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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A box set of outstanding performances in mostly outstanding recordings, 11 Nov 2011
By 
I. Giles (Argyll, Scotland) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Mahler: Symphonies Nos 1 [Blu-ray] [2011] (Blu-ray)
This is a simple re-issue of the series of Mahler symphonies conducted by Abbado at Lucerne and as issued by Euroarts. It does not include the fine Mahler 9 recorded by the same team but issued on a different label. Most important for those concerned about the DTS sound of the second symphony, this box contains the re-mastered set based on the DVD DTS sound track. (The Blu-ray DTS soundtrack was unusable due to mechanical failure). The remainder of the set are the same as the remaining individual original issues on Blu-ray.

Abbado has the enviable reputation of being one of the world's finest Mahler conductors. This has been further reinforced by his set of performances held at Lucerne with his hand-picked orchestra constituting the Lucerne Festival orchestra.

This very large orchestra, apart from containing musicians of outstanding individual abilities, also lays great stress upon their empathy and experience with the world of chamber music. Thus is achieved the unusual combination of orchestral size allied to individual and corporate sensitivity. This suits Abbado's particular vision of Mahler and is apparent throughout this set of performances.

Abbado's vision is very much a visionary approach. It may not suit everyone. Chailly, for example, takes a more traditional view in the sense that his orchestra plays more as a complete entity rather than as a set of chamber musicians. This is an over-simplification of course and there are many instances where Abbado's players play like a traditional orchestra and where Chilly's play as chamber soloists. Nevertheless the overall comparison of approach remains generally secure.

I would suggest that this set constitutes a very strong set of interpretations and performances and that previous recording issues concerning mainly number 2 are now resolved to the point where they should not be a major negative factor.

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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars 21st Century Mahler, 23 Dec 2013
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This review is from: Mahler: Symphonies Nos 1 [Blu-ray] [2011] (Blu-ray)
Claudio Abbado must rank amongst the finest modern Mahlerian conductors; a reputation hard earned over many years which have fashioned numerous stellar recordings on CD.

This box set contains the first seven symphonies and to experience Mahler's artistic vision in front of a live audience and in glorious Blu-ray is surely the next best thing to seeing these gigantic symphonies performed at the highest level in the concert hall. The scale of these works makes a visual experience all the more rewarding, as it helps to illustrate how Mahler subtly employs tiny fractions of a huge orchestra to create the impression of chamber music amidst the ostentatious explosions of noise to which he is more readily associated. This certainly helps to further appreciate his amazing orchestration, it's sheer dynamic breadth and variety.

The orchestra consists of hand picked musicians of the very highest calibre. To watch and listen to them is to be given the impression that they have performed and practiced these works together for years. The readings are magnificent, with Abbado's profound love and understanding of the music as abundantly clear as the admiration and esteem the players (and audience!) hold him in.

Wonderfully shot, expertly engineered and beautifully packaged. The only slight complaint is that this set does not include symphonies 8, 9, 10 and Das Lied von der Erde. A minor quibble as it still represents a terrific investment.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The ultimate collection, 8 Jan 2014
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This review is from: Mahler: Symphonies Nos 1 [Blu-ray] [2011] (Blu-ray)
I bought this after enjoying the Blu-ray of Mahler 9. The playing is absolutely amazing under Abbado's clear and unfussy direction. Without doubt the best performances of these pieces that I've experienced.
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Mahler: Symphonies Nos 1 [Blu-ray] [2011]
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