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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Well worth the modest outlay
Is this really a five star or a one star pair of discs? Who is right? Reading the widely differing reviews here I wondered whether it was worth the modest outlay for yet a couple more Haydn symphony discs or not, but I'm pleased to say I'm glad I took the plunge. There aren't too many recordings of these four symphonies, and one more wasn't going to break the bank...
Published on 26 Mar 2012 by Paul B

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2 of 20 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars This is Haydn castrated.
No joy. No vigour. No fun. No life. No style. No committment.

Don't waste your money.

Go to Fey Symphonies 82 88 & 95or Harnoncourt Haydn - Symphonies Nos 82 - 87 (Paris Symphonies)instead.
Published on 22 Oct 2008 by Mandryka


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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Well worth the modest outlay, 26 Mar 2012
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This review is from: Haydn: Symphonies Nos 88-92 (Audio CD)
Is this really a five star or a one star pair of discs? Who is right? Reading the widely differing reviews here I wondered whether it was worth the modest outlay for yet a couple more Haydn symphony discs or not, but I'm pleased to say I'm glad I took the plunge. There aren't too many recordings of these four symphonies, and one more wasn't going to break the bank.

Its true that Thomas Fey with (mostly) modern instruments, and his crash bang wallop approach, is marginally livlier in number 88, but Kuijken's more direct and less interventionist approach is far preferable in the glorious No.90 with its brillliant alto horns, and the honorary 13th London symphony, namely No.92 the Oxford, where Fey is just too prissy for his own good.

The best thing I can say about Kuijken's petite bande is that it sounds like a proper orchestra. If you are allergic to some of the more radical, supposed authentic sounds of some period bands, with their out of tune extra terrestrial strings, then you have no worries here. The band produces sufficient weight for these big scale works when required and though less brazen than Fey, there is a suitable presence from brass and drums when required. If I say that these readings are "sensible" ones I mean that in a positive way, and don't mean to infer that they are in any way boring. They are quite the opposite in fact.

These performances are continuing to grow on me and I might come back later and up the rating to the full five stars.

This is well worth its very modest price tag. If only Kuijken's 93-104 could be bought for a sensible price.....I might be tempted to invest in my seventh set.

After listening to some of the competition I've just upped this from four to five stars.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Joyful, Vigorous, Life-Affirming Fun!, 11 July 2012
This review is from: Haydn: Symphonies Nos 88-92 (Audio CD)
Whilst perhaps not quite as brilliant as Kuijken's set of "Paris" Symphonies, this is pretty damn fine with the best recording of No 88 since Furtwangler (completely different though the two interpretations are!) and the best ever of No 90. An outstanding bargain, recommended with all enthusiasm.
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5.0 out of 5 stars A fantastic collection, 1 Mar 2014
This review is from: Haydn: Symphonies Nos 88-92 (Audio CD)
Another review comments that this is Haydn castrated. In real life, so the story goes, as a choirister in Vienna Haydn's father spared the boy from actually being castrated, thereby preventing him from taking up a castrati career and turning him towards a career in musical composition. I would have thought this represents a "win! win!" situation all round! Haydn was saved from castration and neither are these performances castrated. I don't find quite the same sense of elegant polish that Kuijken brought to his set of the Paris Symphonies with a different period band, but this remains for me an invigorating joyous set of performances on period instruments. Highly recommended.
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5 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars BARGAUN HAYDN SET, 27 Feb 2009
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This review is from: Haydn: Symphonies Nos 88-92 (Audio CD)
A very good set of Haydn Symphonies at a bargain price. Also, investigate Kuijken's set of Haydn's 'Paris' Symphonies - that's even better than this set under review.
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2 of 20 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars This is Haydn castrated., 22 Oct 2008
This review is from: Haydn: Symphonies Nos 88-92 (Audio CD)
No joy. No vigour. No fun. No life. No style. No committment.

Don't waste your money.

Go to Fey Symphonies 82 88 & 95or Harnoncourt Haydn - Symphonies Nos 82 - 87 (Paris Symphonies)instead.
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Haydn: Symphonies Nos 88-92
Haydn: Symphonies Nos 88-92 by Joseph Haydn (Audio CD - 1999)
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