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Auspicious, but bettered later . . . weird sound
Davis recorded this again for Philips about a decade later, with the LSO, who adored him and played like it, and an equally adept soloist, Nobuko Imai, who unlike Menuhin, was not a moonlighting violin star. This early effort, with an orchestra he worked with rarely, shows a complete command of the score, but could well have been underrehearsed. Things which shouldn't be are just a bit ragged, even with the original Philharmonia at its peak. All that said, this interpretation would be a standout, except for Davis' later effort, which is much more impactfully recorded. To be sure, the folks in the booth got the tricky soloist/orchestra balance right, and the dynamic range is wide. However, the stereo image reminds be of seeing something through the wrong end of a telescope . . . plenty of depth, but not much spread side to side.
Old recording can be also pleasing.
Title: Berlioz Harold In Italy, Op. 16
Artist(s): Viola – Yehudi Menuhin
Conductor – Colin Davis
Orchestra – The Philharmonia Orchestra
Recording Info: Recorded by EMI 1963
Engineer – Neville Boyling
Producer – Victor Olof
1 Harold In The Mountains 16:20
2 March Of The Pilgrims Singing The Evening Hymn 9:05
3 Serenade Of A Mountaineer Of The Abruzzi To His Sweetheart 6:30
4 Orgy Of The Brigands 12:18