96kHz/24-bit, FLAC; Chandos CHSA5175 (supplied by www.chandos.net)
The BBC Symphony for Vivaldi? Well, Tasmin Little says she prefers a ‘big sound’ for ‘The Four Seasons’, and Chandos provides a warm cohesive balance with clear continuo. To my mind, harpsichordist David Wright is the star of the show, coming into his own in ‘Autumn’ with a linking cadenza and a virtual Doppelgänger shadowing the violin. Certainly Little brings plenty of personality to her playing, although odd bits of decoration and sudden tempo changes might lose their attractiveness after a time. More musically interesting, I thought, is the score written for her by Roxanna Panufnik, with flavours of Albania, Tibet (with singing bowl), Japan and (somewhat dark) India underlying music that’s simultaneously ‘romantic’ and astringent. Here the soundstage is closer and wider: St Jude-on-the-Hill, London NW11, was the venue. CB
Sound Quality: 80%
Hi-Fi News Lab Report
Although this download is also available on SACD, it was clearly recorded at 96kHz/24-bit (the disc will be a format conversion to DSD). The potential 48kHz bandwidth is well used as the thrilling strings reach out to ~40kHz. PM
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