25 of 28 people found the following review helpful
on 12 February 2005
Carlos Kleiber has always been fascinating in Beethoven (as in most of the selective repertoire he used to play). This unique document of the Pastorale, taped live in Munich in 1983 (according to the liner notes the only time Kleiber performed this symphony), is no exception. His account is intense, urgent, dazzling, to the point of becoming feverish, and is sure to keep one spellbound long after the performance is finished (just as the audience seemed to have been during the actual concert), as if a work deemed familiar was really heard for the very first time.
Since the original master tape seems to have been in poor condition, the producers of this CD preferred to use the audio cassette made by Kleiber's son. Although carefully mastered there is quite some tape hiss left. Another minus is undoubtedly the short total time (39 minutes). Yet no admirer of Kleiber or Beethoven's Pastorale should be without this CD.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on 21 July 2012
If you are at all interested in Beethoven symphonies, then it is worth buying this unique live recording. The sound quality is not perfect and there are a couple of coughs from the audience in the finale. Whatever you think of the tempo Kleiber chooses (the first movement in particular is fast), he achieves an amazing drive and intensity of expression from the orchestra. This is an extraordinary performance of a well-loved work, which made it sound fresh and exhilarating. I don't know what the audience were expecting, but at the end there is an uncertain pause before they decide to start clapping.
3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on 19 March 2012
a wonderful performance.it was singled out as far and away the finest in recent bbc cd review. however it is copy protected, and will not allow transfer to my iPod.would love to listen to it while walking in the countryside. anyone know a way around this problem?
2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on 8 March 2013
I love this. I love this more than I can say, but I'll give it a go. While most composers go for the slowed down approach to 'those' parts of first movement, Kleiber grabs it by the throat and runs off with it with maniacal joy. Allegedly sticking to Beethoven's metronome settings, this version takes no prisoners, and while the recording quality is not as good as others (not surprising, given its history) it more than rewards the listener with the alternative rendition offered by Kleiber. Some may consider it an anomaly, some a curiosity, or a museum piece, others an outright abomination, but I am always disappointed by every other version I hear now that I know this one. 'Joyful feelings awaken on arriving in the countryside' - oh yeah...
0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 4 February 2013
Just listen to it, I can't hear an orchestra but the angels themselves. I have read some reviews that donnot like the tempo. I totally disagree, this is a masterpiece.
2 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on 12 November 2011
Interesting to read the varied responses on here. On 5th Nov. 2011 this recording was the first choice in Building A Library on the CD Review programme on Radio 3. The reviewer said it won "hands down". Apparently this was the only time Kleiber ever conducted the Pastoral symphony! By contrast some years earlier the choice of a different reviewer was Otto Klemperer. Why not have the best of both worlds!
9 of 18 people found the following review helpful
on 26 March 2004
To comment on this performance I can use only one word: magnificent. Further comments would be superflous and inadequate. The cd sound is quite good for its times and for a live recording.