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CD Review

Maurice Ravel

  • Daphnis et Chloé
  • Rapsodie Espagnole
  • Pavane pour une infante défunte
London Symphony Orchestra/Pierre Monteux
Decca Originals 4757525
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These recordings were originally released on "The Classic Sound" series in 1990. I found that recording to be too dry, there was no body to the sound. So when this was released as part of the "Legendary Recordings" series using a different remasterings I thought that perhaps the sound would be better. Well, it is slightly better but not so much that you would need to replace your earlier disc.

What puzzles me is why the sound is so dry. The very same "Pavane…" was issued on a Philips disc in 2001 and the sound is so much better that I wondered if it was from a different recording session. Nope. It is just that something is amiss. I notice that the Philips disc uses the same 96kHz 24-bit remasterings but somehow they screwed it up this time.

Recommended if you don't have the original because Monteux certainly understands this music. For what it is worth, RCA recently reissued the Munch "Daphnis" on an SACD that sounds superior to this one in every way. I can't help wondering if Monteux's recording is better than it sounds because that is the case in the Philips issue.

Copyright © 2006, Robert Stumpf II