Speakers Corner / Mercury - SR90217 - 180 Gram Virgin Vinyl
AAA 100% Analogue - Pressed at Pallas Germany
33rpm & 45rpm Limited Edition
AAA 100% Analogue This Speakers Corner LP was Remastered using Pure Analogue Components Only, from the Master Tapes through to the Cutting Head 20 Years pure Analogue
"…the performances are excellent and the sound, minus the midbass boom, first-rate. Anyone who can listen to the Dorati/Lso reading of the Enesco Roumanian Rhapsody No. 1 without breaking into a grin is no one I'd like to know. Holy Xeria, what a delightful piece of light classical music – a virtual kazatsky in sound!" - Jonathan Valin, The Absolute
They've started work on the legendary Mercury back catalogue, and the first results, three 20th Century works, have elevated their art to even higher levels of performance. From the beautifully reproduced sleeves to the flat, silent and superb sounding pressings, these records define what a re-issue should be.Stereo Magazine
Modest Moussorgsky: "Pictures At An Exhibition" (orginal and orchestral version by Maurice Ravel), Two excerpts from "Khovanshchina" - Byron Janis / The Minneapolis Symphony Orchestra conducted by Antal Dorati
This two-LP set includes as a very special bonus the piano-only version of Pictures at an Exhibition cut at 45 RPM. This is how this work was originally composed though no recording of that version has previously been released. The full symphonic version of Pictures at an Exhibition is cut here at 33 1/3.
The orchestral version of Moussorgsky’s musical picture gallery has always been one of the most popular works ever heard in concert halls all over the world. Originally written for the piano, the unsuccessful composer never heard the work in all its symphonic glory, although many of his contemporaries had often been tempted to arrange his works. As early as 1891, ten years after his death, Mikhail Tushmalov – a pupil of Rimsky-Korsakov – presented a first version.
However, it is Maurice Ravel’s orchestral version from 1922 that remains unsurpassed to this day. His arrangement amalgamates the original force and angularity of the piano with the brilliance of a modern orchestra. The transparent and powerful performance by the Minneapolis Symphony Orchestra is complemented by an equally fascinating version from one of Mercury’s main pianists, Byron Janis. In listening to the two interpretations one after the other it becomes clear as to how closely Ravel remained true to the original version while still managing to imbue his genial orchestral version with his own tonal conception. The solo piano recording, released for the first time on vinyl, will certainly be of special interest to record collectors.
• Includes Byron Janis's performance of Moussorgsky's original piano version recorded in September 1961 in New York.
Musicians: Minneapolis Symphony Orchestra Antal Dorati, conductor
180g Vinyl Double LP
Never previously released on
Includes Byron Janis's performance of Moussorgsky's original piano version recorded in September 1961 in New York.
Minneapolis Symphony Orchestra
Antal Dorati, conductor
Modest Moussorgsky (1839-1881)
1. Pictures at an Exhibition (orchestration by Ravel)
3. Dance of the Persian Slaves
Original piano version recorded in September 1961 in New York.
20 Years pure Analogue
This Speakers Corner LP was remastered using pure analogue components only, from the master tapes through to the cutting head 20 Years pure Analogue
Are your records completely analogue?
Yes! This we guarantee!
As a matter of principle, only analogue masters are used, and the necessary cutting delay is also analogue. All our cutting engineers use only Neumann cutting consoles, and these too are analogue. The only exception is where a recording has been made – either partly or entirely – using digital technology, but we do not have such items in our catalogue at the present time
Are your records cut from the original masters?
In our re-releases it is our aim to faithfully reproduce the original intentions of the musicians and recording engineers which, however, could not be realised at the time due to technical limitations. Faithfulness to the original is our top priority, not the interpretation of the original: there is no such thing as a “Speakers Corner Sound”. Naturally, the best results are obtained when the original master is used. Therefore we always try to locate these and use them for cutting. Should this not be possible, – because the original tape is defective or has disappeared, for example – we do accept a first-generation copy. But this remains an absolute exception for us.
Who cuts the records?
In order to obtain the most faithful reproduction of the original, we have the lacquers cut on the spot, by engineers who, on the whole, have been dealing with such tapes for many years. Some are even cut by the very same engineer who cut the original lacquers of the first release. Over the years the following engineers have been and still are working for us: Tony Hawkins, Willem Makkee, Kevin Gray, Maarten de Boer, Scott Hull, and Ray Staff, to name but a few.
At the beginning of the ‘90s, in the early days of audiophile vinyl re-releases, the reissue policy was fairly straightforward. Companies such as DCC Compact Classics, Mobile Fidelity, Classic Records and others, including of course Speakers Corner, all maintained a mutual, unwritten code of ethics: we would manufacture records sourced only from analogue tapes.
Vinyl’s newfound popularity has led many other companies to jump on the bandwagon in the hope of securing a corner of the market. Very often they are not so ethical and use every imaginable source from which to master: CDs, LPs, digital files and even MP3s.
Even some who do use an analogue tape source employ a digital delay line, a misguided ’80s and ‘90s digital technology that replaces the analogue preview head originally used to “tell” the cutter head in advance what was about to happen musically, so it could adjust the groove “pitch” (the distance between the grooves) to make room for wide dynamic swings and large low frequency excursions. Over time analogue preview heads became more rare and thus expensive.
So while the low bit rate (less resolution than a 16 bit CD) digital delay line is less expensive and easier to use than an analogue “preview head”, its use, ironically, results in lacquers cut from the low bit rate digital signal instead of from the analogue source!
Speakers Corner wishes to make clear that it produces lacquers using only original master tapes and an entirely analogue cutting system. New metal stampers used to press records are produced from that lacquer. The only exceptions are when existing metal parts are superior to new ones that might be cut, which includes our release of “Elvis is Back”, which was cut by Stan Ricker or several titles from our Philips Classics series, where were cut in the 1990s using original master tapes by Willem Makkee at the Emil Berliner Studios. In those cases we used only the original “mother” to produce new stampers.
In addition, we admit to having one digital recording in our catalogue: Alan Parsons’ “Eye in the Sky”, which was recorded digitally but mixed to analogue tape that we used to cut lacquers.
In closing, we want to insure our loyal customers that, with but a few exceptions as noted, our releases are “AAA”— analogue tape, an all analogue cutting system, and newly cut lacquers.
60 Years Pallas
Audiophile Vinyl - Made in Germany For over 60 years the family business in the third generation of the special personal service and quality "Made by Pallas" is known worldwide. Our custom PVC formulation produces consistently high pressing quality with the lowest surface noise in the industry. Our PVC complies with 2015 European environmental standards and does not contain toxic materials such as Lead, Cadmium or Toluene. Our vinyl is both audiophile and eco-grade!