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  • Schubert: Symphonies 8 & 9
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Schubert: Symphonies 8 & 9

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Audio CD, November 11, 1997
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$78.28 $52.18

Editorial Reviews

Joseph Krips was one of those pleasant Viennese conductors whose sympathy and affection for the so-called First Viennese School (Haydn, Mozart, Beethoven, Schubert) was evident in just about every performance he gave of their music. He had the bad luck of being a good but not great conductor in an era that suffered from no shortage of podium talent. Nevertheless, there are moments when the good can rise to the great, and this Schubert Ninth is one of them. At the time it was recorded, at the beginning of the '60s, the London Symphony Orchestra was rebuilding its reputation, and they play this symphony as though they really have something to prove. Toss in a thoroughly idiomatic Unfinished, and the result is a Schubert disc to treasure. --David Hurwitz

1. Symphony No. 9, D944 'Great': Andante - Allegro Ma Non Troppo
2. Symphony No. 9, D944 'Great': Andante Con Moto
3. Symphony No. 9, D944 'Great': Scherzo: Allegro Vivace
4. Symphony No. 9, D944 'Great': Allegro Vivace
5. Symphony No. 8, D759 'Unfinished': Allegro Moderato
6. Symphony No. 8, D759 'Unfinished': Andante Con Moto

Product Details

  • Performer: Franz Schubert, London Symphony Orchestra, Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra, Josef Krips
  • Audio CD (November 11, 1997)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Universal Classics
  • ASIN: B0000042G0
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #86,895 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Customer Reviews

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See all 6 customer reviews
What a miracle, this recording!
Larry VanDeSande
These symphonies have been recorded many times; Ive heard a lot and own several and I can say without reservation that this reading of the 9th by Krips stands alone.
Sidney Jwanier
I well remember hearing him conduct a Strauss waltz, and being exhilarated by the power of a simple, healthy and natural flow within a piece of music.
John Austin

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

22 of 22 people found the following review helpful By R. Lane on April 18, 2004
Decca issued this recording on CD in 1990 (Amazon asin # B00000E46U). I eagerly scouped up that CD, having lovingly listened to an LP of the recording for many years. I was severely disappointed with the CD. The engineering showed the flaws of many 1980s CDs : scratchy violins, twangy woodwinds, crackily horns. I scrapped the CD quickly and returned to the LP repeatedly to enjoy this masterful recording.
When this CD was issued in 1997, I was very hesitant to try it out, being fearful of another letdown after Decca's earlier miserable failure. After a few trusty reviewers gave this CD good ratings I took the risk, and was amply rewarded. Decca did a total flip flop, and with this CD they did one of their best analog-to-digital transfers ever.
I won't go into any details about the merits of Krips reading or the orchestra's performance. Many before me, both at and in publications, have thoroughly covered the artistic achievements represented here. Krips will never become a household word like Karajan, Furtwangler, Szell, Bohm, or the many others who are associted with noteworthy recordings of the symphony many consider Schubert's crowning glory. Good as they may be, none of them can hold a candle to this reading. Few works of the stature of this Schubert Great C Major Symphony are represented in the recording archives by a single item that stands out clearly above ALL others; but that can certainly be said of this recording (in this particular Decca reissue that is).
Decca quickly dropped this series of CDs, so I would not be surprised if it disappears from the catalog soon. So, get it while you can.
Bottom line:
Composition : Masterpiece.
Performance : Masterpiece.
Engineering : Masterpiece.
Enough said?
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13 of 14 people found the following review helpful By Gregory M. Zinkl on August 5, 2000
Let's not mince words. This is an awesome performance of Schubert's 9th Symphony. Everything is nigh perfect, from the conducting to the orchestral execution to the engineering.
I first knew this performance as a teenager on a cheapie LP. It was a good $7 to spend, and I fell in love with the piece with Krips great conducting. The performance has a warmth that is sorely missing from other performances of the ninths, some of them hardly negligable (including the terrific EMI Barbirolli, the Vox Schippers with Cincinnati, and so on). The most amazing part of the performance is the trio, which seems to go on forever in lesser hands; here it is a delight.
I had the CD pressing before this reissue. Alas, the first CD reissue transfer lost a lot in warmth that my well-worn LP had; while I can't personally comment on the transfer of this particular reissue as I yet do not have it in hand, everything I've read and heard would lead me to believe that the transfers are superior to that first CD try
However, even if it was a bad transfer, I'd recommend that anyone who might even consider that they might perchance like Schubert's symphonic works, should add Krips' ninth to their libraries.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Larry VanDeSande VINE VOICE on March 20, 2004
Verified Purchase
A half-century has passed since the ultimate Viennese kapellmeister, Josef Krips, recorded this remarkable version of Schubert's "Great" C Major symphony (No. 9) and still he has no competitors not named Furtwangler for a place at the top of the heap. While this issue may be NLA at the time being, you can still acquire this magical performance coupled with Schubert's Symphony No. 4 on London/Decca.

I once read a review of this when it was an LP where a critic wondered,. after hearing the Krips-Vienna collaboration, how so many other conductors keep this music so earthbound. Indeed, the same question is worth asking in 2008: how do so many conductors keep this music -- light and airy while simultaneously powerful and profound under Krips baton -- so earthbound?

To test that theory, I tried out the famous Karl Bohm-Berlin Philharmonic version, shopping on UK to find a version. It was nice and all...but earthbound. I returned to the Krips and was floated to the clouds by the music. As if this isn't enough, the 1958 recording still sounds fresh and eminently balanced 50 years later. What a miracle, this recording!

This issue includes a marvelous extra, Krips version of the "Unfinished" 8th Symphony with Vienna Philharmonic. Krips style is not like Kleiber, Solti or those who drive the music unmercilessly or use it to dredge the depths of human expression and emotions. Yet he has no apology to offer for his relatively literal interpretation, again performed with utmost taste and balance.

The music is so great, so humane, that it stands on its own oustide of personal interpretation. And with the Vienna Philharmonic doing the playing...well, can Heaven be far off when this disk is spinning? I think not.
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