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Bruckner - Symphony No 7; Falla - (2) Dances; Mussorgsky - Prelude to Khovanshchina [Extra tracks, Live]

Philharmonia Orchestra , Anton Bruckner , Manuel de Falla , Modest Petrovich Mussorgsky , Carlo Maria Giulini Audio CD
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)

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Product details

  • Conductor: Carlo Maria Giulini
  • Composer: Anton Bruckner, Manuel de Falla, Modest Petrovich Mussorgsky
  • Audio CD (1 Sep 2003)
  • SPARS Code: DDD
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Extra tracks, Live
  • Label: BBC Legends
  • ASIN: B0000B1A56
  • Other Editions: MP3 Download
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 357,857 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. Piano Concerto No. 1 in C Minor, Op. 35
2. Adagio. Sehr geierlich und sehr langsam
3. Scherzo. Sehr schnell - Trio.
4. Finale. Bewegt, doch nicht scnell
5. Danze de los vecinos
6. Danza Del Molinero
7. Prelude

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Giulini's live Bruckner 7th in pretty good sound 18 Sep 2003
By A Customer
Format:Audio CD
The recording of the Bruckner 7th is taken from a live performance at the Proms in 1982, and makes interesting listening in comparison to Giulini's recording in 1986, under studio conditions, with the Vienna Philharmonic for DG.

The most striking difference is to be found in the first two movements, where, with faster tempos and a marginally more flexible approach to phrasing, the live performance comes across as lighter, more lithe and easily songful, even in the sublime adagio. There is an outdoors feel about the musicmaking with the Austrian landscape much to the fore.

The impression conveyed by the later studio recording is quite different. Giulini this time round seems to relate the first two movements more closely to the death haunted 9th symphony. The mood is more sombre and serious as Giulini strives to convey an extra depth of expression. Even the lovely song like melody that surfaces in the adagio has a greater sense of melancholy and regret than in most other recorded performances of this work.

Both interpretations seem to me equally valid and compelling in their different ways. I cannot agree with the views of Richard Osborne, who wrote the liner notes to the live recording, that the studio recording is considerably less successful. Yes, the effect is less "fresh", but, as indicated above, Giulini seems to be aiming for something different in the later recording: a more inner quality. Interestingly, I note that in the liner notes to a recent reissue of the Bruckner 2nd, Mr Osborne referred to the same studio account of the 7th as "epic".

The Philharmonia produces quite a rich, well cultivated sound, even if in the last analysis one misses the deep, burnished brilliance of the Vienna Philharmonic. The strings of the Philharmonia are especially impressive, and the brass produce an appropriately big sound when required, despite some lapses. The overall quality of sound is more than acceptable.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.2 out of 5 stars  5 reviews
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An astonishing Bruckner Seventh 29 Sep 2005
By Santa Fe Listener - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD
On CD Giulini's Bruckner has often been very measured and even a bit lugubrious. This live Seventh in quite good radio stereo preceded his commercial recording of the symphony with the Vienna Phil. in 1987 (DG) and is much more inspiring, as well as faster. Giulini had to have personal belief in any piece of music he conducted, and here the personal connection is very evident--such tender phrasing and depth of emotion are rare, even from great Bruckner conductors. I never thought I would rate a live performance as first choice in any Bruckner symphony, but I would here. Five stars.

P.S. 2011 - Since posting this review, I've become aware of two more concert readings of the Seventh under Giulini. One is a pirate on the Memories label that includes the Ninth Sym.; the orchestra is the Vienna Phil. The other, in excellent broadcast stereo, was done with the Berlin Phil. in 1985 and appears on Testament. It's a rival to this BBC Legends account, although the timings ar slower. I don't know the Memories release, so I can only give the timings for BBC (61 min.), Testament (64 min.), and DG (68 min.).
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Better than DG Recording! 7 Oct 2009
By Ghazali - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD
This is absolutely one of the best Bruckner 7ths around. It is emotionally charged, fluent, and well recorded. If you don't mind some coughing from the audience buy it.
5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Truly a reference version 1 Mar 2008
By SwissDave - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD
I'm still trying to figure out what about the sound it is that made one reviewer down-rate this wonderful live recording. Yes, Royal Albert Hall is the size of a sports stadium and tends to sound like one - it's not where I would have liked this (or anything else of consequence) to be recorded. But: of the several BBC Legends discs I own, some, like Tennstedt's 1985 Beethoven 9th, sound quite well indeed (I'm tempted to say better than any live event I've witnessed there in person). This live Bruckner from 1982 is recorded similarly well, even if ironically, the less distant but drier-sounding Falla pieces from 1963 manage to have impact without clutter (that uneven sense of reverberation and lost echo across the spectrum of too great a hall) - if at the cost of greater audience noise. By the way, comparing the Bruckner to the 1986 DG studio version, one notices once again that a successful high-resolution remastering of an analogue tape will sound less grainy than early to mid-eighties digital. I for one am rather satisfied with the sound here.

More importantly, Giulini's live recording "solves a problem" I've always had with the studio version (which, despite a number of alternatives in my collection, nevertheless remains or remained up to now, my favourite Bruckner 7th of all): the performance of the symphony as a whole comes off as more of one piece. The first two movements in the studio version (with transitions of a single-mindedness that seem to belie the fact that an orchestra is made up of a crowd of players) amount to a quasi-religious experience of unprecedented magnitude (forget the "quasi": the kind that would turn a heretic into a Catholic!), so much so that the symphony seems doomed to remain top-heavy. In the perhaps futile attempt to give them equal weight, Giulini makes the latter two movements sound comparatively laboured, well-played as they may be. I have listened to the studio recording, loved it and compared it to other versions for twenty years, and each and every time the first two movements make me wonder how on earth Giulini will keep up their awesome, breathtaking monumentality, intensity, concentration and sheer tonal beauty. Believe me, after all these years, I am still sitting in front of my stereo hoping for some miracle to happen in the latter two movements...
Listening to the balanced, harmonious live recording today, I'm more than ever convinced it could not be done. The more transparent, Ländler (that is, Austrian barn dance) -inspired mood Giulini sets in the live version from the very beginning makes me think he already held the key to a rounded overall experience in his hand back in 1982, and perhaps tried too hard in the Vienna studio four years later. Slightly less of an ascent to Heaven in London maybe, but no let-down from beginning to end (never mind what appears an incident of wind player fatigue in the last movement). The longer I compare the two versions, I feel as if this live one already had all I love about the studio one, plus greater overall fleetness to boot (on paper, it's really only the timings of the first two movements that differ), and that whoever makes its acquaintance free from the "prior charge" of knowing the studio version by heart must fall head over heels in love with it. Even so, you'll have to pry my out-of-print copy of the studio version from my cold dead fingers.

Greetings from Switzerland, David.

P.S.
The fillers are nicely played, no doubt, but hardly the reason one needs to own this disc. Top recommendations for Falla's Three Cornered Hat must go to the legendary recordings by Ansermet (1961 Decca London) and Jorda (1960 Everest/Vanguard). My favourite Khovanshchina Prelude remains Solti's from 1966 (Decca).
2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Unusual Giulini 27 Jun 2008
By Andre Gauthier - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
This CD centers around the Bruckner 7th symphony. I think it relects Giulini at his very best. His DGG studio recording of this piece is excellent, but doesn't have the life force that his live performances do. Seeing Giulini conduct Bruckner during the late 70s and early 80s was something to behold. He is a tall man, and his beat in certain key moments would start with his arm extended straight up over his head and culminate with it going all the way down, nearly hitting the floor. He used a lot of energy to get that special something from his players. Other conductors simply cannot accomplish what he so often does in Bruckner.

Concerning the "most helpful critical review", I disagree about the sound. It is fairly consistent with other BBC broadcasts of the period and from the same venue. One generally doesn't have a "live performance" with "studio sound". The audience absorbs a great amount of the sound one would hear in an empty hall. When you hear something that is labeled as a "live performance" that also sounds plush, clearly articulated and with lots of reverberation, one is often safe in assuming that many of the takes came from rehearsals with no audience present. How else does one come across so many "live" DGG performances without any audience noises? Record companies are notorious for stating things that just aren't so.

Buy this while you can. Classical CDs are vanishing faster all the time. It would be a shame not to be able to hear how he treats this music in a "live" setting.
3 of 22 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Worst engineered and recorded 31 Dec 2005
By Peace101 - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD
I bought this CD hoping to have some value to my CD collection. But listening three minutes into coughing, I was shocked that people have praised this without ANY pointing to the shortfall (nadirfall to be correct). With FULL price, this is not worth even for a try, believe me.

For those who love Bruckner, this is not the one to have, especially monoaural (left) cymbal crash and triangles in the 15:53 minutes of 20.36 minute second movement (Adagio).

Poor Giulini, he must have been sick or something. Considering I give 10 stars for his 8th and 9th (both VPO/DG), this deserves a shtick, not star.

Here is the problem, the tempo is wierd. This is supposed to be the most sublime of all bruckner's symphonies (barring adagio from 9th), the symphony is more like drudging work.

The Royal Albert Hall (RAH) in London is not the Grossersaal in Musikverein in Vienna. Absolutely third class acoustics. I have never found RAH recordings worthwhile. It has worst sonics...so avaoid any RAH recording. (Sorry for the shtick here. It cost me money and time).

I think the best recording is by far by CBSO/Rattle/EMI, followed by Skrowaczewski/Halle/ArteNova and then HvK/VPO/DG. I have not heard Harnoncourt/VPO/RCA, but I think Harnoncourt have screwed up other symphonies with his so called back-to-time era type conducting, i do not care if it get Grammy or not.

My favorites of all orchestras, CS/Barenboim/DG is also good, but considering Barenboim was new to conducting, it is good for Chicago style brass and drums, etc...you know what I mean.

Sound: 0

Recording effort: 0

Conducting: 1 star

overall: AVOID
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