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Thread: Best Bruckner symphony cycle

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    Senior Member KenOC's Avatar
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    Default Best Bruckner symphony cycle

    Apologies if this has been gone through before. But looking for recommendations, hopefully with some "whys". Thanks!


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    Senior Member Itullian's Avatar
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    Seems like I go for the Jochum on DG and the Wand most often.
    I like the atmosphere and the close up recording of the Jochum and the clarity of the Wand.

    I also have the Chailly on Decca for the spectacular sound.

    I also have Karajan- majestic
    Haitink clarity
    Celibidache- Zen.....................

    I also have a thing about listening to them without side breaks, so that plays a big part in which recording I choose.
    Last edited by Itullian; Apr-29-2014 at 04:29.
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    I would avoid the Solti unless you like overpowering buzzsaw brass.

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    Senior Member Couac Addict's Avatar
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    Haitink/Concertgebouw

    Funnily enough, I wouldn't recommend him for any particular symphony as I think there's better conductors out there. I prefer the pick'n'mix approach rather than box sets. However, the cycle is very balanced and his direct approach throughout keeps it from being to hot/cold.
    This space for rent.

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    Post deleted. Not the thread I would participate in.
    Last edited by hpowders; Apr-29-2014 at 19:04.
    Facts don't care about your feelings.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Couac Addict View Post
    Haitink/Concertgebouw

    Funnily enough, I wouldn't recommend him for any particular symphony as I think there's better conductors out there. I prefer the pick'n'mix approach rather than box sets. However, the cycle is very balanced and his direct approach throughout keeps it from being to hot/cold.
    Saw Haitink take the RCM orchestra with Bruckner 8, was pretty amazing.

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    I really appreciate the Tintner set on Naxos.
    Excellent, detailed recordings.
    Deep, insightful interpretations.

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    Senior Member flamencosketches's Avatar
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    Surprised this thread never took off.

    The only Bruckner cycle I have is Barenboim/Berlin Philharmonic on Warner...:



    It's really good! Especially the last three symphonies. But it is kind of an unconventional pick and I'm not sure if anyone would call it the best.

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    Senior Member Azol's Avatar
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    I'd say Wand's and Tintner's are the two very much recommended boxsets. Best B3 (Tintner) and B5 (Wand) out there.
    Haven't heard Simone Young (yet).
    Gerd Schaller's boxset on Profil is super-complete (and cheap!) but a bit boring here and there, I'd give it a 7/10.
    Celibidache on EMI is not for everyone, so to speak. Love it mostly with a couple of notable exceptions (ahem... B9 Scherzo... ahem). Best B4 and B6 out there.
    Jochum is... not my cup of tea, let alone a full box of that. Too idiomatic, too much fiddling around with the score, guess if you believe Bruckner is a boring composer you'd like this much more.
    Chailly is great at least in several performances I own in my collection, so his boxset is on my radar for now. Chailly B7 is one of the best out there.
    Skrowaczewski gets many recommendations but I haven't had the time to dig into his Bruckner output yet, on my radar also.

    But I suspect the best Bruckner boxset is always going to be the next one.

    P.S. By all means, get Bruckner's choral works by Matthew Best on Hyperion to fill out your Bruckner collection, you won't regret it, it's awesome! 10/10 for performance and recording quality.
    Last edited by Azol; Oct-25-2020 at 16:29.

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    Senior Member Brahmsianhorn's Avatar
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    Karajan, and it’s not even close

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    Senior Member Skakner's Avatar
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    For a starter this is a decent choice.


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    Senior Member mbhaub's Avatar
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    Ditto Karajan. However...the Camerata set (with a completed 9th) is spectacular, too, if you can find it. Eichhorn and Sieghart share the duties. Old Guschlbauer did no. 0 - magnificently, too. The orchestra in Linz plays like they're possessed, the sound is superb - better than Karajan. But the current asking price is jaw dropping - nearly $600 on the used market. Great set, though. It's mostly Nowak, but Carragan in 2 and Samale/Cohrs 9th.21GA1NE665L.jpg
    Last edited by mbhaub; Oct-25-2020 at 18:07.

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    Solti/CSO - Topnotch
    Barenboim/CSO - great set, superbly recorded by DG

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    Senior Member Knorf's Avatar
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    For no. 1-9 (i.e. not a complete cycle), I agree with Karajan as a clear leader, but for my money Skrowaczewski and Blomstedt are close, and Wand not far off at all, nor Haitink.

    Young for me is out of the running for a top recommendation only because she chose only first versions, which for a few symphonies are quite far from my personal preference (mainly nos. 3, 4, & 8), but her performances are outstanding in every way.

    Since Skrowaczewski is actually a complete cycle (not just 1-9), I think actually his is my top recommendation.

    ETA: Solti and Barenboim are out of the running completely as recommendations for me. Solti because he rarely rises above anything more than crudely manipulated bombast, and Barenboim because his various cycles are all plagued by extremely clumsy tempo distortions and general over fussiness.

    Tintner is not a recommendation for me because although his interpretations are great, he never has anything other than pretty amateurish sounding orchestras and less than great recording quality.

    I have mixed feelings about Jochum. Recommendable overall, certainly, but there are a few assorted little quibbles for me. There are superior options in my view.

    On my "to hear" list: Schaller and Gielen.
    Last edited by Knorf; Oct-25-2020 at 19:00.

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    Quote Originally Posted by mbhaub View Post
    ..
    But the current asking price is jaw dropping - nearly $600 on the used market.....
    Yikes!!........

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