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Symphony 9 in D Minor Import, Live

4.5 out of 5 stars 8 customer reviews

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Audio CD, Import, Live, August 12, 1999
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (August 12, 1999)
  • SPARS Code: DDD
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Import, Live
  • Label: RCA Victor Europe
  • Run Time: 62 minutes
  • ASIN: B00002DF4E
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #412,733 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD
I was initially wowed by Wand's amazing handling of Bruckner's great 8th Symphony and I have, since then, bought all the Gunter Wand/Berlin Philharmonic recordings. They are all equally impressive.

Wand's handling of the ninth is no less inspired. His tempos are firm, yet expressively flexible. The opening movement begins eerily, almost mundanely, but soon erupts in a forceful passion. Wand's amazing ability to build and subsequently release tension is artfully showcased in this work. Climaxes sound unearthly; pianos, like whispers. The frightening and tonally complex Scherzo is equally exciting. Foreshadowing the tonality of Schoenburg and the rhythms of Stravinsky, the Scherzo's demonic qualities are brought out under Wand's hand. However, the real highlight of the disc is the monumental Adagio. Its beauty is unmatched in the repertoire, building powerfully, but fading, like a dream, into nothingness. It is, in a way, a fitting way for Bruckner to leave this earth. Wand's interpretation is equally fitting for this movement. He allows the music to unfold naturally and majestically while still maintaining his precise control. Never has the Philharmonic sounded so alive - even under Karajan, the strings have never sounded so rich, so pure, so beautiful. This is the only recording of the ninth that truly is a fitting testament to Bruckner.
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Format: Audio CD
This is a respectable Bruckner 9, no doubt about that. Wand knows unerringly how to pace this mighty symphony. While he clearly has at his disposal a first class orchestra, the Berlin Phil no longer sounds like they did in yesteryear, particularly in the strings. The `saturated fat' sonority has gone. Some might say that's a good thing but I am not one of them. Even so, Wand has a clear eye on Bruckner's use of woodwind through this work and the Berliners do not let him down in this department. All in all, this performance is collectable enough - but it ain't the Karajan '77 Anton Bruckner: Symphony No. 9 - Herbert von Karajan / Berlin Philharmonic
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Format: Audio CD
This is one of the most moving and monumental works in the symphonic repertoire. Even though it is not finished (there is no fourth movement by Bruckner) it still clocks on at about an hour. That aside, Bruckner was a very religious man who worked on the Ninth Symphony right up into his death. This symphony is very evocative of the composer's mortality and at several points I almost sense Bruckner's ascension to heaven or other images liken to it. This album is beautifully played. Gunter Wand who came to Bruckner late in life, gives what I think is almost a perfect interpretation. The Berlin Philharmonics playing is marvelous. This is great Album and a highly recommended place to start with Bruckner (this and his fourth symphony).
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Format: Audio CD
Anton Bruckner's Symphony No. 9 is discussed more often than performed. Should the final two movements for which we have the composer's sketches be 'realised' and included in performance or is the final work of this Romantic giant complete as it stands? One listening to the majestic, spiritually uplifting symphony and the answer seems obvious: the symphony IS complete. Bruckner was one of the more misunderstood composers in history and much of that was due to the fact that he was an apparently simple organist, devoted to God, with a penchant for wooing young, poor maids, and a man so sensitive to criticism that he spent much of his life re-writing his symphonies in reaponse to 'suggestions' from his colleagues and critics, an attribute that labelled him an idiot savant composer well into the 20th Century. His symphonies are indelibly stamped with his personal language - episodic, frequent climaxes of such power that the sudden reversion to quiet pizzicato strains at the peak of his musical mountains can be jarring; his love and use of German landler that serve to ground his monuments to heaven with patches of the countryside of earth; his quotations from Wagner, etc.
But well over a hundred years since his death his extraordinary gifts as a symphonist are held in awe and most orchestras have made his works a staple in their repertoire. All but the mighty 9th. Fortunately this magnum opus is gaining more frequent playings by important orchestras and conductors: Pierre Boulez just gave us his examination and majestic performance with the LA Philharmonic, revealing once again how this contemporary composer can reveal hidden secrets in the massively romantic symphonies. The recording here is by the Berlin Philharmonic conducted by Gunther Wand and is a joy in every way.
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