Mystery score

Mystery score

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

One CD I Won't Be Buying

Alex Ross saved me $17 by posting the first cut from Mark Padmore and Paul Lewis's new recording of Winterreise. Padmore's voice hasn't got much body and becomes tremulous under pressure, which seems to mean anything above about mezzo-piano. "Gute Nacht" is subdued, and I really, really don't want to hear what happens when Padmore sings "Die Wetterfahne" or "R├╝ckblick" or any of the songs that require some power.

P. S. Maybe it makes a difference if you're not listening on headphones, but...

12 comments:

rootlesscosmo said...

I just listened through my computer's built-in speakers and I won't be buying this version either. Besides the strange vocal mannerisms (which is what I think they might be, rather than physical failings) the phrasing, starting with the piano intro, strikes me as fussy--why the fourth-beat fermata in Measure 3 and at similar points in the accompaniment?

Lisa Hirsch said...

I put on Matthias Goerne for an ear-cleanser. I might disagree with scattered choices he makes, but there's no sense with him of "GOD NO, TAKE IT OFF!!"

Sibyl said...

I'm with you. Fey is not what I'm after.

Lisa Hirsch said...

I mentioned Padmore to a friend who said "Yech is exactly right!"

pjwv said...

Hmmmm. . . . and I bought a ticket to hear him sing Winterreise in New York! He's doing it in English translation, interspersed with reading from Samuel Beckett. Well, I will hope for the best.

Lisa Hirsch said...

I look forward to your blog posting about that performance!

rootlesscosmo said...

Hermann Prey was quoted a few years back as saying the first six (I think) songs in the cycle should be at exactly the same tempo; his "Gute nacht" is rhythmically very regular, though by no means unvarying in color and expression, suggesting (I guess) that the traveler is setting forth with a firm step. I like Prey's version, haven't heard Bostridge's--anybody have an opinion on it?

Lisa Hirsch said...

That's nuts - there is no way that "Erstarrung" and "Gute Nacht" should be sung at the same tempo, to take just two of the first six songs. Does Prey actually sing them that way?

David said...

You want real tenors in this. Schreier as a golden mean, Anders if you want wild and committed. For me, nothing less will do. Padmore sounds like he's studied it but not ingested. And the reaction of a friend to his Handel was 'he sounds as if he's had sand kicked in his face'.

He is a good musician, though, and a lot better than Bostridge. But should never have recorded this, surely. And Lewis is far too mimsy, too. Sounds like he's done the stylistic quirk in the Organ Grinder's music just to say wake up, I'm doing something interesting.

Lisa Hirsch said...

Oh, boy, those are violent reactions!

What does "mimsy" mean in this context? Fussy/mannered?

David said...

Weedy, wet. Actually he does the watery stuff very well, but never bites.

Lisa Hirsch said...

Ha, I would have suggest "miasmic" for "weedy, wet"!