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 Post subject: Bach: Prelude & Fugue e-minor, WTC II, BWV 879
PostPosted: Sun Nov 28, 2010 9:57 am 
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The e-minor pair is a special and great one!
The prelude is a two part invention, basing on one little subject like it is usual for this kind of baroque invention. Bach works here with his typical techniques of motivic variation like the reversion f.ex.

The fugue with 3 voices has a quite long subject, which develops to two highpoints in the middle, then the melody decreases to the tonica again in a long run.

It was a pleasure to practise on this pair. Especially in the prelude I had to think of how to form the repetition of every part. I decided for a complete other interpretation (concerning articulation and dynamic) in the repetitions.
In the last part I even increase the tempo a bit with intention. It should sound a bit like a "Gould-like final race". (To stay modest: my tempo isn´t really Gould-like.):wink:

Feedback is very appreciated!

Here are the video-links:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yuRTGQluxl0 (prelude e-minor, BWV 879)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7L0h3xO63uk (fugue e-minor, BWV 879)

The mp3-file is exactly the audio-track of the videos above:
Bach - BWV 879 - Das Wolhtemperierte Clavier II - Prelude and Fugue No.10 in E minor (9:29)

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 Post subject: Re: Bach: Prelude & Fugue e-minor, WTC II, BWV 879
PostPosted: Sun Nov 28, 2010 4:48 pm 
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Dang ! You've just beaten me to it again. I'm actually right now uploading my new version which I've just completed.

These are exemplary as always, especially with respect to the voicing :P though I find the tempi rather slow. The prelude could IMO be more virtuosic and bubbling, and the fugue more dramatic and driving. There are a couple of ornaments in the prelude which could have been better, notably the long trills (though mine are not perfect either). There is a dodgy note at 0:19 in the prelude but apart from that, everything is quite perfect. I'll put this one on the site straight away.

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 Post subject: Re: Bach: Prelude & Fugue e-minor, WTC II, BWV 879
PostPosted: Sun Nov 28, 2010 5:27 pm 
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Thanks Chris! At 00:19 it´s not a real wrong note, just a very small slip, I think. I decided not to cut it out, because it doesn´t really bother here. I don´t find my trills too bad, if I´m honest, may be the long trill in the repeat of the first part could be improved, the others are o.k., tempo like usual is a matter of taste. I don´t feel the prelude to be so virtuosic, more than ever not "bubbling" (german translation I found: überschäumend). Also the fugue has some deep structures, which I don´t like to be "overplayed" in superficiel way. Of course, I´m curious on your version and will listen to it a bit later in the evening.

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 Post subject: Re: Bach: Prelude & Fugue e-minor, WTC II, BWV 879
PostPosted: Sun Nov 28, 2010 11:38 pm 
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Hi again, again, Andreas. I did not have to come and listen to your Bach here because Chris put it up, but I wanted to because you consistently listen and help me with my playing. :) However, you know I have no real advice to offer when it comes to Bach, so I'll just say a couple things. First off - I actually do understand why you said the Prelude sounds like an Invention. I clearly heard similarities between it and the nos. 1 and 4 Inventions. The other thing deals with sound: 1. I hear a strange popping sound at 0:13 and again at 2:45. Each time there is also a tiny little slowing down and then the 'pop'. I wonder if anyone else hears it or is it just the way my computer is playing the file? 2. Just a little thing about your piano - to me it sounds a bit out of tune, which I really only noticed when you played the last note in the Prelude - the octaves. That's all - everything else sounded fine, as usual! :)

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 Post subject: Re: Bach: Prelude & Fugue e-minor, WTC II, BWV 879
PostPosted: Mon Nov 29, 2010 8:13 pm 
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Pianolady wrote:
Quote:
I did not have to come and listen to your Bach here because Chris put it up, but I wanted to because you consistently listen and help me with my playing. :)


Thank you, I appreciate that! :D

Quote:
First off - I actually do understand why you said the Prelude sounds like an Invention. I clearly heard similarities between it and the nos. 1 and 4 Inventions.


Yes, the whole structure and tonal plan is the one of a two part invention, absolutely typical.

Quote:
The other thing deals with sound: 1. I hear a strange popping sound at 0:13 and again at 2:45. Each time there is also a tiny little slowing down and then the 'pop'.


Strange, I think, it must be your computer, because I can´t hear these noises. Did you try it also with another player program?

Quote:
2. Just a little thing about your piano - to me it sounds a bit out of tune, which I really only noticed when you played the last note in the Prelude - the octaves.


That´s a quite good point, I think, Monica. I have tuned my piano myself nearly one week ago, but I think, the E (big E in the bass) I have tuned a very little too high, but for me it was still in the limit of the "pythagoreic compromise" (Kompriss des Pythagoreischen Kommas). (I was just a bit too lazy to pull it down a bit again, if I´m honest :oops: , but now, where you mention it, I will do that tomorrow straight away :D .) I think, all the other tones are quite perfect in the scale of the well-tempered tuning with 440 Hz.

Quote:
That's all - everything else sounded fine, as usual! :)
´

Many thanks to a great lady of the piano! Fortunately I have not to fight with Bachs pieces like a torero! :lol:

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 Post subject: Re: Bach: Prelude & Fugue e-minor, WTC II, BWV 879
PostPosted: Tue Nov 30, 2010 5:26 am 
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musicusblau wrote:
Strange, I think, it must be your computer, because I can´t hear these noises. Did you try it also with another player program?

Yes, I tried Windows Media Player, Real Player, and Quicktime. I hear the popping in all three. Strange that you don't hear it! Wonder if anyone else does?

musicusblau wrote:
Many thanks to a great lady of the piano! Fortunately I have not to fight with Bachs pieces like a torero! :lol:

Well if you do, then at least now you look like one! :lol: (I will let you try to solve this riddle on your own before I explain this remark.)

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 Post subject: Re: Bach: Prelude & Fugue e-minor, WTC II, BWV 879
PostPosted: Tue Nov 30, 2010 8:38 pm 
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Pianolady wrote:
Quote:
Yes, I tried Windows Media Player, Real Player, and Quicktime. I hear the popping in all three. Strange that you don't hear it!


I only have listened to it with Wavelab 6.0. Now I have tried VLC Media Player and I have found out, that you are right. I hear the two short clicks, seems to be a kind of a short digital interuption or distortion. I can´t explain that phenomenon. Originally the wave-file was recorded with 192000 Khz and 24 bit, so that I can save them on a DVD-Audio, which I can play with my new DVD-Audio/SACD-player. It´s the highest sound-quality you can reach with a player device today. In the original wave-file there are no "pops". Strange, strange, strange... :? :x
But thank you very much for your advice, I never would have discovered it, because I usually only listen in WaveLab to my own audio-files, but I feel quite helpless in that moment, because I don´t know the reason and so I don´t know how to change it. I only can hope, that in future I will not have such noises in my recordings. :? :cry:

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 Post subject: Re: Bach: Prelude & Fugue e-minor, WTC II, BWV 879
PostPosted: Sun Dec 05, 2010 11:24 am 
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Hi Andreas,

there is in the analysis menu of Wavelab a function that detects the digital errors. It can also repair them but I found that correcting by hand performs better. It detects three errors in your file at 13s705.7ms, 2mm45s844.2 and 2 mn45s844.8. Both last ones are too close for being heard separately. They may be due to synchronisation losses between an audio interface and a computer or within a digital recorder, which may happen more often at 192 kHz than at 44 kHz sampling rate. Can you hear a difference between recording at 44 and recording at 192 ?


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 Post subject: Re: Bach: Prelude & Fugue e-minor, WTC II, BWV 879
PostPosted: Sun Dec 05, 2010 12:24 pm 
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Hi Didier,
thank you so much for your help, my friend! :D I will look for that analyse function this evening and see, if I´m able to correct these digital errors manually. In every case I will give you a report here, if I had success or not. So, it would be very kind, if you look once more later here, please.
Yes, I can hear a difference between a recording of 44,1 Khz and 192 Khz, at least with my good speakers and my amplifier. The sound is "fuller", "richer" and more of the original sound and ambience is kept in the recording. I have to admit, that the difference may be sometimes is not too big, but I can hear it clearly. Very clear for me is the difference of quality between a wave-file and a mp3-file, which sometimes seems to be like a difference of day and night, because of all that sound-reduction in the mp3-file.
I have played with the thought to record on SACD´s, but I think, a special equipment is necessary for this, and that´s too exensive for me. But later I found out, that WaveLab has the possibility of burning DVD-Audios and so I only had to buy a DVD-Audio-player device (which was not so expensive). (I have a nice combination player now, which can play SACD´s and DVD-Audios. It´s also nice to listen to great interpretations on a purchased SACD.)
I always record with a 16m cable, which goes from my living-room (where my grand-piano is) to my working-room in the first stage of my house (where my computer is). From a simple mixing console the cable goes directly into the sound-card of my computer (Audiophile 192 by M-audio). With that sound-card you can make recordings up to 192 Khz/32 bit. I have to say, I never had such audible "digital errors" until now, though I often have recorded at 192 Khz (but in german there is a clever sentence: Einmal ist immer das erste Mal (attempt of translation: there always is a moment, which is the first one :lol: ). But if this happens more often, I have to think, if I have to return back to 96 Khz (I have recorded the complete WTC I-set with that sampling rate without any problems of digital errors).

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 Post subject: Re: Bach: Prelude & Fugue e-minor, WTC II, BWV 879
PostPosted: Sun Dec 05, 2010 1:18 pm 
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Andreas, the difference that you hear may be due rather to your digital-analogue converter performing better at 192 than at 44, than to the audio files themeselves. For fair comparison, you should listen both files at 192 by converting the 44 one to 192. Regarding mp3, it depends on the rate. I measured that the difference between a piano wav file and its 320 kbit/s mp3 translation is typically 60 dB RMS lower. Even Deutsche Grammophon is proposing 320 kbit/s mp3. :wink:


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 Post subject: Re: Bach: Prelude & Fugue e-minor, WTC II, BWV 879
PostPosted: Sun Dec 05, 2010 7:59 pm 
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Thanks once more very much for your useful help. I have improved the file and corrected all digital errors manually (I also have tried out the automatically correction of the digital errors, but it didn´t help too much, I still could hear the "pop"-noises), so that you now hear no more "pop"-noises at the two places and I have cut out my two slips, so that´s a quite perfect-recording now.

I also have tried out to convert a 44 Khz-file to 192 Khz for to test, if it really only is the digital-analog-converter, which makes me believe, that 192 Khz-files sound better. It´s not like that. I don´t hear a too big difference between the 44 Khz and the to 192 Khz converted 44 Khz-file.
Whereas the originally recorded 192 Khz-files sounds a bit better concerning richness, fullness of tone and ambience. Don´t you think, that more of the sound can be kept with a higher sample rate?

I have learned many useful things by you this weekend, Didier. I really thank you very much! :D

Here is my improved file, Chris, could you replace my old one, please? I think, I also will improve my video on YouTube soon.

Bach - BWV 879 - Das Wolhtemperierte Clavier II - Prelude and Fugue No.10 in E minor (9:28)

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Last edited by musicusblau on Sun Dec 05, 2010 8:49 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Bach: Prelude & Fugue e-minor, WTC II, BWV 879
PostPosted: Sun Dec 05, 2010 8:44 pm 
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Okay, it has been replaced !

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 Post subject: Re: Bach: Prelude & Fugue e-minor, WTC II, BWV 879
PostPosted: Sun Dec 05, 2010 8:48 pm 
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Techneut wrote:
Quote:
Okay, it has been replaced !


Thank you, Chris! :D

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 Post subject: Re: Bach: Prelude & Fugue e-minor, WTC II, BWV 879
PostPosted: Mon Dec 06, 2010 12:33 am 
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musicusblau wrote:
Don´t you think, that more of the sound can be kept with a higher sample rate?


There is a debate about this issue in the audio community and an increasing agreement that there is no improvement above 96 kHz. Anyway, I don't hear any diifference between 44 and 192 on my recording and monitoring system. Two takes recorded on this evening:

192 kHz
44 kHz translated in 192 kHz


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 Post subject: Re: Bach: Prelude & Fugue e-minor, WTC II, BWV 879
PostPosted: Fri Dec 10, 2010 9:07 pm 
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Dear Didier,
thank you very much for these very nice and useful impressions. What a pity you haven´t performed the pieces completely because they are so nicely and musically played! I´m sorry to answer so late. On Wednesday we had our annual advent concert at school and I had to conduct the "Moldau", so I was very busy and had no time to be online.

I think, with my monitoring system I can hear a more or less little difference between the two files. I have an amplifier by Arcam and two nice (high-end) speakers by Myro (their philosophy is to make the "Transienten", that means the beginning of the development of each tone, the first half wave, as natural as possible, see here for further information, if you like: http://www.myro.de, see "status quo", download the pdf-file, unfortunately for you it is all in german.).
In my opinion the difference is in the "atmosphere of sound". The 192-file sounds a bit fuller, has more soul, has more of the "room" and atmosphere of the whole sound and ambience, it sounds profounder, whereas the 44-file sounds a bit more "flaty", not so "fully" respective "roundly", but instead it sounds a bit "directer" and also a bit more superficial concerning the sound. Have you changed the positions of your microphones between the two takes, may be a bit closer to the piano in the 44-file?

Such comparisons are very interesting for me. Yesterday my step-father was here and we compared also a 44-file with a 192-file of one of my Bach-recordings. We found that the difference is obvious. The 192-file has more of the whole original sound and ambience than the 44-file. In our case I have recorded originally with 192 Khz and I have reduced the samplerate to 44 Khz for comparison, so just reverse than you did. But even your "polished up" version of 44 to 192 does not really sound like your true 192-file for my ears.
After the comparison described we listened to the 192 kbit/44 Hz mp3-file and there again is a clear reduction of quality compared with the 44-wave-file, of course.

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