Sigmund Groven & Iver Kleive: harmOrgan (2011) [High Fidelity Pure Audio Blu-Ray Disc]

Album title: harmOrgan
Performer: Sigmund Groven, harmonica; Iver Kleive, organ
Genre: Classical
Label: 2L (Lindberg Lyd)
Location: Uranienborg Church, Norway
Release date: December 2010
Recording date: September 2010
Original source: Mastering in DXD (352.8kHz/24bit)
Quality: Blu-ray Audio
Duration: 01:18:36 + 00:03:42
Video: MPEG-4 AVC 4000 kbps / 1080i / 29,970 fps / 16:9 / High Profile 4.1
Audio#1: DTS-HD MA 5.1 / 192 kHz / 12883 kbps / 24-bit (DTS Core: 5.1 / 48 kHz / 1509 kbps / 24-bit)
Audio#2: LPCM 2.0 / 192 kHz / 9216 kbps / 24-bit

HARMONICA AND ORGAN – AN UNUSUAL DUO. The world’s smallest and the world’s largest musical instrument; “David and Goliath” together in stunning baroque pieces and Norwegian folk music.

Watch the music video on YouTube and VIMEO

Sigmund Groven and Iver Kleive have collaborated for more than 30 years and have built a repertoire consisting mainly of baroque pieces and Norwegian music, most of which they have composed and arranged themselves. Even though they have chosen very different instruments, and are also quite different personalities in many ways, they have a fundamental musical rapport and understanding and also have many other things in common. They both originate from musical families; born and raised in Telemark, a region of Norway rich in folk-music, they have always had an open mind and taken keen interest in various contemporary and popular musical styles and idioms. They left Norway to study, and their mentors were the best possible role models: In Munich Iver came under the guidance of organist Franz Lehrndorfer and legendary choir­master, conductor, and organist Karl Richter, whereas Sigmund had the great fortune to study in England with his boyhood idol, the equally legendary Tommy Reilly, one of the great pioneers of serious harmonica-playing.

“In the right hands the harmonica can be an instrument of great beauty and sophistication. Sigmund Groven, like Tommy Reilly and Larry Adler before him, makes full use of the wide range and tonal expressions that the harmonica is capable of. His musicianship is superb, and he now unquestionably reigns supreme as one of the finest exponents of the harmonica in the world.” – Sir George Martin

Groven/Kleive: Harmorgan Blu-ray, Audio Quality

As usual, 2L has provided reference quality Blu-ray audio on this release. The duo was recorded at Uranienborg Church in September 2010 by 2L’s Morten Lindberg. The recording was made with DPR microphones, Millennia Media amplifiers and SPHYNX2 converters, all connected to a PYRAMIX workstation. Utilizing DXD, a professional audio format which allows for an astounding 352.8 kHz sampling rate, the basic files were then downmixed for Blu-ray audio (as well as the accompanying SACD) to 24bit/192kHz tracks in both a DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 and LPCM 2.0 format. This is one 2L recording where frankly there isn’t a huge difference between the surround and the stereo tracks. As clever as Kleive undeniably is with utilizing different stops on his mammoth organ, there is only so much timbral differentiation that can be achieved, and the mass of sound from that organ can only be diffused so far no matter what surround techniques are employed. The harmonica of course is so tightly focused that though 2L has indeed mixed Groven with a fair amount of spaciousness, the main sound from the instrument is resolutely anchored forward. With the onslaught of sound from the organ, hall ambience is sometimes all but swallowed up with the billowing waves emanating from that massive instrument. This actually works well with the slathered layers that Kleive likes to employ, but it can rob the final product of a bit of clarity now and then. Fidelity here is excellent, however, and dynamic range is truly impressive. All frequency ranges are handled effortlessly, from the organ’s lowest pedal points to the highest reaches of the harmonica’s plaintive wails.

1. Gloria (Sigmund Groven)
2. Aria (Sigmund Groven)
Johann Sebastian Bach – Flute Sonata in E flat Major
3. Allegro moderato
4. Siciliano
5. Allegro
6. I himmelen (arr. Sigmund Groven)
Melodier fra Koralboka (arr. Iver Kleive)
7. Vektervers
8. Mitt hjerte alltid vanker
9. Kom regn fra det høye
10. Kristne, la oss søke sammen
11. Se, vi går opp til Jerusalem
12. Påskemorgen (Ludvig M. Linderman, arr. Iver Kleive)
13. Lengt (Sigmund Groven)
14. Myllargutens bruremarsj (arr. Sigmund Groven)
15. Toccata “Store Gud, vi lover deg? (Iver Kleive)
Suite provençale (Iver Kleive)
16. En bagatell I det store og hele, ikke noe å bry seg om
17. Farvel kjære venn ? som et pust i siv
18. Den grønne trøya
19. Côte d?Azur
Georg Friedrich Handel
Recorder Sonata in F major
20. Siciliana & Giga
21. Undring (Sigmund Groven)
22. In Memoriam (Sigmund Groven)
23. Vårsøg (Henning Sommerro)



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