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Beethoven: Symphonies Nos. 1 & 5

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - James Leonard
With performances this strong, subtle, and vital, there are only two negative charges that can be made against this disc by Paavo Järvi and the Deutsches Kammerphilharmonie Bremen coupling Beethoven's "First" and "Fifth" symphonies: why does the sound have so much echo and why does the "Fifth Symphony" come before the "First"? Using Bärenreiter's New Urtext Edition, with its thousands of corrections big and small, Järvi and the Bremen musicians have created performances of both works that rival the greatest ever recorded. Their "First" is poised and witty with plenty of energy in the Allegros, lots of charm in the Andante cantabile, and a sly sense of humor in the ...
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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - James Leonard
With performances this strong, subtle, and vital, there are only two negative charges that can be made against this disc by Paavo Järvi and the Deutsches Kammerphilharmonie Bremen coupling Beethoven's "First" and "Fifth" symphonies: why does the sound have so much echo and why does the "Fifth Symphony" come before the "First"? Using Bärenreiter's New Urtext Edition, with its thousands of corrections big and small, Järvi and the Bremen musicians have created performances of both works that rival the greatest ever recorded. Their "First" is poised and witty with plenty of energy in the Allegros, lots of charm in the Andante cantabile, and a sly sense of humor in the phrasing of the finale's Adagio opening that is truly Beethovenian. Great as their "First" is, their "Fifth" is immeasurably greater: vigorously contended, inspiringly idealistic, and victorious. No matter how many "Fifths" one may have heard, Järvi and the Bremen's opening motif will be a welcome surprise. True, the Bremen strings' vibrato is minimal and the brass and tympani are often well forward in the balances. But the former is historically appropriate, the later undeniably effective, and taken in context of Järvi's amazing combination of textural fidelity and interpretive charisma, they are wholly justifiable. So why do the performances sound as if either they were recorded in a large empty hall or were doctored afterwards to enhance the reverb? In longer pauses after louder tuttis, the sound of the last notes has not faded before the next notes are sounded, an effect that inevitably diminishes the impact of the next notes. And why was the "Fifth" programmed before the "First"? Certainly, starting the disc with the slashing attack of the most famous four notes in classical music is more exciting than starting with the piquant harmonic twist, but wouldn't the blazing brass perorations of the "Fifth"'s finale also have made a more exciting conclusion? Still, in the final analysis, Järvi and the Deutsches Kammerphilharmonie Bremen recording of Beethoven's "Fifth" and "First" symphonies will be mandatory listening for anyone seriously interested in the composer.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 1/6/2009
  • Label: Rca
  • UPC: 886973383520
  • Catalog Number: 733835
  • Sales rank: 17,641

Tracks

Disc 1
  1. 1–4 Symphony No. 5 in C minor ("Fate"), Op. 67 - Ludwig van Beethoven & Paavo Järvi (30:27)
  2. 5–8 Symphony No. 1 in C major, Op. 21 - Ludwig van Beethoven & Paavo Järvi (24:22)
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Album Credits

Performance Credits
Paavo Järvi Primary Artist
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