Karajan had an extraordinary affinity for Sibelius’s symphonic poems. Raw power and exquisite finesse are blended in his interpretations in a way that is absolutely arresting, and for this music, utterly appropriate. In Tapiola especially, the conductor’s interpretive gifts stand out; listening to this account one is struck by the realization that the score is “modern” music – its unresolved dissonances, rhythmic haze, and almost motionless abstraction are powerfully apparent. Yet the sense of atmosphere is also quite vivid, and in the “storm” music the performance generates incredible voltage. As they often did, the Berlin brass (and winds, especially clarinets) play slightly out-of-tune in Finlandia, producing a piquancy so distinctiveRead more one can identify the recording even over the radio. Taped at a high level, with the strings extremely close-miked, the accounts exhibit the typical “high gloss” effect of mid-1980’s DG digital – the sound is reasonably truthful, but not really good. – Ted Libbey, author of
The NPR Guide to Building a Classical CD CollectionRead less
Works on This Recording
Finlandia, Op. 26by Jean Sibelius Conductor:
Herbert von Karajan
Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Romantic Written: Finland Notes: Composition written: Finland (1899 - 1900).
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