Review by mwgfrg November 7, 2012 (13 of 14 found this review helpful)
|Some time ago, while commenting on the Japanese SACD issue of the Rattle/Berlin Philharmonic Planets, I mentioned the possibility of an SACD reissue of Mehta's famous late analog Decca recording, a TAS and audiophile favorite of the late '70s. Well, here it is, and it still sounds as sumptuous and as well played as ever. It is a broad, sweeping and quite idiomatic recording (not, perhaps, quite as much as are the Boult recordings, or even the Andrew Davis, but better than most), with beautiful string playing and thunderous brass. In a direct comparison, it approaches without quite matching the Decca original LP or Japanese and German audiophile LP reissues I subsequently acquired; there seems to be a bit less bass and hall sound, and the upper strings are not as beautifully projected as on the LPs. Certainly this SHM-SACD transfer is clearly superior to the Western and Japanese RBCDs of this performance I have owned. At least to me it is solidly competitive with the much later Grainger and Andrew Davis digital versions. Unquestionably expensive, the same clumsy and oversized cardboard packaging all these Japanese Universal SHM-SACDs have, and a filler I could probably do without, an SACD transfer of the Star Wars music which is certainly enjoyable but does sound a bit threadbare and second-rate in this company--but with all of that, yet another memorable SACD Planets.
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