Wagner anyone ?

Discussion in 'Classical Music' started by Coda II, Nov 18, 2004.

  1. Coda II

    Coda II getting there slowly

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    Has anyone had experience with the Apex label ?
    Recently picked up a Tristan excerpts CD - Barenboim/Berlin Phil/Waltraut Meier/Siegfried Jerusalem as I have the 1966 Bohm set (and am very happy with it) and wanted a modern recording. Bought on the strength of the soloists (who I like live) and the fact that CD was budget price. But I can't listen to it, mainly because the orchestra just sounds 'wrong'. As the complete set is still on Teldec at full price am I just getting a budget sound here and should expect no more for £4.99 ?
     
    Coda II, Nov 18, 2004
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  2. Coda II

    Tom Alves

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    I believe Apex is the Universal Studio's answer to Naxos. Back catalogue reissues at a budget price. I've a few and they seem ok
     
    Tom Alves, Nov 18, 2004
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    alanbeeb Grumpy young fogey

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    Apex I think is Warner's budget label. Teldec, Warner, Nonesuch etc.
    Universal (Deutsche Gramophon, Philips, Decca) has seperate budget labels for each of its brands.

    The 1966 Bayreuth Tristan is one of the greatest recordings ever.... few more recent recording can hope to match it, even sound quality wise, never mind its communicative power. Possibly Carlos Kleiber's DG set might be worth investigating, but doubt Rene Kollo could better Wolfgang Windgassen.
     
    alanbeeb, Nov 18, 2004
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  4. Coda II

    PeteH Natural Blue

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    I've got several of the Barenboim Wagner sets on Teldec (Dutchman, Lohengrin, Parsifal) and I must say I think they're uniformly superb. As you've noted they're all full price, though I didn't pay that (£60 RRP for Parsifal!) and recorded recently-to-quite-recently. To my ears the orchestras are particularly good - rich, full, natural and Wagnerian, without the squawky, undernourished sound that tends to plague pit orchestras, and with fairly convincing overall perspective (ie. the orchestra doesn't get annihilated by the balance engineer to make way for the voices). The overall effect is very similar across the three sets I've got, whether it's the Staatskapelle Berlin in Dutchman and Lohengrin or the Berlin Phil. in Parsifal, so while I haven't heard the Tristan I'd be surprised if it were that much worse.

    Apex is Warner's budget label and has tonnes of really good recordings reissued from Teldec et al - many of which were at full price only a few years ago.
     
    PeteH, Nov 18, 2004
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  5. Coda II

    Coda II getting there slowly

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    Thanks for the input so far.

    alanbeeb- quite agree about the 1966 recording, though may also get around to the Furtwangler/Flagstad which is now available -but mono

    peteh- I have a Verdi Requiem on Teldec that I am very happy with so thought I should be safe. All the things you say about the orchestra are what I was hoping for, but instead it sounds unbalanced and ponderously slow in places. The immediate result was to pull all the cables out and go for pre to power single wired to speakers rather than bi-wired or amped in the hope that it was all to do with one of the mysterious effects that get discussed elsewhere on ZG. System probably does sound better, but this CD doesn't.
    Should the budget issue be exactly the same as the original full price ?
    I can't see any reason why not
     
    Coda II, Nov 18, 2004
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  6. Coda II

    alanbeeb Grumpy young fogey

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    I can't think that the budget recording will be any different from the original complete recording.
    I used to have Barenboim's full length Parsifal with same forces as his Tristan, I thought it was very good in many ways, especially Jerusalem, and Van Dam as Amfortas, but ultimately Karajan (surprise for me) just had something, possibly Kurt Moll's Gurnemanz and a very atmospheric recording.
     
    alanbeeb, Nov 18, 2004
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