Marek Janowski / L'Orchestre de la Suisse Romande

Bruckner: Symphony No. 5 in B-flat

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PentaTone's extraordinary hybrid multichannel super audio CDs are aimed at the connoisseur of the finest recordings. Marek Janowski's incomparable recording of Anton Bruckner's Symphony No. 5 in B flat major is at least equal to anything released by this prestigious label, and surely surpasses many. Leading the Orchestre de la Suisse Romande, Janowski turns in a perfectly lucid and expressively spot-on reading of Bruckner's contrapuntal masterpiece, and inspires some of the finest playing in this work that has ever been recorded. The instrumental details are crisp, the counterpoint absolutely transparent, the orchestra has full sonic presence, the ambience is resonant but clean and unblurred, and the recording is as credibly realistic as what might be heard in the best seat in a concert hall. In short, this is the collector's and audiophile's go-to recording of Bruckner's Fifth, and it is difficult to find anyone who could find fault with it, short of an ardent defender of some other cherished recording. But it's probably impossible to find one to best this masterpiece of performance and recording, so further praise is superfluous. This album is recommended as one of the best releases of 2010.

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