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Beethoven: Symphonies Nos. 4 & 5 (Speakers Corner) (Pre-Order)Schoenberg, Zemlinsky, Korngold – Bruno Walter knew them all: musicians who sought refuge from the henchmen of the Nazi Party in the New World and found artistic fulfilment there. And they all knew him and his meteoric rise to success at all the great houses in Europe. Formed by working with Gustav Mahler in Hamburg, under whose wing he rose from répétiteur to Chorus Director and then to Kapellmeister, Walter took on further posts as Chief Conductor in Vienna, Munich and Leipzig where the talented artist matured to become a true maestro.
Just when the aged Walter was wanting to retire into private life, Columbia motivated him to record several symphonic works – including Beethoven’s Symphonies – at a time when stereo recording, with its previously undreamt technical possibilities, was just dawning. Even without any knowledge of the still existent recordings of the rehearsals of the Fourth and Fifth Symphonies, the final recording reflects the lifelong experience and meticulousness of the great conductor. In a taut and relaxed manner, and certainly not mellowed with age, Walter brings the scores to glow. The players weave a web that holds the formal symphonic components together with sophistication and richly contrasted, whereby the conductor’s love for tonal detail manifests itself in easily identifiable instruments.
This Speakers Corner LP was remastered using pure analogue components only, from the master tapes through to the cutting head. All royalties and mechanical rights have been paid.
- Ludwig van Beethoven (composer)
- The Columbia Symphony Orchestra conducted by Bruno Walter
Recording: January and February 1958 at American Legion Hall, Hollywood, USA
Production: John McClure
About Speakers Corner
At the beginning of the 90s, in the early days of audiophile vinyl re-releases, the situation was fairly straightforward. Companies such as DCC, Mobile Fidelity, Classic Records and, of course, Speakers Corner all maintained a mutual, unwritten ethical code: we would only use analogue tapes to manufacture records.
During the course of the present vinyl hype, many others have jumped on the bandwagon in the hope of securing a corner of the market. Very often they are not so ethical and use every imaginable source to master from: CDs, LPs, digital files, MP3s – or employed existant tools from the 80s and 90s for manufacturing.
A digital delay is gladly used when cutting a lacquer disc because tape machines with an analogue delay have become quite rare and are therefore expensive. When cutting the lacquer, the audio signal is delayed by one LP revolution against the signal, which controls the cutter head, and for this a digital delay is very often employed. Of course, the resultant sound signal is completely digital and thus only as good as this delay.
We should like to emphasise that Speakers Corner Records on principle only uses the original master tape as the basis for the entirely analogue cutting of lacquer discs. In addition, the pressing tool is newly manufactured as a matter of principle. We have one digital recording in our catalogue (Alan Parsons / Eye In The Sky“), but even in this particular case we used the analogue tapes for cutting.
We only employ existing tools for manufacturing if an improved result is not forthcoming, e.g. the title Elvis Is Back, which was mastered by Steve Hoffman and Kevin Gray, or several titles from our Philips Classics series, which in any case Willem Makkee cut from the original masters at the Emil Berliner Studios in the 90s. It goes without saying that we only used the mother and that new tools were made for our production.
To put it in a nutshell: we can ensure you that our releases are free from any kind of digital effects – excluding the exception above – and that the lacquer discs are newly cut.Symphony No. 4 In B-flat Major, Op. 60
1. Adagio; Allegro Vivace
3. Allegro Vivace. Trio. Un Poco Meno Allegro
4. Finale: Allegro Ma Non Troppo
Symphony No. 5 In C Minor, Op. 67
5. Allegro Con Brio
6. Andante Con Moto
7. Scherzo (Allegro Vivace)
8. Finale: Allegro
$34.99180 Gram Audiophile Virgin Vinyl LP - SealedPRE-ORDER Buy Now