Simon Rattle

Simon Rattle: Russian Music

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This collection, Simon Rattle: Russian Music, includes recordings from 1977 to 2007, and features a variety of orchestras, among them the City of Birmingham Symphony, the Los Angeles Philharmonic, and the Berliner Philharmoniker. In listening through the eight-disc set, it becomes apparent that Russian music is not Rattle's strong suit. Borodin's Second Symphony lacks epic grandeur, Rachmaninov's Second Symphony lacks emotional power, Prokofiev's Fifth Symphony lacks relentless drive, and Shostakovich's Tenth Symphony lacks weight and substance. No matter what the orchestra, Rattle is always Rattle; his downbeats are generally fuzzy, his colors usually garish, his phrasing often sloppy, and his control of form largely nonexistent. The motto theme of the opening movement of Borodin's Second is fatally mauled by Rattle's slipshod phrasing, and the structure of the first movement of Rachmaninov's Second Symphony is terminally undermined by his lack of cogent tempos. There are far too many superior recordings of every work here to begin to list them. Only Rattle's die-hard fans are likely to be interested in this collection.

Track Listing - Disc 3

Sample Title/Composer Performer Time
Piano Concerto No. 2 in C minor, Op. 18
1
10:48
2
12:06
3
12:09
Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini (Introduction and 24 Variations), for piano & orchestra in A minor, Op. 43
4
0:49
5
0:20
6
0:27
7
0:31
8
0:31
9
1:08
10
1:10
11
0:37
12
0:34
13
0:57
14
1:33
15
1:38
16
0:31
17
0:44
18
1:09
19
2:05
20
2:13
21
3:06
22
0:38
23
0:40
24
0:27
25
1:43
26
0:49
27
1:19

Track Listing - Disc 7

Sample Title/Composer Performer Time
Symphony No. 10 in E minor, Op. 93
1
26:39
2
4:20
3
13:05
4
12:58
blue highlight denotes track pick