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The Great Classical Composer Collection Thread

Discussion in 'Music' started by JohnRice, Feb 15, 2010.

  1. JohnRice

    JohnRice Well-Known Member

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    Sumner,

    I have placed several orders from both Amazon.co.uk and Amazon.de. There are many significant deals.

    Man, just to say a bit more, I understand reading reviews, but I am in a serious exploration mode right now, so these big sets are a great way to go. I have been very surprised by the overall quality of the Brilliant sets in particular.
     
  2. Sumnernor

    Sumnernor Well-Known Member

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    I would not avoid the Brilliant sets. They are authorized recordings - so they have the original tapes- They are located in Holland. I would like to contact them about the Bartok Quartets of Sony. They have the Scriabin ochestral worksw with Muti and the Philadelphia and if you like R.Strauss. they have THE best recordings of R. Strauss tone poems with Rudolph Kempe - there are non better even though done in the 60s.
    I am happy that there are people liking classical music. My father didn't like me listening to it because he thought it was for sissies and girls!!! I have many favorite composers. I was lucky once to see Toscanini. I never saw Furtwangler and in Munich was lucky too see Carlos Kleiber.
    I recommend American Record Guide and Fanfare Magazines
     
  3. ManW_TheUncool

    ManW_TheUncool Well-Known Member

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    So wait. The Brilliant set(s) is actually a large collection of old recordings culled from the various big labels? Didn't realize that.
    FWIW, for years (since my college days back in the late 80's), I did my exploration w/ the aid of the site classical.net (and its former usenet newsgroup predecessor). There's a very substantial section there for recommendations to the "basic repertoire" to discover as starting points:
    http://www.classical.net/music/rep/
    I don't often go by the recommendations of actual recordings there, but I did find the basic repertoire section to be immensely helpful, especially as the site added more info about the composers, etc. over the years.
    RE: the Solti rec for the Beethoven symphonies, I may consider him. I do like Solti in the few recordings of other works I have of his, but they are usually in the opera repertoire IIRC. Is his take on the Beethoven symphonies rather broad, lyrical, etc. or a bit more brisk w/ plenty of bite? I tend to prefer the latter more than the former. I have Sir Colin Davis' well recommended Eroica on Philips label, and I find him rather too broad and slow for much of it although I do enjoy it on occasion. Carlos Kleiber's highly regarded Beethoven 5th on DG is also rather broad and slow, but it does not generally feel too much so for me and adds a great sense of a majestic proceeding to it, particularly the 4th movement w/ those glorious french horns. For that one, I actually upgraded to the SACD though I have not been able to listen to it carefully for any improvements over the old CD version -- both also include his Beethoven 7th, which also seems quite good.
    _Man_
     
  4. JohnRice

    JohnRice Well-Known Member

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    I would call Solti's Beethoven to be lyrical (though less than Karajan) and majestic, but somewhat mid range to slow-ish, but not "SLOW" for tempo. He is certainly in the "Modern" school of interpreting Beethoven, which I personally prefer. His 6th (my favorite) is my hands down favorite recording, and I say that even though I have almost never heard any interpretation of ANYTHING I think falls in that category. I am a firm disbeliever there is such a thing as the "best" interpretation of any piece of music. There are simply too many variables.

    Regarding Brilliant, they are actually rarely OLD (say, pre mid 70s or before) recordings, by my experience, but they are typically a mix of ones from other labels with ones of their own. For example, I just got their Grieg set and the Piano Concerto is the exceptional one by Jorge Bolet/Riccardo Chailly/RSO Berlin from Decca. Unfortunately, I already have that one. The solo piano recordings are exceptional, relatively new ones they either did themselves or licensed from a European label I am not familiar with.

    I have even found some outstanding, small sets from labels like Chandos at a very attractive price. Mostly 20th century composers.
     
  5. JohnRice

    JohnRice Well-Known Member

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    Sorry to be slightly off topic...

    I'm hoping someone here has the Telarc/Zander/Philharmonia Mahler 9th Symphony and can confirm the packaging. I purchased one used and it came in a 2 disc case with the third disc just kind of stuffed in the back. My Mahler 6th from Zander/Telarc is not packaged this way. It is in a 3 disc case. I find it very hard to believe Telarc actually did this. Can anyone confirm how it was actually packaged?

    Thanks
     
  6. Dennis Nicholls

    Dennis Nicholls Well-Known Member

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    It's odd that I've never owned any Schubert. It's always been at the back of my mind but never when it's time to log onto Amazon et al......

    So I decided to buy a set of the 8 extant symphonies (1 through 9 minus 7).

    The cheapest set was the Brilliant Classics set, featuring the Dresden Staatskapelle under the direction of Herbert Blomstedt. It's never mentioned in my recent Penguin guides, but I found this interesting online review:

    http://www.classicstoday.com/review/review-15433/
    Based on this review I ordered the set from Amazon. The set arrived the other day and I've very casually listened through all 4 CDs. Liner notes say it was recorded 1978-1981.

    I was surprised to find that I recognized every single movement of all eight symphonies. They have received so much radio play over the years that I guess I've just absorbed them.

    This is a heck of a deal for about $22 at Amazon.
    Or this vendor http://www.arkivmusic.com/classical/album.jsp?album_id=1014366

    It would be interesting to hear comments about others' favorite Schubert cycles.
     
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  7. Sumnernor

    Sumnernor Well-Known Member

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    I have many classical CDs. Living in Munich,I have all of the canatas that Richter did plus many of the orchestral works with him. I like both the "original" and non-original versions. The editor of the American Record Guide does NOT like the original versions, I do ,not because of it being the original but because I like the sound.

    I have much Wagner but I have the Ponto PO 1040 which has the COMPLETE Rienzi on 4 CDs with Edward Downes conducting the Northern Symphony Orchestra. It was recorded by the BBC in the Wagner year of 1976. It is sad to say that is is out-of.print. Look at the comments on Amazon.com for this Rienzi. If you should see it - buy it.
     
  8. David_B_K

    David_B_K Advanced Member

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    I have two Scubert symphony cycles that I really like. Karajan's with the Berlin Philharmonic is available as a couple of 2-fer sets from EMI. Karajan takes a rather fast and driven approach to the symphonies. I also like Harnoncourt's set with the Concertgebouw. Harnoncourt likes to dabble in Historically Informed Performance practices (something I am not into), but his Schubert set is surprisingly unabashedly big and romantic.

    I also recommend Schubert's late string quartets which are very dramatic.

    I have not heard any of the Blomstedt Schubert set, but did enjoy his Beethoven set with the Dresdeners.
     
  9. Aaron Silverman

    Aaron Silverman Well-Known Member

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  10. ManW_TheUncool

    ManW_TheUncool Well-Known Member

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    Another vote for Schubert's late string quartets -- I only have the Italian Qt on Philips label. Also a vote for the Trout Quintet -- checkout Chris Nupens DVD w/ Perlman, Zuckerman, Du Pre, Barenboim and Mehta, which you can sample on YouTube. _Man_
     
  11. Aaron Silverman

    Aaron Silverman Well-Known Member

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  12. Greg Bright

    Greg Bright Well-Known Member

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  13. Dennis Nicholls

    Dennis Nicholls Well-Known Member

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    It's odd being a fan of music that I've reached my 60's without ever going through the Bruckner symphony cycle. Maybe I was put off by Brahm's catty remark about "symphonic boa constrictors". My own take was that Wagner never wrote any symphonies, but that's OK because Bruckner wrote them for him.

    Previously the only disc I'd owned was the 4th and 7th symphonies on DGG with Barenboim/Chicago.

    I've just taken a chance on the $20 11 CD set by Robert Paternostro / Wurttembergische Philharmonie Reutlingen. Good comments in general from Amazon customers but a "meh" from MusicWeb.

    I'm listening to the one I'm familiar with: the 4th. Very different sonics than the Barenboim version. Barenboim's recording was very close-miced on the brass which tends to hit you over the head. Paternostro's version is somewhat more spacious. It may take some getting used to for me.

    Any suggestions as to the order in which I should listen to these symphonies? All 9 are included along with #0 and the Te Deum.
     
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  14. Lord Dalek

    Lord Dalek Well-Known Member

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    I don't have any "Complete" sets (outside of certain symphony cycles) but I do own a lot of classical on CD and vinyl.
    IIRC Brilliant licenses their recordings from Decca, Vanguard, and Vox Records.
     
  15. Dennis Nicholls

    Dennis Nicholls Well-Known Member

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    RCA has released a few new boxed sets. Comments at Amazon indicate new 24 bit mastering on some of the sets.
    The real prize is the almost-complete works of Chopin by Arthur Rubinstein: 10 CD set for as low as $13 (Amazon partner). http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B003S9GOWS/
    [​IMG]
    I bought a set for a friend and had it shipped direct so I can't vouch for it personally, although I do have the earlier RCA boxed set.
     

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