Individual Bruckner Symphonies

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Individual Bruckner Symphonies

Not talking about complete cycles, I believe Giulini's 9 (DG) is the best recording out there. As for the 8, IMHO Gunter Wand's Lubeck Cathedral or Carlos Paita's recordings maybe two of the best. Anyone want to share his opinion regarding good preformances of symphonies 4 & 7 ? Thanks. 

RE: Individual Bruckner Symphonies

For #4 I use as my benchmark(s) Bohm's 78 rpm recording with the Saxon State Orchestra (as it was then called) and the stereo one with the VPO.  For #7 try Blomstedt with the Dresden State Orchestra (formerly the Saxon State Orchestra).

Bliss

RE: Individual Bruckner Symphonies

  I've recently borrowed some excellent Bruckner recordings from my library in New Rochelle,just north of New York, which has a very convenient interloan system where you can borrow any book, CD or DVD etc from nearby libraries and they're brought to yours.

  Solti/Chicago for the first on Decca, Herreweghe/Champs Elysees orch for the fourth on Harmonia Mundi and Nagano/ Berlin Deutsches on the same label, Sanderling/Stuttgart Radio on Hanssler, Boulez /VPO on DG, and Giulini/VPO on DG.

  The Herreweghe recording is on what purport to be period instruments, but I could barely tell any difference between this orchestra and any of today's mainstream ones. Do we really need "authentic" Bruckner? It's a very good performance,though.

  Boulez shows a surprising affinity for Bruckner in his recording of the 8th, and the acoustic of the St.Florian cathedral is ideal for this composer.  I have not always liked Giulini's late recordings with their glacial tempi, but his 9th has absolutely no lack of tension and momentum despite the broad tempi. I wish he had included the completed finale ,though. Having heard it on recordings, I'm convinced that there's no longer any excuse not to use it recordings or live performances any more. It brings the symphony to a thrilling conclusion and resolves the tension and anguish of the first three movements.

 

RE: Individual Bruckner Symphonies

The Nagano recommendation seems interesting. Besides, I suppose that the SACD-DSD format should add great sound. Which will be the next symphony to listen to, after 4, 7, 8 & 9 ?. Thank you.  

RE: Individual Bruckner Symphonies

Unexpectedly, today I found at a very reasonable price a used copy of the 7th Blomstedt/Staatskapelle. I listened to it only once, but at first glance I'm quite impressed. Thanks for the recommendation.

RE: Individual Bruckner Symphonies

Glad to hear you found the Blomstedt.  I should have mentioned that I have the two Bohm recordings of the 4th in only the 78 & LP format (Decca for the LP) but I think both recordings are available on CD, but the VPO version is the one to seek out.  I have the Blomstedt only on LP too (Denon), as well as his recording of the 4th.  I haven't played that in years but think I preferred Bohm.  Good listening to you.

Bliss

RE: Individual Bruckner Symphonies

Quote:
Not talking about complete cycles, I believe Giulini's 9 (DG) is the
best recording out there. As for the 8, IMHO Gunter Wand's Lubeck
Cathedral or Carlos Paita's recordings maybe two of the best. Anyone
want to share his opinion regarding good preformances of symphonies 4
& 7?

Giulini's Wiener Philharmoniker Bruckner 9 is my favorite recording
of that symphony, too, as is his recording of the 8th which I think is
absolutely phenomenal. I also like several of Wand's recordings very
much, though not the Lübeck cathedral performance as much as some of
his others, especially the live recordings from Berlin (1996 and 2001),
mostly because of the overly reverberant acoustics of that cathedral.
Wand himself was unhappy with the acoustics there and so they only did
two of the opening concerts of the festival there, and the later ones
in the concert hall in Lübeck which has much clearer acoustics so all
the important innder detail is not drowned by the boomy, reverberant
sound as in the cathedral. Several of these later concerts were
published on DVD and they include a fabulous 9th.

As for the 4th
and 7th, it is hard to decide for just one version because there are so
many very good ones. I particularly like Abbado's 4th with the WP on DG
though. Sinopoli's DG recording with the Staatskapelle Dresden is
great, too, as is his 7th with the same orchestra, also on DG. Another
favorite 4th is Wand's last recording, with the NDR Sinfonieorchester. But then again, there are so many really good versions, especially of the 4th and 7th.

RE: Individual Bruckner Symphonies

Quote:
Boulez shows a surprising affinity for Bruckner in his recording of the
8th, and the acoustic of the St.Florian cathedral is ideal for this
composer.
 

Great performance, but I find the reverberant acoustics more than just problematic. Bruckner did not write his symphonies for performance in large churhes. He wrote them for performance in concert halls, such as the Musikverein. While the occasional Bruckner performance in a large church can be a nice event, the acoustics rarely do the music justice as all the fine inner detail is washed out (also see what I said above about Wand in Lübeck - it was Wand himself who objected to further concerts taking place in the cathedral). Interestingly though, the sound on the DVD is much clearer than on DG's recording of the same Boulez concerts.

Quote:
I have not always liked Giulini's late recordings with their
glacial tempi, but his 9th has absolutely no lack of tension and
momentum despite the broad tempi. I wish he had included the completed
finale ,though. Having heard it on recordings, I'm convinced that
there's no longer any excuse not to use it recordings or live
performances any more. It brings the symphony to a thrilling conclusion
and resolves the tension and anguish of the first three movements.

You are mostly alone in that conviction - no major conductor has yet accepted any of the completion attempts. And frankly, I have never heard one which I found convincing either. I think the closest we can get to getting an idea of what the finale could have been like is the lecture concert form chosen by Harnoncourt. It is tantalizing since the material is so interesting and promising. And while there seems to be rather more than most people thought, there is still way too much missing. I heard the new version of Carrigan's completion recently with Carrigan himself attending and frankly, I found it highly unconvincing and rambling. The genius of Bruckner did not just lie in his thematic ideas but also in how he shaped them into large symphonic structures. And there is simply no one else who can do that in quite the same way Bruckner would have done.

RE: Individual Bruckner Symphonies

I´ve been reading a lot about Bruckner recordings (I am listening to this long symphonies too, when I find free time !!!). Most of the " specialists" note that THE Bruckner Orchestra is the VPO. I understand Karajan made some of his last recordings playing Bruckner, and with the VPO. The 7th seems to have special praise. Any comments on Karajan´s Bruckner VPO ?

RE: Individual Bruckner Symphonies

All sound like good recommendations, I am surprise that nobody mention Bohm 7 on DG?

RE: Individual Bruckner Symphonies

Bruckner 8 is almost synonymous with Haitink (to a fault).

Yet, who likes his interpretation of this work, here is a video from a live 2007 performance with the concertgebouworchestra. After 2 min introduction, the music starts:

http://cgi.omroep.nl/legacy/player?/id/AVRO/rest/2007/AVRO_1260870/bb.20070822.asf

 

Enjoy!

 

Rolf

RE:B Individual Bruckner Symphonies

Have just been listening to my very favourite Bruckner symphony and its best (I think!) recording:

No 3   Bavarian Radio Orch - Kubelik

I also like No 2 with Berlin Radio Orch - Guilini

No 8 - Wand 

No 6 - Philharmonia - Klemperer    

 Oh... I like ALL Bruckner!!!!!

RE: Individual Bruckner Symphonies

I know he's wacky, but Celibidache's recordings are very interesting, and very pleasurable to many of us.  As for more mainstream choices, I would favor

4th - Bohm or Wand

7th- Sanderling is lovely.

8th - Wand with Berlin.  Boulez *sounds* great (not that this means anything).

9th - no one has mentioned the properly legendary Walter, which also sounds pretty good (late 50s recording).

The 5th is a great symphony, and I would go with the Knappertbusch VPO myself.  Or Sinopoli.  For the wonderful 6th, Klemperer is definitiive.

RE: Individual Bruckner Symphonies

Everyone has their personal favorites...#1 and below (I don't like 'em), #2 Giulini (Testament), #3 Gielen (Hanssler), #4 Bohm, Wand, Celibidache (Decca, RCA, EMI), #5 Welser-Most (EMI), #6 Klemperer, Gielen, Skrowaczewski (EMI, Hanssler, Arte Nova), #7 Karajan (EMI, DG) I've only heard a portion of the Bohm with Vienna on DG and I believe it to be a contender, #8 Karajan (DG), #9 Skrowaczewski (Reference Recordings)...Regards...Lee

Captain4105

 

RE: Individual Bruckner Symphonies

I like Riccardo Mutis recording with BPO on EMI very much.It is a thrilling performance.

There are lots of other great Bruckner recordings but another that really stands out is Karajans first recording of the ninth with BPO on DG. I have never heard a disc with more glorious orchestral  playing.Absolutely stunning!

 

RE: Individual Bruckner Symphonies

I didn´t mention that it was Mutis recording of the fourth I was referring to.

As for Tintner I have listened to some of his recordings and think they are very good, as for instance of the third symphony.

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