Robert Simpson(1921-1997)

Started by Dundonnell, March 25, 2008, 02:09:14 PM

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DavidW

#520


First I have to address the elephant in the room.  The sound quality is not that good.  There is a very audible noise floor even through speakers.  There is distortion and these popping sounds.  Basically it is like someone did a hasty digital recording of vinyl instead of a careful mastering of well preserved reel-to-reel to my ears.  I think that on speakers it is fine, it might not be on headphones.

That being said, these performances are dynamite!  They are far better than anyone else I've heard.  This is the kind of recording that would make fans of Robert Simpson that didn't like him before.  It is really that good.  It is that revelatory.  And in particular the string section is just so lush.  Obviously for fans of Simpson, you got to hear this.  You really do.  I love it despite the dodgy sound. :)

Edit: fixing my awful sentences, I was excitedly typing as fast as I could.

foxandpeng

Quote from: DavidW on June 25, 2022, 08:44:41 AM


First I have to address the elephant in the room.  The sound quality is not that good.  There is a very audible noise floor even through speakers.  There is distortion and these popping sounds.  Basically it is like someone did a hasty digital recording of vinyl instead of a careful mastering of well preserved reel-to-reel to my ears.  I think that on speakers it is fine, it might not be on headphones.

That being said, these performances are dynamite!  They are far better than anyone else I've heard.  This is the kind of recording that would make fans of Robert Simpson that didn't like him before.  It is really that good.  It is that revelatory.  And in particular the string section is just so lush.  Obviously for fans of Simpson, you got to hear this.  You really do.  I love it despite the dodgy sound. :)

Edit: fixing my awful sentences, I was excitedly typing as fast as I could.

;D ;D

I am still waiting for Spotify to get their act together!
"A quiet secluded life in the country, with the possibility of being useful to people ... then work which one hopes may be of some use; then rest, nature, books, music, love for one's neighbour — such is my idea of happiness"

Tolstoy

DavidW

Quote from: foxandpeng on June 25, 2022, 02:49:08 PM
;D ;D

I am still waiting for Spotify to get their act together!

Oh that is weird that Qobuz got it first!

calyptorhynchus

#523
Well there's no documentation for the Horenstein 2 & 3 issue, however I know that the  3 was issued in the 70s as an LP coupled with the Clarinet Quintet. It was reissued by NMC in 2000s.

It may be that the recording of the 2nd was never issued in any form. I don't know the technical details but I believe there was a way of storing a recording on a disc or some sort, rather than tape, back in the 1960s and before. Certainly sounds as if the recording of 2 came off a disc, what with the surface noise.

As well as the tragedy of Horenstein never having a permanent contract with any orchestra after he fled Nazi Germany in the 30s, he never had a decent recording contract either in the stereo era. So many of his recordings are one-offs, or off-air or whatever.

vandermolen

Quote from: calyptorhynchus on June 26, 2022, 02:00:42 PM
Well there's no documentation for the Horenstein 2 & 3 issue, however I know that the  3 was issued in the 70s as an LP coupled with the Clarinet Quintet. It was reissued by NMC in 2000s.

It may be that the recording of the 2nd was never issued in any form. I don't know the technical details but I believe there was a way of storing a recording on a disc or some sort, rather than tape, back in the 1960s and before. Certainly sounds as if the recording of 2 came off a disc, what with the surface noise.

As well as the tragedy of Horenstein never having a permanent contract with any orchestra after he fled Nazi Germany in the 30s, he never had a decent recording contract either in the stereo era. So many of his recordings are one-offs, or off-air or whatever.
Here's the original CD release of Horenstein's recording of Simpson's 3rd Symphony on Unicorn. I like the cover art:
"Courage is going from failure to failure without losing enthusiasm" (Churchill).

'The test of a work of art is, in the end, our affection for it, not our ability to explain why it is good' (Stanley Kubrick).

J.Z. Herrenberg

And this is the original LP I borrowed in the late 1970s.
Music gives a soul to the universe, wings to the mind, flight to the imagination and life to everything. -- Plato

vandermolen

Quote from: J.Z. Herrenberg on June 26, 2022, 10:57:22 PM
And this is the original LP I borrowed in the late 1970s.
I took that one out of the record library too Johan. Here it is again on an NMC CD with a different cover. I also see that there's a 'rehearsal sequence' for Symphony No.3 coupled with Bruckner's 8th Symphony (which I saw Horenstein conduct at the Proms in my youth) on the Intaglio label.
"Courage is going from failure to failure without losing enthusiasm" (Churchill).

'The test of a work of art is, in the end, our affection for it, not our ability to explain why it is good' (Stanley Kubrick).

calyptorhynchus

Ok, so news of a move to record some unrecorded Simpson. The Clarinet Trio has recently been recorded by Emma Johnson, Raphael Wallfisch and pianist John Lenehan, and the two other works that are being prepared for this disk are the original version of the Two Clarinet Quintet (original scoring Clarinet, Bass Clarinet and three double-basses [sic], the Hyperion recording has the version with a standard string trio and the clarinets). Joining this will be a recording of an early string quartet predating the SQ No.1. So Simpson will join the group of composers who have a work No.0 (Bruckner, Tippett, Bax...) (wish they'd record some of Holmboe's pre No.1 SQs!)

I think I posted this link here, but if you want to get an idea of what the Clarinet Trio sounds like I did a midi version last year and it's up on Youtube

https://youtu.be/WUx4Y4Aafhk

Its an amazing work, and quite unlike the Clarinet Quintet written the next year.

calyptorhynchus

And another work that is being recorded, though I don't have information on when it is being released, or what the coupling(s) will be, is the Brass Quintet. And this is another piece of his I did a midi version of:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1BJWvgi08TQ