The symphonies of Brahms are no doubt among the most loved and played masterpieces of the symphonic repertoire. These wonderful but challenging symphonies have been tackled by almost all the leading conductors. İn fact, the discography is really impressive. Fine performances abound. But what about great performances? Perhaps not too many! The Chailly set is certainly fine. All the symphonies are beautifully played. The recording quality is generally good, if not at audiophile standards. But somehow this cycle falls short of greatness. For greatness, I would turn to Abbado with the Berlin Philharmonic, Sanderling with the Staatskapelle or Karajan with the Berlin Philharmonic. For a truly monumental performance of the first symphony try Klemperer with the Philharmonia and for a benchmark rendering of the fourth symphony marked by an unsurpassed clarity of texture and profundity of approach try Kleiber with the Vienna Philharmonic.