Speakers Corner / Mercury Living Presence - SR 90303
180 Gram Virgin Vinyl - Pure Analogue Audiophile Mastering
AAA 100% Analogue - Limited Edition - Pressed at Pallas Germany
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 Absolute Sound Super Disc List TAS Harry Pearson Super LP List
Antonín Dvorák: Concerto for Cello and Orchestra in B Minor, op. 104
Max Bruch: Kol Nidrei, op. 47
Janos Starker and the London Symphony Orchestra conducted by Antal Dorati
A recent and brilliant Speakers Corner LP reissue of Mercury SR90303 - Stereophile
Top Recommendation and a must own recording!" - Richard Foster, Hi-Fi+
The outstanding success of our release of Bach’s Cello Suites performed by Janos Starker has encouraged us to follow this up with a no less important interpretation of Dvorak’s Cello Concerto by the Hungarian virtuoso. Starker tackles this concerto with amazing confidence; technical difficulties encountered by others in its performance appear unknown to him. Tonal purity, even in the dreaded upper register and the cadenzas, remains unscathed, so that one can concentrate wholly on the meditative magic of the music.
Janos Starker has found worthy fellow musicians in Antal Dorati and the London Symphony Orchestra. The conductor and soloist set a benchmark in how to work together as a team in concert in that it is less the often-lamented emulation than the interpretation, which stands in the foreground in this performance. Rather, the two protagonists commit themselves to a chamber-music-like reading, which is distinguished by the dynamically moderate intonation of the orchestra and the slender tone of the soloist throughout.
An ever-welcome encore is found on side two with Bruch’s Kol Nidrei, performed with verve and a good portion of romantic, melting sweetness, which allows this evergreen to flourish.
"...Regardless of which performance you may love, nothing will come close to the sound Mercury has captured at Wembley with this recording. Originally a 35mm recording, Willem Makkee, utilizing Wilma Cozart Fine's 1960 two-track mix downs, has once again, delivered a recording we all should treasure, and in by far the best, readily available sound...Top Recommendation and a must own recording!" - Richard Foster, Hi-Fi+ www.hifiplus.com
Janos Starker, cello
London Symphony Orchestra
Antal Dorati, conductor
Engineer – Robert Fine
Antonin Dvorak (1841-1904)
Cello Concerto in B Minor, Op. 104
2. Adagio ma non troppo
3. Finale (Allegro moderato)
Max Bruch (1838 - 1920)
4. Kol Nidrei, Op.47
Adagio on Hebrew Melodies for Cello and Orchestra (Adagio ma non troppo)
Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky (1840-1893)
5. Variations on a Rococo Theme, Op.33
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.
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!