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Symphony No. 9

Claudio Abbado , Gustav Mahler , Berliner Philharmoniker Audio CD
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
Price: CDN$ 16.01 & FREE Shipping on orders over CDN$ 25. Details
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Product Details

1. Andante comodo
2. Im Tempo eines gemachlichen Landlers. Etwas tappisch und sehr derb
3. Rondo-Burleske. Allegro assai. Sehr trotzig
4. Adagio. Sehr langsam und noch zuruckhaltend
5. Applause

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Customer Reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars
4.5 out of 5 stars
Most helpful customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Agree with other reviewers March 25 2003
By J. Kim
Format:Audio CD
This is Mahler at its best- phenomenal playing (no other orchestra, past or present, comes close) that is in sync with conducting of great imagination and spontaneity. Vastly superior to the orchestra's previous efforts under Karajan, Berstein and Barbirolli- all really awful recordings.
I also obtained the 7th symphony with this same pairing- both are highly encouraged. The 3rd is so-so, mostly because of poor recorded sound.
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5.0 out of 5 stars An equal to Karajan May 10 2004
By A Customer
Format:Audio CD
This Mahler 9th may be equal to Karjan's great (2nd recording) of the work. I have to say was well as the Berlin Philharmonic played for Karajan, they play even better in this recording. Examples of this are found all over the place but to hear playing that is great beyond belif, listen to movments 2 and 3. How Abbado does the opening of the last movement is unique and it does work very well. I liked it alot. This is a classic. Thanks to DG for issuing it.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Superb Feb. 17 2004
Format:Audio CD
An exceptional, beautiful recording of Mahler 9, live in Berlin. A rival to the famous live Mahler 9 from von Karajan - a recording not without it's flaws. This new one under Abbado really stands out from the opening moments, a wonderfully judged tempo, then the release of the first two note motif just like a sigh, which I find proper. Abbado lets the music both unfold and then run riot in the more chaotic passages. I believe this to be correct; the music as written expresses a very free, unstructured, improvisatory quality in important moments of the 1st movement, the material, the phrases themselves being structurally important in the rest of the piece. This is a fully successful execution of the ideas Benjamin Zander describes so well on his Mahler 9 recording but does not convey as easily in the performance.
This is a real 'book-ended' symphony, with the first and last movements holding the most powerful meanings and the middle two offering respite and intrigue. Here Abbado seems to just let the orchestra play, and play they do. Breathtaking music-making!
The finale features some of the richest string sound I have ever, ever heard on a recording, the beauty of the sound and weight of the emotions are almost overwhelming, climaxes are full of grit and strength and unfold naturally from the music. The line moves and moves and moves . . . in the closing pages, Abbado still allows the music to breathe, one simply waits and the pauses last just as long as can be right, the music as soft as it should be, the notes speaking for themselves, no need to add to what Mahler has to say, really exceptional. There is an extended silence before the applause begins, almost 20 seconds, and I do hope that is as it was in the concert, because THAT is how you will be feeling at home, listening to this. Buy it.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Not Viennese enough Dec 30 2003
By A Customer
Format:Audio CD
Here's is my problem with this recording: Control and 'Viennese' style, vs. 'laissez-faire'. Sir Simon Rattle once said that everything about Mahler should be seen as being totally Viennese. Abbado seems to see it different: As being more improvised, i.e rather uncontrolled, sometimes too fast (movements 1&2) and without it's distinctive rhythm. And that's the difference between this recording and, say, Karajan's famous 1982 live account. Imrovisation instead of coherence. I prefer coherence, because it can translate into vision, into true fire, exitement and intensity of a live performance. And there in my view, vK is vastly superior to Abbado. Actually, vK's tempi are much more 'waltz-like', sometimes slower, more delayed (check out the almost 'whispered' fragility in his 1st movement!) and more rustic ("Etwas taeppisch und sehr derb": Laendler!), and do give the piece a much more burleske attitude (as Mahler himself indicates!). In my view, Abbado gets lost in details. Also, you can really hear that vK drives the orchestra to its limits, not in terms of speed, but assertiveness, while I have the feeling that with Abbado they are merely tucking along (only exception: 3rd movement). Take the finale for example: There is something special, something driven in vK's style. Some call it self-indulgent, even narcistic. I don't. I call it expressiveness. Abbado comes close, but cannot reach it. Compare it to Barbirolli's recoding the BPO: While lacking some of vK's fire, that is at least a uniquely warm and sympathetically lyrical approach to this symphony and a sure recommendation in its own right. Also, it is noted that there is a certain unnecessary steelyness in this Abbado recording, that not even the vK version has. Maybe more DG's fault...? Read more ›
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5.0 out of 5 stars A powerful performance Dec 20 2003
By Alan
Format:Audio CD
A powerful Mahler Ninth
Having found some of the earlier Abbado Mahler recordings to be solid but not especially inspired, I wasn't expecting much of this one. It turned to be a superb performance (as is Abbado's new Mahler Third with Berlin).
This is a visceral reading, battering the listener with waves of sound. It is a pretty savage performance, though hardly lacking in the lyrical side. Rather, Abbado and Berlin play everything to the hilt, creating an emotional roller coaster that seems very right.
Of course, the Berlin Philharmonic is an orchestra that can respond brilliantly to almost any demands that are placed on it. Even in this live performance, the orchestra's intensity and accuracy never flag, no matter how hard Abbado drives them.
Perhaps because it was recorded live, some balances are just a little off and the sound lacks some power at climaxes. But there really is a spontaneity here that you rarely hear in studio performances.
The Mahler Ninth has fared well on disc. Though it would seem to be one of the most challenging Mahler symphonies to realize successfully, it brings out the best in a lot of conductors and orchestras. Abbado is yet another excellent recording, joining Klemperer, both Karajan recordings, the Horenstein Vienna Symphony and London Symphony recordings, Kubelik, and Boulez among my favorites.
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Most recent customer reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Excellent performance, Not so good sound quality
Some people may say Karajan, Barbirolli, Horenstein, etc are better, but I don't believe there's only one definitive recording. Read more
Published on Dec 2 2003 by snhnpark
5.0 out of 5 stars Majestic Mahler.
Having started my life in the land of the tulips and the windmills on a diet of Mengelberg, van Beinum and Haitink, it never ceases to amaze me how the views on Mahler... Read more
Published on Jan. 6 2003 by B. Gone
3.0 out of 5 stars Intriguing, but not "great" Mahler..not a 1st choice of M9's
There aren't many performances of Mahler's 9th that have me scratching my head after 5 minutes, but this latest effort from Claudio Abbado and the Berlin is one. Read more
Published on Oct. 9 2002 by DAVID A. FLETCHER
5.0 out of 5 stars Abbado new recording on Mahler ninth symphony
Recorded "live" at the Berlin Philharmonie Hall, September 1999 this is the last of three new Mahler releases on DG. Read more
Published on Sept. 29 2002 by H. Granot
5.0 out of 5 stars Mature Mahler for a Lifetime
If Abbado's earlier set of Mahler symphonies (also on DG) already was worthy of special acclaim, these new valedictory recordings (including the third and seventh symphonies) only... Read more
Published on July 19 2002 by "tlyyra"
4.0 out of 5 stars Buena version pero hay mejores...
Esta nueva version de la Novena de Mahler al igual que la Septima ambas en DG y con Abbado tienen la particularidad de ser algo mas movidas y rapidas en cuanto al tempo, para... Read more
Published on July 13 2002 by Ramsis Ghazzaoui P.
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