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Britten: War Requiem (2 CDs)

Britten: War Requiem (2 CDs)

31 Jan 2014

£11.99 (VAT included if applicable)

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  • Sample this album Title - Artist (sample)
1
30
5:56
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2
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3:32
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3
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3:36
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4
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2:33
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5
30
2:56
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6
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1:56
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7
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4:48
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8
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1:52
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9
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1:11
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10
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1:54
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11
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4:47
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12
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3:30
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13
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6:06
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14
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6:01
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15
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3:51
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Disc 2
1
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3:43
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2
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7:37
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3
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9:34
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4
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5:36
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5
30
7:18
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6
30
9:46
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7
30
2:03
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8
30
4:36
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9
30
8:22
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10
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6:14
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11
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0:17
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12
30
1:04
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13
30
1:10
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14
30
5:19
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15
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3:16
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Product details

  • Original Release Date: 1 Jan 1999
  • Release Date: 1 Jan 1999
  • Number of Discs: 2
  • Label: Decca Music Group Ltd.
  • Copyright: (C) 2006 Decca Music Group Limited
  • Record Company Required Metadata: Music file metadata contains unique purchase identifier. Learn more.
  • Total Length: 2:10:24
  • Genres:
  • ASIN: B003Y6TF0I
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (35 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 35,211 in MP3 Albums (See Top 100 in MP3 Albums)

Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

120 of 121 people found the following review helpful By Klingsor Tristan VINE VOICE on 22 Aug 2006
Format: Audio CD
This was the piece of music that first really turned me on to classical music, listening to the very first performance from Coventry Cathedral on a small tranny radio. What I failed to realise then was that this massive impact was achieved by brilliant structural simplicity.

The whole work is effectively a study on the tritone, the 'diabolus in musica', that most disturbing and unstable of intervals. From the bells at the start to the harmonically ambiguous endings of the first and second movements and of the entire work; from the alternating tonics of the boys' Te Decet Hymnus to the alternating tintinnabulations of the soprano's Sanctus; from the fanfares of the Dies Irae to the two halves of the tenor's ineffable Dona Nobis Pacem at the end of the Agnus Dei. All these and countless other examples revolve around or grow out of the tritone. And what better musical image for war could there be than those two most irreconcilable notes in the scale?

Then, of course, there is the inspired concept of juxtaposing the hieratic incantations of the Latin Mass for the Dead with the burning anger of Wilfred Owen's First World War poems. There are, in fact, three tiers of performers in the War Requiem - the boys' choir and chamber organ, objective and dissociated in the distance; the soprano, chorus and orchestra singing the Latin Mass at, as it were, the centre of things; and the tenor and baritone with the chamber orchestra delivering Owen's bitter poems in the intimate and confidential foreground. The different perspectives of these three groups are a vital aspect of any performance and are ideally realised by producer, John Culshaw (of Golden Ring fame) and his team on this premiere recording.
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22 of 22 people found the following review helpful By Colin Fortune VINE VOICE on 4 Jan 2009
Format: Audio CD
The review by Klingsor Tristan is spot on and he is right to be so enthusiastic. The work itself has a claim to be one of the greatest works composed in the 20th Century and the searing commitment of all the performers in this first recording is almost palpable. The latest remastering eliminates almost all hiss and exposes clearly some of the remarkable quiet scoring of the work as well as delivering speaker-shaking cataclysmic Decca sound in sections like the "Dies Irae." The murmuring choral crescendo in the "Sanctus" is the best achieved on disc. Quite wonderful.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Mr. S. P. Mitchell on 10 Dec 2012
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
As a music lover and audiophile from a young age, I can recall clearly the tears running down my face and the poignancy of those feelings and emotions of empathy experienced in the 1960's, when, despite being very short of money I could not resist purchasing Britten's War Requiem on this brilliant Decca recording and heard the composer's magnificent and moving music, then newly written, and, soon after, so beautifully recorded on vinyl records for the first time.
With the passing of many years, this remastered transfer to CD (which is now obtainable at an extremely low price) moves me even more,especially as we still learn daily of more slaughter still happening in the world we live in. I am also moved not only in remembrance of the stunning accomplishment of the original musical performers, but also in respect for, and in considerable admiration of the remarkable sound quality achieved by those amazing Decca engineers of yesteryear. Having regard to the ease within which the large musical forces involved are so comfortably contained in this outstanding recording, it is not surprising in the least, that the particularly wide ranging and opulent sound on the original recordings, and now on these CDs, continues to impress so much. I have no reservations whatsoever in suggesting that these particular discs deserve to be regarded as both landmark performances and recordings, and, as such, merit inclusion in any serious collection of recorded music.
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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful By Professor A. G. Henley on 27 Mar 2011
Format: MP3 Download Verified Purchase
I first heard this recording 30 years ago, and for a long time had a LP recording. On recently downloading the Decca remaster, it has lost none of its appeal. It is in fact astonishing, listening to this recording, that it was recorded 39 years ago. The sound quality is amazing and the remaster just makes it bristle even more. There have been a number of more recent recordings, most notably with Simon Rattle in charge - but if you want to appreciate this piece you have to listen to it with the original "cast" for whom it was written - Vishnevskaya, Fischer-Dieskau and of course Peter Pears, with the composer in charge. It is almost a misnomer to title the piece "War Requiem" (and I hesitate to write this) - it is in fact a brilliant musical critique of the futility of war. And in so doing it provides a wholly new insight to the Latin text of the Requiem Mass, particularly in the Sanctus. The piece is inspirational and at the same time deeply disturbing - and that is surely how Britten meant it to be. I lived in Coventry for a while and often go back to the Cathedral. I cannot walk round without thinking of this music. I was astonished to read that this original recording sold 200,000 copies in a few weeks of original issue. Take the phone off the hook, find some top quality headphones and prepare to be amazed.
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