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Mahler Symphonies Favorite Recordings - Page 2

post #16 of 3714
Thread Starter 
Ok I am going to break the rules, everyone knows you never buy complete set of Mahler symphonies by one conductor, better to pick and choose best for each symphony..........even so I just bought the Bernstein/Sony set for $52 because there are several very good performances that are hard to find as individual Cds, and even if you did would cost much more than $52.

There are a couple disposable performances here such as 5th symphony which is infinitely better done on newer Bernstein/DG, bit I think that overall even if price not considered I take the older Sony cycle over new DG cycle.

If you were to have one complete set Bernstein is the man, although Abbado & Rattle probably best current Malher conductors. If you could ever get a Horenstein complete set with good sound this will then rule supreme.
post #17 of 3714
Quote:
Originally posted by DarkAngel
Ok I am going to break the rules, everyone knows you never buy complete set of Mahler symphonies by one conductor, better to pick and choose best for each symphony ...
I would agree if and only if the set is going to include your ONLY recordings of the works. If you are going to buy multiple versions of each work, the box sets are often--as you, yourself, pointed out--cheaper (e.g., 12 for the price of 7, 5 for the price of 3, &c.).

I would posit that it can be good to keep a CD with a terrible reading or performance. It has proven helpful to me when I try and explain to the uninitiated why it's completely reasonable to have multiple recordings of the same piece. Play the bad then the good, point out the differences to the newbie, look only mildly-crazy (rather than full-blown nuts) to your guest / student.
post #18 of 3714
Thread Starter 
Heads up, just ordered this Horenstein/EMI Classics for Pleasure
Mahler 4 which I have read is great performance (like most Horenstein) plus good sound and budget price!

Mahler 4
post #19 of 3714
Quote:
Originally posted by DarkAngel
Heads up, just ordered this Horenstein/EMI Classics for Pleasure
Mahler 4 which I have read is great performance (like most Horenstein) plus good sound and budget price!

Mahler 4
If you've had a chance to listen to it, what's your verdict?

***

Let me put in a plug for one of my favorite Mahler recordings: Dame Janet Baker singing Kindertotenlieder on EMI. I was listening to this for the ump-teenth time earlier today, and it remains one of my (very few) Mahler recordings on my desert-island list.



Mahler: Kindertotenlieder, Rückertlieder, Etc / Janet Baker
post #20 of 3714
Quote:
Originally posted by radrd
Here is what I am looking at getting if anyone happens to have any comments. I'm looking to (temporarily) fill up my Mahler collection, and these are not only available from BMG, but also fairly well reviewed:

2 Bernstein
3 Abbado
4 Rattle
5 Chailly
5 Zander
7 Abbado
8 Chailly
9 Abbado
10 Rattle

Once (if) I get all of those, I'd say that my Mahler symphony collection will be very interesting.
I'm a big fan of Abbado's Mahler. I don't understand why he doesn't get as much attention as Rattle, Karajan, Bernstein and some of the others. I have recordings of his of the 3rd, 7th and 9th and love them all. Particularly the 9th. I guess some might find his style too analytical, but the clarity and detail of his approach just puts on full display the brilliance and depth of Mahler's orchestrations and makes me understand and feel the *musical* basis of that emotional punch.

I heard Chailly playing one of the symphonies (I think it was the 5th) at Carnegie Hall and was not that impressed. I found the whole thing kind of shapeless and lacking in insight.

Some of my other favorites include:

1. Walter
2. Klemperer
4. Szell
6. Karajan

In terms of recorded sound, Rattle's No. 2 with Birmingham is tremendous, but I don't think it matches the insight of Klemperer's older recording
post #21 of 3714
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally posted by Odi_et_Amo
If you've had a chance to listen to it, what's your verdict?
Yes I have listened to Horenstein/EMI CFP Mahler 4 and I not at all impressed, very average in all respects. It is very tame relaxed reading without the contrasts needed to effectively perform this piece. The "critics" again go gaga over any Horenstein version that surfaces, and I fell for it.

At the same time I also got the excellent Welser-Most/EMI Classics for Pleasure Mahler 4 which is easily better than the Horenstein, and competes with the top contenders for this work.
Here we have a much more dynamic reading with all the proper contrasts in place, sound quality is very good also. This mid price level CD should be bought if you ever see it for sale. Amazingly this is the only Mahler recording I can find by Welser-Most.
post #22 of 3714
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally posted by Davie
I'm a big fan of Abbado's Mahler. I don't understand why he doesn't get as much attention as Rattle, Karajan, Bernstein and some of the others. I have recordings of his of the 3rd, 7th and 9th and love them all. Particularly the 9th. I guess some might find his style too analytical, but the clarity and detail of his approach just puts on full display the brilliance and depth of Mahler's orchestrations and makes me understand and feel the *musical* basis of that emotional punch.
Abbado's Mahler catalog is a bit confusing since has older individual recordings with VPO & CSO & BPO, a complete DG set with CSO/VPO/BPO, and recently has newer live recordings with BPO.

I have his Mahler 1 & 5 newer live recordings with BPO, and I am very impressed. The two top Mahler conductors now appear to be Rattle & Abbado.........Abbado has the magnificent BPO & DG records bolster his credentials. The downside is these excellent new DG releases are full price and there is much competition from lower price rivals.
post #23 of 3714
Quote:
Originally posted by DarkAngel
At the same time I also got the excellent Welser-Most/EMI Classics for Pleasure Mahler 4 which is easily better than the Horenstein, and competes with the top contenders for this work. ...This mid price level CD should be bought if you ever see it for sale.
Thanks for the tip on the Welser-Möst recording. I'll put it on my to-get list.

If you don't have Reiner's reading, I'd recommend adding it to your list.

post #24 of 3714
Thread Starter 
Yes I do have the Reiner/RCA Mahler 4, sounds great and another top contender. Another old recording which still is one of the best versions available is the Szell/Sony..............Szell has powerful dynamic contrasts with exciting shifts in tempo in the final movement (exactly the opposite of Horenstein)
post #25 of 3714
Quote:
Originally posted by DarkAngel
...Another old recording which still is one of the best versions available is the Szell/Sony...
How's the soprano in Szell's Mahler 4?
post #26 of 3714
I only have two Mahle Cds but I enjoy them quite a bit :

Mahler – Das Lied Von Der Erde (Reference Recordings)

Kirsten Flagstad: Kindertotenlieder/Wesendonk Lieder etc (Mahler/Wagner)(Decca Legends)
post #27 of 3714
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally posted by Odi_et_Amo
How's the soprano in Szell's Mahler 4?
OK, just played Szell/Sony with vocals by Judith Raskin. She has a lightweight soaring silvery tone that scales to the heavens, great counter to the powerful swirling rush of music that follows her vocal parts.

A guy was just over buying my AZ Silver Reference ICs and he seemed impressed with sound quality of this CD.
post #28 of 3714
Quote:
Originally posted by DarkAngel
OK, just played Szell/Sony with vocals by Judith Raskin. She has a lightweight soaring silvery tone that scales to the heavens, great counter to the powerful swirling rush of music that follows her vocal parts.

A guy was just over buying my AZ Silver Reference ICs and he seemed impressed with sound quality of this CD.
For a mid-sixties recording, the sound quality is amazing. You don't get quite the dynamic range or detail of a modern digital recording, but the sound quality in no way detracts from the performance.

Given that it's available as a budget Sony release, I'd say this is a must-have if you're building a Mahler collection.
post #29 of 3714
What is accompanying Szell/Sony Mahler's 4? Any comment on that?
post #30 of 3714
Quote:
Originally posted by Masonjar

4th:
Fritz Reiner and the Chicago, an old RCA record I have.. it just has this amazing charm that I haven't heard in any other recording,
I agree. I too have always loved that performance.

Quote:

7th:

this is the weird one.. -jar
Again, we agree. All this time I thought I was the only one that felt like this was a dud. It just always leaves me wanting for some OTHER Mahler music. Nothing memorable happens IMHO. Not bad, two for two. {^;
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