SACD & Other Hi-Res Reviews

BACH: Violin Concertos in A Minor & E Major; Concerto for Two Violins in d – Yehudi Menuhin, v./ Robert Masters Ch. Orch./ Christian Ferras, v. /Festival Ch. Orch. (in 1043)/ Menuhin – EMI/ Hi-Q Records

Three Bach violin concertos with the great Yehudi Menuhin, in ultimate fidelity, for a price.

Published on June 6, 2013

BACH: Violin Concertos in A Minor & E Major; Concerto for Two Violins in d – Yehudi Menuhin, v./ Robert Masters Ch. Orch./ Christian Ferras, v. /Festival Ch. Orch. (in 1043)/ Menuhin – EMI/ Hi-Q Records

BACH: Violin Concertos in A Minor, BWV 1041; E Major, BWV 1042; Concerto for Two Violins in d, BWV 1043 – Yehudi Menuhin, violin/ Robert Masters Ch. Orch./ Christian Ferras, violin /Festival Ch. Orch. (in 1043)/ Menuhin – EMI Records/ Hi-Q Records xrcd24 [elusivedisc.com] ****½:

These fine EMI recordings were originally taped in 1958 and ’59 at famous Kingsway Hall in London and have been licensed by Resonance Recordings Ltd. for this carefully-processed AAD xrcd using JVC’s K2 Super Coding technology and many other steps to produce the highest fidelity while still retaining compatibility for playback at the 44.1K/16 standard for CDs, without any special decoding. The bound-book-style packaging sets the disc apart from typical CD jewel boxes.

These three Bach violin concerti are super-standards, and one would be hard-pressed to find better performances of all three. As other audiophile reissue labels have shown, the original EMI recordings can sound better than they do on the label’s own recordings, and this release—though expensive—continues that situation. If you have a decent audio system, you will be amazed at the hi-res sonics this standard CD seems to possess. My only slight con is a rather steely violin tone on Menuhin, which I usually do not notice on his other recordings.

—John Sunier




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