Try the Bernstein/Vienna Philharmonic version. My favorite of the many recordings I've heard.
Fantastic recorded sound too.
Fantastic recorded sound too.
For old stuff, try Bruno Walter, Columbia Symphony on CBS MK-42028; Newer recording is Charles Mackerras, Prague Chamber Orchestra on Telarc CD-80139. Also Neville Marriner and the Academy of St. Martin etc, etc are always good. For original instruments definitely Christopher Hogwood, Academy of Ancient Music on L'Oiseau Lyre
Sir Neville Marriner and the Academy of St. Maritn In The Fields (Philips 426 204-2, recorded in Great Britain).Sir Neville and the Academy...are more dynamic sounding with a deep rich bass section. Christopher Hogwood, Academy of Ancient Music on L'Oiseau- Lyre(421 088-2). Hogwood and the Academy use eighteenth-century instuments with the proper tecniques of playing them. The sound is as close to what Mozart intended. The sounds of the instruments are more distinct. Also, Sir George Solti with the Chamber Orchestra of Europe (Decca 448 924-2). I find Solti a bit more bold and intense in his approach to No. 41.
The greatest performance of this symphony bar none is a late fifties recording by Fritz Reiner/Chicago Symphony. I don't know it is available anywhere but it was aprt of a set "The Last Three Symphonies." The sound is good but the performance is astonishing; the counterpoint of the last movement is so brilliantly architected that all others pale by comparison--and there are other good performances.
I like the newer small group recordings better like Saraste/Virgin (2 CD set late symphonies budget price) or
Glover/ASV etc have much clearer more agile perspective of sound which seem to suite Mozart better.
The Walter, Bernstein, Bohm etc are a bit heavy and old school.....good only if you want warm romantic readings, the Mackerras/Telarc is OK but nothing special to me.
The Hogwood and Marriner versions are pretty good.
Kmplerer/Philharmonia takes the Sym almost exactly as the Walter/Columbia, just a tad more guto in the tempo, maybe a finer orchestra as well. But like I say very very close performances. So I'd go Kmplerer. The Mackeras/Prague is excellent as well, but the room acoustics=recording is bad, not warm like the Kemplerer/Walter.
Kmplerer/Philharmonia takes the Sym almost exactly as the Walter/Columbia, just a tad more GUSTO in the tempo, maybe a finer orchestra as well. But like I say very very close performances. So I'd go Kmplerer. The Mackeras/Prague is excellent as well, but the room acoustics=recording is bad, not warm like the Kemplerer/Walter.
I think we must draw out Buxter and perhaps Tweeker a bit more here. In general my favorite 41 is not with the older full orchestra versions: Walter, Bohm, Klemper, Karajan etc. I prefer the new smaller group recordings such as Saraste/Virgin, Glover/ASV, Menuhin/Virgin etc which almost always allow more clarity and intimacy to emerge, and also are energetic and agile in the outer movements.
The full orchestra effect is good with Beethoven and later romantic composers which utilize it's massive scale and sweeping melodies better. I usually find Haydn and Mozart more clearly expressed with small group recordings.
I find the Bernstein/DG makes best case for full orchestra 41 with very passionate/eneregetic outer movements, but I still prefer the transparency offered by smaller group recording.
megasam, have you heard the walter VPO Moz 41 on 78? this is where I find the magic. And I mean 78 on a Victrola. They play with such verve and elegance. To my ears it sounds like a brilliant chamber music collaboration, full of life and there is a rightness to the string sound. Right, as in not "correct" or pedantic, but full of color and nuance, expressive of the music. To me it is miraculous orchestral playing. The music pours out directly, and spontaneously, as if out of a waterfall (yes,I know... flowery language but that's how I perceive it) And in the last movement, I don't know how they manage to balance primal, savage energy, while maintaining a coherent elegant presentation. And that is always what amazes me even today when I hear the VPO. And you can always hear all the voices clearly without it ever being highlighted with a magic marker.
Good heavens Buxter you are digging very deep into the archives, not only do I own no 78rpm but also no mono recordings, all my refernces are from stereo CD. I had the stereo Walter/CSO set which featured sym 35-41, this may no longer be available and I see Sony now offers the older mono Walter/NYPO from early 1950's which I have read are more energetic performances vs later stereo versions.
Perhaps Sony decided the older mono versions are superior performances to stereo versions which I always felt were too relaxed and refined with slow timings.
Buxter I have to know how many CD/records do you own?
I have about 400 78's, 300 cd's, 400 records mostly classical, some jazz. and Half of my collection is still in europe with a friend. I really don't have alot, but I have had the good fortune of having alot of exchange with friends and colleagues who are composers, conductors, in the recording industry, performers, managers, who are passionate about music and we frequently exchange our latest favorite recording, or ones we don't like.
I don't "collect" But I do have friends who are serious collectors- I have this one friend who has 10,000 violin recordings alone-incredible resource. I've bought many recordings over the years, but if I don't love it, I usually get rid of it.