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Black Dyke Recording - Peter Graham



Hello All

As all of the list members in the UK should know the Area test piece 
for the Championship Section next March is Montage by Peter Graham 
and as an eager Solo Horn player for a newly promoted band 
( Ratby Cooperative ) I have purchased a recording of the piece, 
the recording bought was on the Peter Graham CD, played by 
Black Dyke and published by Doyen.

I have a few questions about the piece and the CD in general for anybody
on the list who actually performed for the recording. 
 - Les, if you're still on the list I know you play for 'Dyke, but due to 
the lack of a list of band personnel I don't know if you played on the CD.

Question 1,
Was Montage a different version to the one available now?

After two listens to the piece there are several noticeable differences
in the performance to the piece that we have seen, and the performance
by Fodens on the Highlights of the Masters Contest CD.

a)	The Sop appears to play muted at the end of the first movement.
b)	One of the cornets plays a different note in one of the solos after
	C in the second Movement
c)	The Solo Horn plays a bottom D Sharp in the third bar of D in the
	middle Movement, ( on my part it is marked a D Natural )
d)	The band appears to speed up after A in the third movement, this is
	not marked on our copy.

There are other differences, but these are the ones I can remember.

Question 2,
Who was the recording engineer? and was the band happy with
the recording quality after they had heard it?

I have noticed several things with the recording quality,
a)	The band appears to be backwards, with the cornets coming out 
	of the Right speaker and the trombones coming out of the Left
	speaker.
b)	Cornets are bright and have a full sound, while the lower end 
	of the band sound as though they are playing in a bucket.
c)	The balance of the band is very top heavy, with the Sop
	being very 'in your face' when he plays. ( Kevin perhaps? )


Question 3.
Did the band spend much time rehearsing for the CD in general?
and Montage in particular?

Again after the same 2 listens I was disappointed to hear a few
points that I think should have been better from a Top Class band 
like 'Dyke,

First Movement.

a)	Opening from Euph, Bari not together and intonation problems.
b)	Horns Rushing at C.
c)	Horns rushing again 6 before H
d)	Sop, Flugel, Horn Not together after I

I won't go on but I'm sure you get the Idea.

After saying all this the standard of playing is still very good 
and probably a lot better than I could personally do.
However from one of the Top few bands in the country
the playing standard is rather disappointing and not what I 
would expect.

The CD is still very enjoyable, but the quality of the recording
and the Playing, will make me think twice before I buy another
CD by 'Dyke.

I shall await your comments with eager anticipation,

	Matthew Taylor

	Solo Horn,
	Ratby Cooperative Band,

P.S.	For any 'Dyke fans out there, I hope they play 
	better next March at their Area Contest. 
	Otherwise you will be very disappointed.


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