Review by analogue November 25, 2011 (11 of 12 found this review helpful)
|This is my third version of Carmina Burana that I own on sacd. The other two being from Telarc and Chandos. The Telarc is very excellent in every way but the volume needs to be cranked rather high as some of the passages are low in volume. Unfortunately when the robust parts of the songs kick in ..then the volume is set too high. As for the Chandos disc it is very good as well but it is recorded from to far away and this is a little unsettling.
Now we come to the new sacd which happens to be an shm-sacd. The recording is from 1968 and it is conducted by Eugen Jochum. As to which Carmina Burana is the best of all time. I leave that up to the musicologists. I wont even debate as I dont care. Its all subjective anyways.
As for which is my favourite, at least from the ones I own...its a toss up between the Telarc and the shm-sacd.
The Telarc is more lifelike and freshly recorded but the Shm sacd has the better all around performance without the volume problem. While the original tapes are not really that old I can tell of a subltle strain at times. There might also be a tad of wear and tear also. The brass can be a little tinny and some of the chanting sibilant. But overall a very good shm sacd.
The sound of this shm sacd is pretty good. It has some surprisingly powerful and bombastic moments which feature great dynamic range. The voices are a tad fuller and richer than the dsd recorded Telarc. The solo vocals by the soprano, tenors and baritone are rather beautifully done.
Gundula's voice during dulcissime is haunting but so powerful that there is some microphone strain.
So I can recommend this disc. It is more than decent even with the limitations of the recording or the ever so subtle tape wear. At least with this recording all the memebers seem to be on the same stage wheres with the Telearc I sometimes wonder. This is a difficult piece to record sucessfully Im afraid.
The opening to the piece (O fORTUNA) is best on this disc by far and my favourite I have thus heard in general.
Recommended to die hard fans of this great modern classical piece.
The 4 star rating for sound is adequate but I wont try to convince you that this is the very best shm sacd. Its not.
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