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Karajan Gold - Debussy: La Mer, Prelude; Ravel: Daphnis


Release Date: 02/01/1993 
Label:  Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog #: 439008   Spars Code: DDD 
Composer:  Claude DebussyMaurice Ravel
Conductor:  Herbert von Karajan
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Stereo 
Length: 0 Hours 57 Mins. 

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Works on This Recording

1. La mer by Claude Debussy
Conductor:  Herbert von Karajan
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1903-1905; France 
Date of Recording: 12/1985 
Venue:  Philharmonie, Berlin 
Length: 23 Minutes 58 Secs. 
2. Pavane pour une infante défunte by Maurice Ravel
Conductor:  Herbert von Karajan
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1899; France 
Date of Recording: 12/1985 
Venue:  Philharmonie, Berlin 
Length: 7 Minutes 6 Secs. 
Notes: Orchestrated: Maurice Ravel 
3. Daphnis et Chloé Suite no 2 by Maurice Ravel
Conductor:  Herbert von Karajan
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1913; France 
Date of Recording: 12/1985 
Venue:  Philharmonie, Berlin 
Length: 15 Minutes 20 Secs. 
4. Prélude à l'après-midi d'un faune by Claude Debussy
Conductor:  Herbert von Karajan
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1892-1894; France 
Date of Recording: 12/1985 
Venue:  Philharmonie, Berlin 
Length: 9 Minutes 52 Secs. 
Notes: Composition written: France (1892 - 1894). 

Customer Reviews

Average Customer Review:  1 Customer Review )
 Remarkable and under rated. September 28, 2012 By Peter Jensen See All My Reviews "Karajan made several recordings of La Mer , the 1967 version is very fine indeed. Some have suggested that the piece ticks away like clockwork in his hands, intricate but soulless. There is of course an element of this as Karajan had two main gifts, an astonishing degree of focus on note values as well as a hypersensitive reaction to harmonic shifts. The latter ability is probably more relevant to Debussy however it is good to hear the music given a clarity that displays its impressionism in an illuminating way. At the same time there is no denying the affinity Karajan had for French culture and of course in his persona; life. His recording of Pelleas and Melisande is genuinely expressed if not as effortlessly as the legendary Vienna Opera Production from the 60’s. I would note the 1980’s remake on HMV accompanied by the usual suspects (Bolero, Daphnis ) which has some superb phrasing marred by grossly enriched string textures so gooey that the wind and brass sound as if they are playing in an adjacent building unless suddenly spot lit. The timbres are so lifeless, the orchestra deserved a more open opulent sound. So here in lovely Karajan gold sound we have another remake. It is not as brilliantly realized as it was in 1967, where as the original Gramophone reviewer said, the phrases were realized with the same sense of perfection as Hokuseis wave. The flute playing by Karl Heinz Zoller is sensational, the tone sepia tinged filled with submerged echoes. The muscularity and the precision in the string articulation is staggering. In clean digital sound we revisit the sheer accuracy of the execution. The unanimity of timbre within sections is flawless, tonal variety is endlessly streamed, dynamic control is breathtaking. It feels just a little cold. Perhaps because there is insufficient resonance to allow the backlighting in Debussy orchestration to glow. Still, if this were the debut recording the genius of the execution would be hailed while perhaps expecting future interpretations to develop into a less neutral reading. Sadly to explore this trajectory would mean going back in time, perhaps to the Philharmonia recording when critics were agog and the arrival of a magician." Report Abuse
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