Phonograph Monthly Review, Vol. 3, No. 5 (1929-02)

Record Details:

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The Phonograph Monthly Review 175 February, 1929 ' - Werrenrath is more satisfactorily represented here than in many of his recent releases. He is in far better voice than he has customarily been lately, and his performances are not marred by pretentiousness or melodrama. One hardly imagines songs of this type more effectively sung or re- corded. Victor 9295 (D12, $1.50) Loch Lomond, and Scotch Memories—Hame O’Mine—A Scot is a Scot—My Bonnie Wee Wee, sung by Sir Harry Lauder, with orchestral ac- companiment in Loch Lomond, unaccompanied in Scotch Memories. This is by far the finest record from Sir Harry in many years. His singing and monologue are simple and unforced; there is none of the unrestrained laughter that mars some of his disks. The miniature Lauder performance on the second side, a miscellany of favorite encores, is sung un- accompanied and “put over” in remarkably effective fashion. Victor 1360 (DIO, $1.50) Sonny Boy, and Jeannine 1 Dream of Lilac Time, sung by John McCormack, with orchestral accompaniment. McCormack shows A1 Jolson, Gene Austin, et al, how these masterpieces of the masses should be sung. Victor (special January 11th list 6831 Tannhauser—Dich teure Halle, and Lohengrin—Elsas Traum, sung by Elisa- beth Rethberg, accompanied by the Berlin State Opera House Orchestra under the direction of Fritz Zweig. This and the following record were originally released in the Victor foreign lists. Of the outstanding vocal works of the year this disk of Rethberg was perhaps the finest. It was reviewed on page 29 of the October', 1928, issue. Victor (special January 11th list) 9233 (D12, $1.50) Prince Igor—Arioso of Jaroslavna, and Sadko—Berceuse, sung by Nina Koshetz, with orchestral accompaniment. Reviewed on page 29 of the October, 1928, issue. Miss Koshetz’ finest recorded representation. Victor (special January 11th list) 9285 (D12, $1.50) Die Meistersinger—Finale, sung by Friedrich Schorr, accom- panied by the chorus and orchestra of the Berlin State Opera House. Another of the splendid Schorr series already familiar in the British pressing to many American collectors. It is good, but it is not quite up to the stature of his Sach’s Monologue, or Rhinegold, Flying Dutchman, and Tannhauser excerpts. French Columbia D-11701 (D12) de Falla: Sept Chansons Espagnoles—El Pano Morino, Seguidilla Murciana, and Asturiana, sung by Maria Barrientos, with piano accom- paniments by the composer. (Imported through the H. Royer Smith Company, Philadelphia.) This is de Falla’s first recorded appearance, but it will not be the last: such competent accompaniments as his are rare on records or in the concert hall. Mme. Barrientos sings capably, the interpretations are those of the composer, the songs hard, brightly polished, sharp-cut gems, the re- cording is excellent—what more could one ask of any rec- ord? The list of de Falla recordings grows larger monthly; this admirable disk is to be placed at or very near the top of it. Odeon 5157 (D12, $1.50) Lohengrin—Heil Koenig Heinrich and Wo weilt nun der, den Gott gesandt, sung by Ivar Andresen, accompanied by Chorus and Grand Symphony Orchestra conducted by Dr Weissmann. This excerpts from Act III, Scene 3 of Lohengrin were presumably made at the same time as Ivar Andresen’s Mein Gott und Herr issued by Odeon on the fourth side of its standard set by the earlier release. The recording is of Rienzi overture. This disk is in every way up to the magnificent spaciousness; the course and orchestra are pow- erful, precise, and spirited; and Andresen again gives con- vincing testimony of his sure place among the greatest operatic basses of today. The Okeh Phonograph Corpora- tion is heartily to be thanked for making this impressive disk available. It is a worthy companion to the sensational Odeon Cavalleria Rusticana and Aida choruses. Victor (special January 11th list) 9293 (D12, $1.50) Car- men—Air de la Fleur, and Louise—Depuis longtemps j’habitais, sung by Edward Johnson, with orchestral accom- paniments. Edward Johnson makes but rare phonographic appear- ances these days, so this disk is doubly welcome. Both performances are commendable: sung with animation and in good ringing voice. The accompaniments and recording are excellent. Victor (special January 11th list) 4088 (D10, $1.00 Penn: Sunrise and You, and Walt: Lassie o’Mine, sung by Edward Johnson. A re-recording of Victor 692, one of Johnson’s most popular acoustical works. Victor (special January 11th list) 1139 (D10, $1.50) de Falla: Tus Ojillos Negros (Cancion Andaluza), and Tabuyo: La Zagalina, sung by Marguerite D’Alvarez, with piano accompaniments. D’Alvarez js a singer who at times approaches genius. This little disk is one of her most effective recordings: both songs are of more than ordinary interest. The timbre of her voice varies considerably in different parts of its register, but the dark color of certain lower or middle range passages here is to be designated only as “thrilling.” Victor (special January 11th list) 6878 (D12, $2.00) De- libes: Les filles de Cadix and Rossini: La Danza—Taran- tella Napoletana, sung by Mary Lewis, with orchestra ac- companiments. These are the most interesting selections Miss Lewis has yet recorded and she does them in pleasantly unpre- tentious fashion. The accompaniments are particularly good. Victor (special January 11th list) 6880 (D12, $2.00) Romeo et Juliette—Ah! leve-toi, soleil!, and Salut! tombeau sombre et Silencieux sung by Fernand Annseau, with orchestral accompaniments. Annseau is one of the best French tenors and a well- known member of the Chicago Opera Company. Selections and performances reveal him in characteristically meritous form. Is this his first Victor release? I trust that it will be followed by others. Victor (special January 11th list) 6839 (D12, $2.00) La Partida, and Canto del Presidiario, sung by Emilio De Gogorza, with orchestral accompaniments. A characteristic De Gogorza record: the music is novel and arresting, the performances clear and unforced, and the recording excellent. (Indeed all the vocal disks on the special Victor list are unusually praiseworthy from a technical—as well as musical—point of view.) Light Orchestral Columbia (International list) 59050-F (D10, 75c) Flower Song, and Little Grandmother, played by the Columbia Concert Orchestra. Smooth, unaffected performances of two very sentimental salon pieces. The recording and playing are good. Columbia 1658-D (D10, 75c) Chaminade: The Flatterer and Scarf Dance, played by Robert Hood Bowers and the Co- lumbia Symphony Orchestra. A neat little recording of Chaminade’s best known piano pieces in orchestral arrangements. The performances are unforced and smooth. Columbia (International list) 38006-F (D10, 75c) A Mem- ory of Chopin, and Watson: Reverie, played by Le Marie French String Orchestra. A very pleasing little record of something more than ordinary interest. The Memory of Chopin is a sort of smooth waltz piece drawn largely from the Prelude in C minor, and ingeniously constructed. The Reverie is slight in substance, but unaffected and unsentimentalized. The playing is deft and the disk a valuable addition to the ranks of noteworthy light orchestral records. Victor (International list) 35911 (D12, $1.25) Wedding of the Winds and Sincerity waltzes, played by La Vittoria Orchestra. Brisk waltz performances by an orchestra in which marimbas figure prominently. Columbia 1691-M (D10, 75c) Absent, and La Cinquantaine, played by the Squire Celeste Octet. Sentimentality has full sway here. The disk is not likely to be of general interest.