Paganini & Wieniasky : Violin Concertos

Paganini : Violin concerto No. 1 - Wieniasky : Violin concerto No. 2

Michael Rabin, Eugene Goosens, Philarmonia Orchestra

EMI SP 8534

Testament Records : LP 180 gram

Brand New and Sealed Record

  • Contents & Details

    Niccolo Paganini (1782-1840) :
    A - Concerto No. 1 in D Major
    Henryk Wieniawski (1835-1880) :
    B - Concerto No. 2 in D Minor

    The story of violinist Michael Rabin is as colored and tragic as any other in the stressful life of a child prodigy turned adult. His public performances began while still a young boy, and his first foray into the recording industry came at just 14 years of age with a set of the Paganini caprices. As he became an adult, his playing became unreliable and inconsistent, and he developed a host of idiosyncrasies, not the least of which was a fear of falling from the stage. In a cruel twist of fate, he actually did die at the age of 36 from a fall, though not from a stage. He ended his recording career far earlier than his public performances for reasons unknown.

    The present recordings of Wieniawski's Second and Paganini's First violin concertos represent the last time Rabin was to enter a recording studio. Listeners who were heretofore unfamiliar with Rabin's playing may wonder what all the hype was about. Such skepticism comes to an immediate halt upon Rabin's first entrance in the Wieniawski concerto. Not only is his tone incredibly rich and deep, but his capacity for pyrotechnic feats in both the left and right hands is virtually unparalleled. This not entirely common union of technical command with beauty of sound makes for one gripping and engaging track after another and is certainly worthy of a place in virtually any collection. Michael Rabin plays the "Kubelik" Guarnerius del Gesu of 1735.

    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 Testament Records LP, revived from the EMI-Columbia catalogue, was remastered at EMI's Abbey Road Studios in London, using pure analogue components only, from the original studio tapes through to the cutting head, and was pressed at Pallas.

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