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  Ondine -
  ODE 1072-5
  Bartok: Concerto for Orchestra - Eschenbach
  Bartok: Concerto for Orchestra, Martinu: Memorial to Lidice, Gideon Klein: Partita for Strings

The Philadelphia Orchestra
Christoph Eschenbach (conductor)
Track listing:
  Classical - Orchestral
Recording type:
Recording info:

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Related titles: 6 show all

Reviews: 5 show all

Site review by akiralx December 25, 2005
Performance:   Sonics:  
The first of hopefully a series of releases from an agreement between the Philadelphia Orchestra and Ondine, this SACD is a promising but not outstanding start.

The main work, Bartok's Concerto for Orchestra, is given a good performance, Eschenbach occasionally choosing some expansive speeds. The orchestral playing throughout is excellent. This is more than decent, but in such a competitive field it can't really compete with Kocsis' amazing performance on Hungaroton, which is frankly in a different class interpretatively.

Klein's Partita, a work unknown to me, sounds fine, but Martinu's powerful threnody 'Memorial to Lidice' sadly doesn't quite come off here, mainly owing to the often funereal tempi choices from Eschenbach. At such speeds the work ends up sounding leaden, and the Beethoven's Fifth quotation sounds spongily submerged at the climax - a far better version is Belohlavek's on Chandos, coupled with the Field Mass and the Fourth Symphony.

Sonically the disc is pretty good, with fine presence, if not quite the depth of the best SACDs. Still this is the best the Philadelphians have sounded on disc in quite a few years.

Review by wehecht March 8, 2006 (3 of 4 found this review helpful)
Performance:   Sonics:  
Having attended one of the concerts from which this recording is drawn I can testify that the multichannel sound provides a very good representation of the Philadelphia orchestra in Verizon hall. This may not be the fabled "Philadelphia sound" of days gone by, but it is very clear and well balanced with great timbral accuracy. Maestro Eschenbach's interpretations remain a source of some controversy here in Philadelphia, and I am among those who find his chosen tempi occasionally wayward, as others have mentioned in connection with the Bartok. But despite some reservations this disc is a fine recording of a great orchestra at work, and a tribute to the producers and engineers working in a new venue.

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Review by dschawv December 24, 2005 (3 of 4 found this review helpful)
Performance:   Sonics:    
I was looking forward to this recording a great deal. Previews said this would be great,
As beautifully played as this recording is, it has no spice or flavor.
It is missing the paprika. So well played without character.
So, as Bartok goes, get Reiner or Kocsis. Just recieved the Kocsis, it is wonderful.
Great sonic soundstage.

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Works: 3  

Béla Bartók - Concerto for Orchestra, Sz. 116 BB 123
Gideon Klein - Partita for Strings
Bohuslav Martinu - Památník Lidicím (Memorial to Lidice), H 296