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Classical - Released January 1, 2012 | Deutsche Grammophon Classics

Hi-Res Distinctions The Qobuz Ideal Discography - Hi-Res Audio
When talking about Carlos Kleiber's conducting style and recording catalogue, it is easy to over-use superlatives. Perhaps the secrets of his art are best expressed in the cover picture, with the mad elegance of his gestures, which seem to summon up the music through sheer energy, subtlety and a radiant smile: he seems absolutely possessed by inspiration. But listening to this album should do the trick too. Living as a recluse, cancelling three quarters of his concerts, hardly ever recording, it was like a miracle when Carlos Kleiber agreed to set down these two symphonies for Deutsche Grammphon. In 1975, he recorded the 5th Symphony in the generous surroundings of the Vienna Musikverein, with a Philharmonic that hung off his every word and followed his slightest gesture. Under his philosopher's baton, the "5th" became pure, distilled energy, an explosive Pandora's box that gave off sparks and followed the demands of the score precisely. The fateful four notes around which the entire symphony was built were at once the foundation and the capstone of this landmark work, magnificently structured here by Kleiber. Has there ever been such a tempestuous and light-footed Seventh Symphony? One thinks immediately of Nietzsche: "I would believe only in a God that knows how to dance". Recorded the following year, in the same place, this Seventh soars, pirouettes and exults in a pantheist, saving joy, with a lightness that seems to lift the musicians off the floor. "Now am I light, now do I fly; now do I see myself under myself. Now there danceth a God in me.". Thus directed Carlos Kleiber. © François Hudry/Qobuz
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Classical - Released January 1, 2006 | Deutsche Grammophon (DG)

Every man's death diminishes us all, but the death of a man so close to completing his greatest achievement and the summation of his life's work diminishes us all greatly -- very, very greatly. When Emil Gilels died in 1985, he had completed recordings of most but not all of Beethoven's piano sonatas, released here in a nine-disc set. What's here is unimaginably good: superlative recordings of 27 of the 32 canonical sonatas, including the "Pathétique," "Moonlight," "Waldstein," "Appassionata," "Les Adieux," and the majestic "Hammerklavier," plus the two early "Electoral" Sonatas and the mighty Eroica Variations. What's missing is unimaginably priceless: five of the canonical sonatas, including the first and -- horror vacui -- the last. But still, for what there is, we must be grateful. Beyond all argument one of the great pianists of the twentieth century, Gilels the Soviet super virtuoso had slowly mellowed and ripened over his long career, and when he began recording the sonatas in 1972, his interpretations had matured and deepened while his superlative technique remained gloriously intact straight through to the last recordings of his final year. In performance after performance, one marvels at Gilels' virtuosity, his expressivity, and his sheer joy in music-making. But most of all, it is through the intensity of Gilels' interpretations, in the way he finds the depths of the Largos and reaches the heights of the Allegro vivaces, in the way he seems to so thoroughly understand and completely identify with Beethoven's music, that we understand it in a new and better way ourselves. While obviously not the only Beethoven piano sonata set one should have on the shelf, any Beethoven collection without Gilels is a poorer Beethoven collection. From high stereo to early digital, Deutsche Grammophon's sound is consistently translucent.
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Classical - Released December 2, 2016 | Deutsche Grammophon (DG)

Hi-Res Booklet
Because Beethoven's late piano sonatas are universally revered, performances of these works often invite passionate disagreements about the proper way to interpret them. Such was the case with Maurizio Pollini's recordings (1975-1977), and the controversy surrounding them has never fully abated. While these performances are polished to an extent seldom realized on other recordings, it was this pristine quality itself that invited criticism. Pollini was alleged to have objectified the music and detached himself emotionally from his performances, leaving only cold, analytical readings without a trace of feeling. In defense, it should be pointed out that many previous performances were overly burdened with Romantic interpretations and pretensions, and that Pollini performed a great service by presenting the sonatas in as accurate and clean a manner as possible, without grandiose effects. His performances are astonishingly lucid and flowing, especially in the many contrapuntal passages that regularly appear as features of these works. The last five sonatas are admirably served by Pollini's control and precision, and whatever doubts are held about his emotional involvement may be dismissed when the slow movements of Opp. 109 and 111 are heard. These are sublime performances with a high level of immediacy and skill and are strongly recommended.
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Classical - Released January 1, 2010 | Deutsche Grammophon (DG)

Booklet Distinctions The Qobuz Ideal Discography
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Classical - Released January 1, 1989 | Deutsche Grammophon (DG)

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Classical - Released January 1, 1992 | Deutsche Grammophon Classics

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Classical - Released October 2, 2000 | Deutsche Grammophon (DG)

Hi-Res Booklet
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Classical - Released January 1, 2007 | Deutsche Grammophon Classics

Booklet
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Classical - Released January 1, 1993 | Deutsche Grammophon (DG)

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Classical - Released January 1, 1992 | Deutsche Grammophon (DG)

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Classical - Released January 1, 1994 | Deutsche Grammophon (DG)

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Classical - Released January 1, 2007 | Deutsche Grammophon (DG)

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Classical - Released January 1, 1995 | Deutsche Grammophon (DG)

Distinctions Diapason d'or
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Classical - Released January 1, 2008 | Deutsche Grammophon (DG)

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Classical - Released January 1, 1994 | Deutsche Grammophon (DG)

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Classical - Released January 1, 1995 | Deutsche Grammophon Classics

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Classical - Released January 1, 1992 | Deutsche Grammophon (DG)

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Classical - Released January 1, 1982 | Deutsche Grammophon (DG)

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Classical - Released January 1, 1997 | Deutsche Grammophon (DG)