Classical CD Choice Calls New Pittsburgh Symphony Beethoven “Vital”

Graham Williams offers a new review for the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra and Manfred Honeck's new Beethoven: Symphony Nos. 5 & 7 recordings on Classical CD Choice:

“The refreshingly vivid interpretations of works by Richard Strauss, Dvorak, Janacek and Bruckner that have appeared over the last few years on the Reference Recordings ‘Fresh’ label from Manfred Honeck and the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra have convincingly demonstrated the ability of this partnership to deliver new and often remarkable insights into some of the most popular and frequently recorded orchestral works in the classical repertoire. For any conductor committing two of the most famous and most recorded symphonies to disc is a courageous venture that should not be undertaken lightly, but Honeck’s riveting if occasionally controversial accounts of Beethoven’s 5th and 7th Symphonies fully justify this decision. … The playing of every section of the Pittsburgh Symphony is first rate in both works. Honeck uses what to some will be an unfashionably large orchestra but, thanks to the precision and unanimity of his splendidly focused players, the antiphonal seating of the violins, the use of timpani with hard sticks and brisk tempi throughout, he gains not only most of the best elements of period performance style but also the extra magisterial grandeur that Beethoven’s masterpieces deliver when larger forces are employed. The Soundmirror, Boston team of Dirk Sobotka, Mark Donahue and John Newton have engineered an exceptionally clean and detailed 5.1 stereo and multi-channel 64ff DSD recording, made live in the Heinz Hall, Pittsburgh (5-7 December 2014), that puts the seal on Manfred Honeck’s vital and intelligent readings of these two inexhaustible masterpieces.” —Graham Williams, Classical CD Choice

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Reference Recordings
Native DSD

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