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  82876871562, BVCC-37471
  Mahler: Symphony No. 1, Blumine - Zinman
  Mahler: Symphony No. 1 in D major "Titan", Blumine

Tonhalle Orchestra Zurich
David Zinman (conductor)
Track listing:
  Classical - Orchestral
Recording type:
Recording info:

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Related titles: 10 show all

Reviews: 6 show all

Site review by Polly Nomial November 7, 2008
Performance:   Sonics:  
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Review by seth March 30, 2007 (10 of 14 found this review helpful)
Performance:   Sonics:  
I suppose that it was only a matter of time until the Zinman/Tonhalle recording machine tackled the Mahler symphonies. I personally am not a fan of their Beethoven recordings. I feel that many other people have done the semi-HIP approach more successfully, most notably Mackerras on EMI Budget. Zinman just plows through the music, providing little insight. His R. Strauss traversal, though, was far more compelling, and the reason why I bought into the first release in his Mahler cycle.

I doubt that this recording will displace anyone's favorite recording of the 1st Symphony, let alone make it onto their short or even medium list. Zinman frankly has little to say. Using Gielen's recording as my Mahler 1 measuring stick, Gielen is able to squeeze far more color and wit out of the music. A simple comparison is the second movement. Zinman is very neat with each instrument clearly in its place. Gielen achieves a much fuller tutti and pushes the sarcastic muted brass interjections to the forefront. The brief development section under Gielen is a kaleidoscope of colors. Zinman remains stiff and straight faced here, as he does throughout. Even in the 4th movement coda he keeps the orchestra on a tight leash where as Gielen has no shame in building up the climax to be as loud as possible.

The sound matches the low key performance. The instruments' timbre are realistic, but the orchestra sounds distant and lacks impact and bloom (though the percussion comes through forcefully).

The inclusion of the rarely played Blumine movement is pretty much the only reason to buy this recording. If you do not already have Gielen's record of the 1st Symphony, buy that. I'll maybe check back with this cycle when they get to the 5th.

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Review by Daland January 27, 2007 (9 of 11 found this review helpful)
Performance:   Sonics:  
In a crowded field, this new recording can easily hold its own. Right from the start you know that this is a pure DSD recording - shimmering strings, mellow horns, sweet woodwind. David Zinman, who has been widely praised for his account of Beethoven's symphonies and Strauss's tone-poems generally chooses more leisurely tempi here than, say, Benjamin Zander or Leonard Bernstein (also available on SACD). But even so he holds the score well together, building up tremendous tension in the closing pages of the first and last movements. At the very end he manages to fulfil Mahler's wish to have the seven French horns (played with bells held high) drown out the rest of the orchestra. This is a feat few conductors can bring off in the concert hall. Generally speaking, the sonics are excellent - warm, round tone and a good sense of space. The Tonhalle Orchestra, based in Zurich, has achieved a remarkable standard and uses a large complement of players as befits a Mahler symphony. All participating musicians are listed in the booklet, which is mainly in Japanese.
It seems that this recording, produced by BMG, is available only in Japan. Even so it is well worth acquiring. The back covers expressly mentions that this is a "DSD recording".

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Works: 2  

Gustav Mahler - Blumine
Gustav Mahler - Symphony No. 1 in D major "Titan"