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Reviews: Rodrigo: Concierto de Aranjuez, Fantasía para un gentilhombre, Concierto madrigal - Yepes, Monden, Navarro

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Reviews: 3

Site review by Geohominid July 21, 2015
Performance:   Sonics:    
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Review by feinstei July 25, 2015 (5 of 7 found this review helpful)
Performance:   Sonics:  
I have a wonderful recording of Concierto de Aranjuez on an Alahambra (Spanish Columbia EMI) LP with Narciso Yepes as the soloist and Atualfo Argenta that I consider to be the best performance and the best recorded rendering of this work.

This new mastering (although a valiant effort from Pentatone) suffers from the lousy DG transistorized miking and recording techniques of the '70's. The beautiful clarinet solo in the first movement is almost unrecognizable as a "clarinet" -- it sounds more like a plastic toy flute. The sound is shrieky throughout although the 4 channel gimmick is kind of cool -- you don't have a 10th row center seat in a fine auditorium -- instead, you have a seat between the horns and 2nd violins with the orchestra blasting all around you. Pretty cool, but probably not what Lewis Layton or C. Robert Fine would consider a good "Living Stereo" or "Living Presence" recording

The performance is pretty good on the Pentatone SACD, but the Argenta EMI recording is really the standard for this work, even though it's not available on SACD or Blu-Ray (you can find it in superb "vacuum tube" sound on a cheap reissue CD available on Amazon for about $10).

Pentatone please, in your liner notes, make some mention about the artist (Yepes), conductor, and orchestra! The biography of Rodrigo was very enlightening, but there was NOTHING about the artist, composer, or orchestra!

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Review by threerandot October 24, 2015 (5 of 5 found this review helpful)
Performance:   Sonics:  
I am so pleased that Pentatone have released a second SACD of great peformances with maestro Nariso Yepes.

I got this disc for my birthday this year and a great present it is. As with the previous release of Guitar Concertos on Pentatone with Yepes, I am again biased towards this great maestro.

The recording is very striking with a big open sound and at the same time capturing Yepes guitar up close, bringing the soloist right into your living room. Deep and resonant guitar tones are captured vividly in this quadro recording. Yepes guitar sounds almost jumbo sized at time.

The winds such as the clarinet in the first movement of the Concierto de Aranjuez and the oboe of the second movement of the same have a warmth and breathing quality that is quite remarkable. The second movement is full of high drama in the main theme during large orchestral fortes, the second movement being the centre-piece of this timeless concerto.

The Fantasia para un gentilhombre is a colorful picture of a humble Spanish gentlemen and I cannot help but think that this piece has always been a self-portrait of Rodrigo himself.

The disc closes with the vibrant Concierto madrigal with Godelieve Monden providing strong support throughout this virtuosic showpiece. Yepes articulation is always first rate and fans of these concertos will have much to relish here.

With top notch sound and inspiring performances, this disc should bring a smile to lovers of these remarkable pieces.

This review refers to the Surround Sound portion of this.

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