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Shostakovich: Symphony No.4 CD


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Product details

  • Audio CD (28 Oct 2002)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: CD
  • Label: Regis
  • ASIN: B00007KK95
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 318,460 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Customer Reviews

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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By I. Giles TOP 50 REVIEWER on 27 Oct 2013
This disc, well recorded in 1996, was bought as a sampler of the complete set having so far not found a fully satisfying version of this symphony. Barshai comes as close as any of the others and closer than many others that I have tried.

The performance could be described as being played 'straight' without any distortions of tempo. Points are not made aggressively and the music, which is certainly a powerful piece of writing, is allowed to communicate on its own terms. The playing of the orchestra is of a particularly high standard and is compelling as is Barshai's own vision of the work.

In general terms the tempi are kept on the move and the symphony does not suffer from any lapses of tension. The tempi of the fugal section for the strings in the first movement for example can only be described as hair-raisingly fast and, given the virtuosity of the string section, the result is gripping to say the least! Barshai brings to this score a personal knowledge of the composer and that added understanding comes over with authority.

This joins the Jarvi, Jansons (only when played at an increased playback level as it is cut very low) and a Gergiev BBC 'live proms' recording (not the Philips disc) as the most successful that I have heard so far.

I would suggest that the box set is likely to be even more attractive than this single disc if this is typical of the whole set.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By DR IJ TALLACH on 5 April 2014
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I recently set myself the task of listening to as many versions of this symphony as I could get my hands on. Although there are far more than 16, the line had to be drawn somewhere.....so I settled on the 16 which seemed most highly recommended.

The impetus for this onerous task was, I confess, a review of the recent Petrenko recording of this symphony with the Liverpool P.O. The reviewer dared to give Petrenko and the LPO a rating of less than 5! Having come to idolize Petrenko over the last 2 years, I was indignant. How could there possibly be a better recording?......and if there was, surely the Petrenko still merited 5 stars.
Well, to be brief, I clearly had a lot to learn. Though I still idolize Petrenko, there were at least 6 recordings which, to me, are more powerful. Well, power isn't everything, so - to be more specific - more terrifying! It seems that everthything which was muted, suppressed and distorted by Stalin's reign of terror has a clearer articulation in Shostakovich's fourth symphony than anywhere else in music. And this recording, to me, is the most immediate, the most visceral and the most spine-tingling.

From the comfort of my living room, in this post-modern, spoilt-for-choice, have-it-on-a-plate-now era (I realize this applies to our priviledged and 'developed' corner of the world....even considering austerity measures), life is very different to that for Shostakovich, from 1934 to 1936. Someone recently told me that thrill and terror are one and the same......biochemically speaking. It seems like sacrilege, on one level (that I could find pleasurable what, for Shostakovich, was an expression of horror), but driving to work with Barshai's Shostakovich 4 at high volume is, to me, a thrill to which extreme sports must take a humble second place.
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By Roy E Jones on 14 Dec 2013
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Not bad this verson - some bits are difficult to hear - still prefer Previn with CSO - too scary for my taste this version
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