Automotive Deals HPCC Amazon Fashion Learn more nav_sap_plcc_ascpsc Songs of Summer Fire TV Stick Happy Belly Coffee Handmade school supplies Shop-by-Room Amazon Cash Back Offer showtimemulti showtimemulti showtimemulti  Amazon Echo  Echo Dot  Amazon Tap  Echo Dot  Amazon Tap  Amazon Echo Starting at $49.99 All-New Kindle Oasis AutoRip in CDs & Vinyl Water Sports

Brahms : Symphonies Nos 1-4 & Orchestral Works

June 29, 2010 | Format: MP3

$12.49
Also available in CD Format
Song Title
Time
Popularity  
30
1
14:35
30
2
9:53
30
3
5:10
30
4
17:42
30
5
15:29
30
6
9:49
30
7
5:37
30
8
9:24
30
9
14:17
30
10
13:45
30
11
9:30
30
12
6:20
30
13
9:41
30
14
2:24
30
15
1:14
30
16
1:00
30
17
1:58
30
18
2:45
30
19
0:58
30
20
1:21
30
21
3:18
30
22
1:06
30
23
3:43
30
24
12:47
30
25
11:31
30
26
6:09
30
27
9:43
30
28
10:26
Your Amazon Music account is currently associated with a different marketplace. To enjoy Prime Music, go to Your Music Library and transfer your account to Amazon.com (US).
  

Product Details

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD
This is a tough one to review. Barenboim's recordings with the Chicago Symphony prior to his appointment as Music Director were consistently good, but his recordings as Music Director have been decidedly mixed and, sadly, mostly disappointing. So, this tasteful set of Brahms symphonies is welcome, but there is still something missing. Barenboim has a good sense of the structure of the pieces and the Chicago Symphony's playing is uncannily beautiful. The performances are persuasive and never harsh, yet somehow this is not a "definitive" set of Brahms symphonies. There must be a small element of drive and risk which is missing here. The rest of the collection is, surprisingly, better, and the Haydn Variations is mindblowingly good. So, if you're collecting Brahms symphony sets, this one isn't marriage material but makes a very nice occasional lunch date.
Comment 15 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Audio CD
The Chicago Symphony shines here in what is easily some of the best playing I've heard live or on record. Every note, harmony, line, and gesture is heard clearly without fail. The recording quality lets the orchestra's vibrant sound and every small nuance come through unimpeded and unlike some of the Decca/London records of the CSO's Solti years, there's a real sense of space in the hall. Several reviews fault Barenboim's interpretation as slow or uninspired, but having performed all of these works multiple times as a professional musician, I can't agree with that. Barenboim doesn't push through to the end, instead choosing to let the music breathe and approaches each section in a manner more consistent with their content rather than the generic "Brahms must be heavy and thick" that is applied all too often. There are times when tempos are definitely slower than typical, but these tempos are always chosen in service of the music's emotional and thematic content. As an example, the finale of the 3rd symphony is often much slower and aggressive than recorded here, but the relaxed tempo and restraint give it a dark, brooding character that creates a wonderful tension that is perfectly met by the movement's glowing coda. Another positive in Barenboim's interpretation is his use of rubato which is much more true to the Romantic tradition than the Dr. Beat method that has become nauseatingly ubiquitous in both live performance and on record.

Easily a 5-star recording.
Comment 2 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Audio CD
Wow! What an absolutely wonderful set of recordings of Brahms' symphonies and overtures (along w/ the Haydn variations). I guess with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, this should really not come as a surprise. All of these recordings sound fanatstic and the playing of each piece is balanced with great precision to the credit of Maestro Barenboim. I recommend this set with no hesitation whatsoever.
Comment 11 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Audio CD
It was fated, I suppose, that a huge admirer of Furtwangler like Barenboim couldn't resist trying his hand at Brahms with the weight, intensity, and passion that Furtwangler brought to these symphonies. When a newcomer wants to know what the shouting is all about with Furtwangler, Brahms is the first composer I'd choose, and the Brahms first the prime example. But how does one judge a follower compared to the master?

On the one hand, these are magnificently played readings, and lovers of the Chicago Symphony can spend hours comparing their playing to what is heard on earlier complete cycles by Solti and Levine. (There's also a one-off from Reiner, Sym. #3, to add to the batch.) I like Brahms to sound grandly ambitious and emotional - on that score alone, Barenboim's neo-Romantic style comes through with force. The recorded sound is also quite good, without much digital glare, if a bit thick in texture.

What's really at issue are Barenboim's mannerisms - extreme slowness in the Andante of Sym. #1, for example, and the introduction to the finale, which takes us to Celibidache Land. He apes Furtwangler's surprising tempo changes, as in the sudden acceleration after the first few bars of Sym. #3. It's a tricky business, because unless you have Furtwangler's magic touch with transitions, Brahms can turn into Biedermeyer very quickly. Barenboim also tends to left soft, slow passages sag a bit - listen to the slow movement of Sym. #1. He's trying to sound enraptured and to make us feel the same, but that's a secret that can't be lifted from Furtwangler by imitating him. At his worst Barenboim parodies Romantic style, as in the goopy first movement of Sym. #4.
Read more ›
2 Comments One person found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Audio CD
For my unlearned taste, the Haydn Variations fair the best on this set. Otherwise, I find the performances lethargic and earthbound. The start of the Third Symphony is promising, but then it too seems to succumb to what is sometimes not the slows so much as the not-give-much-of-a-damns. To me, there's no punch, no impetus, no drive. The notes are there, but not a whole lot more. I'd give this perhaps 2.5 stars if I could, but I will be gentle and hand out three.
Comment One person found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I have just finished listening to the Barenboim Brahms Symphonies box set. In it there was a lot of great orchestra playing by the CSO, some thrilling moments (Symphony #1 good, #2 good, #3 great, Tragic good, Academic Festival good, Variations good) and some serious direction. For sure this was a serious effort by a very serious and hailed conductor even if 20 years back in 1993. Plaudits. With the competition out there, it takes a lot of grit to jump in and compete. Middle-aged Barenboim (50/51 by my guess) conducted this set to play against some great and perhaps immortal Brahmsians -- Giulini, Bohm, Klemperer, von Karajan, Celibidache, Bernstein (yes!), and many, many others too numerous to name who have the whole cycle out there, and forgive me if I did not mention your favorite because there are many! - and I have to give him and the great CSO plaudits for that. It took a brave company.

I bought the whole boxed set because I loved Barenboims CSO performance of Brahm's Deutsche Requiem. I continue to recommend it. Although I have given away 8-10 unsatisfactory recorded performances of the Requiem, Barenboim's is one I will cherish. I thought maybe I have been missing something special in the rest of his Brahms. While I would label the whole set "good," it is not the very great Brahms - on a par with his Requiem -- I was seeking. Again, well played and good direction. I stayed with him by and large very well until he got to the 4th Symphony, where he pulled out his fake Furtwanger passport and arbitrarily speeded up, running like Toscanini finishing up a Beethoven Symphony. (By the way, Toscanini was not a bad Brahmsian!) Daniel Barenboim is a very good conductor. He doesn't need that fake Furtwangler ID. And I don't think you get what Brahms has to offer at 90 MPH.
Read more ›
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse

Look for Similar Items by Category