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Syms 8/9
Format: Audio CDChange
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Showing 1-9 of 9 reviews(5 star)show all reviews
This CD is without a doubt one of the best in my collection. It couples the two greatest of Dvorak's symphonies together on one midpriced CD, and not just any performanced of these symphonies, but the best currently available. The greatest of the romantic, emotional, and nationalistic elements that are found in Dvorak's music are present in these performances, led by Kubelik's amazing baton. Though Karajan refined this orchestra to make it the best in the world, his performances of these symphonies does not compare to those of Kubelik with the BPO. Kubelik shares a common ethnic background with Dvorak, thus he get's a better feel for the "slavic" feelings that permeate the music. The strings whine in the most emotionally stirring of ways. The brass and percussion boom and bang, in perfect balance with each other and the strings. And not only is the performance great, but so is the remastered sound. Though it is a 60's recording, and the quality is not up to par with new digital ones, it is still very good. The best performance of the famous New World symphony coupled with an amazing 8th make this CD a definite can't miss. One listen and you'll be hooked
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on July 7, 2001
First, let me thank Mr. Mautner for his insightful review below. I had recently heard Dvorak's 8th for the first time in a concert by the London Symphony, Sir Colin Davis conducting, and was enthralled by this under-performed masterpiece. Reading the rave reviews here (Karajan-Hurwitz controversy notwithstanding!) coupled with the bargain price I decided it was worth a purchase. Well, I hesitate to say this, but DG could charge twice the price for this and it would be well worth it! These recordings were made 30-odd years ago but sound like they were made yesterday. I've heard few other recordings that approximate the visceral experience of a live orchestral concert as well as this one. And what performances! Kubelik "goes for the gusto" here. This is unashamed, passionate romanticism at its most electrifying. Berlin has never sounded better than here under his baton. If you love the "New World" symphony, you'll adore this -- and learn to adore the Eighth along with it.
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on December 26, 1999
My first exposure (embarassingly, perhaps) to Dvorak's magnificent Eighth Symphony was not until graduate school, when I performed it with the Yale Philharmonia under Otto Werner-Mueller. Since that time more than 20 years ago, I have almost fanatically sought out every recording of it that I could find, and have discovered in the process that its transcendent beauty is very difficult to capture in a recording.
But not impossible. Kubelik's recording is not only beautiful sonically, but is one of the finest performances the work may ever receive. Kubelik, always a superb Dvorak conductor (hear the rerelease of his magnificent Chicago Symphony recording of the 9th from the early 50's) was at the height of his interpretive powers, and the Berlin Philharmonic sounds like the Czech Philharmonic on steroids. The results are absolutely glorious.
While there are finer recordings of the Ninth available individually, the coupling with this incredible Eighth makes this one of the truly great CD bargains. This is one of the finest CD's in my collection.
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on October 11, 1998
Kubelik's Dvorak recordings with the Berlin Philharmonic were among the finest work DG released in the 60's, and continue to provide the same thrills on today's double-symphony CD. The Symphony No. 8 (formerly 4) and Symphony No. 9: The New World were originally separate LP's in the same series. The production shows the fine melodic sweep and technical mastery the Berlin Philharmonic brings to each, while Kubelik's leadership brings a warmth and attentiveness this orchestra rarely shows under other conductors. A superb bargain on a definitave CD. The only disappointment is the omission of the photo from the cover of the No. 8 LP, which was a charming Eurotown foil to the New World skyline used on No. 9 and also on the CD.
I bought these LP's as a kid with my allowance; I'm thrilled to be able to have them on CD now. Both on one CD is gravy.
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on November 27, 2001
I think these are two of the best performances you can get of these two great works. Rafael Kubelik's performances are always underrated for some reason, and these this recording makes a strong case for this trend being reversed. I think two of they standout movements. Are the finale of The Eighth Symphony and The Opening Movement of The Ninth. In both these movements a precise amount of playing is mixed with almost flawless attacks to make it very thrilling. The Ninth Symphony First movement has one of the most exciting openings (next to Mahler 5) and It is played very musically with a good amount of rebate. The Largo is very beautiful and of course the finale is hair raising. I would highly recommend getting this disc especially at such a nice price.
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on July 13, 2002
Though the recorded sound quality on this disc is not up to high standards it is good enough to reveal how lovingly and spontaneously Kubelik portrays all that is wonderful in these Dvorak masterpieces. The conductor's affinity for the Dvorakian idiom is undeniable. Just sit back and marvel at the poetry and dynamics Kubelik brings to the glowing Eighth Symphony. His performance of the Ninth is a very sensitive one also. If you really love Dvorak or you want to discover something that will provide you with a welcome spiritual lift, get this cd. I offer more extended comments in my review of DGG's double set which includes Dvorak's Seventh Symphony and works by Smetana, though I do not deal with the latter.
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on July 20, 1999
Somebody at Amazon is playin' tricks on my mind! I haven't heard this CD, but I'm a little bit annoyed that, when I'm searching for Karajan's version(s), this one comes up. David Hurwitz, an Amazon reviewer, doesn't like Karajan that much, so I wonder if he rigged it to go to this version. Oh well--the DG "Originals" series is so great, I'm sure this version is one of the best. But I wish Amazon would just let me search for the music without second-guessing my tastes. I want KARAJAN, so give me KARAJAN!
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on October 3, 1998
(In Spanish) El más grande compositor checo es interpretado aquí de forma impecable por el más grande director checo de nuestro tiempo. Y con la célebre Orquesta (la BPO), en una inspirada lectura de la Sinfonía del Nuevo Mundo. El sonido es EXCELENTE, pero la interpretación lo es aún más.
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on April 18, 2001
There's so much depth and color in Kubelik's music making. You always sense such joy and wonder, especially in the ninth.
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