Notes & Reviews:
"[Semyon] Bychkov reveals himself as one of the most compelling Shostakovich interpreters of our time. The playing of his Cologne radio orchestra is more refined than that of the best Russian orchestras today, and his grasp of the music's dramatic and emotional power has few equals." -- The Sunday Times (London), Dec. 3, 2006 To paraphrase The Gramophone, Bychkov "had big competition in the Shostakovich stakes" during the composer's centenary year, but "he smashes past them brilliantly" (Editor's Choice, Symphony No. 11, AVI-2062). The latest release in the Bychkov-WDR Shostakovich cycle is the challenging, monumental Fourth Symphony, a Mahler-scale symphonic maelstrom of harrowing emotion and imagery that triggered an unexpected backlash from Soviet authorities, leading to the composer's suppression of the work for nearly thirty years. Nearly two decades into his Music Directorship of the WDR Sinfonieorchester Koln, Semyon Bychkov has enjoyed an enormously fruitful relationship with the celebrated ensemble, including seven critically acclaimed and award-winning recordings for Avie. Recorded in demonstration-quality high-definition multichannel DSD sound and released in Hybrid SACD format, this recording will be treasured by Shostakovich fans and audiophiles alike.
BBC Music Magazine
Painfully drawn-out string tremolos and woodwind shrieks at the start of Bychkov's Shostakovich Four promise an ever bigger, more lumbering beast than usual for the composer's most outlandish first movement. Detailed dynamics also make the most of the shadowy scherzo, with spooky presence for the percussion whirrings and clickings at the end.
Bychkov is Shostakovich's leading orchestral interpreter, and this German band is one the best, so together they create a winning combination.
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Stravinsky: Apollo, etc / Bashmet, Moscow Soloists
Copland and His American Contemporaries / Higginbottom
Hook, J.C. Bach, Mahon: Clarinet Concertos / Lawson, Harris
Roslavets: Chamber Symphony, etc / Volkov, BBB Scottish SO
Gordon, Lang, Wolfe: The Carbon Copy Building
Historical - Verdi: Il trovatore / Karajan, Callas, et al
Haydn: Piano Sonatas no 23, 24, 32, etc / Hamelin
Opera in English - Humperdinck: Hansel & Gretel / Mackerras
Brass of the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra
Works DetailsShostakovich, Dmitri : Symphony no 4 in C minor, Op. 43
- Conductor: Semyon Bychkov
- Ensemble: Cologne West German Radio Orchestra
- Notes: Kölner Philharmonie (09/19/2005-09/23/2005)
- Running Time: 63 min. 38 sec.
- Period Time: Modern
- Form: Orchestral
- Written: 1935-1936