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Sibelius Symphonies - Page 3

post #31 of 233
So I just got the Maazel boxed set of Sibelius symphonies that I had mentioned earlier in this thread. I had them delivered here at work, so I popped the first disc in my player and put on my HD600s.

Based on the comments in this thread I had high hopes, but you know no matter how many glowing reviews you get, you never really knows if you will like something new until you try it for youself. Well I have only had time to listen to the first disc with Symphonies 1 and 4. I am happy to say that my expectations so far have been greatly exceeded! This is truly new, (to me), and interesting music that is beautifully played. Listening to this makes me feel happy, not it a bubbly outward way, but rather in a deep place inside. OK, corny, I know, but honest nontheless.

I can hardly wait to listen to the rest of the discs. A sincere thanks for your recommendations. ...all of the sudden the damage to my wallet seems inconsequential.

-Z
post #32 of 233
Zurg
See if you feel the same way about symphony 5,6,7 which have a different style to them which I don't connect with too much..... bleak, desolate, melancholic. Symphonies 1,2 are just beautiful sweeping romantic pieces full of vigor and optimism, I love these works and never grow tired of them......symphonies 3,4 are transitional still having qualities of early works but going in new abstract less romantic direction which I still find interesting.

The 1960's Decca sound is just fabulous, young Maazel was in his 30's and was a powerful dynamic conductor compared to his later mature works which I don't like nearly as much.
post #33 of 233
Zurg,

Agreed. I have the Nos. 4 and 7 and the No. 4 especially is outstanding. Does the set include Tapiola? If it does, you are in for a sonic listening experience you won't believe. Talk about the awesome power wielded by nature.

Thinking very seriously of getting the cycle with Vanska conducting. Been reading some seriously great reviews of this particular cycle.
post #34 of 233
danaa
No, unfortunately Tapiola is not included in the the Maazel symphony set. Grrrr. I would prefer not to have to buy the 4th+7th single disc just to get Tapiola when I already have the same 4th and 7th recordings on the complete set! Any recommendations for other worthy recording of Tapiola?

I just recieved the Finladia/Karelia Suite/Lemminkainen Suite CD by Sakari and the ISO. Haven't had a chance to listen to it yet. The Sibelius/Sakari CDs are amazingly inexpensive and seem to be getting good reviews.

I think I will also pick up a copy of the Sibelius Tone Poems. Any recommendations?

I've listened to the complete symphonies once now, but I want to give them another listen before making any comments.

-Z
post #35 of 233
A fine version of Tapiola is (along with Pohjola's Daughter, Rakastava and the Andante lirico) available on BIS, Neeme Järvi conducting the Gothenburg Symphony.
post #36 of 233
The Sibelius tone poems are a bit slow paced for my tastes and I don't listen to them that often......the exception being "Finlandia" which I really like and sounds more like a Tchaikovsky work.
post #37 of 233
Zurg,

Sorry about the Maazel set not including this. I only have two versions and the Colin Davis on Phillips pales in comparison imho. The Maazel is so good that I offered my wife something in return if only she'd sit and listen to it with all five speakers going last night (she's not a classical fan). At the end, she liked it so much, she borrowed the thing.

This is a Sibelius site where he gives a run down on his favorite Tapiolas. His read on the piece is extremely interesting in and of itself. To get to the recommendations, scroll to the bottom of the page. Following that, there are messages by others on the work.

Link 1

The second link (at the same site) is one of the excellent reviews of the Vanska cycle, including another wonderful (great read) on his take on the work Tapiola. Apparently, this set is also extremely well recorded, as is obviously the Maazel. Unfortunately, he doesn't have any reviews of Maazel's work that I'm aware of.

Link 2

Out of all the works I own, Tapiola is one of the ones most in need of great sonic quality.

My wife liked Tapiola last night that she okay'd the buying to the new set. Maybe I'll order it today.
post #38 of 233
My obsession with Bernstein/Sony/NYPO recordings continues, I just ordered the Sony complete Sibelius Symphony set:

Sibelius

Last couple years I have been buying just about every Bernstein/Sony CD they put out since they are always mid price or less, and are always passionate, individual (some say eccentric/misguided), and very energetic often pushing the NYPO to their limit. The later Bernstein/DG recordings from late 1970's and 1980's are almost always more polished and restrained compared to earlier Sony versions......there are some exceptions, his DG Schumann Symphony set comes to mind.
post #39 of 233
I too have become fond of Bernstein, some discs I like better than others, but I have yet to be totally disappointed by anything he's put out, and they are hard to resist are budget/near-budget prices too. Have yet to hear any of his Sibelius, so I look forward to your impressions DA.

Scott
post #40 of 233
I've been real hit or miss on Bernstein, but I do have the symphony No. 5 with him and it's pretty sensational. I covet his symphonies Nos. 1, 2, and 3 on Sony, but don't know if they package it this way. I bid, but lost, at ebay for his Sony Royal series Nos. 4, 5, 6, and 7 two days ago.

The price for his complete set that you linked is very tempting.
post #41 of 233
Quote:
Originally Posted by danaa
I've been real hit or miss on Bernstein, but I do have the symphony No. 5 with him and it's pretty sensational. I covet his symphonies Nos. 1, 2, and 3 on Sony, but don't know if they package it this way. I bid, but lost, at ebay for his Sony Royal series Nos. 4, 5, 6, and 7 two days ago.

The price for his complete set that you linked is very tempting.
The set linked is an import and has newest remaster only 1 year old.

There are other sets in this Bernstein series that include Tchaikovsky Symphonies 1-6, I just have so many sets now it would be very hard for Lenny to get any play time here.
post #42 of 233
As this thread somehow inspired me to listen to more Sibelius lately (actually more than would be considered as healthy I guess...), I was wondering if anybody did compare the early Maazel (Vienna) to the later Pittsburgh cycle from 91/92?
Also, does anybody know the Birmingham / Rattle set on EMI from the 80s?
post #43 of 233
Quote:
Originally Posted by DarkAngel
The set linked is an import and has newest remaster only 1 year old.

There are other sets in this Bernstein series that include Tchaikovsky Symphonies 1-6, I just have so many sets now it would be very hard for Lenny to get any play time here.
DA, I think I'd better put you on my ignore list. Nothing personal, you understand, but this is getting expensive. I've developed a knee-jerk response to your posts that's starting to make my credit card statements a genuine pain.

Let us know what you think of the Bernstein. I'm not always convinced by his readings, but they're unfailingly personal and eloquent. Bernstein always has something to say, an interpretational perspective that's unfailingly interesting. He's also been fortunate in the quality of his recorded sound.

BW
post #44 of 233
Bill,

You too can join my class action with DA and his harm to our wallets!

Scott
post #45 of 233
My Bernstein/Sony set has not arrived yet and I have already ordered even more Sibelius symphonies:

Gibson/Chandos Sym 1-7 (budget price)
Berglund/Finlandia Sym 1-3 (1998 recordings)


The newest Berglund I wanted to try because he uses smaller orchestra group, COE (Chamber Orchestra of Europe) Can these works be sucessful using smaller group????? The answer will soon be revealed to me.

Berglund

BTW....the more I read about Bernstein/Sony I "might" have made a mistake getting it, seems that each performance is either very energetic or very broad reading going for extremes in both directions.....
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