Perlman/Previn/LSO: Symphonie Espagnole & Tzigane - RCA LSC-3073 - stunning!
Jacket VG / Vinyl NM / US pressing
This handsome LP from RCA (LSC-3073, US pressing, Red Seal (no dog) label, stereo) features Itzhak Perlman, Andre Previn, and the London Symphony Orchestra in sultry and dazzling performances of Lalo's Symphonie Espagnole Op. 21 and Ravel's Tzigane, both recorded in the fabled acoustics of London's Kingsway Hall on, respectively, 3 and 5 September 1968 (producer: Peter Delheim / engineer: Alek Rosner).
Wrote T.H. in his September 1969 review for The Gramophone: "These days one assumes that violinists of international repute will throw off virtuoso pieces like these with panache added to sheer technical accuracy, and so indeed does Itzhak Perlman. There is really little more to be said on this aspect of yet another record of such display vehicles. But I don't think the recording itself flatters Perlman's G string tone, especially when he is attacking hard—the first tune in the Lalo is one of many examples: and I ascribe this largely to the recording, not merely because the soloist is close up, so that our ears are too near 'the works' but also because the sound of the orchestra itself tends to be on the strident side in loud passages.
"In soft passages, to go to a quite different point, I too often found that I could not hear exactly what the strings were playing. I don't think this is Previn's fault for a moment, for it is evident that he has most admirably taken trouble over these accompaniments and getting really soft string playing is such a virtue; but when it is inadequately recorded, so that—as a general illustration of the sort of thing—one can hear pizzicato chords in the background but too vaguely to know what the harmonies are or to distinguish changing top notes of chords, then it's the recorded balance that is wrong. It is not all carelessly done by any means (the ppp timpani rhythm near the end of the Lalo 4th movement, for example, is caught to perfection) but the general result is often unsatisfactory. The Ravel is certainly a staggering performance, with Perlman absolutely on top of its formidable difficulties."
The gradations of condition I use are as follows: MINT, Near-Mint, Excellent, Very Good, Good, Fair, Poor.
The condition of the jacket is VERY GOOD++. There is slight bumping/wear at corners, as well as some minor discoloration to the rear panel. However, there are no seamsplits, bends, or owners' markings and the album remains solid, bright, and very handsome in appearance – overall, a very good collector's copy.
The condition of the LP itself is near-MINT and it plays without defect – overall, a superb collector's copy.