On 2 April 1989 the label TACET was founded in Stuttgart.
We have come up with plenty of ideas to celebrate this big jubilee as is fitting.
After starting off our Blu-ray Discs, which show great promise of success, many more releases will follow in TACET Real Surround Sound. We are also continuing vinyl at full speed after last year's spectacular "Play Backwards" LPs. We are expecting 3 new CD recordings by Evgeni Koroliov alone (Schubert, Stravinsky, Beethoven). Throughout the year, the Auryn Quartet together with Nobuko Imai will delve into a complete recording of the string quintets of Mozart. Just a few days ago, Christoph Ullrich started the utterly crazy complete recording of the 555 piano sonatas of Domenico Scarlatti. The Nederlands Philharmonisch Orkest is playing the symphonies of Gounod. And Wojchiech Rajski is giving us the most beautiful birthday present this summer with his Polish Chamber Philharmonic: he will be completing the first Beethoven symphony cycle in TACET Real Surround Sound. Never before has a recording been in such demand by customers, so persistently over the course of years, as this Ninth. And that is certainly not all…
A very important date for you and us: the High End Show in Munich from 15 to 18 May. We have booked a larger-than-usual stand there in order to present our recordings in the best possible quality. This time it will be in a different way than usual - in the form of "concerts" of our sound carriers. We are offering the music in a sound quality that many people do not know at all. Everyone should find out just what overwhelming experiences are made possible by our recordings. Some will even discover details from the scores that remained hidden at concerts. -
In order to do justice to the music, we shall be playing according to a fixed programme. Thomas Gluck from Sweden will moderate; I shall be helping him, friends and important artists will visit us, but above all the music will be running - longer passages of it than usual. Entire movements, whole works. As I said before, a concert programme. We hope you'll come by and visit us!
Our posters for Download:
A new poster series to celebrate TACET's 25th anniversary has just been finished. Five posters introduce individual aspects of our work that have helped us create an unmistakeable profile over the course of many years: the innovative spirit, a home for artists, special sound, zest for music and constancy of personnel. If any readers would like to hang up any of the posters: just go ahead! The print data are ready here:25 Years of Innovations
Would you like an example? How about ordering number 1, "Premiere - We're Going to the Concert", the first game with music and CD? This enjoyable parlour game took advantage of the fact that one could, for the first time, jump directly to individual pieces of music on a CD - a sensation in those days. With an LP there would have been a wild search for the right alignment groove and plenty of winding with tape systems - neither of which was feasible. On a CD, one simply types "25" and track 25 appears.
- Or how about ordering number 207, the Backwards Boléro, surely the best-selling LP classic of the past year? Just place the needle inside, not outside, with resounding success: there is definitely a better sound where you really need it, namely at the end. Since then, many people have asked why that hasn't always been standard with LPs.
These two products alone have lent more than a fragrance to the music market, but here they simply stand as symbols of our label's uninterrupted power of innovation. Other trailblazing novelties such as TACET Real Surround Sound, created 14 years ago, will - I am convinced - influence the music market to a far greater extent and on a more lasting basis - if they are not already doing so now. And now, the Anniversary Year also has surprises in store...
Artists feel so well looked after at TACET that they don't want to go anywhere else.
TACET recordings remain in the catalogue for many years or even decades. Our artists never come to know the often painful experience when a recording, made with all their heart and soul, suddenly disappears from the market. Thus there are meanwhile 58 different sound carriers by the Auryn Quartet, 16 by Evgeni Koroliov 16, almost everything by the Abegg Trio that they have ever recorded, as is also true of Erika Haase (died in 2013), Hartmut Lindemann, the Gaede Trio and quite a few others.
Musicians love the natural quality of timbres on TACET recordings. A sound engineer colleague once asked me: "Hey, where do you get those timbres from?" Probably from the tube microphones, but also, especially, from the musicians. And from other participants: what other firms spend for the finished recording, TACET does just for the grand piano.
The choice of pieces is made by mutual consent and in partnership. The decision in favour of the artists is made at the beginning, followed by the programme. Ideas of the musicians are often found in the catalogue; frequently they have their own ideas or stimuli from outside, but this is always done in complete compliance and full of enthusiasm. Only this makes possible long-term projects like the complete edition of the Haydn string quartets, the Beethoven symphonies or even the complete sonatas of Scarlatti.
The artistic cover design, the clear layout within the booklets as well, interesting and sensitive introductory texts, translations by native-speaking musicians and many other features contribute to the satisfaction of the musicians.
No wonder the artists regard TACET as their home.
Sound 1 - Stewart Eaton has received a new viola, a valuable item on loan. The Auryn Quartet is rehearsing a piece right now, and he is playing the instrument for the first time. The others can't believe their ears. What is this, then? They hardly recognise their own violist! And suddenly they hear themselves differently as well. They almost forget to continue playing. Soon they themselves sound differently, although nothing having to do with their instruments has changed.
Sound 2 - Evgeni Koroliov is recording a piece by Bach. He could play it flawlessly ten times. But he is not satisfied. He is looking for another sound. "Please turn off your machines - I have to clean things up a bit." He plays just a few single notes, groping for them. Then he repeats the whole piece for the tape, again and again, and each time there is a little bit more of what he is looking for. Just a little bit less pressure and the tone would no longer sound at all. That's it. A fragile sound bordering on nothingness.
Sound 3 - An old tube microphone makes a different noise floor from that of a modern transistor microphone. It makes a bit more noise, and it is somewhat more irregular. Sometimes the tube is too old or has had a bad day. Then it "sizzles" a bit, or it "throttles". If things get too bad, then it must be replaced or, if there are no more spare tubes, the entire microphone must be replaced. But if the rustling remains below the subjective auditory threshold, then I love this somewhat unstable, living sound that doesn't disturb the music, but even enriches it. I then think of the canvas of a painter, which is also visible and yet does not apparently have anything to do with what he is painting.
Which of these components - the instrument, the playing, the transmission - exerts which influence, cannot be determined. And there are still others, such as the space, for example. All these components together, in their entirety, determine what is being passionately sought by all participants in every single release of the label TACET. For the past 25 years.
Lost in Music for 25 Years
25 years, means
14 blu-ray discs
400 hours of music
and it never, ever, ever gets boring! That's TACET's range of products.
25 years ago it was enough to bring out a CD of a well-known artist with a programme of his or her choice and sales success was guaranteed. Today you could say, to paraphrase Karl Valentin, everything has already been recorded, but not yet by everybody. To preserve an artist A with programme B in room C so that the sound is at least easily recognisable can now be done by almost any mobile phone. Why should you spend money on it? If the artist is famous and has something personal to say, then a concert will always seem more rewarding.
Photography is similar. In the past a photo was an expensive affair. Today the cheapest digital camera delivers razor sharp images. Anyone wanting something special no longer takes snapshots. Presentation of photos is becoming ever more important. This is demonstrated, for example, in the cost and effort that goes into wedding photographs. My wife and I have just one; without feet...
As a Tonmeister I could never accept "the disc" as a poor substitute for a live concert. I have always tried to regard it as its own artistic medium. Today, more than ever, it is important to present works and interpretations in a special but meaningful way and, indeed, in a way that is not possible in a concert. It is important to support the artist, to challenge him, to show him the differences between concert and disc and to go with him on an adventurous treasure hunt beyond the concert hall. Unusual and well-thought-out recordings are always interesting.
That is how we wish to continue in years to come.