“Abbado’s approach to Brahms is generally direct, but his control of rhythm and phrase makes the performance instantly compelling” – The Penguin Guide to Compact Discs
Loaded with German Romanticism & including variations on a Bach cantata, Brahms’ final symphony is a remarkable example of his mastery of symphonic composition. A rich, warm work that builds on a sense of movement & intensity right up to the final bars. This release also represents the completion of Bernard Haitink’s celebrated LSO Live Brahms cycle that has included the symphonies, Double Concerto, Tragic Overture & Serenade No 2.
Ernst Krenek is an up and coming composer the way I hear him. He should be at least ten times more popular than he is. When you listen to his first symphony you can hear the serial roots from which it is inspired. Yet it is far from a cold and calculated work. It is multi-dimensional with both serious and humorous personalities. It is said that Krenek had too many musical personalities in his long career and life (1900-1991). But I like to think ……Dmitri @Amazon.com
…got this for the Brahms, which is at best a thoroughly decent performance, nothing more - but the highlight is the excellent Beethoven. The ratings reflect the dichotomy of the two performances and their sonics, an average of 4 for sound seems fair - but the Beethoven warrants a 5 for performance.
This last installment in Claudio Abbado's fine Brahms cycle has the same virtues as the previous recordings: excellent playing, fine recording, and an intensely lyrical response to the music that never precludes a healthy dose of energy where required. The high point of the cycle is the Third Symphony, followed by the Second. If you have those and wish to collect the others, they are not far behind in quality and you can buy this disc (and the one with the First Symphony) with complete confidence. The couplings are also very well done. –David Hurwitz