Try Furtwangler's AMAZING 1942 (wartime) LvB 9th with BPO. The recording's sonics are simply horrendous, but the performance's sense of anticipation, intensity/ferocity, & emotional impact is absolutely 2nd to none.
I'd also highly recommend Furtwangler's 1951 LvB 9th with Bayreuth Festival Orchestra (more so than his 1954 version with Philharmonia Orchestra). This has much better sonics than the 1942 version, but i'd definitely go with the wartime version if i was only to pick one.
I have all three. Purchased them based on the reviews. I could only listen to each of them once. A great performance can only go so far in overcoming noise filled recordings. Compared to my SACD recordings of the 9th, the Furtwangler hype now seems to have been much ado about nothing. My favorite 9th is Karl Bohm - Wiener Philharmoniker - Norman - Fassbaender - Domingo - Berry
Very slow and very good.
depends if one places greater weight on performance or recording/mastering/sonic quality. uninspired performances typically put me to Zzzzzz (even if they're being performed live), so i'd always go with interesting & inspired performances.
the Furtwangler performances were recorded 60-70 yrs ago (this roughly translates into 2 to 4 "generations" of listeners). their longevity alone speaks volumes.
lots of good LvB 9th out there. look elsewhere if you want a recording to show off your hifi.
i've got > 2 dozen recordings of this piece & the irony is i don't even like its choral finale.
hi Rok2id, your "hype & much ado about nothing" remark is interesting since it seems more befitting the SACD, DVD-A & other proprietary hi-res formats (but this is an entirely different discussion).
I think the SACD format is a real advancement, but maybe not 'night and day' over a well done redbook.
How can you not like the choral? That is the 9th!!
BTW, If I could have been at any performance live, I would chose the wartime Berlin concert. But for listening in my living room via CD in 2012, I chose Bohm.
Yes. I've never gotten into the 4th movement... Perhaps it's just too overplayed, or maybe it's a German-opera thing?! (i've several Wagner Ring cycles - 2 by Solti, & another by Böhm, but also can't seem to muster the patience to finish each piece either). I find the first 3 movements (of LvB's 9th) thoroughly enjoyable tho.
On SACD format, the trend towards music downloads & p.c. playback does not bode well for proprietary hi-res formats (not to mention improvements in redbook by way of SHM-CDs, K2 mastering, etc.). Hope Sony will open up the DSD source. It'd be a waste for this technology (& my many SACDs) to go down the path of the betamex / laser disc / etc.
P.s.: Furtwangler's wartime concert with BPO was performed (grudgingly by Furtwangler) for Nazi officers at the height of the Nazi propaganda machine... (perhaps one of the reason for the tension, ferocity, & restraint?). Don't think you would hv wanted to be there.
'P.s.: Furtwangler's wartime concert with BPO was performed (grudgingly by Furtwangler) for Nazi officers at the height of the Nazi propaganda machine... (perhaps one of the reason for the tension, ferocity, & restraint?). Don't think you would hv wanted to be there.'
Excellent Point!!! I think the jury is still out on Furtwangler's wartime actions. As it is with other German artists of that era.
Glad you like too. I have this on a Turnabout 2 Lp set. Seems to have more "there" there than even the SACD, taken from Melodiya? Lp's.
Pity the choral distortion at points. Otherwise like it far better than the '51, with its agonizingly slow and poorly played slow mov't.
What a wild ride.
Comparing a performance from 70 years ago to a new recording with the latest technologies is nonsense. My point when I started the thread was that this particular remastering makes the performance more immediate and compelling than we are used to hearing with recordings of this vintage.
I have about 15 recordings of the 9th, including 3 SACD versions (Vanska, Masur, Herreweghe ). Furtwangler is a special musician , whatever his politics were. Are his recordings "better" than other famous conductors? No answer to that, but I don't think that any of the worthy conductors mentioned above will be generating this kind of discussion 50 years after their demise.
Read more than 5 books about Furtwangler's wartime activities, I still don't want to join the discussion regarding Furtwangler's political position during Nazi era.
Let music be music alone.
Here is another interesting recording. Furtwangler conducted Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra and performed Beethoven's Symphony No. 9 at Salzburg Festival on August 31 1951. It was just one month after the historical Bayreuth reopening performance (July 29 1951).
Orfeo C 533 001 B
Hope you will enjoy it.
Otto you are definitely the living encyclopedia of classical music recordings.
Just so happens I have the abovementioned recording in CD in front of me, an EMI ARt reissue of that performance.
BTW you still have the SA11 and the Ming Da?
It is nice to talk to you again. I traveled abroad for the past 2 years and now I am back.
Yes, I still have both pre-amplifiers and you are welcome to stop-by anytime. I am thinking to post the Ming-Da for sale.
Glad you still have the SA11. Take VERY good care of it as Dai no longer services audio gear.
The Ming Da... keep it, there are ways to make the filament supply better, less prone to noise and less whistling. These things don't have much resale value, and the caps we've put in are worth quite a bit.