Reissue on the 1955s USSR Accord, the quality varies from track to track, the sound is sometimes not fully disclosed, but magical honey notes, expressive and caressing the ear, arise here and there. Gould is certainly a wizard!
From the 3-lp set only the first (1968) and the third (1972) records have been found, from each one I took three most successfully recorded tracks. The result was an example of how the thoughtless replacement of recording equipment with a more modern one leads to the degradation of sound, in this case – the loss of natural timbres of the piano on the record of 1972 (tracks 4, 5, 6). In general, the sound of the entire second book of the WTC makes worse impression than the first (1965).
On tour in the USSR Gould was recorded several times, including a live performance of the Three-Voice Inventions (1960) and a partita #2 (1962) with a well good LO-FI sound. Inventions convey the magic of the piano Gould better than studio recordings, we can only guess how great it sounded live. Rondo and sarabande from the second partita recorded somewhat tougher, there are noticeable detonations in the saraband. At the end of the list there are two finest Columbia 1964 studio recordings of inventions. The magic there is noticeably less.
Bach and Gould are made for each other. The language of heavenly beauty of the first and the stunning polyphony of the second are indescribable. The quality of the recording is not bad, the most clearly recorded tracks are selected.
NEW – Energophone take – 28-02-2020
Clear, faceted Haydn, high-quality record. Gould is out of competition.
The recording is complex in sound, the piano does not fit well with the harsh-sounding Bernstein orchestra. The remastering conveyed the drama laid down by Gould as truthfully as possible. It is immortal concert, for all time.
The 1976 reissue, made by Russian Melodia, is surprisingly decent. The original tracks are not recorded evenly, the sound of fourth and sixth partitas in my opinion do not reach the good rate but in the first numbers there was enough beautiful moments. Gould plays divinely, the unattainable ideal of a classical pianist. The first and third partitas are the best in quality.