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What Classical Music Are You Listening To?


StarThrower
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Earlier today:

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I love Jean Martinon's way with Debussy.  His approach strikes me as perfectly balanced, both in terms of coolness and color.  Others conductors may make this music sound more voluptuous, but the danger there is that it can also feel overheated.  Martinon holds back ever so slightly; he just lets it happen -- so the music feels completely natural and unforced, like the wind on your face by the seaside.  This subtle sense of restraint also strikes me as being quintessentially French, perfect for Debussy . . . and Roussel and Saint-Saëns and the rest.  

 

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1 minute ago, mjzee said:

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Only two more discs to go to complete listening to the Bruno Walter box (I'm not going to listen to the 8 discs of interviews and rehearsals).

Did any particular performances bowl you over??? I love Walter's way with Brahms & Mahler.

Coincidentally, I just ordered precisely that Bruckner recording a few days ago. 😉

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7 minutes ago, HutchFan said:

Did any particular performances bowl you over??? I love Walter's way with Brahms & Mahler.

Coincidentally, I just ordered precisely that Bruckner recording a few days ago. 😉

I still consider myself a neophyte when it comes to classical music.  I buy these boxes and play them one disc at a time, often in the background, to acclimate myself to the music and see what I pick out.  So what strikes me is sometimes the compositions or the composer, or sometimes how one conductor or orchestra differs from another.  I don't know a lot of Bruckner (although a search of my collection reveals I have 8 discs: 4 by Walter, 2 by Szell, 1 by Haitink, and one by Runnicles), but this composition strikes me as reminiscent of Wagner.  In general, I find Walter's results appealing: lush, detailed, lively, but not as hard-edged and energetic as, say, Szell.  Does that at all jibe with your impressions?

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In my comparison of Bruckner with Wagner, it helped that the prior disc in the Walter box contained Wagner's Lohengrin, Siegfried Idyll and Tannhauser Ouverture & Bacchanale (Venusberg).  The style of those were so striking that it stayed with me.  Then, when I heard the Bruckner, I noted some similarities.  I'm not sure I would have made that comparison if the Wagner disc was, say, 5 discs back.

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