Resurrection Through Remastering
Grady Harp | Los Angeles, CA United States | 09/26/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Modern science does indeed concern itself with the arts when it comes to state of the art remastering of some albums made too many years ago, before even stereophonic recordings were available. Such is the case with this newly released, remastered recording originally made back in the aurally immature 1950s. The original recording still exists (it has been worn thin in my collection) but this new edition on CD surpasses anything one could hope for.
But first things first. The Recital here is a shared one: Elisabeth Schwarzkopf offers twelve inimitable Schubert songs with the radiance and inner intelligence that marked her fine career. Her voice gleams and is silvery in the finest sense of the 'German sound'. Though she never was able to pull off the Italian repertoire, she was a brilliant interpreter of Mozart and Strauss on the opera stage. On the recital stage she, as a soprano, virtually owned the works of Schubert, Schumann, Wolf and the other Romantics. There is a wondrous communication in her singing, the knowledge that she is always placing the composer first without mannerisms that would stamp her singing as 'Schwarzkopfian'. For this set of songs she is matched with the equally fine pianist Edwin Fischer: this is a true collaboration. Find a finer 'An die Musik' or 'Im Frühling' if you can: there simply aren't many as sung by a soprano!
The second portion of the Recital belongs to Fischer and he plays Schubert's 'Moments musicaux for piano, D. 780' as if to the music born. This is magnificent pianism and interpretation. When the entire recital is played it makes the kind of sense that few artists offer today. This is a terrific musical experience. Grady Harp, September 05