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Thread: My personal Beethoven string quartet journey....

  1. #226
    Senior Member Itullian's Avatar
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    Exploring this new set
    The recorded sound is excellent, realistic, clear, perfect distance and balance.
    It's a clamshell box with a beautifully done booklet with color pages. And photos from the various concerts.
    Each cd is the program from each city they played in. A complete set.
    More after I finish listening.

    The only possible caveat I can think of is that the quartets are not in the order of opus number.
    They are grouped as at a concert. Early with late, etc,
    Last edited by Itullian; May-18-2020 at 21:44.
    When all else fails, listen to Thick as a Brick.

  2. #227
    Senior Member Itullian's Avatar
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    ^^^^^^
    The set is awesome. Great playing and fantastic sound
    When all else fails, listen to Thick as a Brick.

  3. #228
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    Quote Originally Posted by Itullian View Post


    Exploring this new set
    The recorded sound is excellent, realistic, clear, perfect distance and balance.
    It's a clamshell box with a beautifully done booklet with color pages. And photos from the various concerts.
    Each cd is the program from each city they played in. A complete set.
    More after I finish listening.

    The only possible caveat I can think of is that the quartets are not in the order of opus number.
    They are grouped as at a concert. Early with late, etc,
    I've heard some of the Ebene set. The sound is clear, but my impression is that the mikes were close and reverb was added later--I could be wrong... And as excellent as the playing may be, the cello is more like a tenor instrument with not as much low-end as I'd prefer (cf. Soyer with Guarneri, for example).

  4. #229
    Senior Member Itullian's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by perdido34 View Post
    I've heard some of the Ebene set. The sound is clear, but my impression is that the mikes were close and reverb was added later--I could be wrong... And as excellent as the playing may be, the cello is more like a tenor instrument with not as much low-end as I'd prefer (cf. Soyer with Guarneri, for example).
    hmmm, it sounds great to me.
    When all else fails, listen to Thick as a Brick.

  5. #230
    Senior Member wkasimer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Itullian View Post


    Exploring this new set
    The recorded sound is excellent, realistic, clear, perfect distance and balance.
    The sound is a little too close for my taste, at least on the first two discs. I assume that was done to minimize audience participation, but at the same time it will make all of the venues sound the same, which kind of defeats the purpose of recording in multiple cities.

  6. #231
    Senior Member wkasimer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by wkasimer View Post
    The sound is a little too close for my taste, at least on the first two discs. I assume that was done to minimize audience participation, but at the same time it will make all of the venues sound the same, which kind of defeats the purpose of recording in multiple cities.
    I also wish that they had included applause. I know that many people find that objectionable, but if you're going to record a live performance, why not include the audience response?

  7. #232
    Senior Member wkasimer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Itullian View Post


    The only possible caveat I can think of is that the quartets are not in the order of opus number.
    They are grouped as at a concert. Early with late, etc,
    That's not a big deal to me, at least in this case, where there's an actual good reason to do so. It bothers me more when it seems to be done just to be perverse (the first ABQ set was issued helter-skelter, but the most recent issue has the quartets in order). I do wish, though, that Erato had indicated on the back of the clamshell box which quartets are on which disc.

    And despite my reservations about the sound, I'm really enjoying this set.

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  9. #233
    Senior Member Itullian's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by wkasimer View Post
    That's not a big deal to me, at least in this case, where there's an actual good reason to do so. It bothers me more when it seems to be done just to be perverse (the first ABQ set was issued helter-skelter, but the most recent issue has the quartets in order). I do wish, though, that Erato had indicated on the back of the clamshell box which quartets are on which disc.

    And despite my reservations about the sound, I'm really enjoying this set.
    I am too. I prefer the quartets in order too, but once in a while I don't mind something different.
    And I am really enjoying the playing on this set.
    Beautiful booklet too!!!
    When all else fails, listen to Thick as a Brick.

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  11. #234
    Senior Member Knorf's Avatar
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    I'm somewhat surprised at the lack of interest on this forum in the last Tokyo Quartet Beethoven cycle, on Harmonia Mundi SACDs. I think it's absolutely fantastic, beating their very good RCA set, and it was immediately one of my all-time favorite Beethoven cycles. Indeed, these recordings are some of my favorite string quartet performances, period!

    I'm very sure many other string quartet enthusiasts would find much to enjoy in this cycle. In addition to wonderfully musical, thoughtful, and polished performances, the recording quality is outstanding.


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  13. #235
    Senior Member Merl's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Knorf View Post
    I'm somewhat surprised at the lack of interest on this forum in the last Tokyo Quartet Beethoven cycle, on Harmonia Mundi SACDs. I think it's absolutely fantastic, beating their very good RCA set, and it was immediately one of my all-time favorite Beethoven cycles. Indeed, these recordings are some of my favorite string quartet performances, period!

    I'm very sure many other string quartet enthusiasts would find much to enjoy in this cycle. In addition to wonderfully musical, thoughtful, and polished performances, the recording quality is outstanding.

    I agree, mate. It's excellent. I love their first cycle just as much. The recording of the HM one is very special. They give them sound to die for.

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  15. #236
    Senior Member wkasimer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Knorf View Post
    I'm somewhat surprised at the lack of interest on this forum in the last Tokyo Quartet Beethoven cycle, on Harmonia Mundi SACDs. I think it's absolutely fantastic, beating their very good RCA set, and it was immediately one of my all-time favorite Beethoven cycles. Indeed, these recordings are some of my favorite string quartet performances, period!

    I'm very sure many other string quartet enthusiasts would find much to enjoy in this cycle. In addition to wonderfully musical, thoughtful, and polished performances, the recording quality is outstanding.

    I bought it when it was first issued, and was disappointed. Compared to the Tokyo Quartet's first recording, and any number of other recordings, I thought that the remake was well played but low on energy.

  16. #237
    Senior Member Knorf's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by wkasimer View Post
    I bought it when it was first issued, and was disappointed. Compared to the Tokyo Quartet's first recording, and any number of other recordings, I thought that the remake was well played but low on energy.
    I definitely do not find it so, nor even understand how one could perceive it as low energy. But so it is! No one necessarily hears things the same.

    I re-listened to Op. 59 No. 3 today just to confirm I'm not mad.

    I'm not.

    This is a very dynamic set of recordings, not low energy at all. Tempi are on the brisk side, the sound is fabulous, they bring out accents, and they create wonderfully large dynamic and color contrasts. Also, the intonation is flawless.
    Last edited by Knorf; May-23-2020 at 04:37.

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  18. #238
    Senior Member Merl's Avatar
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    The Grosse Fugue on the HM edition is probably one of the best around. They nailed it first time around but the HM account is the highlight of the set, for me.

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    Senior Member jegreenwood's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Knorf View Post
    I definitely do not find it so, nor even understand how one could perceive it as low energy. But so it is! No one necessarily hears things the same.

    I re-listened to Op. 59 No. 3 today just to confirm I'm not mad.

    I'm not.

    This is a very dynamic set of recordings, not low energy at all. Tempi are on the brisk side, the sound is fabulous, they bring out accents, and they create wonderfully large dynamic and color contrasts. Also, the intonation is flawless.
    I have it. I found the tone gorgeous, and I wouldn't say low energy, I would say relaxed, compared to some of my other recordings.

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  21. #240
    Senior Member Itullian's Avatar
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    Here I go again.
    Another one to the hoard.
    When all else fails, listen to Thick as a Brick.

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