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13 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Among the best
Bernstein may be more sensuous, Karajan surprisingly violent and intense, but neither their nor any other recording captures just about all of this symphony as well as Abbado and his Berliners. Superior to and more spontaneous than his Chicago recording, and sounding wonderful, this is a must.
Published on 8 Aug 2005

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8 of 17 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Could have been special
Abbado seems to know the workings of this symphony as well as anybody. He understands the layout of the symphony as a whole and the playing in general is exceptional. I read in one review that they played 'as though their life depended on it'. I can agree with that but there is one major component missing here - Tragedy - the thing this symphony needs in bucketfuls. I...
Published on 29 Jun 2006 by Mr. J. P. Mossman


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13 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Among the best, 8 Aug 2005
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This review is from: Mahler: Symphony No. 6 (Audio CD)
Bernstein may be more sensuous, Karajan surprisingly violent and intense, but neither their nor any other recording captures just about all of this symphony as well as Abbado and his Berliners. Superior to and more spontaneous than his Chicago recording, and sounding wonderful, this is a must.
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5 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Sounds amazingly and conveys tragedy of the 6th, 30 May 2009
This review is from: Mahler: Symphony No. 6 (Audio CD)
Firstly, what a pitty that not all the symphonies of Mahler recorded lately with Abbado are not on an SACD. The tempo and the conduction of the instruments are perfect. Not too slow neither too fast, like many others misinterpreted performances. The Berliner Philharmoniker show that they still belong among the best and that they are very familiar with Mahler. There are also other superb recordings as Kubelik and Bernstein but this one is on SACD what makes it special as it sounds far better than just an ordinary stereo CD.
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3 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Very nearly a great reading, 1 Dec 2010
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Dr. Rodney S. Newton (East Barnet, Herts, UK) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Mahler: Symphony No. 6 (Audio CD)
This is a superbly played and, in the main, a superbly conducted account of Mahler's daunting 'Tragic' Symphony. Abbado strictly obey's Mahler's initial indication of Allegro energico ma non troppo by setting off at a standard march tempo of 120 beats per minute and keeping the music of a tight rein thereafter. This is even more evident in the 'symphony-within-a-symphony' of the last movement, where he manages to integrate the various tempi well nigh perfectly - especially in the final elegy, with the crashing 'fate' motive with which the work ends hammered home with great emphasis (for me, other conductors fall at the last fence by taking it just a shade too fast). The problems lie the inner movements, especially the Andante moderato which, interestingly, Abbado places second, whereas most conductors today place it third (Mahler never made his mind up about the order of the inner movements anyway). Having played at least one Mahler symphony under Abbado's direction, I am aware that he does not favour sentimentality, but I feel that he veers too much in the opposite direction here, not always allowing the music time to make its point and almost seeming impatient to move on. Similarly, there is a lack of real engagement in the drama of the nightmarish Scherzo (for example, where are the snarling, mocking horns after figure 78 in the score? Abbado's are far too polite). Listening to these movements under Boulez, Bernstein or Kubelik will prove the point. While the playing of the BPO is well nigh perfect throughout, the recording first rate and the two great hammer blows in the finale properly devastating, for me, Abbado just misses the mark by a whisker. A little less polish and more involvement would have placed this release on the very top of the pile, but as it is, in my estimation Boulez and Bernstein (particularly his second recording and his DVD) are still just ahead.
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5 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Outstanding, 22 Dec 2006
By 
Neil Gibson (Glasgow Scotland) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Mahler: Symphony No. 6 (Audio CD)
There are quite a few very good recordings of this symphony (including 2 others by Abbado). This reading is special (Gramophone Record of the Year) because of Abbado's distillation of his long refined view of Mahler, the amazing playing of the BPO and as an example of the tremendous sound and interpretations Abbado is coaxing from orchestras (Lucerne, Mahler CO) in the late "freelance" part of his career.
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8 of 17 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Could have been special, 29 Jun 2006
By 
Mr. J. P. Mossman (crewe, cheshire United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Mahler: Symphony No. 6 (Audio CD)
Abbado seems to know the workings of this symphony as well as anybody. He understands the layout of the symphony as a whole and the playing in general is exceptional. I read in one review that they played 'as though their life depended on it'. I can agree with that but there is one major component missing here - Tragedy - the thing this symphony needs in bucketfuls. I know its not all about tragedy, there are some beautiful moments in this symphony and there is a lot more hope than soem people realise here but this recording just doesnt sound like Mahler should. If you like a warm and rich Mahler 6 which sounds like a sunny day then buy this. If you already know Mahler's 6th and are looking for a better version than the one you have then look at Chailly, Karajan, Boulez (dont believe the negative words of Boulez's Mahler) or Sanderling.

This ones a real let down although it is beautifully played.
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Mahler: Symphony No. 6
Mahler: Symphony No. 6 by G. Mahler (Audio CD - 2005)
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