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Great sounds from the good times. I really enjoyed this HDTT rendition of those reference recordings.
Brahms' 1st symphony directed by Furtwangler is a must. This edition plays so well to make the listening very exciting
I've been a big fan of this interpretation of Brahms' 1st for years. I've heard multiple reissues and remasters ranging from good to terrible: after all, this is a live early 1950's recording of a big orchestral piece, when tape recording was in its very early days. Which made it all the more surprising to hear how good it sounds in this reissue! No shrill highs, no exaggerated hiss, no flutter, very clean sounding while still managing to sound natural and convincing. Well done HDTT.
Great Brahms interpretation
Furtwängler was one of these conductors that could find a new dimension in the music and this recording is an excellent example on this. The sound quality of this recording is also remarkable.
Furtwangler's '52 Brahms First
Furtwangler cultists rightly prefer his wartime recordings to his postwar studio efforts, but this live Brahms first from 1952 is a special case. From the opening timpani thwacks (which yes, come across better here than previously) to the final race to the finish line, this performance blazes with greater intensity than any other. It has been released many times previously, but only now does it sound well enough for sound itself to no longer pose a barrier. The collaboration between HDTT and Eduardo Chibás has proved highly successful; hopefully it will lead to future collaborations. Highest possible recommendation.
Title: Brahms Symphony No. 1 & Variations on a theme by Haydn
Artist(s): Wilhelm Furtwängler & The Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra
Recording Info: Berlin Phiharmonic Orchestra 1952 (op. 68) and 1950 (Op. 56a)
Transferred from tape by HDTT - Remastered and edited by Eduardo Chibás
From the first time I heard this Brahms Symphony No. 1 on LP many years ago, I have always felt that it was the best performance of this work that I know. There are some wonderful performances with other orchestras, including some beautifully played Vienna Philharmonic performances, but this Berlin interpretation has an inner strength and drive that is unique. Only the last movement in a wartime recording with the same orchestra is perhaps superior in incandescence, but unfortunately incomplete.
There are many performances of the Haydn Variations conducted by Furtwängler, and most are very good. This is among the finest. Unfortunately, there is some surface "crackle" in some fortissimo passages, but it is not too bad.
In general, the sound in both performances is excellent, with a deep base and great detail.
- Eduardo Chibás