In light of his successful recordings of works by Gustav Mahler and Richard Strauss, it makes sense that Gustavo Dudamel should turn next to these late Romantic composers' greatest inspiration, the music of Richard Wagner. As with all of Dudamel's previous offerings, the energy level is high, the interpretations are meticulous and full of detail, and the Simón Bolívar Symphony Orchestra of Venezuela is as brilliant and powerful as any world-class orchestra. Yet because these orchestral excerpts from Das Rheingold, Die Walküre, Siegfried, Götterdämmerung, and Tristan und Isolde are typical for a Wagner compilation, amounting to his greatest hits, most classical fans will either own a disc like this one or at least know the selections quite well. The listeners who will benefit the most from this album, released exclusively as a digital download, are newcomers to Wagner, who will be swept up by such dramatic pieces as the Ride of the Valkyries, the Entrance of the Gods into Valhalla, Forest Murmurs, Siegfried's Rhine Journey, Siegfried's Funeral Music, and the Prelude to Tristan und Isolde. Dudamel has the pulse of Wagner's passionate music and conveys its epic emotions with vividness and extraordinary sonic richness and depth.
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AllMusic Review by Blair Sanderson
|Tristan und Isolde|