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Tchaikovsky: Symphony No. 6 - Neeme Järvi

Tchaikovsky: Symphony No. 6 - Neeme Järvi

BIS  BIS-SACD-1348

Stereo/Multichannel Hybrid

Classical - Orchestral


Tchaikovsky:
Symphony No. 6 Op. 74
Francesca da Rimini Op. 32

Gothenburg Symphony Orchestra
Neeme Järvi (conductor)


Neeme Järvi is one of the most recorded conductors of our time – but this is the first time he records the Tchaikovsky symphonies! He does so with “his” orchestra of 22 years standing, the Gothenburg Symphony Orchestra: a combination whose many recordings on BIS has made huge audiences very happy indeed!

That Tchaikovsky and Järvi really is a ‘dream team’ concert audiences all over the world have been able to hear for themselves over the years. A student of the legendary Yevgeni Mravinsky – whose Tchaikovsky interpretations are still considered among the greatest – Järvi here gives us a vibrant Pathétique of unusual clarity, firmly rooted in the great Russian tradition, followed up by a Francesca da Rimini of great passion and fire.

We are of course extremely proud to be able to offer this unique opportunity to fans of Tchaikovsky, Järvi, the GSO – and to all other music lovers. That the recording is also one of the first multi-channel, surround sound releases of these much-loved works surely adds to the attraction!

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12 of 16 recommend this, would you recommend it?  yes | no

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Recording
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Recorded: 2004-01-23/24 (Symphony No. 6); 2003-09-01 (Francesca da Rimini) at the Gothenburg Concert Hall, Sweden
Recording equipment: Neumann Microphones; Cookwood and Millennia microphone amplifiers; Meitner DSD interface; Pyramix Audio Workstation HD system; Adam loudspeakers
Recording producer: Lennart Dehn
Sound engineer: Michael Bergek
Tracks
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Total time: 69:48
Comments (10)
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Comment by Luukas - May 23, 2017 (1 of 10)

Unfortunately this album is one of those disappointments in the Järvi/Gothenburg Tchaikovsky cycle. Although recorded in DSD the recording seriously lacks the sense of presence, especially when you're listening to it in multichannel. The dynamic range is wide but a little bit too harsh in my view. The centre speaker adds a pleasant front-to-back perspective but the rear speakers are subdued. This almost makes me think that the surround sound was mixed artificially from the stereo origins.
Moreover Järvi's performance isn't convincing. His has chosen quite fast tempi for Pathétique which creates stressful and insensitive atmosphere. This might be a good thing for someone but it didn't reassured me. Francesca da Rimini was performed too carefully which was due to Järvi's slower-side pulse in the fast sections. Compared to Tchaikovsky: Serenade for Strings, Francesca da Rimini - Stokowski or Tchaikovsky: Symphony No. 5, Francesca da Rimini - Jansons this was really depressing listening experience.
And why on earth BIS decided to release these albums on CD only as a box set (BIS-CD-1897/98)? They already had these surround sound mixes. How strange... Some years ago I received the box set as a gift but for this reason I have listened to it only few times. Tchaikovsky: Symphonies 4, 5 & 6 - Christian Lindberg is much more better choice.

Comment by hiredfox - May 27, 2017 (2 of 10)

It's worth checking but only part of this survey was recorded in DSD notably 1 and 3 and maybe one other. From my recollection, the 6th was a PCM recording and probably only 48kHz. BIS abandoned DSD for PCM on cost grounds and difficulties in editing and the switch was made at the same time as this survey was being recorded. The harshness and lack of presence that you refer to may be evidence of this being a PCM recording.

Comment by William Hecht - June 9, 2017 (3 of 10)

Actually none of this series is recorded in dsd. The engineering credits go to the Gothenberg in house team. The more or less contemporaneous Jarvi/GSO Sibelius series on DG, engineered by the same team, is listed as 24/48, which is what I believe this series is as well.

Comment by Scott Adair - June 12, 2017 (4 of 10)

I'm sure, then, the question has already been asked and answered somewhere, but I've yet to stumble across it: if they aren't DSD recordings, why does BIS continue to put the DSD logo on the inlay cards? I have the 3rd and 5th of the Jarvi/Tchaikovsky series; they both have the DSD logo, but I can find no mention of any of those other things like sampling rates or bit whatevers. Under the equipment listing there is a "Meitner DSD interface," though I've no idea what that is. I'd add that I have a lot of BIS SACDs newer than these, and they all have the DSD logo, too; the Poltera Martinu cello concerto discs being recent examples.

Comment by Luukas - June 12, 2017 (5 of 10)

Perhaps they have included the DSD logo to the inlay cards because the final high-resolution master tapes (PCM 96/24, sometimes 48/24 or 44.1/24) have been converted to DSD for SACD productions. So it's not a pure DSD but PCM which has been enchanted using DSD - on the other hand utilizing ultrasonics.

Comment by Scott Adair - June 13, 2017 (6 of 10)

Thanks, Luukas. That sounds very plausible. It is still disappointing. I'm quite sure I have at least 2 or 3 Exton SACDs which use a "DSD Mastering" logo. Perhaps that would be more appropriate for BIS to use. Chandos make it a point to display "24/96" or whatever is used on their SACDs, so at least you know what it is.

Comment by hiredfox - June 13, 2017 (7 of 10)

You can check this out on e Classical. All BIS discs state the original recording regime. Just search for this one.

Comment by William Hecht - June 13, 2017 (8 of 10)

It is not possible to produce any sacd without encoding in dsd which is, in effect, the alphabet or language of sacd. No matter what the original recording methodology was, analog, PCM of any resolution, it doesn't matter, every sacd has gone through a dsd stage, hence the dsd logo on discs that we're not recorded with dsd technology. And yes, more recent BIS discs do state the resolution of the original recording on the inside of the back page of the booklet.

Comment by hiredfox - June 19, 2017 (9 of 10)

Just to tie this up...

http://www.eclassical.com/conductors/jarvi-neeme/tchaikovsky-symphony-no6-pathetique.html

Comment by William Hecht - June 19, 2017 (10 of 10)

Thanks, John. Amazing that the Francesca is at 176.4, I'd love to do a comparison listening session but unfortunately this version of #6 passed out of my library some time ago since it seemed the least inspired of the five sacds of the piece I'd acquired and space constraints have become severe. I don't recall there being any extraordinary change in sound between the pieces, but then auditory memory is notoriously unreliable.