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Mahler: Urlicht - Primal Light / Caine, Bensoussan, et al.

Gustav Mahler , Uri Caine , Uri Caine , Arto Lindsay , Dean Bowman Audio CD
4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (26 customer reviews)

Price: $19.28 & FREE Shipping on orders over $35. Details
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MP3 Music, 11 Songs, 2009 $8.99  
Audio CD, 1998 $19.28  

Listen to Samples and Buy MP3s

Songs from this album are available to purchase as MP3s. Click on "Buy MP3" or view the MP3 Album.

Song Title Time Price
listen  1. Symphony No. 5, Funeral march 5:52$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  2. The drummer boy from "The boy's magic horn" 5:46$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  3. Now will the sun rise as brightly, from "Songs of the death of children" 1:50$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  4. I often think they have merely gone out!, from "Songs of the death of children" 3:34$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  5. Symphony No. 1, "Titan"12:05Album Only
listen  6. Symphony No. 2 "Resurrection", Primal Light 2:33$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  7. Symphony No. 2 "Resurrection": Andante moderato 6:55$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  8. Symphony No. 5: Adagietto10:37Album Only
listen  9. The drunkard in spring, from "The song of the earth" 7:51$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen10. Who thought up this song, from "the boy's magic horn" 2:40$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen11. The farewell, from "The song of the earth"12:59Album Only

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Frequently Bought Together

Mahler: Urlicht - Primal Light / Caine, Bensoussan, et al. + Wagner E Venezia + Goldberg Variations: Aria and 70 Variations Adapted, Arranged and Composed by Uri Caine
Price for all three: $65.17

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Product Details

  • Performer: Uri Caine, Uri Caine, Arto Lindsay, Dean Bowman
  • Composer: Gustav Mahler
  • Audio CD (June 23, 1998)
  • SPARS Code: DDD
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Winter & Winter
  • ASIN: B000007RYQ
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (26 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #104,663 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Editorial Reviews

This auspicious, surprising, release debuted the Winter & Winter imprimatur, which carries on German producer Stefan Winter's longstanding role in blurring musical boundaries, as he did for so many years with the jazz label JMT. Pianist Uri Caine, known mainly for playing in the polystylistic mode of New York's downtown jazz scene, steeped himself in Mahler's music in preparation for the 1995 series of concerts leading up to this CD. Caine's ensemble--14 members strong, at points--recasts portions of Mahler's symphonic cloudbursts into a setting that smacks of klezmer, jazz, and crazy combinations of the scores' lavish bombastics. It's clear that Mahler's works tested the boundaries of so many available sounds at the turn of the century, from cantors to martial brass to Wagnerian bulk. Caine attempts it all, succeeding most somberly in the sections based on the Resurrection Symphony and most clangorously in the First Symphony's third movement, transformed into a serious klezmer bash by Caine, clarinetist Don Byron, and drummer Joey Baron. --Andrew Bartlett

Product Description

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
21 of 24 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Mahler taken back to his roots January 11, 1999
Format:Audio CD
Gustav Mahler described himself as "thrice homeless: as a Bohemian among Germans, as a German in Austria, and as a jew throughout the world." While that may have summed up Mahler well at the end of the 19th century, at the end of the 20th, we call that kind of thing "multicultural," and see it as a strength. Uri Caine recognizes that strength, and his renditions of Mahler's music reveal the roots of the composer's style, in the waltzes and marches of his native Bohemia, in Jewish klezmer music, in the chanting of kantors, as well as the art-music ambience of Vienna. Caine and his outstanding band (special kudos to Don Byron's clarinet in particular) provide a window into Mahler's music that illuminates it even as it distorts it. If you really know your Mahler, you'll find this recording a revelation. Moreover, you'll never again be able to listen to the Mahler 5th, for example, without hearing the klezmer elements in the 2nd theme. And the fact that one of the "Songs of a Wayfarer" works perfectly as breezy tune that might have been penned by Chick Corea implies how far Mahler's influence reaches into the 20th century. As a Mahler afficianado, I adored this; but I suspect that friends who don't know Mahler's work, but who like John Zorn and Carla Bley, are going to dig this as well. Call it Post-Modern, call it an outrage, call it a gas! (And the packaging is as beautiful as the tunes.)
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Raising Caine? December 27, 1999
Format:Audio CD
Well, we seem to have a bit of a disagreement below. I hope that I may be able to clarify for those considering this purchase. I am an enthusiastic, if a bit less than fully obsessed, Mahlerite, as well as being a longtime jazzophile. I am also quite skeptical in general of jazz treatments of classical themes; they tend either to be overly reverential (which doesn't prevent their being mediocre) or to simplify the source music (for easier improvisation) to the point where one must question the use of the theme at all. This, to my mind, is an exception. But you must bear that what I like is not always, or even often, what most enthusiasts of jazz OR classical music tend to like. (I'm not inordinately discriminating in my aesthetic judgments, just fussy.) I would venture to suggest that Mahlerians with little interest in jazz would be quite horrified by this recording (as indeed an acquaintance of mine was.) Further, I'd say that fans of contemporary jazz, especially the "downtown" scenesters -- Zorn, Douglas, et al. -- will love this regardless of their taste for classical music. And, as one reviewer noted below, even those who consider Mahler to be an old bloat, but who like challenging jazz, will probably admire this disc. And is Uri Caine one of the most interesting jazz pianists (and arrangers) in decades, or what? His Wagner CD is extraordinary, too, although similar cautions to those cited above (and below) apply.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The New quintessential performance of Mahler July 5, 2005
Format:Audio CD
This is the story i was told when buying this record, it's been many years so this is as close as i could remember it:

"There is an annual competition where orchestras from all over the world come together to perform Mahler pieces. It's been going many many years... then along came Uri Caine. His orchestra included Cantors (jewish religious singers) and a cacophony of other messy instruments and ideas to perform with. They won to competition to the horror of stuffy stuck-up Mahler purists the world over.. How could this horrible mess win over all ther other very traditional (very similar and boring) performances!? Uri Caine's orchestra has continued to win every year since. Why? Because Uri's interpretation gives a fuller understanding of Gustav Mahlers background, his roots, he brings so much life to the music."

So then i actually listened to the music myself and it was breathtaking, funny, it told stories, it had personality, it was bursting at the seams with new ideas.

I listen to all kinds of music, but rarely jazz and rarely classical. I was not familiar with Uri Caine or Gustav Mahler, but after hearing that story, then listening for myself i had to have this cd. And while often my purchases are terrible mistakes, this one was a resounding success. This cd is my most treasured.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars jaw-dropping interpretation of Mahler December 2, 2006
Format:Audio CD
I am a Mahler fan - and I don't like jazz! So I was rather nervous at listening to this first time around. But I found it simply stunning. The resurrection symphony slow movement, complete with screeching solo violin emulating a searingly distorted electric guitar was, in fact, profoundly moving. And the sheer musicianship of the performers, in the more sensitive sections earned my utmost respect. This album is shocking, unbearable, gripping, lighthearted, exciting, mocking, reverential, tender - everything Mahler was. Fantastic buy!
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Mahler revered November 15, 2006
By M.
Format:Audio CD
On his 1997 release Urlicht / Primal Light, Uri Caine took some of Gustav Mahler's most famous compositions, and, well, jazzed them up, with some of the most prominent musicians on the downtown New York scene, including Dave Douglas and Joey Baron.

What still surprises me about this beautiful album is just how faithful Caine is to Mahler. Unlike his later Goldberg Variations, this isn't Mahler deconstructed, it's Mahler revered, in a small group jazz (and at times, thanks to Don Byron , klezmer) setting. It makes perfect sense -- if some of the greatest jazz performances have come from mediocre show tunes, why not use symphonies and lieder as a starting point for improvisation?
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful music
Uri Caine and his ensemble again succeed in exposing a challenging composer`s music in a more intimate light. Highly recommended for Mahler lovers.
Published on January 24, 2012 by Hektor Konomi
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant Mahler!
This is very fine arranging, and true to Mahler and his roots. If you love jazz, and Mahler (and a touch of avant-garde) you'll love this CD.
Published on January 25, 2011 by Mr. C
4.0 out of 5 stars Utterly Fascinating
This CD begins with the opening trumpet notes from the Mahler 5th Symphony, then plunges into a postmodern Klezmer-like jazz idiom that both infuriates and captivates. Wow! Read more
Published on July 6, 2009 by Karl W. Nehring
5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing interpretation of Resurrection Symphony No. 2/Primal Light
I've owned this album for years and I still come back to this piece as one of the best interpretations of the Resurrection symphony out there. Read more
Published on June 24, 2008 by FoghornLeghorn
1.0 out of 5 stars Uri Caine's mutiny against Mahler
I've been a big Mahler fan since Bernstein's first recording (4th Symphony) as well as a knowledgeable follower of jazz. Read more
Published on September 29, 2006 by Daniel J. Garr
5.0 out of 5 stars raw, gritty and fertile freshly tilled earth
it's not pure as in so many anally treated works of Mahler. admittedly i am not interested in listening to see if the sonority of the instruments is perfect to some pompous... Read more
Published on December 13, 2005 by soundsmith
5.0 out of 5 stars Hard sell for purists
Yes, Mahlerites will shudder the first time they hear this. I certainly did. But the more I thought about it, and when I subsequently bought it and started listening to it with... Read more
Published on October 27, 2004 by D. B. Rathbun
5.0 out of 5 stars Still Caine's Best
This is still Uri Caine's best album. I'm convinced that years from now this will be pointed to as his seminal achievement as a musical artist. Read more
Published on September 19, 2002 by Amazon Customer
5.0 out of 5 stars What a strange, strange recording
I so desperately wanted to hate this recording. Upon looking at the line-up (which includes a DJ and a guitarist! Read more
Published on December 8, 2001
3.0 out of 5 stars Almost, but not quite
This is obviously an intriguing idea, and it's well-imagined by Caine, who manages to take Mahler and place him in unusual contemporary contexts. Read more
Published on August 14, 2001 by George Grella
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