This is one of the most dissapointing Ninths I have ever heard. Bohm conducts Beethoven as Mozart, controlled and at moderate/slow/incredibly slow tempi. To begin with, these tempi are far off from Beethoven's specifications, regardless of whether or not Beethoven's metronome was off or if he set the tempi too high for whatever reason. Karajan's tempi versus Gardiner's "correct" tempi are convincing, but to slow it down as much as Bohm does is clearly not in Beethoven's intention--Bohm is not within the ballpark. And if Bohm wishes to slow down the tempi so much, he should at least add more emotional intensity. The truth is, Beethoven's symphonies are more emotionally intense at quick tempi and good dynamics. Though the first movement of Furtwangler's 42 or 54 performances are also slow, Furtwangler's first movement plays with terror whereas Bohm's plays with grace. Grace was not the intention of the first movement--that's for sure. The second movement is also too slow, though it does for a second add more mystery to it, but just for a second, then I get bored. I think Furtwangler got it right when he detected both mystery and ferocity in this movement, thus his scherzo starts slow but has rapid changes in dynamics. Bohm's is just boring. Now, Bohm's slow movement isn't bad, as I do believe it is best when played slowly. Slow tempi should be used when they accurately convey the emotion that Beethoven probably was trying to communicate, so the slow movement isn't bad. The fourth movement: in the strings interlude after the turkish march/tenor solo-- how weak is this! Many have interpreted this as being a "war" of some sort (preceded by a call to war by the tenor and followed by victory), but this surely is a weak war! Furtwangler, once more, in his fast mind-blowing tempo choice, conveys the struggle accurately. But Bohm seems to want clarity above anything. The fourth movement, because of the chorus and soloists, however, is not bad. It does play warmly, and that is perhaps why so many love this recording: they only care about one movement! That, or, they are too used to listening to Bohm's recordings of Mozart and need to experience the mind of Beethoven--a possibly bipolar, anything but controlled, madman of fury!