted by: BobKay

Re: Stunning Recordings - 09/14/13 04:28 PM

"No, don't buy that one, buy this one!" -- BobKay

Though Tame Impala are the current Euro Festival (and musical press) darlings this summer, real 60's psychedelia makes their writing and playing seem rather thin. I was excited to get it. I had it for a couple of weeks, then sold it back.

A better band in that vein (and this is really odd) is Pond, who are 2/5's of Tame Impala. Their new CD, Hobo Rocket is, IMO, a better record and more fun, though clocking in at only about 35 minutes.

Would I lie to you about Rock and Roll? Huh? Ever?!?

Hellcommute, welcome. Great to have contributing thoughts.
I may have differing opinions, but you had me in your corner after the second "l" in "hell."
Posted by: Hellcommute

Re: Stunning Recordings - 09/14/13 08:57 PM

Ordered. Thanks!
Posted by: BobKay

Re: Stunning Recordings - 09/16/13 01:00 PM

PM me and lemme know whatcha think. I'm really interested.

Hell, some of the regulars here are now likely horrified that you took my suggestion so readily. Just be more cautious if my suggestion has anything whatsoever to do with any, even teeny, aspect of your real life.

May I refer to you simply as "Hell?" It puts an instant "bad" word in any text to/about you. Saves me a little time.

n.b. I publicly swore off emoticons a long time go, so just assume I'm kidding unless it's REALLY offensive, OK?
Posted by: Hellcommute

Re: Stunning Recordings - 09/16/13 06:45 PM

Will do. Hell is fine, why the hell not! smile

FYI I also ordered Santigold, Jagwar Ma and Django Django. I'm starved for new and interesting music right now. Any more suggestions bring'em in. I average ~5 discs a week I'd say.

I might start another thread for new and interesting indie music. There is great production values in a lot of the new albums coming out. They are a great listen and have fantastic fidelity.... but don't quite fit the "stunning recordings" handle when you consider the bulk of this thread is classical and instrumental.
To quote Seinfeld-- "Not that there's anything wrong with that." wink

For those who are willing to experiment, and like Paul Simon's Graceland album, Check out the track "One(Blakes got a new face)" by Vampire weekend. If you're speakers are setup correctly and image well you are in for a thrill. "Cape cod Kwassa Kwassa" is another fun track to check out. Seen this band twice. Great live.
Posted by: fredk

Re: Stunning Recordings - 09/18/13 05:25 PM

Originally Posted By: BobKay
..
n.b. I publicly swore off emoticons a long time go, so just assume I'm kidding unless it's REALLY offensive, OK?

In which case assume he's drunk and just thinks he's kidding.
Posted by: BobKay

Re: Stunning Recordings - 09/20/13 07:09 AM

Originally Posted By: fredk
Originally Posted By: BobKay
..
n.b. I publicly swore off emoticons a long time go, so just assume I'm kidding unless it's REALLY offensive, OK?

In which case assume he's drunk and just thinks he's kidding.


EVERYONE knows I don't drink.
Posted by: richeydog

Re: Stunning Recordings - 09/20/13 01:31 PM

Originally Posted By: BobKay
EVERYONE knows I don't drink.

...before breakfast.
Posted by: tomtuttle

Re: Stunning Recordings - 09/20/13 02:11 PM

No, you guys don't get it.

I've SEEN Bob not drink.
Posted by: MarkSJohnson

Re: Stunning Recordings - 09/20/13 02:49 PM

I've seen him NOT get stumbling drunk!
Posted by: tomtuttle

Re: Stunning Recordings - 09/20/13 03:40 PM

Even when that would have clearly been a prudent course of action.
Posted by: BobKay

Re: Stunning Recordings - 09/20/13 05:36 PM

Originally Posted By: tomtuttle
Even when that would have clearly been a prudent course of action.


Ummm, this control freak says, "no." I prefer to be WITH inebriated people in the evening, and, next morning, tell them wicked lies about their horrendous behaviors.
Posted by: MarkSJohnson

Re: Stunning Recordings - 09/20/13 05:56 PM

Jeez, Tom, we're in trouble! smile
Posted by: CV

Re: Stunning Recordings - 09/21/13 11:55 PM

Jesca Hoop's The Complete Kismet Acoustic sounds really good.
Posted by: CV

Re: Stunning Recordings - 09/21/13 11:58 PM

Originally Posted By: CV
Jesca Hoop's The Complete Kismet Acoustic sounds really good.


Here's the first track: "Silverscreen"
Posted by: J. B.

Re: Stunning Recordings - 09/22/13 11:02 AM

Dark Side of the Moon's best is the 5.1 SACD.
Still very good and close behind, is the original Quadraphonic version.
playing these, you'll easily hear all kinds of things
you could not hear before on the Cd's.

the original Cd's in stereo lack a lot of resolution
compared to the 2 above; dynamic range seems more restricted
and so many different instruments all jammed up in the front
stage makes for fuzziness in the reproduction.
compared to the CD's, the surround versions seem to have a much better sound stage and acoustic ambiance.

i love the SACD, and for those who can't play them,
the disc's stereo version (hybrid disc) is also supposed to have been remastered from the original half inch tapes and one benefit is that the details and resolution are better than on former cd releases.
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 12/04/13 09:26 PM

Sir Edward Elgar's majestic and beautiful 2nd Symphony has continued to grow on me to the point where it now is one of my favorites. An excellent disc couples the symphony with my other Elgar favorite, the overture In the South, inspired by a winter vacation he took with his family in the south of Italy.

Available for about $3 up from Import CDs and other sellers at Amazon .
Posted by: michael_d

Re: Stunning Recordings - 12/06/13 02:02 PM

That's nice... Temporarily sold out at Amazon though.

A buddy suggested I get Album for the Young,
P.I. Tchaikovsky

Might you have it? Or an opinion?
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 12/06/13 11:33 PM

Mike, I didn't suggest buying from Amazon in-house(which is much higher priced, as well as being unavailable), but rather from the several third-party sellers there who have it at bargain prices. I note that Import CDs raised the price over a dollar over the past day; possibly they got quite a few orders. It looks like i-Deals(which I've also dealt with)now has the best offer.

As to the Album for the Young disc, Tchaikovsky composed 24 brief(average about a minute)pieces for young pianists. The twist on the disc that probably is the one suggested to you is that after the 24 are played by a pianist, they're repeated in arrangements made for string quartet. These brief items aren't really to my taste, although the string arrangements add a bit more interest. I did find samples(not available on Amazon) here on CD Connection, so you can take a listen to see if you're more impressed.
Posted by: brwsaw

Re: Stunning Recordings - 12/07/13 01:02 PM

Anyone listen to this http://www.2l.no/pages/album/090.html yet?
I'm considering making it my first multi-channel audio purchase.
Its mentioned on AVS here

http://www.avsforum.com/t/1503385/stereo-vs-surround-with-steve-guttenberg#post_24036082
Posted by: michael_d

Re: Stunning Recordings - 12/09/13 10:14 PM

Originally Posted By: JohnK
Mike, I didn't suggest buying from Amazon in-house(which is much higher priced, as well as being unavailable), but rather from the several third-party sellers there who have it at bargain prices. I note that Import CDs raised the price over a dollar over the past day; possibly they got quite a few orders. It looks like i-Deals(which I've also dealt with)now has the best offer.

As to the Album for the Young disc, Tchaikovsky composed 24 brief(average about a minute)pieces for young pianists. The twist on the disc that probably is the one suggested to you is that after the 24 are played by a pianist, they're repeated in arrangements made for string quartet. These brief items aren't really to my taste, although the string arrangements add a bit more interest. I did find samples(not available on Amazon) here on CD Connection, so you can take a listen to see if you're more impressed.


Thanks John.. My default is Amazon, as they ship free. Good to know about the Tchaicovsky disk. I'll pass on it.
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Stunning Recordings - 03/19/14 09:51 PM

Holst's massive composition "The Planets" is well known for its musical excitement and beauty and its purely sonic values have made it a popular candidate for demonstration discs. Everyone should have at least one performance(I have seven)in their collection, but should be aware that the composer wasn't an example of a "one-hit wonder".

An excellent 2-disc collection which includes of course a performance of The Planets conducted by Sir Adrian Boult(who led its first performance, and who Holst commented "First made The Planets shine")also includes a fine overview of his other works. Besides The Planets I especially enjoy The Perfect Fool and The Song of The Blacksmith from the Suite for Military Band. This set is available for about $7 up from several Amazon sellers .