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Mahler: Symphony no 6, Piano Quartet / Eschenbach

Album Summary

>Mahler, Gustav : Symphony no 6 in A minor "Tragic"
>Mahler, Gustav : Quartet for Piano and Strings in A minor
Performers Conductor Ensemble Composer

Notes & Reviews:

"The Philadelphia Orchestra's first recording of Mahler's Sixth Symphony may well be the Sixth of first choice, sonically and interpretatively. In the first movement and Scherzo, Eschenbach favours clear lines and chamber-like orchestral balances from his responsive musicians, albeit within a darker, fuller-bodied framework than Ivan Fischer's lithe and transparent Budapest recording (Channel Classics, 12/05). Even the cowbells sound utterly musical, rather than "sound-effecty". Normally I'd prefer a faster Andante moderato with more characterfully contrasted themes. Yet the beautifully modulated string section plus a steadily flowing basic tempo helps Eschenbach justify his 17'23" timing (in the Karajan and Tennstedt ballpark). Inspiration climbs several notches for Eschenbach's assiduously integrated yet flexible Finale, and just about matches Bernstein's terrifying dynamism measure for measure. Remember Solti's he-man Chicago brass? You'll find comparable power and unanimity here, plus outstanding first-desk work (a Philadelphia tradition). If the spooky clarinet and tuba exchanges don't draw you in, what will? Persnickety collectors who judge the Finale solely by hammer-blow impact: make sure your loudspeakers are insured. To fill out disc two, Eschenbach moves from the podium to the piano bench for the surviving movement from the Piano Quartet Mahler composed during his student days at the Vienna Conservatory. The music's thick, busy textures, frequent imitative passages and declamatory outbursts may sound like ersatz Brahms but the jauntier melodic thinking wouldn't be out of place in Dvorak. Eschenbach and his colleagues project to the balcony and play up the music's ambitions at full blast. Their approach contrasts to an equally volatile, yet lighter, more intimately scaled recording featuring pianist Sachiko Kayahara and members of the Prazak Quartet (Praga, 11/02). I hope that fresh programming concepts, realistic multichannel engineering, intelligent musicianship and world-class execution continue to define the formidable Ondine/Eschenbach/Philadelphia partnership." -Gramophone


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Works Details

>Mahler, Gustav : Symphony no 6 in A minor "Tragic"
  • Conductor: Christoph Eschenbach
  • Ensemble: Philadelphia Orchestra
  • Running Time: 84 min. 32 sec.
  • Period Time: Post Romantic
  • Form: Orchestral
  • Written: 1903-1904
  • Studio/Live: Live

>Mahler, Gustav : Quartet for Piano and Strings in A minor
  • Performers: Efe Baltacigil (Cello); Choong-Jin Chang (Viola); Christoph Eschenbach (Piano); David Kim (Violin)
  • Running Time: 13 min. 23 sec.
  • Period Time: Post Romantic
  • Written: circa 1876
  • Studio/Live: Live