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Berliner Philharmoniker / Simon Rattle - Brahms: The Symphonies [4LP]

Warner Classics

  • £64.26

Format: 4 x LP
ICPN: 0190296266966
Release Date: 21 Oct 2022
Genre: Classical

Clamshell with 4 x LPs - 180 GR. PRESSING black vinyl – no download code
Original cover artwork – Liner notes in English, German and French

Brahms’ four symphonies lie at the very core of the Berliner Phiharmoniker’s repertoire and reputation. With the combination of Sir Simon Rattle's vision and iconoclastic approach, and the orchestra's remarkable technique and unique sound, these performances mark a milestone in the history of Brahms recordings.

Sir Simon Rattle and the Berliner Philharmoniker have recorded the complete symphonies of Johannes Brahms live in concert in the Philharmonie, Berlin. This is a major recording of music that is central to the tradition of the 127 year-old orchestra. It combines the incomparable sound and musicianship of the Berliner Philharmoniker, and the iconoclastic and visionary approach that has characterised Sir Simon's music-making over the past forty years.

Discussing the Brahms symphonies performances and recordings Sir Simon agreed that Brahms is very much at the centre of the Berliner Philharmoniker’s sound and style of playing. “Of course, the works were newly minted when the Orchestra was [being born] – in the first three years of the Orchestra’s history, they played all of them.” He also described the particular sound of Brahms, “steeped in the German ethos, the idea of the forests and the sound of horns coming from a distance, even the forest colours” and confirmed that performing these works with the Berliner Philharmoniker, which has been hailed as the world’s greatest Brahmsian orchestra “gives you a possibility of colours that you have almost nowhere else. … I can say to this orchestra, ‘I need a different sound’ and the sound changes immediately.”

“Simon Rattle combines Furtwängler’s monumentality with Karajan’s beautiful sound.” Die Zeit
“Simon Rattle has clearly forged a deep bond with the Berlin Philharmonic during his tenure, and the playing is never less than superb, with every section of the orchestra ideally responsive. If any one aspect should be singled out it must be the horn-playing, both solo and as a body, which is gloriously expressive, most movingly of all throughout Symphony No. 2.” BBC Music Magazine
“Rattle’s reading [of the First Symphony] is one in which the inwardness and charm of the exquisitely realised inner movements offset the breadth and lyric power of the surrounding drama. ... in the Third... Rattle's finely moulded direction sustains the discourse.” Gramophone


Symphony No. 1 in C minor, Op. 68
SIDE A I. Un poco sostenuto – Allegro – Meno allegro
II. Andante sostenuto
SIDE B III. Un poco allegretto e grazioso
IV. Finale: Adagio – Più andante – Allegro non troppo, ma con brio – Più allegro

Symphony No. 2 in D major, Op. 73
SIDE C I. Allegro non troppo
II. Adagio non troppo
SIDE D III. Allegretto grazioso (Quasi andantino)
IV. Allegro con spirito

Symphony No. 3 in F major, Op. 90
SIDE E I. Allegro con brio
II. Andante
SIDE F III. Poco allegretto
IV. Allegro

Symphony No. 4 in E minor, Op. 98
SIDE G I. Allegro non troppo
II. Andante moderato
SIDE H III. Allegro giocoso
IV. Allegro energico e passionato

Berliner Philharmoniker
Sir Simon Rattle

Recorded in concert: 29.X-14.XI.2008, Philharmonie, Berlin
Producer: Christoph Franke
Balance engineer: René Möller
Total timing: 2 hours 46 minutes
A Warner Classics release, (P) 2009 & © 2022 Parlophone Records Limited

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