Mussorgsky's monumental 1874 work performed with precision and drama by the National Symphony Orchestra of Ukraine in 2001.
Mussorgsky's 1874 suite Pictures at an Exhibition, a tribute to the versatile artist Viktor Hartmann, has proveed perhaps the most popular of all the composer's works, both in its original version for piano and in the colourful orchestral version of Ravel presented here. Linked by Promenades for the visitor to the exhibition, Mussorgsky represents in music a varied collection, from the Market of Limages and the Catacombs to the final Great Gate of Kiev. This recording also presents two versions of the orchestral favourite Night on the Bare Mountain, an orchestral witches' sabbath.
These brilliant, hard-driving performances bring back (happy) memories of Russian orchestras of the 1960s and a style of playing that has all but disappeared. The performances aren't subtle, but then neither is the music, and my how Theodore Kuchar and Co. deliver the goods! Why don't we hear playing like this anymore in music that practically defines the word "excitement?" The other two short pieces, the Hopak and Golitsin's Exile, simply put the icing on the cake. Don't let the cheap price, the not-terribly-well-known performers, or the brevity of this review prevent you from trying out this really gutsy and very well recorded disc (probably the best sonics from this source thus far). You'll be missing a real treat if you do. - Classics Today 5/5
Daily Noise: Metal & Punk History
Friday, 15 February
16 Years Ago PRURIENT live on A Dark and Tranquil Place
Tuesday, 12 February
26 Years Ago ARCHGOAT record their unreleased first album
Saturday, 9 February
33 Years Ago SLAUGHTER complete Strappado
Wednesday, 6 February
17 Years Ago DESTROYER 666 record Cold Steel... for an Iron Age
Tuesday, 5 February
30 Years Ago S.O.B. record Suck Up Brain or Fuck Ya Brain?
Sunday, 3 February
29 Years Ago NOMEANSNO live at Cattle Club, Sacramento
Saturday, 2 February
21 Years Ago SVARTSYN release Tormentor
Friday, 1 February
15 Years Ago CARPATHIAN FOREST live in Poland (We're Going to Hollywood for This)