Enjoyable Soviet symphonies
(3 out of 5 stars)
"Dmitri Kabalevsky is often criticized for being simplistic, and this CD will not change that perception for most listeners. Neither symphony recorded here has any great pretensions at depth, but they are quite diverting and exemplify the "positive" Soviet symphonism of the 1930's and '40's. They come nowhere near the depth of a Shostakovich or a Prokofiev, but Kablevsky's gift for melody and his wit distinguish these works from other, more "humdrum" symphonies from this era. Tjeknavorian and his Armenians perform passably, although intonation is at times a bit sketchy (which keeps me from giving it a 4-star review). Fans of Kabalevsky's famous 1st cello concerto and of his popular "Comedians" ballet will doubtless enjoy this recording, and Russian music fans who are not familiar with this composer might consider checking it out."
The worst orchestral sound I've ever heard
Murat Ozkoyuncu | ANKARA Turkey | 08/30/2003
(1 out of 5 stars)
"I'm sharing most opinions of previous rewiever about Kabalevsky's music, he has certainly not wide horizons like shostakovich and prokofiev. But he wrote some acceptable and modern-western sounding music in his times, and I cannot say all his work bad.However, the main problem is playing of armenian philharmonic in this recording, listen to their uncertain orchestral tone-especially diffuse, oily-cum-oriental vibrato of strings and third-rate brass playing turned this western-serious soviet symphonies to caucasian folk music played by ten-piece village band; or if there was a symphony orchestra in the times of "1001 nights tales" it would be sound like that.I've listened many good recordings of Loris Tjeknavorian at the past, mostly recorded by british orchestras, and i thing he's a capable conductor, but his collaboration of Armenian Philharmonic (i thing it depends on enthusiasm about establishment of orchestra of free Armenian Republic), is a total disaster.I cannot imagine any familiar work of soviet composers like shostakovich or prokofiev, or more familiar orchestral works like Tchaikovsky, played by Armenian Philharmonic, it will be certainly sound like between catastrophy and comedy."