Marek Janowski / L'Orchestre de la Suisse Romande

Bruckner: The Symphonies

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Recorded between 2007 and 2012, PentaTone's audiophile set of Anton Bruckner's numbered symphonies and the Mass No. 3 in F minor is an extraordinary achievement by Marek Janowski and the Orchestre de la Suisse Romande, artists who previously weren't known for performing Bruckner. Yet they have set a high standard with these exciting performances, and the symphonies have never sounded better in the multichannel format. While other conductors have established reputations for recording only the original and lesser known versions of Bruckner's symphonies, Janowski chose instead to perform the more familiar later versions in the editions of Leopold Nowak, and in the case of the Symphony No. 2, of William Carragan, so there are no curiosities in this box set. But the power and clarity of the music are communicated directly, and the details of the scores are completely audible in the clean DSD sound. Janowski recorded this cycle in the same period he was recording the major operas of Richard Wagner for PentaTone, so this is part of an even greater accomplishment for this low-profile conductor. Enthusiasts for everything Bruckner will lament the absence of the Study Symphony in F minor and the Symphony in D minor, "Die Nullte," but considering the excellence of this set, they can console themselves with separate recordings. Highly recommended.

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