SACD & Other Hi-Res Reviews

VIVALDI: The Four Seasons – Janine Jansen, violin/ orchestra – DGG Pure Audio Blu-ray

Wonderful performance in better-than-the-CD sound—just. But is it worth the new investment without the surround sound if you have that?

Published on May 6, 2014

VIVALDI: The Four Seasons – Janine Jansen, violin/ orchestra – DGG Pure Audio Blu-ray

VIVALDI: The Four Seasons – Janine Jansen, violin/ orchestra – DGG 479 1053 Pure Audio Blu-ray (PCM 2.0, DTS-HD MA 2.0, Dolby TrueHD 2.0, 24-bit/ 96kHz), 39:04 [Distr. by Universal] ****:

I am referring everyone who reads these new DGG Blu-ray Pure Audio reviews to my review of the first reissue for comments and details on this series in general. This is early Jansen, 2005, and it made quite a splash, no doubt because of the alluring photography that appears all through the liner notes—here also. But she quickly proved herself to be more than a flash in the pan, actually an astonishingly gifted and multitalented artist of the highest rank. Her Vivaldi rates with the best; though this is another “scaled-down” version using string quartet, double bass, theorbo, organ, and harpsichord—all very colorful—the recording, like most instances where this usage is employed, is quite close up and gives the illusion of a larger orchestra. Because of this it could never be a first choice for me, but I am glad to have it as her pyrotechnics are worth the price of admission alone, and at only 39 minutes, and here in only 2.0 stereo (though you can get the SACD for a mere $600 on Amazon!) the price is quite steep indeed. I look forward to when Universal releases this again in the Blu-ray format with the surround sound option, and allows me to trade my existing one for it (this is a wish don’t forget—no idea if it will happen).

But for the performance alone and the upgraded sound from my own CD version, this is definitely superior. Then again, the price might not be worth it to you since the CD stereo was actually quite good too. Your call.

—Steven Ritter




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