|Ludwig van Beethoven, Anton Nanut, Hans-Hubert Schonzeler|
25 Beethoven Favorites
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Less than impressive...
John Salerno | Houston, TX, USA | 02/28/2000
(2 out of 5 stars)
"I must say that I am very disappointed with this CD. It's bad enough that only select movements from symphonies, concertos, sonatas, etc. are put on compilation albums like this one, but it irritates me to no end that even the individual movements themselves are cut! Supposedly "edited for leisure listening", this CD in no way fulfilled my expectations of what it would be. Most tracks are about 3 minutes long (whereas they should actually be anywhere from 5-15 minutes).But aside from this content problem, the quality of the tracks is not that good either. The sound has a dull, flat quality to it, and is not as rich or lively as other recordings I've heard of the same pieces. (And in case this means anything to you: there is a note on the CD case that states "Digitally mastered from the original analog tapes"). Whether this is good or not, the CD does not sound as great as it seems to claim.(Also, on a more irrelevant note: If you are expecting this CD to contain 25 of the most widely-known, familiar pieces, then don't buy it, because not many of them are popular).My advice would be to find another compilation (even if that means buying one with less tracks) that contains the full versions of the movements and that sounds much better than this one."
Good Price, Middling Content
Robert I. Hedges | 10/14/2004
(3 out of 5 stars)
"The most attractive thing about this Beethoven compilation CD is the price. For around five dollars, you get almost 77 minutes of music, which makes this CD useful as a very basic introduction to Beethoven, although I think some of the track selections are a bit obscure, and certainly don't rank with his greatest compositions.
The most universally recognized recordings on the CD are "Symphony Number 5 in C Minor", and "Symphony No. 9 in D Minor 'Choral' (IV. Finale: Allegro assai)." Coincidentally these are also probably the most technically superior recordings on the disc. The remaining tracks vary from relatively common to totally obscure. The quality of the individual tracks seems to vary quite a bit. There is relatively little background noise, yet some of the performances seem a bit muffled. It isn't unpleasant to listen to the CD, but by no means are these the best recordings available of these works.
Perhaps most annoying is the slavish devotion to the title: the producers were obviously bent on putting 25 Beethoven tracks on this CD for marketing purposes. The problem with that concept is that these pieces average about 3:08 per track, which won't cut it for a reasonable presentation of Beethoven. Not only are the individual tracks taken totally out of context, with no prevailing theme guiding their selection, but the tracks themselves were condensed and edited to fit in the 3 minute slot allotted to them on the CD. The result is not particularly representative of the works themselves, and is on occasion rather jarring to listen to.
There are better Beethoven compilations than this available, and I advise listeners to go for quality, not quantity: buy several CDs with unified themes and unedited pieces rather than this if that is an affordable option. This CD is not as good an introduction to Beethoven as I had hoped, and in fact, falls far short of the sister volume "25 Mozart Favorites", which is more sensible and has better recordings.
Great for the road
J. Ikner | OBX of NC | 05/10/2007
(3 out of 5 stars)
"I found this to be a nice collection of favorites, especially to keep in the car and listen to. It is a variety of well known compilations. Although not encompassing, it is perfect as a review for driving, relaxing, and enjoyment. Plus, the price is right!"