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Qobuz’s experts gather all the essentials of each genre. These albums have marked music history and become major landmarks.

With the Ideal Discography you (re)discover legendary recordings, all whilst building on your musical knowledge.

Albums

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Veruschka

Ennio Morricone

Film Soundtracks - Released January 1, 1971 | Gdm

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Bach: Concertos for 2, 3 & 4 Harpsichords, BWV 1060 - 1065

Gustav Leonhardt

Classical - Released January 28, 2022 | Warner Classics

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Quem Sabe Isso Quer Dizer Amor

Maria Gadú

World - Released December 3, 2021 | Slap

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Buena Vista Social Club

Buena Vista Social Club

World - Released September 17, 2021 | World Circuit

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International bestselling band The Buena Vista Social Club introduced Son Cubano, the first Afro-Cuban sound, to music lovers across the globe. However, their record was lucky to have ever come into existence at all. This album (which went on to sell over 8 million copies worldwide) was recorded in 1996 at the Egrem studio in Havana and was organised at the very last minute, replacing another session. Initially, the plan was to bring together Cuban and Malian musicians, but it later transpired that the African musicians had not received their visas. The altered project saw Nick Gold, founder of the British label World Circuit, Ry Cooder, the famous American producer and guitarist, and Juan de Marcos González, conductor of the Afro-Cuban All Stars who had just released their first tribute album to the biggest Cuban bands of the 50s, record an album with local musicians⁠—possibly one of the wisest decisions of their career.The record features some of the best Cuban musicians, including bassist Orlando 'Cachaíto' López, trumpeter Manuel 'Guajiro' Mirabal and Barbarito Torres, an expert on the laúd, a small Cuban lute, as well as some veteran singers who came out of retirement to record these tracks. Compay Segundo (89), Pio Leiva (80), Ibrahim Ferrer (69), Omara Portuondo (66) and Eliades Ochoa (50) all gathered around the piano played by Ruben Gonzalez (78), who was also recording another album during this time.Called the Buena Vista Social Club in reference to the famous Havana club where traditional musicians used to meet prior to the 1930s, the album was discreetly released in 1997. Gradually, glowing reviews and positive word-of-mouth attracted the attention of the general public, which was further heightened by the Grammy Award they won that same year. The alchemy between the seasoned vocals, the genius of the musicians and the ever-fresh flavour of these forgotten hits is simply perfect. The result is strikingly authentic, and it’s impossible not to feel the genuine joy felt by these talented and mischievous musicians.In 1998, the original BVSC line-up put on three concerts: two in Amsterdam and one in Carnegie Hall in New York. Wim Wenders, friend of Ry Cooder, was behind the camera during these exceptional performances. He was also behind the recording sessions in Cuba for Ibrahim Ferrer’s first solo album, which was the main source of material for the film Buena Vista Social Club. Released in 1999, this documentary served to cement this short-lived group’s status as legends.For most of these artists, this album marked the start of short, international careers. Compay Segundo and Ruben Gonzalez died in 2003, Ibrahim Ferrer in 2005 and Orlando 'Cachaíto' López in 2009. Some of the original band members continued to tour the world under the name Orquesta Buena Vista Social Club and, in October 2015, they were the first Cuban musicians to be welcomed at the White House following the decline of the relationship between Cuba and the USA, demonstrating the huge cultural importance of this record. © Benjamin Minimum/Qobuz
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Chega de Saudade (Remastered Edition)

João Gilberto

World - Released April 2, 1959 | Ipanema Discos - Atlantic

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Chega de Saudade (1959) is the first album by Bahian musician João Gilberto, whose reputation as a genius had already begun to grow following his studio work with other artists. Chega de Saudade didn’t just kick-start João Gilberto’s solo career, it also gave rise to Bossa Nova, a musical genre that set Brazilian music on a whole new trajectory. Soft vocals, inspired by American jazz, combined with a new kind of guitar rhythm (which would eventually be termed "bossa rhythm") were the definitive elements that consolidated his album as the spark that started this new musical movement.This new way of playing the instrument became popular among the younger generations of the time and inspired musicians like Gilberto Gil, Caetano Veloso, Jorge Ben, Chico Buarque and Milton Nascimento. At the same time, João Gilberto also managed to win over the older generation with Chega de Saudade: although revolutionary for its time, the album didn’t forget the musical roots of Brazil. His repertoire includes compositions by renowned artists such as Ary Barroso, Geraldo Pereira and Dorival Caymmi, with each piece of music being  given a fresh new twist.A year before his solo debut, João Gilberto got involved with the album Canção de Amor Demais by Elizeth Cardoso, playing the guitar in the song Chega de Saudade, composed by Vinicius de Moraes and Tom Jobim. In this record, you can already hear the beginnings of the "bossa rhythm". However, it wasn’t until the release of the LP Chega de Saudade and João Gilberto’s version of the song that Bossa Nova was finally consolidated. The album was produced by Aloysio de Oliveira and features arrangements and orchestral direction by Tom Jobim, making this album an instant success, both critically and commercially. Including classics such as Desafinado, Chega de Saudade and Bim Bom, who can be surprised? © Nathália Padua/Bananas
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Händel: Suites pour clavecin

Pierre Hantaï

Chamber Music - Released November 20, 2020 | Mirare

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The new album from Pierre Hantaï, who is momentarily moving away from his dear Scarlatti, is a veritable gem! The French harpsichordist opens this masterful recital recorded in January 2020 in Haarlem (Netherlands) by Nicolas Bartholomée's team and dedicated to four suites by Georg Friedrich Haendel through one of the least known, HWV 426, the first issue of Book I of 1720. Immediately, his fingers immerse this eclectic, cosmopolitan world, where neighbouring Italy and France collide seamlessly, in a resplendent sunshine. Once again, the phrasing dazzles as much as the science that the worthy heir of Gustav Leonhardt displays in grasping the diversity of character as he does in painting landscapes in changing light.Here, the Suite in F major, HWV 427 is a miracle. It is a moving, opening Adagio, with an unheard-of melancholy fullness, in which the "art of touching the harpsichord", of singing, of making polyphony shine, is carried high. So much so that the perpetual movement of the Allegro that follows may initially startle you, Pierre Hantaï's metrical regularity is astonishing, even in the more ornate repeats. However, the lines never seem tight, which makes you look at the choreography, undoubtedly reproducing the outlines of an imaginary Gavotte: an unforgettable sensation! The second Adagio is a sort of prelude, before a bugle fugue, not so distant here from the most joyful fugues of J. S. Bach's Well-Tempered Clavier.The focus of the recital is the spacious and rather sombre Suite in D minor, HWV 428; at first the traditional Präludium, Allemande, Courante, then suddenly, a long Air whose theme is tenderly unfolded, morphing into a strange world of "harmonic" ramblings, as if improvised, launched like rockets by the harpsichordist - a work in its own right!On all levels, an enthralling recital, to be treasured, which will give many people the opportunity to enjoy Handel's Harpsichord Suites once again. © Pierre-Yves Lascar/Qobuz
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Das Pfefferminz-Experiment

Marius Müller-Westernhagen

Rock - Released November 8, 2019 | Polydor

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Keep on Keeping On. Studio Albums 1970-74 (2019 Remaster)

Curtis Mayfield

Soul - Released February 22, 2019 | Rhino

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A guitarist worshipped by Jimi Hendrix, an insanely good falsetto singer that even Prince looked up to, an author heavily involved in the American civil rights movement and a top-tier songwriter: Curtis Mayfield was a man of many talents. His groovy symphonies helped form solid links between funk, jazz, blues, soul and traditional gospel. After making his name with The Impressions in the 60s, he embarked on a solo career in 1970. This box set named Keep On Keeping On contains the singer’s first four studio albums, each remastered in Hi-Res 24-Bit quality: Curtis (1970), Roots (1971), Back to the World (1973) and Sweet Exorcist (1974). Here, the rhythm'n'blues enjoy a second life, supported by a wah-wah guitar, careful percussion and an always airy string section. Every topic concerned is a mini-tragedy, socially engaged, anchored in traditional gospel music. The masterful arranging of these albums (especially his masterpiece Curtis, and Roots) can be considered rivals to Marvin Gaye’s What’s Going On. It is worth mentioning that this 1970-1974 box set does not include the soundtrack to Superfly, Gordon Parks Jr.’s 1972 film which contains the singles Pusherman and Freddie’s Dead. © Marc Zisman/Qobuz
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Now He Sings, Now He Sobs

Chick Corea

Jazz - Released January 1, 1968 | Blue Note Records

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Walton: Symphony No.1 in B-Flat Minor

André Previn

Symphonies - Released November 16, 2018 | RCA Victor

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This is an absolute MUST LISTEN. One of André Previn’s greatest recordings captured in the 1960s in London – truly a golden era for the American conductor! Here, the London Symphony Orchestra, galvanised and operating in the very heart of its repertoire, is at its most beautiful: the brass section is electric (listen to the Scherzo!), the woodwinds are poetic and the strings unrelenting in their rhythmicity... What sets this recording apart from any other are the very fast tempos, always kept within bounds by André Previn, that help unveil Walton’s great architectural sense in the most unique way – check out the magnificent coda of the initial Allegro assai; throughout this interpretation, Sibelius and Hindemith influences progressively fade away in favour of a truly distinctive orchestration and management of musical time that make this score what it really is: a real oddity in the British musical landscape of the 1930s. André Previn’s performance on the 26th and 27th of August 1966 – he went on to create a new version with the RPO for Telarc − is all the more striking when we consider that around the same time, with the same musicians, he was working on the complete symphonies of Ralph Vaughan Williams which lack in poetry, most probably suffering from the type of analytical frankness that actually exalts Walton’s Symphony No.1. A few years later, he also recorded Walton’s Symphony No.2 for EMI, again with the LSO. This can be enjoyed with wonderful sound recording by the Decca team, conducted here by James Lock. © Pierre-Yves Lascar
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The Girl From Chickasaw County - The Complete Capitol Masters

Bobbie Gentry

Country - Released August 17, 2018 | Capitol Records Nashville

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More than eight and a half hours of music! Bobby Gentry absolutely deserves such a generous celebration, even though her glory years only really lasted about a decade. Retiring in the early 1980s into total anonymity, this great voice of the 1960s and 1970s is presented here in a deluxe selection. Across 8 records, 177 tracks are brought together: her six studio albums for Capitol (Ode to Billie Joe from 1967, The Delta Sweete and Local Gentry from 1968, Touch ‘Em With Love from 1969, Fancy from 1970 and  Patchwork from 1971), the record she made with Glen Campbell in 1968 and over 70 unreleased tracks including alternative takes, demos, BBC live recordings and all kinds of rarities! Hidden behind the mystery of her premature retirement and the cult following which has only grown with time remain these songs. Bobbie Gentry was more than just a simple country, folk and pop singer like so many others of her generation. Only Bobby could’ve written hits like Mornin' Glory, Fancy, Okolona River Bottom Band, Chickasaw County Child and most famous of all, covered the world over, Ode to Billie Joe, the fascinating story of the suicide of the mysterious Billie Joe McAllister who leapt from Tallahatchie Bridge. In France, Joe Dassin would go on to put a French spin on the song: Billie Joe became Marie-Jeanne and the Tallahatchie Bridge became the bridge over the Garonne…There is class, freedom and striking sensuality in Bobbie Gentry's voice. There are also brilliant arrangements and an instrumentation that line up perfectly with the songs, from slightly kitschy lounge strings (but they're so cool) to a simple guitar that clings to the contours of her voice. Bobbie Gentry was never fully country, fully pop, fully soul or fully folk. She was Bobbie Gentry. Full stop. © Marc Zisman/Qobuz
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A Bach Recital (Mono recording)

Wilhelm Kempff

Classical - Released August 17, 2018 | Decca Music Group Ltd.

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Os Portugueses

Rodrigo Leão

Pop - Released June 29, 2018 | Sony Music Entertainment

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In 2018, Rodrigo Leão, a composer and pianist born in Lisbon in 1964, commemorated 25 years as a solo artist after a decade of immense success with Madredeus, the group he founded alongside Pedro Ayres Magalhães in 1985. Ave Mundi Luminar (Columbia, 1993) was the first milestone in his journey to become one of Portugal's most iconic⁠—and internationally recognised—musicians. This release included the reissue of the soundtrack to a documentary called Portugal, a social portrait (a 2007 television series by Joana Pontes and Antonio Barreto) under the title Os Portugueses (Sony Music, 2018). It features 28 songs, including ten new recordings of tracks originally written for Madredeus (including O Pastor and Guitarra) and Sétima Legião, the pianist’s first band (Mil Maneiras de Amar). One previously unreleased track shines particularly brightly: Restos da vida, performed by Camané, one of today’s greatest Fado singers. Vocalists Selma Uamusse and Ana Vieira also feature in these nostalgic melodies with a chamber music feel, where strings and accordion intertwine with the soft textures of synthesisers and piano.Rodrigo Leão’s Os Portugueses puts the spotlight on the Portuguese language and traditional instrumental music; a clean, unpretentious offering that resonates with the contemporary preference for minimalism. His intimate exploration of the album’s concepts amplifies the characteristic sound of this creator who more than deserves his place in Portugal’s musical history books. The influence of Madredeus is evident throughout the musician’s style, not only in this particular record and the memories it explores but also in his current projects. This record marks the 25th anniversary of his solo career and is a celebration of current Portuguese music. © Ulyses Villanueva/Qobuz
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Mascagni: Cavalleria rusticana / Leoncavallo: Pagliacci

Herbert von Karajan

Opera - Released May 11, 2018 | Deutsche Grammophon (DG)

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Awase

Nik Bärtsch

Jazz - Released May 4, 2018 | ECM

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Once again, the spine, if not the heart of Awase isn’t Nik Bärtsch’s piano. Because whenever the Zurich musician gets his band Ronin going, he builds his music as well as his improvisations around Kaspar Rast’s XXL ability on the drums. As often with this self-proclaimed zen funk gang, the hypnotic power of rhythmic motifs gives a supreme unity to this jazz that sounds like no other. The term Awase comes from martial arts, meaning “moving together” in the sense of matching energies. A fitting metaphor for the dynamic precision, tessellated grooves and balletic minimalism of Bärtsch’s crew. Six years have passed since Ronin’s last release, a live recording in Europe and Japan between 2009 and 2011. In the meantime, the quintet has turned into a quartet and integrated a new bassist, Thomy Jordi. A completely new look for Ronin version 2018… A mutation that delivers a new form of freedom and flexibility in their approach to compositions. Their interactions and energy seem to compound! Once again it’s very hard to resist to the hypnotic power of the motifs they string together with superb fluidity over the 65 minutes of Awase. © Max Dembo/Qobuz
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Sweet Dreams

Eurythmics

Pop - Released January 21, 1983 | Sony Music CG

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Two chords on the synthesiser and everything is said! More than enough to recognise the singular sound of Eurythmics, the emblematic band from the 1980s. The tandem of Annie Lennox and Dave Stewart symbolises perfectly this new synth-pop wave (pop in essence, futuristic in form) so typical of this decade during which guitars had almost become personae non-gratae… And while the British duo topped the charts during the entire decade, Sweet Dreams remains their greatest work. On the partition, Dave Stewart dabbled in a darker new wave, a-la Bowie (Love Is A Stranger) and dared venturing into “krautrock” light (Sweet Dreams). He could go funky (I’ve Got An Angel) or even disco (Wrap It Up). On vocals, Annie Lennox is impressive, as always, switching from soul to a bleak singing voice at will. A true classic! © Clotilde Maréchal/Qobuz
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Thriller 25 (Super Deluxe Edition)

Michael Jackson

Soul - Released March 21, 2018 | Epic - Legacy

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Realce

Gilberto Gil

Brazil - Released January 1, 1979 | Palco

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Bartók: Music for Strings, Percussion and Celesta, Sz. 106 - Hindemith: Concert Music for String Orchestra and Brass, Op. 50

Leonard Bernstein

Classical - Released March 2, 2018 | Sony Classical

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Being There (Deluxe Edition)

Wilco

Rock - Released October 29, 1996 | Rhino - Warner Records

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After a magical first work of fairly rough alternative country (A.M.) that was conceived at the time of the turbulent separation of his group Uncle Tupelo, Jeff Tweedy took his time to release a second album with Wilco. Already, the work was ambitious as it was a double album. Blending all their musical similarities, this was an album that from the moment it was released in October 1996 led quite a few journalists to write that Tweedy had signed his own Exile On Main Street. Much like the Rolling Stones’ masterpiece, eclecticism is the crucial ingredient to this mix of basic rock’n’roll, bluegrass, country rock, psychedelia, folk and soul. With loose guitars, pedal steel, brass and unlimited instrumentals, Wilco weaves here an impressive web between the Rolling Stones from their golden age, The Replacements, The Beatles and Big Star from the album Third. Alternating between ballads and electronic soundstorms, Tweedy demonstrates above all else that with a timeless and classical base, he is taking the lead with his grandiose songs and the stunning architecture of his compositions… This remastered Deluxe Edition offers, as well as the original album, fifteen unpublished bonus tracks notably including alternative versions of I Got You and Say You Miss Me alongside a live recording from 12th November 1996 in Troubadour, Los Angeles and a session for the radio station Santa Monica KCRW taken the next day. © MZ/Qobuz