The Krips Beethoven Symphonies

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The Krips Beethoven Symphonies

Does anyone know anything about the Joseph Krips Beethoven Symphony set?.  I first encountered these recordings in the 60's on a budget label with pressings so poor that you wondered if the company was using shredded wheat.  A few years ago I bought them on CD for $7.00.  Very cheap.

 

This seems odd because Krips was a well known European conductor and the orchestra was the London Symphony.  The performances are generally good (especially the 5tth)  and the recordings are good for their time.  Why is it alsways sold as a cheapie for somone who "just wants a set of the Beethoven Symphinies?"

 

Notes to You!

RE: The Krips Beethoven Symphonies

The Krips Beethoven 3 was the very first LP record I ever bought when I was a kid, over 40 years ago.  I no longer have that LP but remember the performance, and have been thinking about trying to find it again.  At the prompting of your post I bought the complete set as a very cheap iTunes download.  I have no idea why it is sold as a cheapie, as Krips was a very highly rated conductor, especially in Europe.

RE: The Krips Beethoven Symphonies

I actually attended a Krips' concert at RFH. Bruckner's 7th.

He had a number of highly rated recordings, all with the LSO, I think, and all on Decca.

The Schumann 1st and 4th symphonies and the Schubert 9th were Gramophone first choices for a number of years. The 'Spring' symphony was a knockout, as I remember.

Also, as I remember, his performances tended towards the affable and could lack excitement. This may be why his Beethoven cycle is not highly regarded.

However, if Eloquence think it worthwhile to reissue his discography it might be time to reassess.

 

I note that many of his recordings are to reappear on Eloquence.

RE: The Krips Beethoven Symphonies

Yes, I recall that in the early days of CD, Tower Records offered the cycle on "Bescol" at an absurdly low price.  They were a travesty and my copy was discarded long ago. The cycle (9 symphonies, but without the few overtures that appeared on the LP issues) was subsequently released on the Everest label in superb transfers done by Sony engineers.  It was a 5-CD set [EVC9010/14] and as five single CDs [EVC 9100~9104].  They are no longer available, but copies may surface in the used CD market.  I can recommend them without qualification.  P.S. If I recall correctly, they were also the first STEREO Beethoven Symphony cycle to appear on stereo tape and stereo disc.

Jerry

RE: The Krips Beethoven Symphonies

They are almost always so cheap that I would buy them without hesitation.  That is what I did, and found a very fine, middle of the road set of Beethoven.  There is an unforgivable brief flaw at the beginning of the ninth symphony (first movement/fourth?)  that sounds as if the tape snagged, and maybe that is what one reader is referring to.  It is very brief, and soon forgotten (if you're that kind of person).  When you start the first disc, it is apparent that the sound is pretty elderly-I have one of the "un-remastered" sets.  But your ear is quickly acclimated.  Wind intonation could be better sometimes, but the perfomances never fail to sing.

Does anyone know the legal history of the ownership of the masters?  I'll bet it would be a great story.

Presbyteros

RE: The Krips Beethoven Symphonies

I've asked the same question (re: Current ownership of the Everest recordings) but have never been able to get a satisfactory answer.  The last authorized reissues (from the Omega group, using master tapes processed by Sony in a superb series running from EVC 9000 through EVC 9060, with EVC 9021 tentatively assigned but not issued) were NOT included in the sale of Omega's catalog to Artemis.  So, I assume they remain in limbo. 

Jerry

RE: The Krips Beethoven Symphonies

PS The current Everest issues can be found on www.harkitrecords.com. It does though seem a bit bonkers to issue one CD of Shostakovich of 33 minutes and one of Prokofofiev of 35 mins. Why not put them together on one disc?

RE: The Krips Beethoven Symphonies

Back to Krips, Decca put out an Original Masters box of 5 CDs a few years ago of standard orchestral fare, Brahms, Haydn, Mozart, Mendelssohn, Tchaikovsky etc many dating from his days as LSO Principal Conductor in the early 1950s. 

The Schubert 9th mentioned by Troyen gets a rosette in the Penguin Guide which states it is his best recording, still available both on Decca CD and Speakers Corner vinyl LP.

RE: The Krips Beethoven Symphonies

I know this is off the subject, but I recall sifting through many recordings of Schubert's ninth as a teenager (when one could hear recordings before you bought them) and the prize went to Krips and the London Symphony on Decca.  Only one other recording has a slight edge on it and that is the 9th by Toscanini and NBC Symphony (more specifically the third movement's trio...there is  nothing else like it)...otherwise Krips takes the lead...but Wand in his RCA Berlin recording is also very good and I also enjoy Furtwangler on DG.

Also, Krips' Mozart is outstanding, especially his Philips series with the Concertgebouw playing the mid to later symphonies.  He is right up there with Mackerras, Tate, Bohm, Abbado and Walter...and dare I say I find his Mozart a tad more appealing that the famous Mackerras series for Telarc and even his more recent series on the Linn label.  There is so much joy and energy in these performances (just listen to the Paris symphony for example), and the sound is excellent.  Some can be found on SACD (Pentatone label)....Lee

Captain4105

 

RE: The Krips Beethoven Symphonies

I do not deviate from my view of the Beethoven symphony recordings that I have heard that this is an underpowered set and as uncompetitive now as it was then.

However, I still maintain that his pioneering recording of the Schumann "Spring" symphony is outstanding with the trumpets played at the pitch indicated by the composer, as I remember, very pre-"original instruments."

So good that Decca extracted it from its LP format coupled to the 4th and issued it on a 10 incher. Which is the format I had.

RE: The Krips Beethoven Symphonies

The LP version of the 5th is on youtube. So... what is your comment about this performance?

http://www.youtube.com/watch_popup?v=RBUATIWAEFI&vq=large

Rolf

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