Debussy : Iberia
Fritz Reiner conducting the Chicago Symphony Orchestra (1958)
RCA "Living Stereo" LSC 2222
Analogue Productions : LP 200 gram
Brand New and Sealed Record
Contents & Details
Claude Debussy (1862 - 1918) :
Maurice Ravel (1875 - 1937) :
Alborado del Gracioso
Valses Nobles et Sentimentales
Reviewer Anthony Kershaw calls Iberia "one of the few records that transcends engineering, and simply allows Debussy, Ravel, Reiner and his orchestra to make our souls a richer place." This RCA is a "perfect" synthesis of interpretation, playing and sound.
The recording is rich in timbre and detail, and is beautifully transparent, identifying the accurate placement of instruments and the boundaries of Orchestra Hall's stage. The soundfield is complete (depth and width) with the center boasting the Chicago Symphony Orchestra's fabulous woodwind section.
As it seems to be on many great orchestral recordings, the percussion section steals the "audiophile" show. The percussionists' playing in Iberia will amaze you with their crack ensemble and the way they accomplish quick changes in dynamics, these ranging from quiet delicacy to raw power. Conductor Fritz Reiner must have reveled in the sound of the castanets clicking merrily on his left and the different styles of tambourine technique employed by the section player on his right. From the softest stroke of a soft mallet on suspended cymbal to the superb timpani sound, Iberia is all that recorded percussion should be.
The "golden age" of recordings was from 1955 to 1965, at the beginning of the LP and the stereo era, where pure vacuum tube amplification helped produce recordings demonstrating unparalleled fidelity and warmth, lifelike presence and illumination.
This Analogue Productions LP was remastered by Kevin Gray at AcousTech, using pure analogue components only, from the original analogue studio tapes through to the cutting head and was pressed on 200-gram virgin vinyl at Quality Record Pressings.