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  88697542542, BVCC-34178
  Beethoven: Symphonies Nos. 2 & 6 - Paavo Järvi
  Beethoven: Symphony No 2, Symphony No. 6 "Pastoral"

Deutsche Kammerphilharmonie Bremen
Paavo Järvi (Jarvi) (conductor)
Track listing:
  Classical - Orchestral
Recording type:
Recording info:

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Reviews: 3

Site review by Adrian Cue June 26, 2011
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Site review by Geohominid September 25, 2009
Performance:   Sonics:    
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Review by hiredfox August 18, 2009 (9 of 10 found this review helpful)
Performance:   Sonics:  
I suppose the question uppermost in people's minds will be "Do we need yet more Beethoven on disc or even on SACD?" With Vanska's 2 & 6 on BIS a candidate for Gramophone Orchestral Disc of the Year, the question becomes even more pertinent.

Let's deal with this straightway. The answer is a resounding "Yes" if you value recording quality at least as highly as performance. This is an outstanding recording and it came as no surprise that the people in the engine room who created this Sony RCA Red Seal disc are our very good friends from Polyhymnia (yet again!). They really are going from strength to strength, learning all the time the subtleties and nuances that allow progress in the recording and playback arts. The refinement of textures and details of this recording are simply breathtaking. Yes it is a DSD recording and in my view one of the very best sounding classical discs made so far.

Should you buy it for just that? The answer would be a resounding "of course not" if the performances were 'turkies'! ...but happily they are not. Conjecturious maybe but Jarvi doesn't let us down with his sensitive and literal interpretation of the 'Pastoral" that somehow fits in with our relaxed and laid back summer mood. OK, so maybe Beethoven was equivocal about his intentions and hoped it would not be considered programatic but for me Jarvi's relaxed pacing in more or less regulation time of 40 mins supports the notion of a lovely romp in the long rustling grass of hot summers past and releasing all those emotions that go with it. This is a match at least for Vanska and Haitink of recent SACD releases. It could be my favourite 6. I loved it.

The Second was more difficult for me, exciting and dramatic certainly as the Great Man intended with firm bass lines aided by brilliant recording, especially timpani's (caution needed at the Finale) but sometimes the drama, gravitas and abrupt mood swings seemed to come at the expense of the flow of the music overall even 'though the melodies are always enjoyably pleasant. A thoughtful and technically precise reading that requires the listener to concentrate a little more than usual does not make this a 'classic' interpretation; it left me somehow a little dissatisfied at the end even at second hearing. Norrington is still my preferred conductor for the Second.

Overall 'though a disc well worth hearing.

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Works: 2  

Ludwig van Beethoven - Symphony No. 2 in D major, Op. 36
Ludwig van Beethoven - Symphony No. 6 in F major, Op. 68 "Pastoral"