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Bruckner: Symphony No. 4


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Audio CD, July 24, 2013
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Samples
Song TitleArtist Time Price
listen  1. Bruckner: Symphony No. 4: I. AllegroJesus Lopez-Cobos/Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra20:08Album Only
listen  2. Bruckner: Symphony No. 4: II. Andante quasi allegrettoJesus Lopez-Cobos/Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra20:14Album Only
listen  3. Bruckner: Symphony No. 4: III. Sehr schnell; Trio. Im gleichen TempoJesus Lopez-Cobos/Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra11:34Album Only
listen  4. Bruckner: Symphony No. 4: IV. Allegro moderatoJesus Lopez-Cobos/Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra18:31Album Only


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Product Details

  • Audio CD (July 24, 2013)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Telarc
  • Run Time: 12 minutes
  • ASIN: B000003CWU
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #166,637 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Editorial Reviews

Bruckner: Symphony No. 4 by Jesus Lopez-Cobos [Artist], Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra [Artist]

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Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

14 of 15 people found the following review helpful By Evan Wilson on November 6, 2000
Format: Audio CD
Meek man that he was, Bruckner submitted most of his symphonies to revision, frequently at the behest of well-meaning, if uncomprehending, friends. This resulted in the so-called "Bruckner problem" in which several symphonies exist in different versions. In the case of the 4th symphony, there are 3 main version (worked on in 1874, 1880 & 1889 respectively). Traditionally, we hear the 1880 version with the so-called "Hunting horn" scherzo.
This recording uses the original (if one can EVER say a Bruckner score is the original) 1874 version. In many ways it sounds like a completely different piece of music from the well-known 1880 version. In addition to a different scherzo, this version of the 4th frequently uses quintuplets in place of the more famous "Bruckner rhythm" of duplet+triplet (perhaps why the piece was initally deemed unplayable by the Vienna Philharmonic). Differing ostinatos, changed orchestration and completely different episodes in the first, second and fourth movements make this an interesting musical experience for anyone who knows the later revision.
However, where Bruckner's revisions in the 5th symphony, for instance, disfigured that piece, virtually all his revisions in the fourth make it a better piece. Although I was repeated fascinated by episodes in this version of the 4th, it simply does NOT hold together as a piece as well as the revision. This is especially true in the finale where unrelated episodes sit cheek by jowl without any overriding coherence. (The finale of the 1880 revision is completely successful, either, but it sounds far more coherent than this.) Also, the older scherzo is simply not as inspired as the "Hunting horn" opus.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By W. Chiles on October 31, 2014
Format: Audio CD
This recording, like Inbal's is of the original version of Bruckner's 4th. The composer tended to re-examine his works as well as respond to feedback from conductors and his students Loewe and Schalk, who themselves created performing editions of his works that they thought would best appeal to audiences. Typically a composer's last thoughts on a work are the most cogent and best organized. This is certainly true of Bruckner whose later revisions are more taut in form. Understandably many listeners want to hear as much of his music as possible even if the symphony rambles as it certainly does in this case. The earlier Haas editions generally give you more music, the later Nowak editions are better organized. Having heard this work for the first time in its Nowak edition, I find it impossible to warm to this recording due to its lack of coherent structure. Still, if you insist on becoming familiar with Bruckner's first thoughts, this is beautifully played and recorded. Lopez-Cobos is a dedicated and sympathetic Bruckner conductor who approaches the music much in the manner of Bruno Walter. The orchestra is well suited for the music with a nicely blended brass section, that unlike their Chicago counterparts, don't over play or overwhelm the rest of the orchestra. Their warm timbre is just right for Bruckner. Just be advised, this is NOT Bruckner's final say on the symphony so I would not recommend it as your only recording of it.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Rodney W. Helt on February 26, 2013
Format: Audio CD
I was pleasantly surprised by the relative lightness of this original score compared to the heavier later versions normally played today. This score sounds more like the natural progression from the previous Symphony #3. One can quible about the orchestral execution of the Cincinnati players, but I found nothing to complain of and would have enjoyed a live concert of this level of quality. And there we come to the real hub of the Bruckner problem today--one rarely finds any of the Bruckner canon scheduled regularly today in a normal subscription series; not which edition is be played is correct or not! If we wish to hear a Bruckner symphony today, we are limited to only a couple of dvd performances or the less than rare recorded compact discs.

Bruckner's music is so fiendishly difficult to play, only virtuoso or specialist ensembles attempt it these days. There are many excellent renditions available of the various editions, one does not need to look far to find them. My personal favorites include Jochum, Klemperer, and Bohm as conductors. I am glad to have heard the present recording under review and can heartily recommend it for its listening enjoyment.
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5 of 8 people found the following review helpful By "exploder_2000" on April 13, 2003
Format: Audio CD
I disagree with Evan Wilson that the latter revisions make this work a better piece. I feel that this original version is better than the 1880 version in all aspects.
The 1874 version possesses a sense of exquisite beauty and originality. When I first listened to this version, I was struck by its strong message of beauty, sorrow, calm and romance. While the message in the 1880 version is the same, the message was not as strong and much less inspiring. Much of raw power of the content had been mellowed down by revisions to make the work more acceptable to public at that time.
However my gripe with this recording is the quality of the playing. For the 1880 version, there is a large selection of very very well played recordings of the world's best orchestras and conductors. Bohm, Karajan(especially Karajan), Furtwangler, etc. While Jesus Lopez Cobos does fare quite well with his orchestra, he somewhat falls short when compared to the very best. I feel that the problems mentioned by Evan Wilson is due to this rather than the music itself. I can only imagine how it would sound like should the 1874 be played by top musicians.
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