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Thread: What do you think of Barenboim's Bruckner Symphony cycle?

  1. #1
    karajan
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    Default What do you think of Barenboim's Bruckner Symphony cycle?

    I recently downloaded the whole set of Barenboim and i have heard his rendition of the fifth symphony and i must say it was quite magnificent!

    What is your opinion? Is it great or bad?

    Also could someone be kind enough to tell me the most expansive version of all of Bruckner's symphonies?

    /karajan

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    Senior Member joen_cph's Avatar
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    I suppose it´s the Teldec recordings, not the old DG set, which I haven´t heard. I have found several of the Teldec symphony recordings to be great - 5, 4 & 7 in particular. The degree of polish in the performances vary unusually much in that set IMO, I would think the amount of rehearsel time too.

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    karajan
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    It is WarnerClassics and the orchestra playing is Berlin Philharmoniker

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    Senior Member joen_cph's Avatar
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    Yes, that is the Teldec.

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    Senior Member Bone's Avatar
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    Teldec set is very good - not many better 5's or 9's out there. I do have a problem with 4: the horn playing in the first movement at the conclusion is some of the most crass noise I've ever heard on a recording. I think the soloist warbled on a note and then just decided to trash the performance.

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  8. #6
    karajan
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    But otherwise are the other 7 symphonies top-notch?

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    TalkingHead
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bone View Post
    Teldec set is very good - not many better 5's or 9's out there. I do have a problem with 4: the horn playing in the first movement at the conclusion is some of the most crass noise I've ever heard on a recording. I think the soloist warbled on a note and then just decided to trash the performance.
    I know what you mean! It's all gone perfectly, then you fluff some passage that was under your fingers no problem ... aagh, you feel like throwing your instrument on the floor and stomping on it. OK to do so in rehearsal, not live before a paying public. Just about OK in a recording session, but don't expect to get any further stand-in jobs.

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    Senior Member joen_cph's Avatar
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    I wouldn´t say top-notch IMO, but opinions vary immensely in these matters ... There aren´t any complete Bruckner sets where you´ll find the consistently best recording of the symphonies. I like Barenboim´s brisk, engaged and fluent tempi though, but at times there needs to be more coordination. In the 9th I prefer more ebb-and-flow effects than his reading there (which is more clear and steady than it is the rule with him) as heard for instance in Jochum/DG or, to a less extent, Jochum/EMI. For an alternative, very broad reading, Karajan/EMI is an interesting 4th.

    My own preferences are

    00 - Inbal,Frankfurt
    0 - Inbal,Frankfurt
    1 - Abbado,VPO; Inbal,Frankfurt; Tintner
    2 - Inbal, Frankfurt; Skrowaczewski; Simone Young (because of the rare original version): I don´t get Giulini/EMI.
    3 - Inbal/Frankfurt;Celibidache/DG (very different from his EMI), Skrowaczewski. Kubelik,BayrRSO is the rare 2nd version of the work, but otherwise not very interesting.
    4 - Barenboim,BPO; Karajan/EMI; Celibidache/DG (very different from his EMI version); Abendroth; Suitner; Konwitschny; Inbal,Frankfurt, mainly interesting because it´s a quite different version of the symphony. I don´t get Böhm.
    5 - Barenboim/BPO; Welser-Möst/EMI; Abendroth
    6 - Blomstedt/Decca; Celibidache/EMI; Skrowaczewski
    7 - Karajan/EMI; Barenboim,BPO; Inbal,Frankfurt; D´Avalos/ASV; Blomstedt,Gewandhaus
    8 - Haitink, CtGeb 1981; Furtwängler 1944; Wand; Inbal,Frankfurt is interesting mostly because it´s the original version of the symphony.
    9 - Jochum/DG; Furtwängler 1944

    I haven´t heard enough of Wand´s recordings to fully know about them, but it´s an impressive set, not at least his various 8th´s.
    Last edited by joen_cph; Apr-08-2013 at 17:50.

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    Senior Member Xaltotun's Avatar
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    Oh, I love Barenboim's Teldec set to death! Some additional bonuses it has are a recording of the hard to find choral piece "Helgoland", and the fact that all the symphonies are on their respective discs, no swapping.
    Wäre das Faktum wahr, – wäre der außerordentliche Fall wirklich eingetreten, daß die politische Gesetzgebung der Vernunft übertragen, der Mensch als Selbstzweck respektiert und behandelt, das Gesetz auf den Thron erhoben, und wahre Freiheit zur Grundlage des Staatsgebäudes gemacht worden, so wollte ich auf ewig von den Musen Abschied nehmen, und dem herrlichsten aller Kunstwerke, der Monarchie der Vernunft, alle meine Thätigkeit widmen.

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    Senior Member Bone's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by joen_cph View Post
    I wouldn´t say top-notch IMO, but opinions vary immensely in these matters ... There aren´t any complete Bruckner sets where you´ll find the consistently best recording of the symphonies. I like Barenboim´s brisk, engaged and fluent tempi though, but at times there needs to be more coordination. In the 9th I prefer more ebb-and-flow effects than his reading there (which is more clear and steady than it is the rule with him) as heard for instance in Jochum/DG or, to a less extent, Jochum/EMI. For an alternative, very broad reading, Karajan/EMI is an interesting 4th.

    My own preferences are

    00 - Inbal,Frankfurt
    0 - Inbal,Frankfurt
    1 - Abbado,VPO; Inbal,Frankfurt; Tintner
    2 - Inbal, Frankfurt; Skrowaczewski; Simone Young (because of the rare original version): I don´t get Giulini/EMI.
    3 - Inbal/Frankfurt;Celibidache/DG (very different from his EMI), Skrowaczewski. Kubelik,BayrRSO is the rare 2nd version of the work, but otherwise not very interesting.
    4 - Barenboim,BPO; Karajan/EMI; Celibidache/DG (very different from his EMI version); Abendroth; Suitner; Konwitschny; Inbal,Frankfurt, mainly interesting because it´s a quite different version of the symphony. I don´t get Böhm.
    5 - Barenboim/BPO; Welser-Möst/EMI; Abendroth
    6 - Blomstedt/Decca; Celibidache/EMI; Skrowaczewski
    7 - Karajan/EMI; Barenboim,BPO; Inbal,Frankfurt; D´Avalos/ASV; Blomstedt,Gewandhaus
    8 - Haitink, CtGeb 1981; Furtwängler 1944; Wand; Inbal,Frankfurt is interesting mostly because it´s the original version of the symphony.
    9 - Jochum/DG; Furtwängler 1944

    I haven´t heard enough of Wand´s recordings to fully know about them, but it´s an impressive set, not at least his various 8th´s.
    Love the Inbal recordings! Appreciate your depth of knowledge in Bruckner and I look forward to hearing your recommendations soon.

    I do hope you'll give HvK 8 / VPO another listen. I look forward to hearing Haitink's 8 (another vastly underrated Brucknerian). Have you heard the Abbado or Blomstedt 4's?

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    Senior Member joen_cph's Avatar
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    I do hope you'll give HvK 8 / VPO another listen. I look forward to hearing Haitink's 8 (another vastly underrated Brucknerian). Have you heard the Abbado or Blomstedt 4's?
    I don´t recall hearing them, but I´ve somewhat settled with my collection & listening to Anton has been a bit on a stand-still recently, though I appreciate him a lot as one of the definitely most important and enjoyable composers. The HvK 8th didn´t make it to my "parnassus", but has a lot of recommendations by others of course. Haitink did several 8ths, the 81 is superb. The Inbal 3rd should be heard by everyone interested in the composer

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    Quote Originally Posted by joen_cph View Post
    I don´t recall hearing them, but I´ve somewhat settled with my collection & listening to Anton has been a bit on a stand-still recently, though I appreciate him a lot as one of the definitely most important and enjoyable composers. The HvK 8th didn´t make it to my "parnassus", but has a lot of recommendations by others of course. Haitink did several 8ths, the 81 is superb. The Inbal 3rd should be heard by everyone interested in the composer
    I decided to be wayward and pick up the Barenboim/Chicago Symphony set; have always liked Barenboim's conducting, and the Chicago Symphony's sound. No-one else seems to like it, either, which I find encouraging.

    So far, so good; he brings life and clarity to these works in equal balance, without being overly Teutonic in approach. More musical, less monumental.

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    Quote Originally Posted by karajan View Post
    I recently downloaded the whole set of Barenboim and i have heard his rendition of the fifth symphony and i must say it was quite magnificent!

    What is your opinion? Is it great or bad?

    Also could someone be kind enough to tell me the most expansive version of all of Bruckner's symphonies?

    /karajan
    Ach du lieber. You ought to know Herbert!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bone View Post
    Teldec set is very good - not many better 5's or 9's out there. I do have a problem with 4: the horn playing in the first movement at the conclusion is some of the most crass noise I've ever heard on a recording. I think the soloist warbled on a note and then just decided to trash the performance.
    Beastly horn player, absolutely beastly!

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    Quote Originally Posted by joen_cph View Post
    I wouldn´t say top-notch IMO, but opinions vary immensely in these matters ... There aren´t any complete Bruckner sets where you´ll find the consistently best recording of the symphonies. I like Barenboim´s brisk, engaged and fluent tempi though, but at times there needs to be more coordination. In the 9th I prefer more ebb-and-flow effects than his reading there (which is more clear and steady than it is the rule with him) as heard for instance in Jochum/DG or, to a less extent, Jochum/EMI. For an alternative, very broad reading, Karajan/EMI is an interesting 4th.

    My own preferences are

    00 - Inbal,Frankfurt
    0 - Inbal,Frankfurt
    1 - Abbado,VPO; Inbal,Frankfurt; Tintner
    2 - Inbal, Frankfurt; Skrowaczewski; Simone Young (because of the rare original version): I don´t get Giulini/EMI.
    3 - Inbal/Frankfurt;Celibidache/DG (very different from his EMI), Skrowaczewski. Kubelik,BayrRSO is the rare 2nd version of the work, but otherwise not very interesting.
    4 - Barenboim,BPO; Karajan/EMI; Celibidache/DG (very different from his EMI version); Abendroth; Suitner; Konwitschny; Inbal,Frankfurt, mainly interesting because it´s a quite different version of the symphony. I don´t get Böhm.
    5 - Barenboim/BPO; Welser-Möst/EMI; Abendroth
    6 - Blomstedt/Decca; Celibidache/EMI; Skrowaczewski
    7 - Karajan/EMI; Barenboim,BPO; Inbal,Frankfurt; D´Avalos/ASV; Blomstedt,Gewandhaus
    8 - Haitink, CtGeb 1981; Furtwängler 1944; Wand; Inbal,Frankfurt is interesting mostly because it´s the original version of the symphony.
    9 - Jochum/DG; Furtwängler 1944

    I haven´t heard enough of Wand´s recordings to fully know about them, but it´s an impressive set, not at least his various 8th´s.
    I bow to you: this is a wonderful list. I have just about all these recordings - apart from the Abendroths,D'avalos, Blomstedt Leipzig - I have the Dresden -, Young and the EMI Karajans. I really do love the Giulini 2nd and it's a symphony I rate very, very highly, so it's not an off the cuff assessment, and though I find Bohm generally unexciting I DO like that VPO 4th.
    If you can , try to hear Sanderlings 4 on Profil. His Gewandhaus 3 is also great, as is is Bavarian 7.
    Best regards.

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