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Why can't I get into Simon Rattle?

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 
He conducts so many works that I love, but I just don't like his approach on anything! He's supposed to be one of the best Mahler conductors in the world....and especially his recording of the Resurrection is supposed to be definitive. But for me it is unlistenable...meaning I've never been able to sit through his entire reading of that work. Anyone else dislike Rattle's recordings?
post #2 of 7
Hopefully you are not being influenced by places like Classics Today reviews (which I often disagree with) since they love to give negative critique for Rattles newer releases. Way back when the Rattle/EMI 2nd first appeared it was highly rated since there were fewer choices back then especially in good modern sound, remember this was even before Kaplan made his 1st recording. I really don't hear anything that would make someone strongly dislike it, seems pretty balanced without any real issues that would cause people to feel too strongly one way or another.

It currently does not make my top 5 Mahler 2nd list, but if I was making list back in 1987 it would make the list. I see EMI has just released a complete Rattle Mahler box set, but overall it does not rank as one of the very best ever like Bernstein, Kubelik, Bertini etc

My Mahler Rattle collection looks like this:
-2nd GROTC remaster
-10th BPO
-10th Bournemouth SO
post #3 of 7
I've never like Nirvana, for what it's worth.
post #4 of 7
I don't know about his Mahler, but I love his Sibelius cycle and his live performances of Shostakovich. He seems to be working through the Shostakovich symphonies on disc, which makes me very excited.
post #5 of 7
They made a big deal over Rattle's Porgy and Bess, but I found it totally unidiomatic.

See ya
post #6 of 7
His Shostakovich 4 and Mahler 5 I enjoyed.
post #7 of 7
Some people click with Rattle, some don't. I mostly don't. There are times when I love his interventionist approach, such as in the Scherzo to Mahler's 7th, where he and his players seem to invent new sounds to be gotten from the traditional instruments. But too often, I just find that Rattle gets fussy and keeps the music from flowing. Good example: At the very end of Janacek's 'Sinfonietta' he builds up a good head of steam, then instead of going out with a blaze of glory (see Kubelik or Mackerras for that), he pulls the brass volume way, way back, apparently thinking that for some reason it would be important at that moment to hear the trills the woodwinds are playing. In that one manuever, the excitement disappears as the players suddenly are forced to reign in Janacek's orgy of sound.

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