Starting in 2003, Jonathan Nott and the Bamberg Symphony pursued the ambitious project of recording Franz Schubert's symphonies Nos. 1-8, and the SACDs were individually released later that decade to considerable critical praise. This 2011 set of six SACDs brings together the four albums with the symphonies, plus two collections of modern compositions inspired by Schubert's music. Nott's conducting tends to be on the fast side in Schubert, and the Bamberg Symphony is sometimes a little uneven in sound quality. But by and large, they demonstrate a great understanding of Schubert's styles, both in his Classical and Romantic veins, and acquit themselves with enthusiasm and brilliance.
More than most composers currently active, Brett Dean uses music to tackle political and social themes of our times. A common factor in the works on this recording is the sometimes problematic aspects of human communication and the erosion and misuse of language. In his violin concerto The Lost Art of Letter Writing, which was awarded the renowned Grawemeyer Award in 2009, Dean strikes a blow for written correspondence, demonstrating how, even today, the art of letter writing, the conveyance of wholly individual mood pictures, is possible.
This 17CD Limited Edition Set encompasses the 70-year history of one of Germany’s leading orchestras. Includes no fewer than 5 CDs of world premiere recordings by luminaries such as Kertész, Sinopoli, Blomstedt as well as definitive recordings by all the famous conductors who shaped the orchestra’s distinctive style.
Between 1994 and 2011, Pierre Boulez recorded the symphonies and songs of Gustav Mahler for Deutsche Grammophon, and for many listeners these recordings are high points in his catalog, while others regard them as idiosyncratic recordings for specialists. The basis of both views stems from Boulez's meticulous conducting and exacting performance standards, which produce music of extreme lucidity and precision, yet which can also seem overly cerebral and dispassionate. Boulez's approach to Mahler may seem clinical, and this is a reasonable assessment of the way he treats details, textures, timbres, dynamics, and rhythms as indicated in the score, clearly and cleanly, without adding personal touches or interpreting the music through Mahler's biography or his own mythology.