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Thread: The struggle with Bruckner was worth it - now I need your help!

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    Default The struggle with Bruckner was worth it - now I need your help!

    After years of trying, I finally get (and love) Bruckner. I am sitting here working with tears welling up in my eyes listening to the 2nd movement of the 7th Symphony. I listed to the 5th and 9th earlier. Holy Cow - the 5th is a killer - the Scherzo.That Scherzo! What a Scherzo! Sorry, excited, but I repeated that amazing Scherzo several times.

    I'm going to chalk this long overdue victory to Harnoncourt, because his 5th is so magnificent, and since the only wrong he can do is with Mozart, I had to get it (his Schubert and Haydn are revelatory). I was totally blown away. I have the Jochum set, which I'm listening to as well, but I gotta get Harnoncourt's 9th and the other Bruckner he's recorded.

    Now, I like every sub-genre of classical music - opera, chamber, choral, all of it. So if you all have other Bruckner recordings and works you would recommend, I would appreciate it.

    My guys are Beethoven, Mozart and Schubert, and I have a feeling Bruckner might take his place amongst them.
    Last edited by gellio; Sep-15-2019 at 01:44.
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    Senior Member starthrower's Avatar
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    The Skrowaczewski cycle on Oehms made me a fan. It's a beautifully played and recorded set.
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    At some point you need to hear what Celibidache did with Bruckner in his live recordings with the Munich Philharmonic. The 7th is perhaps the weakest of the bunch but most of them are revelatory. He is slow and draws the music out to heavenly lengths (some think perversely so) but for me his method works wonderfully. And, for the 5th, an amazing intense recording by Jochum with the Concertgebouw. And, really, you have to hear Furtwangler!

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    I also usually enjoy Wand's Bruckner.

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    Thanks Enthusiast. Love Jochum and the Concertgebouw is my favorite orchestra. Going to get that one.
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    I know it's not a popular opinion these days, but I still think Karajan was one of the great Bruckner conductors we've ever had. Add to that a great orchestra and this set is a winner. And now that you can get it all on one Blu Ray disk for under $40 it's a great bargain.
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    Thanks guys. What about non-symphonies? I ordered Jochum’s Masses and the Harnoncourt box with 3, 4, 7 and 8, because his 5th and 9th are absolutely incredible.
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    If you haven't already, the completed 9th. I suggest the 2nd (or is it 3rd) Gerd Schaller recording of his own completion. As to Celibidache, his view is an unusual one and not one that I would recommend to someone just getting into Bruckner.

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    Senior Member Malx's Avatar
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    I would second the recommendation of Skrowaczewski's Symphony set.

    Away from the symphonies this disc of a couple of his chamber works is well worth investigating:


    Bruckner quintet.jpg
    Last edited by Malx; Sep-15-2019 at 21:43.

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    Senior Member elgars ghost's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by gellio View Post
    Thanks guys. What about non-symphonies? I ordered Jochum’s Masses and the Harnoncourt box with 3, 4, 7 and 8, because his 5th and 9th are absolutely incredible.
    If you like the masses then don't overlook Jochum's recording of the Te Deum, coupled with a setting of Psalm CL and ten motets for unaccompanied choir.

    '...a violator of his word, a libertine over head and ears in debt and disgrace, a despiser of domestic ties, the companion of gamblers and demireps, a man who has just closed half a century without a single claim on the gratitude of his country or the respect of posterity...' - Leigh Hunt on the Prince Regent (later George IV).

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    for High-octane Bruckner - Solti/CSO....huge dynamic contrasts, incredible sonorities that [I think] Bruckner would have loved..the climaxes are amazing....Solti keeps it moving....too often Bruckner gets too slow, logy, episodic...it becomes disconnected and bogs down....Barenboim's earlier set with Chicago is excellent, and superbly recorded...
    Walter is the standby - his 4,7,9 are classics...
    if you can find them - von Matacic/CzechPO produced some excellent Bruckner as well...lively, connected - excellent 7, 9.

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    In terms of 'other works' it's really only the symphonies. Maybe some like the choral and other vocal works and the quartet/sextet and the other bits and pieces, but it's really only the symphonies. I like the three orchestral pieces + march in D minor as little Beethovenian 'sketches' for what was to come.

    I had old Karajan recordings of Bruckner which kinda bored me when I was getting into Bruckner. There have been better recordings made since then. Or at least ones with less gloss. I don't know how to describe it. I like Klemperer and Haitink and Chailly's version of the 6th.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Becca View Post
    ... As to Celibidache, his view is an unusual one and not one that I would recommend to someone just getting into Bruckner.
    Quite a few people say that but I have never understood it. Why wait? I am not sure I liked Bruckner so much until I had heard Celibidache. It's different but it communicates and is heavenly - great music making. I don't think you need to be an experienced Brucknerian to relate to it. Not at all.
    Last edited by Enthusiast; Sep-16-2019 at 13:04.

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    I have the Sinopoli/Dredsen incomplete set which is available only in Japan, and it has the distinction of having the best IMO (5th) and the worst IMO (9th) recording in the same box set, a feat I do not expect anyone else to repeat.

    I only have Harnoncourt's 9th (Wiener) but from that I can see he is an exceptional Bruckner interpreter. I have always wanted to listen to (or watch) his 5th on DVD.

    The great thing about Bruckner is that his music is open-ended enough to allow for diverse interpretations. Celibidache brought out his spirituality being the most obvious. Jochum showed us he is a genius, Karajan painted a landscape of the Austrian Alps, and Wand, a human/mortal/hero in life's struggles in the Beethovenian tradition.

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    Quote Originally Posted by cyberstudio View Post
    I have the Sinopoli/Dredsen incomplete set which is available only in Japan, and it has the distinction of having the best IMO (5th) and the worst IMO (9th) recording in the same box set, a feat I do not expect anyone else to repeat.
    Does anyone else feel the same way about Sinopoli's 9th?
    '...a violator of his word, a libertine over head and ears in debt and disgrace, a despiser of domestic ties, the companion of gamblers and demireps, a man who has just closed half a century without a single claim on the gratitude of his country or the respect of posterity...' - Leigh Hunt on the Prince Regent (later George IV).

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    Quote Originally Posted by elgars ghost View Post
    If you like the masses then don't overlook Jochum's recording of the Te Deum, coupled with a setting of Psalm CL and ten motets for unaccompanied choir.

    This one is incredible for the Te Deum and the Psalm. Personally, I don't think the motets communicate as well with wide vibrato, so I like Halsey and even the Naxos recording for those.

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