17 of 18 people found the following review helpful
This review is from: Schubert: Symphonies Nos 8 & 9 (Audio CD)
I have heard a lot of performances of Schubert's last symphony and this is my favorite. For example, it's more detailed and respectful of period practice than Solti, not to say more commonsense in the approach to the score (no diminuendo on the final chord of the symphony). It's less fussy and glossy than Rattle's interesting recent effort but hardly less well played and it's warmer and more relaxed than Mackerras' own earlier version with the OAE. The winds period brass really play out beautifully and give the performances some bite and style without the roughness that we sometimes associate with period performance.
It's worth mentioning that Mackerras takes a faster initial tempo in the first movement as indicated in the original score that he discovered in Vienna and, although it is startling at first, after a few listens you wonder how anyone could ever have played this differently.
The 'Unfinished' is just as effective, though there have certainly been more profound (ie. slow and heavy) performances in the past! Finally, there is also the beautifully natural Telarc recording that rounds off wonderfully thought out and executed release.