Rachmaninoff Plays Rachmaninoff: Zenph Re-performance
Frequently Bought Together
Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought
Top Customer Reviews
The other pieces on the album are also pianistic treats. Rachmaninoff's transcriptions of "Flight of the Bumblebee" and "Scherzo from a Midsummer Night's Dream" showcase his dexterity, and are great fun to hear. The intricacy of voicing and rubato in Rachmaninoff's performances of his original works is astounding, and each track is packed full of little musical surprises.
This album was re-performed on a 1909 Steinway model D on which Rachmaninoff may have very well played. Thanks to recording engineer Richard King and everyone involved in the preparation of the piano, the sound of that wonderful instrument comes through beautifully in this album. This disc presents each piece from two perspectives: an exceptional stereo version places you near the front of the audience while Rachmaninoff plays, and an intimate binaural stereo version seats you on the bench next to him. The binaural version was recorded using a special dummy head with a microphone in each ear, carefully positioned so that when the tracks are played back through headphones, each note comes from its correct place in space (lower notes toward the left, higher notes toward the right). This may be one of the best sounding piano albums ever made.Read more ›
I know people may have trouble with the Zenph concept, but I find the concept intriguing and the execution on this CD is very well done. Until there is time travel, this is a real treat.
Be aware that there are 13 tracks on this CD: 1 - 13 are recorded in standard stereo and then repeated as 14 - 26 in binaural stereo for headphones. I would rather have thius split into 2 separate discs but that is a nit.
This modern recreation - using softwear analyzing his playing dynamics (touch, pedeling, speed etc) that is then fed to a Steineway Grand - seeks to recreate Rachmaninoff's exact style (minus missed notes, good or bad) in modern, quality stereo sound. Whether one agrees to its relevance and authenticity in the scheme of things, it is a totally fascinating approach from sound science and engineering.
First of all this is a rich collection of Rachmaninoff's solo piano compositions and transcriptions. I was not so familiar with Rachmaninoff's solo works until this disc and was transfixed to hear each piece over and over. It became clear why this pianist is so admired.
What I found most striking listening to this disc with no expectations was the exceedingly nuanced and beautiful pianism. There is a smoothness and a fresh, organic nature to the playing that shows no unnecessary/excessive elaboration, rubato, over pedaling. Its hard to decribe the effect - the music just seeems to flow effortlessly like a clear stream of water through a tranquil forest. You don't hear mushed-over textures from excess pedaling (which the composer was known not to engage in) but nice, clear sonorities and distinctiveness of the notes.
Not sure why so much negative press on the sound quality. From my ears, it sounds equal or better than any of the other 1000 classical discs.Read more ›
"Where Zenph truly fails is in reproducing the artistry and musical effects found in Rachmaninoff's playing. Simply put, Zenph often reproduces the notes but not the musical relationship between the notes. Consider two slurred notes played in a particularly expressive manner by Rachmaninoff. In Zenph the second note will be quieter but lack a poetic connection."
"throughout Rachmaninoff's playing one hears beautifully balanced chords. The top note might sing out more in one chord whereas an inner dissonance might be emphasized for a different color in another chord. These are the sort of details missed by the Zenph technology. Zenph's chords for the most part simply sound like ordinary chords - they lack the special touch, color, balance, and sound Rachmaninoff brings."
"Zenph fails to recreate is the energetic, incisive quality found in many of the original 78s. What happened to the light, springy character of the Mendelssohn Scherzo? Why does the Bach Gigue sound so much more crisp and energetic on the original 78rpm? Where's the electricity in the opening of Liebesfreud?Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This great pianist is playing some of his great music. He was so expressively prolific and gave us some really good and great music, as this album shows.Published 15 months ago by Kermit
I bought this Cd brand new on Amazon. It arrived in excellent condition.
I already have the normal tracks which I bought on HD Tracks, but did not have the binaural... Read more
Listened to this cd for a few hours
Wasn't much difference between the regular & the binaural sound
Not sure ,if this is a true binaural recording?? Read more
The team from ZENPH obtained the best recordings by Rachmaninoff from the early twentieth century and, through proprietary computer processing, were able to remove surface noise... Read morePublished on December 7, 2011 by Classical Recording Collector
After watching Joshua Bell on PBC-TV's "Great Performances"" perform the Grieg Duet using the Zenph technology with Rachmaninoff performing on the piano , I ordered the cd that... Read morePublished on January 24, 2010 by Andrew Lebby
While many of the reviewers have commented (mostly positively) on the technical aspects of this recreation, I must say that the disc has given me ample musical pleasure and an... Read morePublished on January 7, 2010 by Dr Carl
My audiophile husband greatly enjoyed this CD for his birthday. I liked it as well.Published on December 26, 2009 by Gentle Reader