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Antonin Dvořák From the New World István Kertész / Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra

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ESOTERIC COMPANY

Discontinued (April, 2010)

Dvořák: Symphony No. 9, From the New World

The most dramatic version of From the New World in recording history, recorded by Kertész at the tender age of 32, with the renowned VPO, makes a vivid comeback courtesy of unsurpassed DSD mastering.

Super Audio CD/CD hybrids with attention to detail that only Esoteric can achieve

Following the re-release of Mozart's Piano Concerto Nos. 20 and 27 by Clifford Curzon - a recording that has been highly praised for its perfectionist focus on the original master sound and the overwhelming improvements in sound quality achieved through the SACD hybrid format - this is the second re-release of a Decca masterpiece. Ever since it's initial release, this analog recording has been viewed as a definitive masterpiece. Throughout the LP age, it never disappeared from the catalog, even with the arrival of the CD era, and it is now available for the first time in the Super Audio CD/CD hybrid format, courtesy of DSD mastering.

The Decca debut of a great conductor - Kertész

Hungarian conductors, starting with Nikisch and followed by Fricsay, Ormandy, Szell, and Solti, István Kertész (August 28, 1929-April 16, 1973), dominated the world of glorious conducting in the 1960's, filling various posts as the General Music Director of the Augsburg Opera (1960-1963), and the Cologne Opera (1964-1973), and as principal conductor of the London Symphony Orchestra (1965-1968). During this period, he recorded many great albums for Decca, conducting the VPO, the LSO, and the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra, (but sadly drowned in 1973 while swimming in Tel Aviv, which was a great loss to all).

This album is a monumental recording for Kertész as his debut for the UK's Decca label. Particularly in Japan, From the New World has been a "must have" ever since its first release by King Records in 1961. In this respect, it sits alongside the RCA version by Reiner/Chicago Symphony Orchestra, the Columbia version by Bernstein/New York Philharmonic, the Epic version by Szell/Cleveland Orchestra, and the DG version by Karajan/BPO. Taking advantage of the full timbre of the VPO with its long tradition, Kertész - then just 32 years old - added dramatic changes in tempo and gave full life to the work. The heavy hammering rhythms of the tympani and the roar of brass created a thrilling intensity, as if it was a concert recording. Five years later in 1966, Kertész re-recorded this symphony, conducting the London Symphony Orchestra, accomplishing a mellower performance in place of the youth and dynamism of his earlier recording. Among Japanese fans, this VPO version has been much more appreciated.

A great recording in the Sofiensaal, where the Decca sound was created

The album was produced by Ray Minshull who was responsible many of Kertész's recordings for Decca, working with engineer James Brown. The Sofiensaal was built as a bathhouse in the early 19th century, was later used as a dance hall, and is famous for Johann Strauss's frequent appearances on its stage. From 1956 to the 1980's, it served as the home of Decca's stereo recording sessions in Vienna. This venue is the most suitable for Decca's recording policy of clearly recording and reproducing the details of the sound, and the legendary recording of Solti's "The Ring of the Nibelung," has been accompanied by recording after recording representing the Decca sound. This From the New World is one of them, definitively and three-dimensionally reproducing the crisp sounds of the tympani, the delicate brightness of the brass, the unique resonance of the Vienna oboes, clarinets, and other woodwinds, and the silky, deep string parts - particularly the solid low strings. And even after nearly 50 years since its recording, its enchanting clear sounds have never lost their freshness.

"...an ideal version of From the New World...with all of the required elements" (excerpt from the liner notes on the original LP).

"A magnificent orchestral tapestry with such depth must be the result of Kertész's symphonic interpretation of the score, but in its approach, it's much greater than that of Karajan. This is due to not only the symphonic interpretation, but also all of the types of elements included. Changes of tempo are dynamic and many, and while in some cases they intensely liven up the music, in others they sing touchingly, arousing in the listener a feeling of nostalgia. Taking full advantage of the VPO's strengths, the string instruments express a nuance of graceful adoration. Meanwhile, the brass section is required to play forcefully, with a robustness that doesn't sound like the VPO, emphasizing the folk tradition behind the composition. This is also expressed in the powerful sound of the powerfully struck tympani...I have to say this is an ideal version of From the New World, that is truly magnificent with all of the required elements"

- Koho Uno, LP Techo, 1962.

Super Audio CD/CD hybrid - eliminating compromise to explore the limits of high quality sound

For these re-releases in the Esoteric Super Audio CD/CD hybrid format, perfectionism was applied to every single detail, from the selection of the master tapes to the uncompromising DSD mastering, as has been the case with past Esoteric projects. Especially in DSD mastering, Esoteric's carefully calibrated state of the art equipment, including Esoteric MEXCEL cables, are integrated with Esoteric DA converters and rubidium clock generator, to minutely transfer all of the information from Decca's master onto disc.
Title and track list
Antonin Dvořák (1841-1904)
Symphony No.9 in E minor, Op.95"From the New World"
1. Adagio-Allegro molto
2. Largo
3. Scherzo-Molto vivace
4. Allegro con fuoco
A performance
Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra
Conducted by István Kertész
Recording
Producer: Ray Minshull
Engineer: James Brown
Location: Sofiensaal, Vienn
Recording date: March 22-24 1961
Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra
Conducted by István Kertész
SA-CD /CD re-mastering
Producer: Motoaki Ohmachi (ESOTERIC COMPANY)
Mastering Engineer: Kazuie Sugimoto (JVC Mastering Center)
Special Thanks to: Hiroshi Hizawa (Universal Music K.K.)
SA-CD/CD re-mastering was carried out on August 26, 2008 at JVC Mastering Center.

Product ID :ESSD-90015
Format :SACD Hybrid
Label :Decca
Distributed by ESOTERIC COMPANY
STEREO P.D. Made in Japan
DSD mastering / SACD layer: Stereo / CD layer: ADD
Deluxe Digipak packaging