Discussion:
debussy orchestral music - recommendations?
(too old to reply)
Paul Ilechko
2006-08-27 22:01:13 UTC
Permalink
The only complete(ish) set I have is Haitink, and it bores me to tears.
I have the Mitropoulos "La Mer" on the GCOTTC set, which it is much
better. I'm looking for more Debussy that has that kind of life and
energy - any recommendations?
Andy Evans
2006-08-27 22:47:57 UTC
Permalink
La Mer -
Boston SO/Munch - thrilling must-have performance c/w Saint Saens Symph
3
Boulez/New Philharmonia c/w Jeux and Apres Midi CBS - very fine disc
altogether and a must have.

Jeux -
Boulez on DG is even finer than the CBS, though the coupling is
slightly lower key
Maderna is another interesting and rewarding performance c/w Stravinsky
and Milhaud.
You absolutely have to get good performances of Jeux (I suggest the two
Boulez discs) because in the wrong hands it doesn't make much musical
sense. Haitink is one of the worst to my ears, Ansermet is always
interesting though not a match for Boulez, Martinon and Dutoit rather
bland. Bernstein is quite good, coupled with an excellent La Mer, Apres
Midi and a couple of Nocturnes - good disc to have.

Images and Nocturnes - I have the Ansermet performances, the Brilliant
box of Martinon, the Dutoit performances, and Boulez. I enjoy all in
their way. I find these pieces less interesting than Jeux and La Mer
n***@thump.org
2006-08-28 09:42:00 UTC
Permalink
On 27 Aug 2006 15:47:57 -0700, "Andy Evans"
Post by Andy Evans
Boulez/New Philharmonia c/w Jeux and Apres Midi CBS - very fine disc
altogether and a must have.
I second that. I became hooked on it!
tomdeacon
2006-08-27 22:53:50 UTC
Permalink
Post by Paul Ilechko
The only complete(ish) set I have is Haitink, and it bores me to tears.
I have the Mitropoulos "La Mer" on the GCOTTC set, which it is much
better. I'm looking for more Debussy that has that kind of life and
energy - any recommendations?
I suppose that one could have guessed that you would go for the
"dancing girls" versions of any music. So, of course, Haitink is not
your tasse de the.

No surprise here.

If you're also cheap you can now acquire the Martinon EMI complete set
for next to nothing. It's worth much more than that, of course.

If you go for dry as dust Debussy, you should apply to Mr. Gable for
his sage advice.

If you want to be selective, as any wise person would be, you might
like to start with La Mer and investigate Munch, Reiner, Boulez, Szell,
Ingelbrecht, Cluytens and Karajan. Once you have your tastes set in
that work, you can then apply for further advice regarding the other
works.

TD
Curtis Croulet
2006-08-27 23:10:43 UTC
Permalink
Martinon. You might also investigate the historical Debussy collection on
Andante.
--
Curtis Croulet
Temecula, California
33°27'59"N, 117°05'53"W
makropulos
2006-08-27 23:11:22 UTC
Permalink
Martinon is a fantastic bargain, and you get his complete Ravel
orchestral works as part of the same deal.

For individual pieces, a few of my own preferences include:

La Mer:
Désormière/Czech PO (Andante), Manuel Rosenthal/Paris Opéra
(Accord), Munch/Boston (RCA), Ansermet/SRO (Decca Legends), Stokowski
(Decca)

Nocturnes: Rosenthal again, Inghelbrecht (Testament) - and I have to
say that I do like Haitink's Nocturnes - one of my favourite Haitink
records.

Jeux: Cluytens (EMI)

Images: Munch, Monteux, Rosenthal.

There are plenty more...Reiner, Toscanini, Coppola, Fournet...
Post by Paul Ilechko
The only complete(ish) set I have is Haitink, and it bores me to tears.
I have the Mitropoulos "La Mer" on the GCOTTC set, which it is much
better. I'm looking for more Debussy that has that kind of life and
energy - any recommendations?
Andy Evans
2006-08-27 23:41:30 UTC
Permalink
You'll probably get a lot of recommendations for Martinon on the
grounds of good value, but in my opinion it isn't exciting and full of
energy in the way that, say, Munch's La Mer is. It's good enough but
there are better individual performances. You did state that as your
objective - something more exciting.
I listened again to Bernstein and Maderna in Jeux, and I have to say
Maderna is much more subtle, though Bernstein on the surface is more
energetic and jazzy. So I wouldn't rule out being equally satisfied by
some really subtle performances, like Boulez DG in Jeux. It's worth
having a few Jeux - the performances vary much more than those of La
Mer.
Paul Ilechko
2006-08-27 23:58:45 UTC
Permalink
Post by Andy Evans
You'll probably get a lot of recommendations for Martinon on the
grounds of good value, but in my opinion it isn't exciting and full of
energy in the way that, say, Munch's La Mer is. It's good enough but
there are better individual performances. You did state that as your
objective - something more exciting.
I listened again to Bernstein and Maderna in Jeux, and I have to say
Maderna is much more subtle, though Bernstein on the surface is more
energetic and jazzy. So I wouldn't rule out being equally satisfied by
some really subtle performances, like Boulez DG in Jeux. It's worth
having a few Jeux - the performances vary much more than those of La
Mer.
Thanks for all the helpful comments, Andy.
Paul Ilechko
2006-09-03 19:44:01 UTC
Permalink
Post by Andy Evans
You'll probably get a lot of recommendations for Martinon on the
grounds of good value, but in my opinion it isn't exciting and full of
energy in the way that, say, Munch's La Mer is. It's good enough but
there are better individual performances. You did state that as your
objective - something more exciting.
Picked up a used copy of the Munch disc today, and it really is superb -
just what I was looking for. Now I just need to get a good Jeux ;-)
makropulos
2006-09-03 20:36:14 UTC
Permalink
Great choice - I think it's the one I probably listen to more often
than any other. Glad you like it so much.
Post by Paul Ilechko
Post by Andy Evans
You'll probably get a lot of recommendations for Martinon on the
grounds of good value, but in my opinion it isn't exciting and full of
energy in the way that, say, Munch's La Mer is. It's good enough but
there are better individual performances. You did state that as your
objective - something more exciting.
Picked up a used copy of the Munch disc today, and it really is superb -
just what I was looking for. Now I just need to get a good Jeux ;-)
Andy Evans
2006-09-03 20:57:44 UTC
Permalink
Picked up a used copy of the Munch disc today, and it really is superb
-
just what I was looking for. Now I just need to get a good Jeux ;-) >.

Boulez Jeux on DG is in a class of his own - you really should buy it.
It's a marvel. Andy
Paul Ilechko
2006-09-03 23:52:06 UTC
Permalink
Post by Andy Evans
Boulez Jeux on DG is in a class of his own - you really should buy it.
It's a marvel. Andy
Better than his Sony? I always thought that DG stood for "Don't Get"
where Boulez is concerned (kind of like for Karajan).

In fact, the more I listen to and learn about classical music, the lower
the percentage of yellow spines in my collection.
The Scarlet Parsnip
2006-09-04 00:28:31 UTC
Permalink
On Sun, 03 Sep 2006 19:52:06 -0400, Paul Ilechko
Post by Paul Ilechko
Post by Andy Evans
Boulez Jeux on DG is in a class of his own - you really should buy it.
It's a marvel. Andy
Better than his Sony? I always thought that DG stood for "Don't Get"
where Boulez is concerned (kind of like for Karajan).
In fact, the more I listen to and learn about classical music, the lower
the percentage of yellow spines in my collection.
The Jean Martinon recordings on EMI... much like Martinon's Ravel
cycle, are marvelous.
Andy Evans
2006-09-04 14:15:47 UTC
Permalink
Better than his Sony? I always thought that DG stood for "Don't Get"
where Boulez is concerned >>

Well, in my opinion the Jeux on DG is rather special. The rest of the
disc is not as urgent as the Sony, but it's worth having for the Jeux.
If you can, listen to it and hopefully you'll see what I mean. My jaw
dropped when I first heard it. It's very clear, logical and subtle and
you start to wonder how it could be conducted any other way. He just
seems to "get" it. Andy
d***@aol.com
2006-09-04 19:03:36 UTC
Permalink
Post by Paul Ilechko
Better than his Sony? I always thought that DG stood for "Don't Get"
where Boulez is concerned (kind of like for Karajan).
That's generally true, but the Jeux is one of the rare exceptions.
Other arguable exceptions include Boulez's recordings of his own music
(which aren't recorded by DG's engineers) and the Bruckner 8th (which
was recorded live).

-david gable
tomdeacon
2006-09-04 19:18:02 UTC
Permalink
Post by d***@aol.com
Post by Paul Ilechko
Better than his Sony? I always thought that DG stood for "Don't Get"
where Boulez is concerned (kind of like for Karajan).
That's generally true,
Gosh! Someone should warn DG not to waste any more money on that guy.

but the Jeux is one of the rare exceptions.

And that one didn't make money anyway. Typical!
Post by d***@aol.com
Other arguable exceptions include Boulez's recordings of his own music
(which aren't recorded by DG's engineers)
More money losers.


and the Bruckner 8th (which> was recorded live).

And another.

Just a waste of time, I guess.

Perhaps you should write Matthew Cosgrove and tell him to pack it in
with old Pierre.

TD
d***@aol.com
2006-09-04 19:59:19 UTC
Permalink
Post by tomdeacon
Gosh! Someone should warn DG not to waste any more money on that guy.
Boulez is not the problem: the problem is DG's engineering. That's
apparent to everybody who's heard the live recordings made in better
sound around the same time as the DG recordings. Many people who have
heard both have posted here. Not having heard the live recordings, by
definition you're incapable of having an opinion on their merits
relative to the DG recordings, which won't stop you from acting as if
you do.
Post by tomdeacon
but the Jeux is one of the rare exceptions.
And that one didn't make money anyway. Typical!
You make this stuff up as you go along. You have no idea how much
money DG made from Boulez's Debussy recordings. In fact, the two
living conductors who have made them the most money are Boulez and
Gardiner.
Post by tomdeacon
Post by d***@aol.com
Other arguable exceptions include Boulez's recordings of his own music
(which aren't recorded by DG's engineers)
More money losers.
Again, that is your surmise and nothing more. It's not a fact that
you're in a position to verify.
Post by tomdeacon
Perhaps you should write Matthew Cosgrove and tell him to pack it in
with old Pierre.
Boulez would be better off if he gave up conducting altogether and
concentrated on composing. As for his recorded legacy, the DG
recordings will only be a tiny part of it and the most disappointing
part. Neither his reputation nor the course of music history would be
altered one iota if he never made another recording for DG.

I know the DG imprimatur, like the Philips, matters to you. It has
nothing to do with music.

-david gable
Paul Ilechko
2006-09-04 20:32:09 UTC
Permalink
Post by d***@aol.com
Boulez is not the problem: the problem is DG's engineering.
And it's not just Boulez. From what I've heard, I much prefer Karajan's
recordings on other labels to those on DG.
tomdeacon
2006-09-05 11:27:41 UTC
Permalink
Post by d***@aol.com
Post by tomdeacon
Gosh! Someone should warn DG not to waste any more money on that guy.
Boulez is not the problem: the problem is DG's engineering. That's
apparent to everybody who's heard the live recordings made in better
sound around the same time as the DG recordings. Many people who have
heard both have posted here. Not having heard the live recordings, by
definition you're incapable of having an opinion on their merits
relative to the DG recordings, which won't stop you from acting as if
you do.
Post by tomdeacon
but the Jeux is one of the rare exceptions.
And that one didn't make money anyway. Typical!
You make this stuff up as you go along. You have no idea how much
money DG made from Boulez's Debussy recordings. In fact, the two
living conductors who have made them the most money are Boulez and
Gardiner.
LOL!

Sorry, David, but you simply don't know what you're talking about.
Don't know where you pick up this stuff, but it's simply untrue.

Think HvK. The others aren't even in the running.
Post by d***@aol.com
Post by tomdeacon
Post by d***@aol.com
Other arguable exceptions include Boulez's recordings of his own music
(which aren't recorded by DG's engineers)
More money losers.
Again, that is your surmise and nothing more. It's not a fact that
you're in a position to verify.
Not now. But the figures as of five years ago spoke volumes, David.

I simply don't know why you allow yourself so much wishful thinking.
Post by d***@aol.com
Post by tomdeacon
Perhaps you should write Matthew Cosgrove and tell him to pack it in
with old Pierre.
Boulez would be better off if he gave up conducting altogether and
concentrated on composing.
Oh, dear.

Please. Say it isn't so.

Hasn't he already done enough harm to the progress of music as we know
it?
Post by d***@aol.com
As for his recorded legacy, the DG
recordings will only be a tiny part of it and the most disappointing
part. Neither his reputation nor the course of music history would be
altered one iota if he never made another recording for DG.
I shall pass your comments on to Mr. Cosgrove through the normal
channels. His producer would also enjoy hearing your remarks on his
work. Mind you, with financial pressures bearing down on Universal like
a ton of bricks, I would imagine that a cost/benefit analysis has
already been done, as it will be on Gergiev and his fabulously
money-losing recordings for the Philips label now that his defender has
moved over to EMI. New winds are blowing through the corridors.

but I have to say that you're going to be a popular boy, David, at
Universal Music.
Post by d***@aol.com
I know the DG imprimatur, like the Philips, matters to you. It has
nothing to do with music.

It has everything to do with music. And it also has to do with people.
Remember them, David. Or do you live in an entirely abstract world?
They are the ones who make the music and make it go.

TD
Philip Peters
2006-09-04 23:26:46 UTC
Permalink
Post by d***@aol.com
Post by Paul Ilechko
Better than his Sony? I always thought that DG stood for "Don't Get"
where Boulez is concerned (kind of like for Karajan).
That's generally true, but the Jeux is one of the rare exceptions.
Other arguable exceptions include Boulez's recordings of his own music
(which aren't recorded by DG's engineers) and the Bruckner 8th (which
was recorded live).
-david gable
Webern?

Philip
Dan Fowler
2006-08-28 00:03:41 UTC
Permalink
Martinon is my first choice in this music. I also like Ansermet and
Tortelier, particularly his Nocturnes. I don't listen to Dutoit as often,
though it is well-recorded. A sentimental favorite is Simon/Philharmonia on
Cala, one of my initial CDs of this music.

Dan
The only complete(ish) set I have is Haitink, and it bores me to tears. I
have the Mitropoulos "La Mer" on the GCOTTC set, which it is much better.
I'm looking for more Debussy that has that kind of life and energy - any
recommendations?
d***@aol.com
2006-08-28 00:57:21 UTC
Permalink
Boulez's single greatest recorded performance of a Debussy piece is the
Philharmonia La mer: it's also one of his best recorded performances,
period. Boulez always gets the serene majesty of the thing, but here
he also gets the repressed savagery. (The whole conception could not
be more French.) All of Boulez's CBS recordings can be had in a
mid-priced 2-CD set on Sony. With the possible exception of the Jeux,
the recordings in every case are much better than the later DG
recordings . . . and less artificially lit by the engineers. The
Desormiere and Munch Mers are required listening. Reiner is overrated,
but I haven't heard it recently enough to tell you why I think so.

Anything with Maderna conducting goes to the top of the pile, so you
should hear his Jeux. My favorite Boulez Jeux is not either of the
studio recordings. Never heard Bernstein's Jeux. Don't miss the
Philips disc with Monteux's Images and Symphonic fragments from
Martyre. Monteux's Martyre and Boulez's Philharmonia La mer are
probably my two favorite Debussy recordings.

For a good laugh, go and read Tom Deacon's post recommending Haitink's
bland un-French Debussy over Boulez's. "Burnished" is not a virtue in
this repertory. Luminous and subtle and mercurial are.

-david gable
Paul Ilechko
2006-08-28 01:06:06 UTC
Permalink
Post by d***@aol.com
Boulez's single greatest recorded performance of a Debussy piece is the
Philharmonia La mer: it's also one of his best recorded performances,
period. Boulez always gets the serene majesty of the thing, but here
he also gets the repressed savagery. (The whole conception could not
be more French.) All of Boulez's CBS recordings can be had in a
mid-priced 2-CD set on Sony.
This is probably where I will start. Thanks for confirming my decision ;-)
Post by d***@aol.com
Anything with Maderna conducting goes to the top of the pile, so you
should hear his Jeux.
Would love to, but I'm pretty sure it's OOP.
Post by d***@aol.com
For a good laugh, go and read Tom Deacon's post recommending Haitink's
bland un-French Debussy over Boulez's. "Burnished" is not a virtue in
this repertory. Luminous and subtle and mercurial are.
I've yet to hear anything by Haitink that isn't at least leaning towards
bland. But it's on Philips, which makes up for a lot where TD is concerned.
Mark Melson
2006-08-28 01:15:09 UTC
Permalink
On Sun, 27 Aug 2006 21:06:06 -0400, Paul Ilechko
Post by Paul Ilechko
Post by d***@aol.com
Boulez's single greatest recorded performance of a Debussy piece is the
Philharmonia La mer: it's also one of his best recorded performances,
period. Boulez always gets the serene majesty of the thing, but here
he also gets the repressed savagery. (The whole conception could not
be more French.) All of Boulez's CBS recordings can be had in a
mid-priced 2-CD set on Sony.
This is probably where I will start. Thanks for confirming my decision ;-)
Post by d***@aol.com
Anything with Maderna conducting goes to the top of the pile, so you
should hear his Jeux.
Would love to, but I'm pretty sure it's OOP.
Post by d***@aol.com
For a good laugh, go and read Tom Deacon's post recommending Haitink's
bland un-French Debussy over Boulez's. "Burnished" is not a virtue in
this repertory. Luminous and subtle and mercurial are.
I've yet to hear anything by Haitink that isn't at least leaning towards
bland. But it's on Philips, which makes up for a lot where TD is concerned.
You want un-bland Haitink? Try to find Haitink's second Concertgebouw
recording of Bruckner 9. I imprinted on the first one, which is pretty
good, but the later recording (from 1981, available at one time on
Philips 410 039-2) is both tougher and more passionate. It's one of
the great Bruckner Ninths, and one of Haitink's very best recordings.

Mark Melson
Raymond Hall
2006-08-28 03:12:38 UTC
Permalink
Post by Mark Melson
You want un-bland Haitink? Try to find Haitink's second Concertgebouw
recording of Bruckner 9. I imprinted on the first one, which is pretty
good, but the later recording (from 1981, available at one time on
Philips 410 039-2) is both tougher and more passionate. It's one of
the great Bruckner Ninths, and one of Haitink's very best recordings.
Haitink's Duo set is a bargain, especially for those who want a well played
(RCO), well recorded set, that gives us Debussy without the eccentricities
of some individual interpreters. Often forgotten, is a nice EMI Eminence CD,
by Baudo, who gives a beautifully turned La Mer and Jeux with the LPO, the
Jeux being being a deal faster than Haitink's Jeux.

Haitink's Nocturnes are quite superb btw, and the rest has nothing really
wrong with it. Perhaps some individual flair is missing.

I was contemplating the Martinon box, but somehow, I was wondering if he can
me that much more than Haitink does. Certainly gallic flair I suppose. There
is savagery in La Mer, (as some have said), and maybe I could try Boulez in
the Debussy twofer, when opportune.

Ray H
Taree, NSW
Lawrence Chalmers
2006-08-28 03:37:57 UTC
Permalink
I just got a new(?) Australian 'Eloquence'
cd of Debussy w/

Marche ecossaise, Bercceuse heroique
(Concertgebouw, Van Beinum)

Danses pour harpe et orchestre
(Chamber Music Society of Amsterdam,
Van Beinum, Berghou -harp)

Le Martyre de Saint Sebastian fragments
(Monteux, LSO )

Premiere Rapsodie, Jeux
(Concertgebouw, Haitink)

Don't have the Duo set, but its nice to have for 'Martyre' which is my
favorite performance
(ever heard Wand's recording? - very ineresting).

I've not heard Martinon, Boulez, or Bernstein
but have others by Reiner, Salonnen, Cantelli.
Gerard
2006-08-28 14:02:01 UTC
Permalink
Post by Raymond Hall
Haitink's Duo set is a bargain, especially for those who want a well
played (RCO), well recorded set, that gives us Debussy without the
eccentricities of some individual interpreters.
[...]
Post by Raymond Hall
Haitink's Nocturnes are quite superb btw, and the rest has nothing
really wrong with it. Perhaps some individual flair is missing.
Seconded.
Post by Raymond Hall
I was contemplating the Martinon box, but somehow, I was wondering if
he can me that much more than Haitink does. Certainly gallic flair I
suppose.
Not much more than that.
Bob Harper
2006-08-28 06:30:32 UTC
Permalink
Post by Mark Melson
You want un-bland Haitink? Try to find Haitink's second Concertgebouw
recording of Bruckner 9. I imprinted on the first one, which is pretty
good, but the later recording (from 1981, available at one time on
Philips 410 039-2) is both tougher and more passionate. It's one of
the great Bruckner Ninths, and one of Haitink's very best recordings.
Mark Melson
Amen, amen. One of the best Bruckner 9ths ever.

Bob Harper
makropulos
2006-08-28 01:45:25 UTC
Permalink
I completely agree - the Boulez New Philharmonia La Mer is a marvel.
But equally wonderful (maybe even more so) was a Prom performance I
heard him give in the early 70s - I'd love to see that out on BBC
Legends one of these days.
Post by d***@aol.com
Boulez's single greatest recorded performance of a Debussy piece is the
twcinnh
2006-08-28 03:00:49 UTC
Permalink
After watching some of the early TV broadcasts of the Boston Symphony
on WGBH television in the early 60s I decided to subscribe to a concert
series. Munch was Music Director. I won't bore with the details, but
in his last year he performed many of his 'Hallmark' works.

Debussy and Berlioz are among those that stand out in my mind. I still
can't get enough Munch in French music, as well as much more. But the
La Mer performance I can still remember. Sitting in Symphony Hall
marvelling at the sound of an orchestra.

I hope you have success finding something in your search than comes
close to what Munch did for me 44 years ago. Others still don't come
all that close.

Good luck.

Tom
Post by makropulos
I completely agree - the Boulez New Philharmonia La Mer is a marvel.
But equally wonderful (maybe even more so) was a Prom performance I
heard him give in the early 70s - I'd love to see that out on BBC
Legends one of these days.
Post by d***@aol.com
Boulez's single greatest recorded performance of a Debussy piece is the
tomdeacon
2006-08-28 09:59:30 UTC
Permalink
Post by d***@aol.com
For a good laugh, go and read Tom Deacon's post recommending Haitink's
bland un-French Debussy over Boulez's. "Burnished" is not a virtue in
this repertory. Luminous and subtle and mercurial are.
And then, in order to wipe the smile from your face, go and read the
various encomia which have been heaped on these fabled recordings by
Bernard Haitink. He has never done better on record in ANY music, and
that is saying a very great deal.

Moreover, to refer to Boulez in any music as "luminous, subtle, and
mercurial" is simply absurd. Think liberal, earthbound, and obvious and
you are closer to the very pedestrian truth. His La Mer is truly and
deservedly fabled, but even that is not to my taste. I do think David
needs to rehear the Reiner in order to have his ears reset.

TD
d***@aol.com
2006-08-28 15:39:49 UTC
Permalink
Post by tomdeacon
Moreover, to refer to Boulez in any music as "luminous, subtle, and
mercurial" is simply absurd. Think liberal, earthbound, and obvious and
you are closer to the very pedestrian truth. His La Mer is truly and
deservedly fabled, but even that is not to my taste. I do think David
needs to rehear the Reiner in order to have his ears reset.
The Reiner is the one that is literal minded. It has a certain
virtuosic sweep, but it isn't French and mysterious. You base your
opinions on brand names, not on what you hear.

-david gable
j***@aol.com
2006-08-28 15:48:11 UTC
Permalink
Post by d***@aol.com
The Reiner is the one that is literal minded. It has a certain
virtuosic sweep, but it isn't French and mysterious.
David, if you haven't already, you really should try the Gielen
recording on Vox. It's worthy of comparison to the Boulez, although I'm
not sure whether it's French or not.

--Jeff
d***@aol.com
2006-08-28 15:50:49 UTC
Permalink
Post by j***@aol.com
Post by d***@aol.com
The Reiner is the one that is literal minded. It has a certain
virtuosic sweep, but it isn't French and mysterious.
David, if you haven't already, you really should try the Gielen
recording on Vox. It's worthy of comparison to the Boulez, although I'm
not sure whether it's French or not.
--Jeff
At least it's Gielen!!! I'll check it out, Jeff.

-david gable
tomdeacon
2006-08-28 17:35:27 UTC
Permalink
Post by d***@aol.com
Post by j***@aol.com
Post by d***@aol.com
The Reiner is the one that is literal minded. It has a certain
virtuosic sweep, but it isn't French and mysterious.
David, if you haven't already, you really should try the Gielen
recording on Vox. It's worthy of comparison to the Boulez, although I'm
not sure whether it's French or not.
--Jeff
At least it's Gielen!!! I'll check it out, Jeff.
And he likes contemporary music. So, I guess he's OK.

Talk about a brand-fucker.

TD
tomdeacon
2006-08-28 17:34:14 UTC
Permalink
Post by d***@aol.com
Post by tomdeacon
Moreover, to refer to Boulez in any music as "luminous, subtle, and
mercurial" is simply absurd. Think liberal, earthbound, and obvious and
you are closer to the very pedestrian truth. His La Mer is truly and
deservedly fabled, but even that is not to my taste. I do think David
needs to rehear the Reiner in order to have his ears reset.
The Reiner is the one that is literal minded. It has a certain
virtuosic sweep, but it isn't French and mysterious. You base your
opinions on brand names, not on what you hear.
HA HA HA HA HA HA HA

I have known and loved the Reiner since the late 1950s when it was
released. It managed to sweep Toscanini from my mind. Later I
discovered Munch and Monteux and Inglebrecht, Martinon, Cluytens and so
on. I even had a brief fling with Szell.

French and mysterious, you say. The French are not mysterious. They are
usually very clear and straightforward. At least in my experience.

Debussy, on the other hand, writes music and his music allows for a
wide variety of interpretations. Reiner's La Mer is usually described
as the North Sea, Toscanini's, The Mediterranean. You pays your money
and you takes your pick.

TD
makropulos
2006-08-28 17:42:01 UTC
Permalink
So if Reiner's the North Sea and Toscanini's the Mediterranean, who
gets closest to the sea that Debussy was actually trying to evoke (the
English Channel)? In my view one of the best of all is the landlocked
Czech Philharmonic with Roger Désormière. And perhaps another is de
Sabata (Testament).
Post by tomdeacon
Post by d***@aol.com
Post by tomdeacon
Moreover, to refer to Boulez in any music as "luminous, subtle, and
mercurial" is simply absurd. Think liberal, earthbound, and obvious and
you are closer to the very pedestrian truth. His La Mer is truly and
deservedly fabled, but even that is not to my taste. I do think David
needs to rehear the Reiner in order to have his ears reset.
The Reiner is the one that is literal minded. It has a certain
virtuosic sweep, but it isn't French and mysterious. You base your
opinions on brand names, not on what you hear.
HA HA HA HA HA HA HA
I have known and loved the Reiner since the late 1950s when it was
released. It managed to sweep Toscanini from my mind. Later I
discovered Munch and Monteux and Inglebrecht, Martinon, Cluytens and so
on. I even had a brief fling with Szell.
French and mysterious, you say. The French are not mysterious. They are
usually very clear and straightforward. At least in my experience.
Debussy, on the other hand, writes music and his music allows for a
wide variety of interpretations. Reiner's La Mer is usually described
as the North Sea, Toscanini's, The Mediterranean. You pays your money
and you takes your pick.
TD
Curtis Croulet
2006-08-28 18:01:33 UTC
Permalink
TD's choice of Reiner is interesting. Desormiere is available in the
Andante set, but I thought the more interesting performance was Piero
Coppola's from 1932. Some of the clarity Simon Trezise prizes is due to
Coppola's tiny orchestra, but, still, there are sounds in Coppola's that are
approached only (in my experience) by Martinon's ORTF recording.
--
Curtis Croulet
Temecula, California
33°27'59"N, 117°05'53"W
makropulos
2006-08-28 18:14:51 UTC
Permalink
There are some beautiful things in Coppola's performance of La Mer, and
it's very usefully in the same (fascinating) Andante set as both Déso
and Toscanini (NBC) in La Mer, along with plenty of other interesting
material. I love that set!
Post by Curtis Croulet
TD's choice of Reiner is interesting. Desormiere is available in the
Andante set, but I thought the more interesting performance was Piero
Coppola's from 1932. Some of the clarity Simon Trezise prizes is due to
Coppola's tiny orchestra, but, still, there are sounds in Coppola's that are
approached only (in my experience) by Martinon's ORTF recording.
--
Curtis Croulet
Temecula, California
33°27'59"N, 117°05'53"W
tomdeacon
2006-08-28 21:14:39 UTC
Permalink
Post by makropulos
There are some beautiful things in Coppola's performance of La Mer, and
it's very usefully in the same (fascinating) Andante set as both Déso
and Toscanini (NBC) in La Mer, along with plenty of other interesting
material. I love that set!
Post by Curtis Croulet
TD's choice of Reiner is interesting. Desormiere is available in the
Andante set, but I thought the more interesting performance was Piero
Coppola's from 1932. Some of the clarity Simon Trezise prizes is due to
Coppola's tiny orchestra, but, still, there are sounds in Coppola's that are
approached only (in my experience) by Martinon's ORTF recording.
While I would never discourage anyone from investigating historical
recordings - i.e. 78 RPM discs - I really don't think they have much to
offer someone who is trying to hear what Debussy actually wrote.
Progress in recording has been astonishing over the years, as everyone
will agree. In my opinion, and it is only an opinion, conductors whose
recordings have benefitted from stereophonic sound and all the
developments since that period, say, 1954, have a clear advantage over
those who haven't had this advantage.

So, for the purposes of La Mer, let us say, Toscanini is interesting,
but dated. Things start to get interesting with Ansermet's La Mer for
Decca, Cluytens set for Pathe-Marconi, Reiner and Munch for RCA Victor,
Szell and, more recently still, Boulez for Columbia Records, now Sony.

This is where the real battleground of Debussy interpretation is
fought, if I can use that analogy. Naturally, there is no fighting
among musicians!!!

And we have a plethora of Seas at our disposal today in splendiferous
sound, revealing every single strand of Debussy's score in a way which
could only be vaguely suggested in the distant past.

Frankly, I am open for lots of different styles in this music, even one
which has been described as "burnished", referring to the outstanding
achievement of Bernard Haitink and the RCO in Debussy's music, but what
I don't like at all is a style which removes all of the fog and
sultriness and scariness this music contains. Boulez is one thing, as
he is clearly a genius, and we allow a great deal of lattitude to such
people, but his imitators are truly a plague upon the earth and to be
avoided. Hell, even Ansermet and his foul-sounding winds are better
than musical dessication, specially of La Mer, which is, shall I say,
rather "liquid"?

TD
makropulos
2006-08-28 21:26:47 UTC
Permalink
Fair point about 78s of Debussy - some of the detail does tend to get
lost in the mists of time on pre-war recordings like Coppola's - but
the post-war Ansermet La Mer (Decca 78s, 1948) is incredibly
clear-sounding, as is Désormière on Supraphon. Of those you mention
Munch, Szell, Boulez (Sony), Ansermet (1957) and Reiner all have really
convincing qualities of different kinds, of course. Cluytens I am
ashamed to say I don't know, but if it's up to his usual standards in
French repertoire, I'm eager to get to know it. And I would definitely
want to add Rosenthal (Véga/Adès, now Accord) to your list.
Post by tomdeacon
While I would never discourage anyone from investigating historical
recordings - i.e. 78 RPM discs - I really don't think they have much to
offer someone who is trying to hear what Debussy actually wrote.
Progress in recording has been astonishing over the years, as everyone
will agree. In my opinion, and it is only an opinion, conductors whose
recordings have benefitted from stereophonic sound and all the
developments since that period, say, 1954, have a clear advantage over
those who haven't had this advantage.
So, for the purposes of La Mer, let us say, Toscanini is interesting,
but dated. Things start to get interesting with Ansermet's La Mer for
Decca, Cluytens set for Pathe-Marconi, Reiner and Munch for RCA Victor,
Szell and, more recently still, Boulez for Columbia Records, now Sony.
This is where the real battleground of Debussy interpretation is
fought, if I can use that analogy. Naturally, there is no fighting
among musicians!!!
And we have a plethora of Seas at our disposal today in splendiferous
sound, revealing every single strand of Debussy's score in a way which
could only be vaguely suggested in the distant past.
Frankly, I am open for lots of different styles in this music, even one
which has been described as "burnished", referring to the outstanding
achievement of Bernard Haitink and the RCO in Debussy's music, but what
I don't like at all is a style which removes all of the fog and
sultriness and scariness this music contains. Boulez is one thing, as
he is clearly a genius, and we allow a great deal of lattitude to such
people, but his imitators are truly a plague upon the earth and to be
avoided. Hell, even Ansermet and his foul-sounding winds are better
than musical dessication, specially of La Mer, which is, shall I say,
rather "liquid"?
TD
tomdeacon
2006-08-29 10:20:04 UTC
Permalink
Post by makropulos
Fair point about 78s of Debussy - some of the detail does tend to get
lost in the mists of time on pre-war recordings like Coppola's - but
the post-war Ansermet La Mer (Decca 78s, 1948) is incredibly
clear-sounding, as is Désormière on Supraphon. Of those you mention
Munch, Szell, Boulez (Sony), Ansermet (1957) and Reiner all have really
convincing qualities of different kinds, of course. Cluytens I am
ashamed to say I don't know, but if it's up to his usual standards in
French repertoire, I'm eager to get to know it. And I would definitely
want to add Rosenthal (Véga/Adès, now Accord) to your list.
Correct. You should also investigate Ingelbrecht, whose Debussy has the
added advantage, like Rosenthal's, of having orchestras which produce a
sound Debussy might actually have recognized as "orchestral". Gable
doesn't mention this in his extravagant praise for Boulez's early
version of La Mer, but the Philharmonia Orchestra sounds absolutely
nothing like a Debussy orchestra. For that you have to go back to the
1950s and earlier. Nowadays this orchestral sound is completely lost to
us.

TD
Brendan R. Wehrung
2006-08-30 04:33:21 UTC
Permalink
Post by tomdeacon
Post by makropulos
Fair point about 78s of Debussy - some of the detail does tend to get
lost in the mists of time on pre-war recordings like Coppola's - but
the post-war Ansermet La Mer (Decca 78s, 1948) is incredibly
clear-sounding, as is D=E9sormi=E8re on Supraphon. Of those you mention
Munch, Szell, Boulez (Sony), Ansermet (1957) and Reiner all have really
convincing qualities of different kinds, of course. Cluytens I am
ashamed to say I don't know, but if it's up to his usual standards in
French repertoire, I'm eager to get to know it. And I would definitely
want to add Rosenthal (V=E9ga/Ad=E8s, now Accord) to your list.
Correct. You should also investigate Ingelbrecht, whose Debussy has the
added advantage, like Rosenthal's, of having orchestras which produce a
sound Debussy might actually have recognized as "orchestral". Gable
doesn't mention this in his extravagant praise for Boulez's early
version of La Mer, but the Philharmonia Orchestra sounds absolutely
nothing like a Debussy orchestra. For that you have to go back to the
1950s and earlier. Nowadays this orchestral sound is completely lost to
us.
TD
I've always thought the sound of the Straram Orchestra is (or was)
typically French.

Brendan
Andrew Rose
2006-08-28 22:18:34 UTC
Permalink
Post by tomdeacon
Post by makropulos
There are some beautiful things in Coppola's performance of La Mer, and
it's very usefully in the same (fascinating) Andante set as both Déso
and Toscanini (NBC) in La Mer, along with plenty of other interesting
material. I love that set!
Post by Curtis Croulet
TD's choice of Reiner is interesting. Desormiere is available in the
Andante set, but I thought the more interesting performance was Piero
Coppola's from 1932. Some of the clarity Simon Trezise prizes is due to
Coppola's tiny orchestra, but, still, there are sounds in Coppola's that are
approached only (in my experience) by Martinon's ORTF recording.
While I would never discourage anyone from investigating historical
recordings - i.e. 78 RPM discs - I really don't think they have much to
offer someone who is trying to hear what Debussy actually wrote.
Maybe it is worth hearing the Prelude de l'Apres-midi d'un Faune on a
1926 recording, if only to hear it as closely as possible to how the
composer would have heard it, at least as far as performance is concerned.

I'm not saying the Royal Albert Hall Orchestra under Ronald in that year
is 100% as Debussy would have had it, but surely it must be closer than
later renditions...
j***@aol.com
2006-08-28 22:43:23 UTC
Permalink
Post by Andrew Rose
Post by tomdeacon
Post by makropulos
There are some beautiful things in Coppola's performance of La Mer, and
it's very usefully in the same (fascinating) Andante set as both Déso
and Toscanini (NBC) in La Mer, along with plenty of other interesting
material. I love that set!
Post by Curtis Croulet
TD's choice of Reiner is interesting. Desormiere is available in the
Andante set, but I thought the more interesting performance was Piero
Coppola's from 1932. Some of the clarity Simon Trezise prizes is due to
Coppola's tiny orchestra, but, still, there are sounds in Coppola's that are
approached only (in my experience) by Martinon's ORTF recording.
While I would never discourage anyone from investigating historical
recordings - i.e. 78 RPM discs - I really don't think they have much to
offer someone who is trying to hear what Debussy actually wrote.
Maybe it is worth hearing the Prelude de l'Apres-midi d'un Faune on a
1926 recording, if only to hear it as closely as possible to how the
composer would have heard it, at least as far as performance is concerned.
I'm not saying the Royal Albert Hall Orchestra under Ronald in that year
is 100% as Debussy would have had it, but surely it must be closer than
later renditions...
It's not necessarily true that a 1926 recording is closer to how
Debussy would have heard it than a 2006 recording. After all, Debussy
was as interested in dynamic range and orchestral color as the next
guy.

No, what you're talking about are the quirks of phrasing, portamenti,
reed scrapes, horn bores and other preferences that Debussy might have
been familiar with, whether or not he liked them or heard them
exclusively that way in his head. For that, perhaps it's best to listen
to recordings by Coppola, Pierne, Straram or others working in France,
rather than Ronald, regardless of the repertoire. It wouldn't surprise
me one bit if Debussy woke up in 2006, heard Rattle conduct La Mer with
Berlin, and said "Yes! That's what I wanted it to sound like!"

--Jeff
tomdeacon
2006-08-29 10:27:09 UTC
Permalink
Post by j***@aol.com
It's not necessarily true that a 1926 recording is closer to how
Debussy would have heard it than a 2006 recording. After all, Debussy
was as interested in dynamic range and orchestral color as the next
guy.
Of course. And he would have winced easily at the pinched sound of
orchestral recordings made in the early part of the 20th C. No question
about it.
Post by j***@aol.com
No, what you're talking about are the quirks of phrasing,
portamenti,
Post by j***@aol.com
reed scrapes, horn bores and other preferences that Debussy might have
been familiar with, whether or not he liked them or heard them
exclusively that way in his head. For that, perhaps it's best to listen
to recordings by Coppola, Pierne, Straram or others working in France,
rather than Ronald, regardless of the repertoire. It wouldn't surprise
me one bit if Debussy woke up in 2006, heard Rattle conduct La Mer with
Berlin, and said "Yes! That's what I wanted it to sound like!"
It would surprise me a great deal. There is absolutely no evidence to
support such a statement.

Debussy knew what he knew. He wrote music for the sounds that he knew,
not for sounds that he didn't know. The only thing we can be sure of is
that he wouldn't recognize much of his music as it is performed today.

Except the notes, of course.

TD
makropulos
2006-08-29 11:17:39 UTC
Permalink
It's maybe worth adding that one of Debussy's first appearances as a
conductor (not something he did very often) was with the Queen's Hall
Orchestra in London in 1908. So he certainly would have known the sound
of a London orchestra such as Landon Ronald's.
tomdeacon
2006-08-29 13:19:35 UTC
Permalink
Post by makropulos
It's maybe worth adding that one of Debussy's first appearances as a
conductor (not something he did very often) was with the Queen's Hall
Orchestra in London in 1908. So he certainly would have known the sound
of a London orchestra such as Landon Ronald's.
That would have been quite a shock after his local French ensembles of
the day, specially the winds, of course.

TD
makropulos
2006-08-29 17:42:14 UTC
Permalink
Tom - do you happen to know if Cluytens's orchestral Debussy for Pathé
(especially "La Mer") has ever been issued on CD? "Jeux" Great Artists
of the Century disc, "La Boîte à joujoux" is on Testament (as is the
lovely "Pelléas") but I can't find any trace of "La Mer" or the
"Noctures" (or "Images" for that matter). They don't even seem to be
available in Japan. The Ravel is everywhere, of course (and rightly so,
in my view).
Post by tomdeacon
Post by makropulos
It's maybe worth adding that one of Debussy's first appearances as a
conductor (not something he did very often) was with the Queen's Hall
Orchestra in London in 1908. So he certainly would have known the sound
of a London orchestra such as Landon Ronald's.
That would have been quite a shock after his local French ensembles of
the day, specially the winds, of course.
TD
tomdeacon
2006-08-29 18:05:45 UTC
Permalink
Post by makropulos
Tom - do you happen to know if Cluytens's orchestral Debussy for Pathé
(especially "La Mer") has ever been issued on CD? "Jeux" Great Artists
of the Century disc, "La Boîte à joujoux" is on Testament (as is the
lovely "Pelléas") but I can't find any trace of "La Mer" or the
"Noctures" (or "Images" for that matter). They don't even seem to be
available in Japan. The Ravel is everywhere, of course (and rightly so,
in my view).
The Debussy HAS appeared on CD, I think. My memory is of some "High
Fidelity" series out of Japan which I found when I was over there back
in the 1990s. I own the set on the original Angel pressings as well as
some very expensive LP transfers done in the 1990s. But I cannot seem
to locate the CDs at the moment. They have, I think, been misfiled, or
placed in some boxes. I will look them out as soon as I can and give
you the reference numbers.

TD
tomdeacon
2006-08-29 18:36:00 UTC
Permalink
Post by makropulos
Tom - do you happen to know if Cluytens's orchestral Debussy for Pathé
(especially "La Mer") has ever been issued on CD? "Jeux" Great Artists
of the Century disc, "La Boîte à joujoux" is on Testament (as is the
lovely "Pelléas") but I can't find any trace of "La Mer" or the
"Noctures" (or "Images" for that matter).
I have done a further seach. The audiophile series I purchased in Japan
was of Cluytens' Ravel, not his Debussy, alas, so I only own the
Debussy complete on the original LPs and some audiophile versions.

The Images (Basic Classics and GCOTC) and Nocturnes (Disky) have been
reissued on CDs I own. Not sure about La Mer, however. Perhaps in a
French compendium? Jeux exists, as you note, as does La Boite. So
almost all of his Debussy has been released. I imagine that in
Pathe-Marconi's view Martinon's set eclipsed that of Cluytens, which
was older and less well recorded. This is a great pity. There has been
an almost systematic disintegration of his catalogue over the years,
something which leads to comments such as the one noted earlier and
which are completely unjustified, in my opinion. Cluytens was, indeed,
a great conductor. Would that we had his equal around today performing
in France or anywhere!

TD
Gerard
2006-08-29 19:50:26 UTC
Permalink
Post by tomdeacon
Post by makropulos
Tom - do you happen to know if Cluytens's orchestral Debussy for
Pathé (especially "La Mer") has ever been issued on CD? "Jeux"
Great Artists of the Century disc, "La Boîte à joujoux" is on
Testament (as is the lovely "Pelléas") but I can't find any trace
of "La Mer" or the "Noctures" (or "Images" for that matter).
I have done a further seach. The audiophile series I purchased in
Japan was of Cluytens' Ravel, not his Debussy, alas, so I only own the
Debussy complete on the original LPs and some audiophile versions.
The Images (Basic Classics and GCOTC) and Nocturnes (Disky) have been
reissued on CDs I own.
I have a Royal Classics (Disky) CD with Images with Cluytens.
j***@aol.com
2006-08-29 20:04:24 UTC
Permalink
Post by Gerard
Post by makropulos
do you happen to know if Cluytens's orchestral Debussy for
Pathé (especially "La Mer") has ever been issued on CD? "Jeux"
Great Artists of the Century disc, "La Boîte à joujoux" is on
Testament (as is the lovely "Pelléas") but I can't find any trace
of "La Mer" or the "Noctures" (or "Images" for that matter).
I have a Royal Classics (Disky) CD with Images with Cluytens.
Likewise, Arts Music recently issued live performance of Debussy's
"L'Enfant Prodigue" with Cluytens conducting. It's coupled with
Honegger's 3rd.

--Jeff
makropulos
2006-08-29 20:54:31 UTC
Permalink
Thanks for the information (to TD and to others). I clearly need to
track down that Disky CD of the Images. Given EMI France's current
fondness for reissuing some quite unusual material from the 50s, with
any luck they might give us more Cluytens on one of their super-cheap
reissue sets. I live in genuine hope, given that France is one of the
countries where his work is still most valued.
Brendan R. Wehrung
2006-08-30 05:07:51 UTC
Permalink
Post by makropulos
Thanks for the information (to TD and to others). I clearly need to
track down that Disky CD of the Images. Given EMI France's current
fondness for reissuing some quite unusual material from the 50s, with
any luck they might give us more Cluytens on one of their super-cheap
reissue sets. I live in genuine hope, given that France is one of the
countries where his work is still most valued.
Does EMI France have a web site for their mono releases?

Brendan
tomdeacon
2006-08-30 10:03:51 UTC
Permalink
Post by Brendan R. Wehrung
Post by makropulos
Thanks for the information (to TD and to others). I clearly need to
track down that Disky CD of the Images. Given EMI France's current
fondness for reissuing some quite unusual material from the 50s, with
any luck they might give us more Cluytens on one of their super-cheap
reissue sets. I live in genuine hope, given that France is one of the
countries where his work is still most valued.
Does EMI France have a web site for their mono releases?
EMI France doesn't have a website, as far as I have been able to
discover.

TD
makropulos
2006-08-30 10:42:13 UTC
Permalink
TD is right as far as I can tell - EMI France doesn't have a website
where there are listings of its mono releases (or any other releases
for that matter). I usually find out about them on amazon.fr and
fnac.com (or by seeing them in Parisian record stores when I am there,
which is fortunately quite frequently). The current EMI France historic
series called "Les Rarissimes" (2 CD sets) has some remarkable material
on it - although searching amazon.fr for "Rarissimes" only produced
about half the series last time I tried it. Cluytens, Rosenthal,
Freitas Branco, Désormière, Forestier, Oubradous and Tzipine are
among the conductors represented. And composers conducting their own
works include Jolivet and Honegger - at long last on CD the complete
recording of "Le Roi David" - but you wouldn't know this from the front
cover which simply says "Les Rarissimes de Janine Micheau".
Post by tomdeacon
Post by Brendan R. Wehrung
Does EMI France have a web site for their mono releases?
EMI France doesn't have a website, as far as I have been able to
discover.
TD
tomdeacon
2006-08-30 12:09:00 UTC
Permalink
Post by makropulos
TD is right as far as I can tell - EMI France doesn't have a website
where there are listings of its mono releases (or any other releases
for that matter). I usually find out about them on amazon.fr and
fnac.com (or by seeing them in Parisian record stores when I am there,
which is fortunately quite frequently). The current EMI France historic
series called "Les Rarissimes" (2 CD sets) has some remarkable material
on it - although searching amazon.fr for "Rarissimes" only produced
about half the series last time I tried it. Cluytens, Rosenthal,
Freitas Branco, Désormière, Forestier, Oubradous and Tzipine are
among the conductors represented. And composers conducting their own
works include Jolivet and Honegger - at long last on CD the complete
recording of "Le Roi David" - but you wouldn't know this from the front
cover which simply says "Les Rarissimes de Janine Micheau".
I found them all many months ago, but I have to say that it required
some real sleuthing.

If you have a single recent volume in the series you can easily see all
the others, as they are listed in the back of the booklet.

Incidentally, some in this series have already been deleted from the
French catalogue. These are the kinds of things which you really have
to buy when they appear, otherwise you will be out of luck. It was also
advantageous to purchase them in "pre-release", as www.amazon.fr had
them on a very special low price in advance of their release. They all
arrived together in the same shipment at that low price, about Euro
7.98, I seem to recall.

TD
Brendan R. Wehrung
2006-08-31 05:28:13 UTC
Permalink
Post by tomdeacon
Post by Brendan R. Wehrung
Post by makropulos
Thanks for the information (to TD and to others). I clearly need to
track down that Disky CD of the Images. Given EMI France's current
fondness for reissuing some quite unusual material from the 50s, with
any luck they might give us more Cluytens on one of their super-cheap
reissue sets. I live in genuine hope, given that France is one of the
countries where his work is still most valued.
Does EMI France have a web site for their mono releases?
EMI France doesn't have a website, as far as I have been able to
discover.
TD
I did some digging around after I asked the question and found
http://www.emimusic.fr/home.html
but _their_ link is to EMI Classics, which (of course) mentions no
specifically French titles. Nor gives a French e-mail contact. Is there
anybody reading who lives in Paris and wants to ask for one on the phone?

Brendan
tomdeacon
2006-08-31 14:39:30 UTC
Permalink
Post by Brendan R. Wehrung
Post by tomdeacon
Post by Brendan R. Wehrung
Post by makropulos
Thanks for the information (to TD and to others). I clearly need to
track down that Disky CD of the Images. Given EMI France's current
fondness for reissuing some quite unusual material from the 50s, with
any luck they might give us more Cluytens on one of their super-cheap
reissue sets. I live in genuine hope, given that France is one of the
countries where his work is still most valued.
Does EMI France have a web site for their mono releases?
EMI France doesn't have a website, as far as I have been able to
discover.
TD
I did some digging around after I asked the question and found
http://www.emimusic.fr/home.html
but _their_ link is to EMI Classics, which (of course) mentions no
specifically French titles. Nor gives a French e-mail contact. Is there
anybody reading who lives in Paris and wants to ask for one on the phone?
That is the same dead end which many of us have found over the years.

Think "shoestring", when you think of EMI Classics in France. Simply no
personnel to do the job, I imagine. Their infrastructure was described
to me recently by a former executive as minimal, particularly as
compared to that of Universal Classics.

TD
makropulos
2006-08-31 15:15:02 UTC
Permalink
Brendan et al:

Les Rarissimes de...

Here's a list of what I have or have information about. I think this is
at least nearly all of them so far (the most recent releases - Querol,
Micheau etc. came out in March 2006). All are 2-CD sets. As TD says, a
number of them are already deleted.

Thierry de Brunhoff 585249-2
Aldo Ciccolini 586465-2
André Cluytens 585213-2
Alfred Cortot 351857-2
Pierre Dervaux 585216-2
Roger Désormière 586486-2
Louis Fourestier 585212-2
Samson François 585246-2
Pedro de Freitas Branco 586474-2
Bruno Leonardo Gelber 586468-2
Eric Heidsieck 585222-2
Aafje Heynis 586490-2
Arthur Honegger 586477-2
José Iturbi 351804-2
André Jolivet 585237-2
Ralph Kirkpatrick 351836-2
Lili Kraus Vol.I 562831-2
Lili Kraus Vol.II 586471-2
Yvonne Lefébure 351878-2
Marcelle Meyer Vol.I 585228-2
Marcelle Meyer Vol.II 586483-2
Marcelle Meyer Vol.III 351826-2
Janine Micheau 351846-2
André Navarra 585231-2
Fernand Oubradous 585234-2
Leopoldo Querol 351814-2
Manuel Rosenthal 585240-2
Magda Tagliaferro 351867-2
Georges Tzipine 585204-2
Daniel Wayenberg 585207-2
Jean Wiéner and Clément Doucet 586480-2
Quatuor Végh 585219-2
Quintette à vent de l'Orchestre National de France 585225-2

To keep fully up to date with them, one place to look is the online
Bibliographie Nationale Française, which includes sound recordings.
It's slow work searching it, but the listings are usually very
detailed.

Le link:

http://bibliographienationale.bnf.fr/
Matthew B. Tepper
2006-08-31 16:01:50 UTC
Permalink
Post by makropulos
Les Rarissimes de...
Here's a list of what I have or have information about.
That's a great list for starters! If only EMI were smart enough to have a
list on their website which includes full contents listings....
--
Matthew B. Tepper: WWW, science fiction, classical music, ducks!
My personal home page -- http://home.earthlink.net/~oy/index.html
My main music page --- http://home.earthlink.net/~oy/berlioz.html
To write to me, do for my address what Androcles did for the lion
I ask you to judge me by the enemies I have made. ~ FDR (attrib.)
makropulos
2006-08-31 16:21:23 UTC
Permalink
Matthew - it's a real pain doing it, but the complete contents are
given in the individual listings on the Bibliographie Nationale
Française site.

Another place which has some (but not all) of them listed with complete
track details is the EMI Switzerland site. If you put "rarissimes" into
a title search it comes up with several of them - as well as a load of
broken links...

But here's the url if you're interested:

http://www.emiclassics.ch/
Post by Matthew B. Tepper
Post by makropulos
Les Rarissimes de...
Here's a list of what I have or have information about.
That's a great list for starters! If only EMI were smart enough to have a
list on their website which includes full contents listings....
--
Matthew B. Tepper: WWW, science fiction, classical music, ducks!
My personal home page -- http://home.earthlink.net/~oy/index.html
My main music page --- http://home.earthlink.net/~oy/berlioz.html
To write to me, do for my address what Androcles did for the lion
I ask you to judge me by the enemies I have made. ~ FDR (attrib.)
Matthew B. Tepper
2006-08-31 19:09:28 UTC
Permalink
"makropulos" <***@gmail.com> appears to have caused the following
letters to be typed in news:1157041283.174074.294850
Matthew - it's a real pain doing it, but the complete contents are given
in the individual listings on the Bibliographie Nationale Française site.
Another place which has some (but not all) of them listed with complete
track details is the EMI Switzerland site. If you put "rarissimes" into
a title search it comes up with several of them - as well as a load of
broken links...
http://www.emiclassics.ch/
VERY helpful. Thank you again.
--
Matthew B. Tepper: WWW, science fiction, classical music, ducks!
My personal home page -- http://home.earthlink.net/~oy/index.html
My main music page --- http://home.earthlink.net/~oy/berlioz.html
To write to me, do for my address what Androcles did for the lion
I ask you to judge me by the enemies I have made. ~ FDR (attrib.)
Brendan R. Wehrung
2006-09-01 05:33:12 UTC
Permalink
Post by Matthew B. Tepper
Post by makropulos
Les Rarissimes de...
Here's a list of what I have or have information about.
That's a great list for starters! If only EMI were smart enough to have a
list on their website which includes full contents listings....
If Tom is right French EMI employs a couple of dedicated, overworked
producers who probably have to scream to get the attention of managing
execs when they want to issue another set. These same execs would then
have to exhibit a glimmer or intelligence to understand that customers
acually need to know what they are buying. But it's so much easier to
depend on vendors to get the word out, is it not?

Brendan
Matthew B. Tepper
2006-09-01 14:32:53 UTC
Permalink
Post by Brendan R. Wehrung
If Tom is right
Based on what has filtered to me, I would not believe this to be the case.
Post by Brendan R. Wehrung
French EMI employs a couple of dedicated, overworked producers who probably
have to scream to get the attention of managing execs when they want to
issue another set. These same execs would then have to exhibit a glimmer
or intelligence to understand that customers acually need to know what they
are buying. But it's so much easier to depend on vendors to get the word
out, is it not?
And much easier simply not to bother to do the publicity in the first place;
I mean, that would require a few minutes' effort, wouldn't it?
--
Matthew B. Tepper: WWW, science fiction, classical music, ducks!
My personal home page -- http://home.earthlink.net/~oy/index.html
My main music page --- http://home.earthlink.net/~oy/berlioz.html
To write to me, do for my address what Androcles did for the lion
NOT an advocate of cannibalism (despite what Kevin Maroney says).
tomdeacon
2006-09-01 14:58:31 UTC
Permalink
Post by Matthew B. Tepper
Post by Brendan R. Wehrung
If Tom is right
Based on what has filtered to me, I would not believe this to be the case.
Post by Brendan R. Wehrung
French EMI employs a couple of dedicated, overworked producers who probably
have to scream to get the attention of managing execs when they want to
issue another set. These same execs would then have to exhibit a glimmer
or intelligence to understand that customers acually need to know what they
are buying. But it's so much easier to depend on vendors to get the word
out, is it not?
And much easier simply not to bother to do the publicity in the first place;
I mean, that would require a few minutes' effort, wouldn't it?
They do the publicity, of course, just not in English; only in the
French magazines. Some collectors are smart enough to read those
publications and remain "in the know". Others are not, as we can see
from Mr. Tepper's pathetic post.

Oh, and by the by, as far as I know, publicity costs money. There is
usually minimal budget for publicity for SE products. Believe me, I
know whereof I speak.

TD
tomdeacon
2006-08-29 20:44:26 UTC
Permalink
Post by Gerard
Post by tomdeacon
Post by makropulos
Tom - do you happen to know if Cluytens's orchestral Debussy for
Pathé (especially "La Mer") has ever been issued on CD? "Jeux"
Great Artists of the Century disc, "La Boîte à joujoux" is on
Testament (as is the lovely "Pelléas") but I can't find any trace
of "La Mer" or the "Noctures" (or "Images" for that matter).
I have done a further seach. The audiophile series I purchased in
Japan was of Cluytens' Ravel, not his Debussy, alas, so I only own the
Debussy complete on the original LPs and some audiophile versions.
The Images (Basic Classics and GCOTC) and Nocturnes (Disky) have been
reissued on CDs I own.
I have a Royal Classics (Disky) CD with Images with Cluytens.
Probably the same transfer that is on Basic Classics, licensed from
Disky, which is licensed from EMI, which owns Disky now.

Someone at EMI is intent upon flogging all of Cluytens recordings at
the lowest possible price. Only Stuart Brown at Testament has any
cocept of just how valuable they actually are.

Let's hope that he moves on to Cluytens' Debussy.

TD
Gerard
2006-09-04 19:22:46 UTC
Permalink
Post by tomdeacon
Post by Gerard
Post by tomdeacon
Post by makropulos
Tom - do you happen to know if Cluytens's orchestral Debussy for
Pathé (especially "La Mer") has ever been issued on CD? "Jeux"
Great Artists of the Century disc, "La Boîte à joujoux" is on
Testament (as is the lovely "Pelléas") but I can't find any
trace of "La Mer" or the "Noctures" (or "Images" for that
matter).
I have done a further seach. The audiophile series I purchased in
Japan was of Cluytens' Ravel, not his Debussy, alas, so I only
own the Debussy complete on the original LPs and some audiophile
versions.
The Images (Basic Classics and GCOTC) and Nocturnes (Disky) have
been reissued on CDs I own.
I have a Royal Classics (Disky) CD with Images with Cluytens.
Probably the same transfer that is on Basic Classics, licensed from
Disky, which is licensed from EMI, which owns Disky now.
Someone at EMI is intent upon flogging all of Cluytens recordings at
the lowest possible price. Only Stuart Brown at Testament has any
cocept of just how valuable they actually are.
Let's hope that he moves on to Cluytens' Debussy.
I had a new look on the shelves, and there is a Jeux by Cluytens, on a EMI
twofer ("artist profile" - with Beethoven symph. #6, different pieces by
Roussel, and some Franck, Pierné and Berlioz).
Bob Harper
2006-08-29 21:23:16 UTC
Permalink
tomdeacon wrote:
(snip)

Cluytens was, indeed,
Post by tomdeacon
a great conductor. Would that we had his equal around today performing
in France or anywhere!
TD
Absolutely. See, for example, the two Wagner discs on Testament.

Bob Harper
tomdeacon
2006-08-30 00:13:17 UTC
Permalink
Post by Bob Harper
(snip)
Cluytens was, indeed,
Post by tomdeacon
a great conductor. Would that we had his equal around today performing
in France or anywhere!
TD
Absolutely. See, for example, the two Wagner discs on Testament.
I have not heard those, Bob. But I was immediately intruiged when I
noticed them among the Testament reissues.

Again, I cannot recomend his Beethoven cycle with the BPO more highly.
It is about to be reissued in a 5 CD capbox set in October of this
year. I own the multi-CD set which was already issued at bargain price
in France a few years back. At 20 Euros, this is a very fine purchase.

TD
Bob Harper
2006-08-30 01:19:47 UTC
Permalink
Post by tomdeacon
Post by Bob Harper
(snip)
Cluytens was, indeed,
Post by tomdeacon
a great conductor. Would that we had his equal around today performing
in France or anywhere!
TD
Absolutely. See, for example, the two Wagner discs on Testament.
I have not heard those, Bob. But I was immediately intruiged when I
noticed them among the Testament reissues.
Again, I cannot recomend his Beethoven cycle with the BPO more highly.
It is about to be reissued in a 5 CD capbox set in October of this
year. I own the multi-CD set which was already issued at bargain price
in France a few years back. At 20 Euros, this is a very fine purchase.
TD
You owe it to yourself to hear them. Great playing--by a French
orchestra in German music, no less.

Agreed about the Beethoven, which I have on Seraphim CDs. I think the
entire set of five cost me around $20.

Bob Harper
J***@msn.com
2006-09-04 20:42:20 UTC
Permalink
Post by tomdeacon
Post by d***@aol.com
For a good laugh, go and read Tom Deacon's post recommending Haitink's
bland un-French Debussy over Boulez's. "Burnished" is not a virtue in
this repertory. Luminous and subtle and mercurial are.
And then, in order to wipe the smile from your face, go and read the
various encomia which have been heaped on these fabled recordings by
Bernard Haitink. He has never done better on record in ANY music, and
that is saying a very great deal.
Moreover, to refer to Boulez in any music as "luminous, subtle, and
mercurial" is simply absurd. Think liberal, earthbound, and obvious and
you are closer to the very pedestrian truth. His La Mer is truly and
deservedly fabled, but even that is not to my taste. I do think David
needs to rehear the Reiner in order to have his ears reset.
TD
But the big question is, is music to your taste? Hauser
d***@aol.com
2006-09-04 21:03:56 UTC
Permalink
Post by tomdeacon
Moreover, to refer to Boulez in any music as "luminous, subtle, and
mercurial" is simply absurd.
It absolutely is not. You really do NOT know what you're talking
about. Boulez's whole career has been one long pursuit of subtle and
refined post-impressionist effects. Boulez is interested in the
luminous and scintillating, the fantastic and poetical, the fugitive,
ephemeral, mercurial, and evanescent. Just the other day Charles Rosen
described Boulez in The New York Review as "the master of iridescent
sonorities." In Boulez's music the tempo generally floats in response
to the changing sonorities. A more supple and flexible continuum is
scarcely imaginable. And - characteristic of his own music - these
virtues are precisely what he brings out in Debussy's. You can't hear
any of this because you're used to people who paint with larger
gestures and thicker heavier sounds. Boulez can't stand the obvious.

-david gable
tomdeacon
2006-09-05 11:33:27 UTC
Permalink
Post by d***@aol.com
Post by tomdeacon
Moreover, to refer to Boulez in any music as "luminous, subtle, and
mercurial" is simply absurd.
It absolutely is not. You really do NOT know what you're talking
about.
The kind of comment one can expect when there are simply no other
arguments.
Post by d***@aol.com
Boulez's whole career has been one long pursuit of subtle and
refined post-impressionist effects.
The operative word there is "post", David.
Post by d***@aol.com
Boulez is interested in the luminous and scintillating, the fantastic and poetical, the fugitive,
ephemeral, mercurial, and evanescent.
Sounds like a perfect recipe for a Mahler interpretation to me!
Post by d***@aol.com
Just the other day Charles Rosen described Boulez in The New York Review as "the master of iridescent sonorities."
Charles is prejudiced. He is extremely close to Boulez, as you know.
Not a good source of objective opinion on the matter.
Post by d***@aol.com
In Boulez's music the tempo generally floats in response
to the changing sonorities. A more supple and flexible continuum is
scarcely imaginable. And - characteristic of his own music - these
virtues are precisely what he brings out in Debussy's. You can't hear
I hear it, David, but I don't like it.
Post by d***@aol.com
any of this because you're used to people who paint with larger
gestures and thicker heavier sounds. Boulez can't stand the obvious.
Pity.

The wood for the trees strikes me as the appropriate cliche here.

TD
d***@aol.com
2006-09-05 16:19:03 UTC
Permalink
Post by tomdeacon
Post by d***@aol.com
Just the other day Charles Rosen described Boulez in The New York Review as "the master of iridescent sonorities."
Charles is prejudiced. He is extremely close to Boulez, as you know.
Not a good source of objective opinion on the matter.
Nonsense. If Rosen were plugging Boulez merely because he were
Boulez's friend, he wouldn't have chosen "iridescent sonorities." That
description is specific to Boulez's music, and it would never have
occurred to Rosen to describe Carter as "the master of iridescent
sonorities." (William Sommerwerck made a similar comment about
explosante/fixe on this very newsgroup long before Rosen ever printed
these words. There's a very good reason why.)

Moreover, if Rosen didn't like Boulez's music, he'd never have become
his friend. As a performer who has played some (but not much) music
written by his contemporaries, Rosen finds it difficult to have
composers for friends unless he plays their music. In any case, the
greatest critics of the French painters of the 19th century were their
closest friends: Baudelaire, Gautier, and Mallarmé all knew the
painters they wrote about. The fact that these writers could drop by
the studio and watch their painter friends at work and argue about
aesthetic matters with them lends what they had to say a greater
authority, not less authority. It's you who is prejudiced. Prejudice
results in decisions a priori rather than decisions based on
experience. You really have no idea about Boulez's style, but that
doesn't stop you from dismissing it in ignorance.

-david gable
tomdeacon
2006-09-05 18:33:52 UTC
Permalink
Post by d***@aol.com
Post by tomdeacon
Post by d***@aol.com
Just the other day Charles Rosen described Boulez in The New York Review as "the master of iridescent sonorities."
Charles is prejudiced. He is extremely close to Boulez, as you know.
Not a good source of objective opinion on the matter.
Nonsense.
More non-arguments, David.

Really, you will have to come up with something better than "so and so
says this, so it must be true", whoever the so and so may be.
Post by d***@aol.com
If Rosen were plugging Boulez merely because he were
Boulez's friend, he wouldn't have chosen "iridescent sonorities."
You distort my words.

What I said was that he was an unreliable source of opinion on Boulez
because he is a close friend.
You would have to say the same if he commented on Eliot Carter in any
way. Or asked Boulez or Carter's opinion of Rosen for that matter.
Post by d***@aol.com
That description is specific to Boulez's music, and it would never have
occurred to Rosen to describe Carter as "the master of iridescent
sonorities." (William Sommerwerck made a similar comment about
explosante/fixe on this very newsgroup long before Rosen ever printed
these words. There's a very good reason why.)
That's not a reason. That's a coincidence.

Moreover, it is quite ludicrous to speak of sounds as though they had
irridescence. Pretty words, but what exactly do they mean? How do they
enhance our knowledge of Carter, for example? It's critickese(sorry for
the word, but you know what I mean).
Post by d***@aol.com
Moreover, if Rosen didn't like Boulez's music, he'd never have become
his friend.
Is this chicken and egg, David?

Rosen may have not really liked Debussy, or Liszt or Schumann or Chopin
or Beethoven or Mozart or Bach on a personal level, and yet still liked
his music.

But if he were a close personal friend of all those composers - an
literal impossibility, of course, but a notion worth pursuing for the
sake of argument - he would not be a reliable voice of opinion on the
subject of their work as composers.
Post by d***@aol.com
As a performer who has played some (but not much) music
written by his contemporaries, Rosen finds it difficult to have
composers for friends unless he plays their music. In any case, the
greatest critics of the French painters of the 19th century were their
closest friends: Baudelaire, Gautier, and Mallarmé all knew the
painters they wrote about. The fact that these writers could drop by
the studio and watch their painter friends at work and argue about
aesthetic matters with them lends what they had to say a greater
authority, not less authority.
Of course Rosen speaks with authority. I never said he didn't. But it
is mainly the authority of his intellect, his writing, his playing. But
his view is not more authorititive than any other opinion, I would
suggest. Perhaps more informed, more personally committed, but not more
valid, at least not to me, and I am the only one I have to please on
this score, you see. I am not in search of or in need of a celebrated
personality to validate my preferences. You may feel I only like the
"big names", but actually Ingelbrecht is not that big, in fact, and
others I like are long dead and forgotten by the average music-lover.

On the subject of "authority", do you think Shaw was "authorititive" on
Brahms? He was on Wagner, I suppose. But then he liked Wagner and
didn't like Brahms. Or is he less authorititive because he didn't like
Brahms. Really, this is a silly notion, that of "authority" in
subjective opinion.
Post by d***@aol.com
It's you who is prejudiced.
Read "opinionated". And my opinions do not coincide with yours.

This is not a big deal, David. I cannot for the life of me fathom why
you even care. It's touching, of course, but really not a valuable use
of your time. You may be worried that I have the wrong opinions, and
that too is touching. But don't. I am a big boy and can handle myself
perfectly well. So, relax, already.
Post by d***@aol.com
Prejudice results in decisions a priori rather than decisions based on
experience. You really have no idea about Boulez's style, but that
doesn't stop you from dismissing it in ignorance.
I don't "dismiss" Boulez' style, David. I simply don't rate it very
highly. Particularly not in comparison with the style of others whose
work I value more highly.

It's just as simple as that.

TD
d***@aol.com
2006-09-05 22:32:50 UTC
Permalink
Deacon writes:

"Really, this is a silly notion, that of 'authority' in subjective
opinion."

My God, you are dense. "I like it" and "I don't like it" may be the
expressions of "subjective" opinion in your sense. Neither opinion is
of the slightest interest to anyone but the person who holds it.
Neither statement constitutes criticism. What Baudelaire and Gautier
wrote about French painting and what Rosen writes about Boulez are
interesting because of their profound grasp of the art or music they
write about, which goes way beyond subjective opinion. What they write
deepens understanding and therefore appreciation. The intimacy of
these writers with the painters and composer in question is one of the
reasons why.

"Moreover, it is quite ludicrous to speak of sounds as though they
had irridescence [sic]. Pretty words, but what exactly do they mean?"

Anybody who knows the music in question will grasp exactly what he
means beyond any shadow of a doubt. Using the term iridescence is no
different from describing Ravel, Messiaen, and Boulez as "French
colorists." Iridescence is a metaphor intended to describe
Boulez's treatment of what we call "color" in music. If you
don't get this, you are incompetent to say anything about virtually
any French music or painting of the past two centuries. Next you'll
tell me that impressionist paintings don't flicker.

"On the subject of 'authority', do you think Shaw was 'authorititive'
on
Brahms? He was on Wagner, I suppose. But then he liked Wagner and
didn't like Brahms."

This is absurd. You don't read Shaw on Wagner or Brahms to find out
whether you should like it. You read Shaw because of whatever
intrinsic value his writing has and because of whatever insights into
the music of Brahms and Wagner he may have.

My failure to address the other points raised in your post doesn't
mean that your "arguments" are crushing. Most of them are
completely beside the point. I will only address one more of your
claims. When I remarked that William Sommerwerck's description of
Boulez's ...explosante/fixe... gibed with Rosen's characterization
of Boulez as "the master of iridescent sonorities," you responded:

"That's a [mere] coincidence."

It is nothing of the kind. Music is not a Rorschach blot that each
listener makes out of what he will. Its form and expressive character
are determined by the composer. Nobody experiences the Adagietto from
Mahler's Fifth Symphony as light hearted. Everybody hears the climax
of Wagner's Liebestod in exactly the same spot: right where Wagner
put it. Everybody comes to recognize that Debussy's music sounds
French, Mahler's Germanic, and so on. It is inevitable and not mere
coincidence that Rosen, Mr. Sommerwerck, and I discover the same kind
of color and expressive character in Boulez's music: because Boulez
put it there.

-david gable
tomdeacon
2006-09-06 11:57:25 UTC
Permalink
Post by d***@aol.com
"Really, this is a silly notion, that of 'authority' in subjective
opinion."
My God, you are dense. "I like it" and "I don't like it" may be the
expressions of "subjective" opinion in your sense. Neither opinion is
of the slightest interest to anyone but the person who holds it.
As I said, it really doesn't matter to me whether you agree with me or
not.

So, keep repeating your "authorities". And I will keep repeating my own
opinion, which is formed over many years, David, and has not been
arrived at casually.
Post by d***@aol.com
"Moreover, it is quite ludicrous to speak of sounds as though they
had irridescence [sic]. Pretty words, but what exactly do they mean?"
Anybody who knows the music in question will grasp exactly what he
means beyond any shadow of a doubt.
Does that mean it has meaning?

I would ask you to explain, then.
Post by d***@aol.com
Using the term iridescence is no
different from describing Ravel, Messiaen, and Boulez as "French
colorists."
Sorry. I didn't use those terms. Boulez a "French colourist"? Are you
joking?
Post by d***@aol.com
Iridescence is a metaphor
Gee whiz. Is this a course, David?
Post by d***@aol.com
intended to describe
Boulez's treatment of what we call "color" in music.
Another ridiculous term. Music doesn't have colour, David. It has
sounds, which have characteristics and dynamics. No more, no less.
Post by d***@aol.com
If you don't get this, you are incompetent to say anything about virtually
any French music or painting of the past two centuries.
So, you are equating painting and music.

Perhaps it is you who are incompetent, since you don't seem to be able
to tell the difference between the visual arts and music.
Post by d***@aol.com
Next you'll tell me that impressionist paintings don't flicker.
Certainly don't flicker like my lights do when there is a thunderstorm.
Do yours?
Post by d***@aol.com
"On the subject of 'authority', do you think Shaw was
'authorititive'
Post by d***@aol.com
on Brahms? He was on Wagner, I suppose. But then he liked Wagner and
didn't like Brahms."
This is absurd. You don't read Shaw on Wagner or Brahms to find out
whether you should like it. You read Shaw because of whatever
intrinsic value his writing has and because of whatever insights into
the music of Brahms and Wagner he may have.
Now we are getting somewhere.

So, we should quote Rosen for the intrinsic value of his writing?
Post by d***@aol.com
My failure to address the other points raised in your post doesn't
mean that your "arguments" are crushing.
I didn't intend to "crush" anyone, David, just to express my opinion.

Sorry if you don't agree. But that's life, you know.

Most of them are
Post by d***@aol.com
completely beside the point. I will only address one more of your
claims. When I remarked that William Sommerwerck's description of
Boulez's ...explosante/fixe... gibed with Rosen's characterization
"That's a [mere] coincidence."
It is nothing of the kind.
It is a coincidence of opinion on one subject.
Post by d***@aol.com
Music is not a Rorschach blot that each
listener makes out of what he will. Its form and expressive character
are determined by the composer. Nobody experiences the Adagietto from
Mahler's Fifth Symphony as light hearted. Everybody hears the climax
of Wagner's Liebestod in exactly the same spot: right where Wagner
put it.
Funny, David, but you know many pianists actually miss the climax of
the Liszt Sonata?

Things are not as obvious or clear as you suggest.

Moreover, you are wrong about Mahler's Adagietto. Many take it as
soothing background music. Even the accompaniment to the film has been
lost as a connection.
Post by d***@aol.com
Everybody comes to recognize that Debussy's music sounds
French, Mahler's Germanic, and so on.
No. They don't. The simply recognize it as music they like or don't
like. It's sort of irrelevant to most people that Debussy is French and
Mahler Austrian.
Post by d***@aol.com
It is inevitable and not mere coincidence that Rosen, Mr. Sommerwerck, and I discover the same kind of color and expressive character in Boulez's music: because Boulez
put it there.
LOL!

What a pity most people don't hear colour, David. They see it.

I suppose you're an exception in this regard. Perhaps a candidate for a
seminar on synesthesia?

TD

j***@aol.com
2006-08-28 04:26:29 UTC
Permalink
Post by Paul Ilechko
The only complete(ish) set I have is Haitink, and it bores me to tears.
I have the Mitropoulos "La Mer" on the GCOTTC set, which it is much
better. I'm looking for more Debussy that has that kind of life and
energy - any recommendations?
Run, do not walk, to your nearest computer and order yourself a copy of
De Sabata's La Mer on Testament. And get Cantelli's Debussy too. And
Toscanini's La Mer (I suppose the one with the BBC). That's where
you'll find incomparable life and energy.

I forget who mentioned Van Beinum, but he also fills your reques; the
Concertgebouw is sensational (no less polished than for Haitink, but
with more verve and sass to the sound). Buy Schuricht's Faun if you
ever see it, and don't shy away from those old Philadephia recordings
(La Mer, Faun) with Stokowski.

I admit to liking a whole lot of other Debussy conductors, like
Inghelbrecht, Coppola, Rosenthal, Boulez (yes, his New Philharmonia La
Mer is as good as stated here), Desormiere, Salonen, Maderna, Karajan,
Munch, Monteux, and Celibidache among them. I do like some things
about Haitink's Debussy, by the way, but not enough to make him a
frequent destination.

--Jeff
k***@yahoo.co.uk
2006-08-28 06:40:17 UTC
Permalink
There's a pair of Debussy orchestral CDs with the Philharmonia under
Geoffrey Simon which feature some very interesting arrangements of
assorted piano pieces.

Cala CACD1024 has: The Engulfed Cathedral (orch. Stokowski); L'Isle
Joyeuse (orch. Molinari); Two Arabesques (orch. Mouton); Bruyeres
(orch. Grainger); Danse (orch. Ravel); Children's Corner (orch.
Caplet); and La Mer (the first edition of the score with the added
trumpet fanfares in the finale which were deleted from the reprint).

Cala CACD1025 has: Night in Granada (orch. Stokowski); Clair de lune
(orch. Caplet); Pagodes (orch. Grainger); Girl with the Flaxen Hair
(orch. Gleichmann); Petite Suite (orch. Busser); the Premiere Rapsodie
for Clarinet and Orchestra; and the three Nocturnes.

Both CDs had very good reviews ("a warm, urgent reading of La Mer, very
well recorded" ... "the Nocturnes are colourful and atmospheric, with
full vivid recorded sound": Penguin Guide) and audio snippets can be
heard on the Cala Records website.
Bob Harper
2006-08-28 06:28:16 UTC
Permalink
Post by Paul Ilechko
The only complete(ish) set I have is Haitink, and it bores me to tears.
I have the Mitropoulos "La Mer" on the GCOTTC set, which it is much
better. I'm looking for more Debussy that has that kind of life and
energy - any recommendations?
Others have had their say re most of the orchestral music, but for La
Mer I would not be without Reiner or Karajan '64.

Bob Harper
MELMOTH
2006-08-28 07:42:00 UTC
Permalink
Ce cher mammifère du nom de Paul Ilechko nous susurrait, le lundi
28/08/2006, dans nos oreilles grandes ouvertes mais un peu sales quand
I'm looking for more Debussy that has that kind of life and energy - any
recommendations?
Martinon
Rosenthal
Boulez
--
Car avec beaucoup de science, il y a beaucoup de chagrin; et celui qui
accroît sa science, accroît sa douleur.
[Ecclésiaste, 1]
Melmoth - souffrant
Andrew Rose
2006-08-28 07:45:18 UTC
Permalink
Post by Paul Ilechko
The only complete(ish) set I have is Haitink, and it bores me to tears.
I have the Mitropoulos "La Mer" on the GCOTTC set, which it is much
better. I'm looking for more Debussy that has that kind of life and
energy - any recommendations?
De Sabata's Jeux:

http://www.pristineaudiodirect.com/LargeWorks/Orchestral/PASC046.php

(2'10" clip online)



You might also be interested in:

PASC018 - An Orchestral Extravaganza - Debussy

La Mer (1903-05) - Boston SO
Conductor: Serge Koussevitzky
(from HMV DB3923-3925, recorded 1939)

Images I & III (1906-12) - San Francisco SO
Conductor: Pierre Monteux
(from HMV DB6182-6183, recorded 1942, double-starred in The Record
Guide, 1952)

Printemps - Symphonic Suite (1887) - Royal Phil. Orch.
Conductor: Sir Thomas Beecham
(from HMV DB6549-6550, recorded 1946, double-starred in The Record
Guide, 1952)

Nocturnes (1893-99) - L'Orchestre de la Société des Concerts du
Conservatoire de Paris
Conductor: Jean Fournet
(from Philips A 00.160L, recorded 1952, winner Grand Prix de l'Académie
de Disque, 1953)

Total duration: 77'37"


http://www.pristineaudiodirect.com/LargeWorks/Orchestral/PASC018.php

(includes 2nd movement from Printemps as online sampler)



and:

PASC043: Ibéria (Images pour Orchestre, No. 2) - Debussy

Le Grand Orchestre Symphonique de L'I.N.R.,
Conductor: Franz André
Released in 1952 on Telefunken LP LGX 66001
(Duration 16'54")

http://www.pristineaudiodirect.com/LargeWorks/Orchestral/PASC043.php

(3rd movement: "Le matin d'un jour de fête" available to sample online)
MELMOTH
2006-08-28 07:48:28 UTC
Permalink
(supersedes <***@free.fr>)

Ce cher mammifère du nom de Paul Ilechko nous susurrait, le lundi
28/08/2006, dans nos oreilles grandes ouvertes mais un peu sales quand
I'm looking for more Debussy that has that kind of life and energy - any
recommendations?
Integrals :

Martinon
Rosenthal
Boulez

+ All Monteux recordings...
--
Car avec beaucoup de science, il y a beaucoup de chagrin; et celui qui
accroît sa science, accroît sa douleur.
[Ecclésiaste, 1]
Melmoth - souffrant
Matthew B. Tepper
2006-08-28 15:14:40 UTC
Permalink
Post by Paul Ilechko
The only complete(ish) set I have is Haitink, and it bores me to tears.
I have the Mitropoulos "La Mer" on the GCOTTC set, which it is much
better. I'm looking for more Debussy that has that kind of life and
energy - any recommendations?
Back from vacation, so I'll add to the chorus suggesting Martinon.

For historicals, Toscanini's Philadelphia "La Mer" and "Ibéria."
--
Matthew B. Tepper: WWW, science fiction, classical music, ducks!
My personal home page -- http://home.earthlink.net/~oy/index.html
My main music page --- http://home.earthlink.net/~oy/berlioz.html
To write to me, do for my address what Androcles did for the lion
NOT an advocate of cannibalism (despite what Kevin Maroney says).
Curtis Croulet
2006-08-28 16:27:12 UTC
Permalink
Post by Matthew B. Tepper
For historicals, Toscanini's Philadelphia "La Mer" and "Ibéria."
I also think highly of his 1950 NBC recording of La mer. "Debussy's La mer"
by Simon Trezise (Cambridge Music Handbooks) is a fascinating mine of
information about this piece.
--
Curtis Croulet
Temecula, California
33°27'59"N, 117°05'53"W
Matthew B. Tepper
2006-08-28 17:20:43 UTC
Permalink
Post by Curtis Croulet
Post by Matthew B. Tepper
For historicals, Toscanini's Philadelphia "La Mer" and "Ibéria."
I also think highly of his 1950 NBC recording of La mer. "Debussy's La
mer" by Simon Trezise (Cambridge Music Handbooks) is a fascinating mine
of information about this piece.
I have special feelings about the 1950 NBC Debussy recordings, as they are
the last recordings from Studio 8-H (and ironically, the best-sounding, as
though the engineers finally got it right). But the Philadelphia Orchestra
is itself something quite special, despite the more problematic sound.
--
Matthew B. Tepper: WWW, science fiction, classical music, ducks!
My personal home page -- http://home.earthlink.net/~oy/index.html
My main music page --- http://home.earthlink.net/~oy/berlioz.html
To write to me, do for my address what Androcles did for the lion
NOT an advocate of cannibalism (despite what Kevin Maroney says).
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