Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
Gordon Turk French Spectaculars
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Overall, this is a great CD. Dr. Turk is an fine organist and deserves more recognition for his playing. His registration is well-done and he uses the organ's stops to the utmost. Turk also plays the more melodic songs with distinct emotion. The only detraction is that in the faster pieces, such as Widor's Toccata, his playing is just slightly inaccurate with some little fluffs here and there. However, this CD is worth getting. The organ is amazing and full of intensity, and Dr. Turk is a talented organist. I recommend buying this and taking a trip to Ocean Grove this summer to hear one of his recitals."
(4 out of 5 stars)
"This is an exciting release. While the pieces are "standards" in the French organ reportory, to hear an organ such as this is an extraordinary treat. The program notes state that the organ contains over 9,000 pipes and 152 ranks, and indeed from the recording it is evident that the organ is vast both physically and tonally. For those who expect to hear a typical church organ, you will not find it on this disc - this instrument is one of real musical expression - it is a grand symphonic organ.
However, without a good performer, this expression would not be evident. Turk definitely gives a diverse, interesting, and colorful demonstration of the range of this instrument. And, like a previous reviewer stated, he does play the softer pieces very beautifully. But at times, compared to other organists' recordings, he sounds a bit lethargic. The Chorale from Suite Gothique is painfully slow, and the Toccata from Suite Gothique should be more scintillating in the perpetual motion in the manuals. However, Final alla Schumann is excellent, as is Vierne's stirring Finale. Also, this music is naturally exciting, so even some mistakes in tempos sound fine to the listener. Buy this CD to hear some inspiring music and a wonderful organ of "bombastic intensity," as Turk states. * Also, the program notes, written by Turk, are very interesting, and provide a background of the composers and the French organ school, the registration chosen, and the Ocean Grove organ."
A great American Eclectic Organ
Richard A. Ayers | San Diego, CA | 01/26/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This organ is unique amongst American Classic Organs, not being of the Aeolian-Skinner school. The Ocean Grove Auditorium has a rather short reverberation time due to its wooden construction, but never mind, this organ powers up to meet this acoustic challange. Having close to 10,000 pipes, this instrument has something like 6 32' stops and over 20 16' stops, and is spread out across the entire front of the auditorium. No Aeolian-Skinner or Austin Organ of this size comes close in this regard. The folks who expanded this organ since the Hope-Jones days deserve my highest praise for a truly outstanding achievement.
The Boellman opening if played at the right level is stunning. The quiet passages then come out at the right sound level. I always find it hard to believe the power and diversity of sounds that this organ produces.
The performances seem OK to me and in no way detract from demostrating the magnificance of this instrument"