Author Topic: "Drinking the Kool-Aid"  (Read 10276 times)

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Offline Bogey

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"Drinking the Kool-Aid"
« on: August 04, 2013, 08:32:35 AM »
What is a disc or performance that everyone seemed to be showing the love for (here or elsewhere) and then when you purchased it, you found it really did not meet your expectations?
There will never be another era like the Golden Age of Hollywood.  We didn't know how to blow up buildings then so we had no choice but to tell great stories with great characters.-Ben Mankiewicz

Offline Pat B

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Re: "Drinking the Kool-Aid"
« Reply #1 on: August 04, 2013, 09:38:58 AM »
Back in the '90s, Rostropovich's Bach Suites and Zinman's Beethoven 9th.

More recently I have a couple of candidates but want to give them at least one more chance.

Offline k a rl h e nn i ng

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Re: "Drinking the Kool-Aid"
« Reply #2 on: August 04, 2013, 09:43:20 AM »
Great idea for a thread!

(I'll spectate a bit before playing, myself.)
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Offline XB-70 Valkyrie

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Re: "Drinking the Kool-Aid"
« Reply #3 on: August 04, 2013, 10:35:26 AM »
The Julius Katchen Brahms (solo piano) set. I hate to pick on him because he was  a very good pianist (very good with Liszt actually), but these readings of Brahms solo piano works seem too fast-paced and superficial compared to Kempff, Solomon, Michelangeli, to name a few (although sadly none of these recorded the complete cycle).
If you really dislike Bach you keep quiet about it! - Andras Schiff

Offline Archaic Torso of Apollo

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Re: "Drinking the Kool-Aid"
« Reply #4 on: August 04, 2013, 11:25:54 AM »
Reiner's CSO Beethoven 9th. I was expecting a fiery, in-yer-face performance, but it sounded disappointingly lukewarm.

Bernstein's NYPO Mahler 6th. This isn't tragic; it's neurotic, bordering on hysterical. Bernstein's later VPO remake is better in every way, and Solti's contemporaneous version is preferable if you want a "fast & hard" approach.

Karajan's VPO Bruckner 8th. Not at all bad, except for a too-slow scherzo. But not the sublime experience I was expecting.
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Offline springrite

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Re: "Drinking the Kool-Aid"
« Reply #5 on: August 04, 2013, 11:52:00 AM »
Don't hit me with a baseball bat but Solomon's Beethoven sonatas.
Do what I must do, and let what must happen happen.

Offline mc ukrneal

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Re: "Drinking the Kool-Aid"
« Reply #6 on: August 04, 2013, 12:20:40 PM »
There are probably others, but here are a few I have replaced (though not necessarily got rid of):

Liszt's Piano concertos, Richter/Kondrashin.

Mozart's Marriage of Figaro, Rene Jacobs and co.

Rimsky-Korsakov Symphonies, Jarvi and co. on DG

Liszt Hungarian Rhapsodies, Roberto Szidon
Offenbach gets a raw deal in recordings considering his talent! For a discussion of this outstanding composer too little recorded: http://www.good-music-guide.com/community/index.php/topic,5572.

Offline Sergeant Rock

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Re: "Drinking the Kool-Aid"
« Reply #7 on: August 04, 2013, 12:37:41 PM »
Gulda's Beethoven




Sarge
the phone rings and somebody says,
"hey, they made a movie about
Mahler, you ought to go see it.
he was as f*cked-up as you are."
                               --Charles Bukowski, "Mahler"

Offline Jeffrey Smith

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Re: "Drinking the Kool-Aid"
« Reply #8 on: August 05, 2013, 07:13:54 AM »
Back in the '90s, Rostropovich's Bach Suites and Zinman's Beethoven 9th.

Jens agrees with you about the Rostropovich, and I tend to agree with you about the Zinman.

My own candidate:
Immerseel/Seiler's Beethoven violin sonatas is a dud for me, although I can't say people have gone ga-ga over them--but given the performers involved, I expected a good deal better.

And btw:

Reiner's CSO Beethoven 9th. I was expecting a fiery, in-yer-face performance, but it sounded disappointingly lukewarm.

Bernstein's NYPO Mahler 6th. This isn't tragic; it's neurotic, bordering on hysterical. Bernstein's later VPO remake is better in every way, and Solti's contemporaneous version is preferable if you want a "fast & hard" approach.

I'd say neurotic and hysterical might be a valid approach to M6.

Quote
Karajan's VPO Bruckner 8th. Not at all bad, except for a too-slow scherzo. But not the sublime experience I was expecting.

I tend to agree with you there.  In fact,  I think I prefer his recording with the Berliners.

Offline Gordo

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Re: "Drinking the Kool-Aid"
« Reply #9 on: August 05, 2013, 07:22:32 AM »
Minkowski, for instance here:



... and here:

Isn't it funny? The truth just sounds different.
-- Penny Lane, Almost Famous (2000)

Offline Todd

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Re: "Drinking the Kool-Aid"
« Reply #10 on: August 05, 2013, 07:30:12 AM »
Don't hit me with a baseball bat but Solomon's Beethoven sonatas.



I tend to agree with this one.  I'd add Richard Goode's Beethoven, which received many plaudits. 

When Hermann Scherchen's recording of the Eroica was first reissued, there were a lot of people who said it was great.  I not only dislike it, I rate it among the worst ever recordings of the work that I've heard.

The Quartetto Italiano has long been held in high esteem by many, but I can't think of even one recording with them that I've heard that I consider top tier.  Their Schubert comes closest.

Solti's Ring. 
The universe is change; life is opinion.   Marcus Aurelius, Meditations

Offline Archaic Torso of Apollo

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Re: "Drinking the Kool-Aid"
« Reply #11 on: August 05, 2013, 08:13:22 AM »
I'd say neurotic and hysterical might be a valid approach to M6.

Not for me. Tragedy (which this symphony aims to evoke) should have a certain rigorous, objective quality. It's not just about highlighting the negative emotions.

When Hermann Scherchen's recording of the Eroica was first reissued, there were a lot of people who said it was great.  I not only dislike it, I rate it among the worst ever recordings of the work that I've heard.

Well I think it's great, or at least never dull, but both this and the Mahler 2 he did about the same time suffer from really sloppy, thin-sounding playing. BTW can the credited "Vienna State Opera Orchestra" really be the Vienna Philharmonic under a different name, or is it some differently constituted body?
formerly VELIMIR (before that, Spitvalve)

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Beorn

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Re: "Drinking the Kool-Aid"
« Reply #12 on: August 05, 2013, 08:15:53 AM »
Too much to mention.

Offline Sergeant Rock

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Re: "Drinking the Kool-Aid"
« Reply #13 on: August 05, 2013, 08:21:04 AM »
Too much to mention.

We've been such a disappointment to you, Dave  :(

Sarge
the phone rings and somebody says,
"hey, they made a movie about
Mahler, you ought to go see it.
he was as f*cked-up as you are."
                               --Charles Bukowski, "Mahler"

Beorn

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Re: "Drinking the Kool-Aid"
« Reply #14 on: August 05, 2013, 08:23:03 AM »
We've been such a disappointment to you, Dave  :(

I'm not necessarily referring to people here, just people in general. Opinions are like--what was that quote again?  ;)

Offline Sergeant Rock

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Re: "Drinking the Kool-Aid"
« Reply #15 on: August 05, 2013, 08:25:33 AM »
I'm not necessarily referring to people here, just people in general. Opinions are like--what was that quote again?  ;)

Yeah, that's why if I'm forced to endorse something, I generally provide caveats. Let the buyer beware, especially if you're asking my opinion.  ;D
the phone rings and somebody says,
"hey, they made a movie about
Mahler, you ought to go see it.
he was as f*cked-up as you are."
                               --Charles Bukowski, "Mahler"

Beorn

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Re: "Drinking the Kool-Aid"
« Reply #16 on: August 05, 2013, 08:27:49 AM »
Yeah, that's why if I'm forced to endorse something, I generally provide caveats. Let the buyer beware, especially if you're asking my opinion.  ;D

Yeah, when someone asks my opinion, I'm thinking, why the hell do you want to know that???

Offline Todd

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Re: "Drinking the Kool-Aid"
« Reply #17 on: August 05, 2013, 08:40:38 AM »
BTW can the credited "Vienna State Opera Orchestra" really be the Vienna Philharmonic under a different name, or is it some differently constituted body?



That's a good question.  I would have thought they were one and the same, but I could certainly be wrong.  (I hope I am.)
The universe is change; life is opinion.   Marcus Aurelius, Meditations

Offline Jeffrey Smith

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Re: "Drinking the Kool-Aid"
« Reply #18 on: August 05, 2013, 08:51:32 AM »

Well I think it's great, or at least never dull, but both this and the Mahler 2 he did about the same time suffer from really sloppy, thin-sounding playing. BTW can the credited "Vienna State Opera Orchestra" really be the Vienna Philharmonic under a different name, or is it some differently constituted body?

A quick consultation with Wikipedia results in the answer "definitely maybe".
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vienna_Philharmonic
Quote
The members of the orchestra are chosen from the orchestra of the Vienna State Opera. This process is a long one, with each musician having to prove his or her capability for a minimum of three years' playing for the opera and ballet. Once this is achieved the musician can then ask the board of the Vienna Philharmonic to consider an application for a position in the orchestra.

But Wikipedia doesn't make it clear if new VPO members stay with the VSO, and if so, whether they can leave the VSO later and remain members of the VPO.

And of course not everyone who plays with the VPO is an actual member of the VPO.

(Perhaps the Vienna State Opera Orchestra designation was used because the Vienna Philharmonic members weren't happy with the recording and didn't want it assigned to the VPO?)

Offline Superhorn

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Re: "Drinking the Kool-Aid"
« Reply #19 on: August 05, 2013, 09:33:14 AM »
    Reginald Goodall's Wagner rrecordings . Many critics  have swooned over them, including Andrew Porter, considering the most sublime Wagner performnces of our time, praising their slow-paced grandeur .  But I've lways found them a travesty of Wagner, impossibly slow and lethargic , devoid of any momentum .I've seen giant tree sloths with more energy !
    Goodall did not have a clue about what Wagner's music was about .  Not a single  episode had any sense of shape, direction, continuity or flow .  He made a complete hash of the tempo relations,  virtually  nullifying any contrast between slow or fast, taking everything at one
exasperatingly slow pace , making the louder passages  lumberingly turgid and the quieter ones limp as a  wet noodle .
It's known now that Wagner  could not stand  hearing his music played at  excessively slow tempos , so you can be pretty sure that he would have been exasperated by Goodall .  By comparison, the supposedly "slow": Knappertsbusch is like a speed demon .



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