Fritz Reiner - Debussy's La Mer  &  Respighi's Fontane di Roma;  Pini di Roma  (RCA Living Stereo 68079)
Item# C1865
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Product Description

Fritz Reiner - Debussy's La Mer  &  Respighi's Fontane di Roma;  Pini di Roma  (RCA Living Stereo 68079)
C1865. FRITZ REINER Cond.Chicago Orch.: La Mer (Debussy); Fontane di Roma; Pini di Roma (both Respighi). RCA Living Stereo 68079, recorded 1959 & 1960. Final Copy! - 090266807925


“Reiner's legendary performances of Respighi's PINES and FOUNTAINS OF ROME were recorded in Orchestra Hall, Chicago, in 1959. This record still has the power to astonish, both by the sheer quality of the orchestral playing and the richly translucent sound and incredibly subtle detail. The ecstatic moment when the strings swell out in '’The Pine of the Janiculum’, then even more rapturously is the unforgettable and the portrait of the Villa Medici fountain at sunset has a similar element of rapture, with the bell gently tolling at the end. The wonderful internal balances in the music's quieter passages are a credit to conductor and engineers alike, and of course also to the unique hall acoustics. In ‘The Pines near a catacomb’ the gentle tam tam strokes before the delicate entry of the muted trumpet are bewitching. Similarly the way the clarinet steals in at the ‘Janiculum’ and the spinning of magical textural evocation at the close of this section is totally memorable. The playing of the Chicago orchestra is quite glorious and the many touches from the percussion department add to the uniquely atmospheric quality of these remarkable recordings. The big splashes of sound, like the turning on of the ‘Triton Fountain’, or the great ‘Neptune processional’, associated with the Trevi at midday, so spacious in Reiner's hands, are splendidly brought off. But it is the gentle moments that one remembers most, utterly alluring in their soft focus, almost decadent in their glowing seduction of colour. This is an indispensible reissue.”

- Ivan March, GRAMOPHONE, Aug., 1993

“A highly sought-after RCA shaded dog Living Stereo title, the performance and sonics found within rate a 10/10. A ‘must have’ - the dynamics are monstrous! Whichever other Respighi tone poem recordings you ultimately purchase, you MUST own this one. Since the early ‘60s it has been the standard by which all others have been judged, and in terms of both sound and performance, it has never really been surpassed. The final march of PINES is simply incredible: Thundering bass drum, crashing cymbals and gongs, bellowing brass — nobody since has brought the whole thing off with the same combination of excitement and discipline.”

- Z. D. Akron