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15 May 2013

Wilhelm Backhaus plays... Chopin. Etudes ... Schumann. Fantasie ... Brahms. Paganini Variations (etc) - HMV 1908-1937

Chopin:  Etudes, op.10, nos.1-12    /    Etudes, op.25, nos.1-12
Schumann:  Fantasie in C major, op.17  /  Nachtstuck in F major, op.23/4  /  Fantasiestuck, op.12/2  
Brahms:  Paganini Variations, op.35    /     Handel:  The Harmonious Blacksmith   /  
J.S.Bach:  Pastorale (from Christmas Oratorio. BWV.248)    /    Liszt:  Liebestraum no.3   &   Hungarian Rhapsody, no.2   
Delibes:  "Naila" - Waltz (arr: Dohnanyi)     /    Albeniz:  Tango (arr: Godowsky)   /    Rachmaninov:  Prelude, op.3/2     
Wilhelm Backhaus, pianoforte       13 files zip FLAC Mega Download                                                                             
EMI Electrola 'Dacapo'  137 290345 3  (2LP)   c.1984 German pressings.  Due to variable German EMI filtering/'noise-reduction' by 'Anon'
(plus some rough shellac surfaces) these performances are hardly heard at their best!  Have applied some minimal 'de-click' with slight treble boost (mostly ineffective due to limited retained frequency-range). Mainly for 'un-fussy pianophiles'....  Full recording/composition details >>>








10 comments:

  1. Anonymous18 May, 2013

    What a treat! Backhaus was certainly something...

    Thank you very much for sharing these jewels.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'd mentioned this set, some months back, as being in 'inferior' sound - which I can't do much about (the Chopin, whilst relatively quiet has evidence of 'noise-reduction' - as do others)...and some tracks are truly awful!!

      I've some more on 78's (including an acoustic), and, although it's years since I heard it, a 10" Decca Chopin recital seemed very fine.

      I'd be particularly interested in uploading Decca's stereo Haydn sonata recital + Schumann Piano Concerto (from 2ss 10" test pressings - better sound than the SDD re-issue -which contains 'Waldescenen'- that sounding very good.

      The Haydn, btw, is one of my favourite piano LP's, and has excellent sound for 1957-ish.

      Delete
  2. Bittertea20 May, 2013

    Thanks for this - your transfer is magnificent.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Flatterer!!
      The reason for this was that some material is not on CD (or the rest is on 'unofficial CD')....but for a 'magnificent' sound from this vintage I would have chosen the EMI/France 'Reference' LP of Horowitz/Liszt Sonata, etc..also have Cortot's Chopin Etudes in this series - and the Walter Walkure Act 1 - so much better than the old EMI transfer (and probably better than my Act 1 (and Act 2) 78 albums would provide.
      But I'm beginning to suspect folks prefer a bit of 'de-click' - which, to my mind, simply 'smooths-over' the sound: but in this case the damage had already been done!!

      Delete
  3. I am very glad to see this useful post thanks for sharing this post with us.
    Awaiting for your next post.
    Chopin Etudes

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you for the link - which reminds me that I should complete the Solomon issues here with the remaining Chopin LP (78 transfers) - and never did upload Moiseiwitsch's HMV mono/stereo Chopin disc/s...

      Delete
  4. Anonymous13 July, 2013

    Actually despite your reservations about the sound not being 'heard at their best', all the other issues I've heard of this (Pearl included) sound pretty inferior and even more 'denoised'. Thanks again.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. My standards are too high!

      [basically was expecting that German shellac (or the metals) would provide a better source than it seems many sides were dubbed from - hence
      less information loss]

      I should, by now, have uploaded the 4LP's (on Dacapo mid 1970's) of Lotte Lehmann - but it's 'too hot' to slave over the computer..

      Delete
  5. Thank you very much for this transfer, especially the Chop etudes!
    In my opinion Backhaus' recording is still very impressive, not only technically (just one take for everything!) but also from the stanpoint of interpretation. It has a direct freshness like a morning breeze, unencumbered by those terribly bad interpretative habits that we are accustomed to today.
    About the quality of the transfers I can only repeat what other commentators already said: This transfer is really outstanding. I have heard 3 or 4 other transfers and this is the only one where the piano tone has enough 'presence' to be enjoyed in spite of the age of the recording. Almost a little miracle of sound 'resurrection' I did not hope for any more.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I agree about the Chopin: I also have an early mono 10" Decca LP (LX3044) of some Mazurkas + a Waltz/Etude/Ballade which I recall as very impressively played.

      Re: this set - 'I did my best' -but the 78's weren't transferred to Griffith/Hardwick standards!

      Delete