Nielsen: Symphonies & Concertos / Gilbert, New York Philharmonic

Release Date: 6/9/2015
Label: Dacapo
Catalog Number: 6200003
Composer: Carl Nielsen
Conductor: Alan Gilbert
Orchestra/Ensemble: New York Philharmonic
Number of Discs: 4

Physical Format:

SACD
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Notes and Editorial Reviews
This is a hybrid Super Audio CD playable on both regular and Super Audio CD players.

Reviews for some of the recordings that make up this set:

Symphonies 2 & 3

The New York Philharmonic is a powerhouse orchestra, Nielsen is a powerhouse symphonist, and Alan Gilbert revels in the music’s energy and dynamism. ... Gilbert’s interpretations take no prisoners, and frankly that is just what Nielsen needs. The Allegro collerico opening of “The Four Temperaments” is really ferocious, the finale almost giddy. And yet, Gilbert’s tempos in the Andante pastorale of the “Espansiva”, or the Andante malincolico of the “Temperaments”, are also perfectly judged, sensitive, and expressive. The former, especially, reveals a combination of tranquility and flow unique in the work’s discography. The string playing is particularly beautiful here, and the Philharmonic’s woodwinds, solo oboe especially, do themselves proud in music that often relies on their artistry and character. Gilbert also very convincingly paces the tricky finale of the same work, with its hymn-like main theme that still has to sound “allegro”. ... Gilbert reveals a genuine affinity for the music, and Nielsen’s athleticism suits the orchestra very well indeed. If this series keeps up as it has begun, it’s going to be stupendous.

– David Hurwitz, ClassicsToday.com

Symphonies 5 & 6

If you like your Nielsen big, bold, and gutsy, then this is the cycle you need to own.

This doesn’t mean that Gilbert and his players are in any way crude. The opening of the Fifth Symphony emerges with gossamer delicacy, and the solo wind playing is as sensitive as one could wish. But the hostile snare drum entrance carries real menace, while the movement’s adagio second half, beautifully spun out by the strings, features the best percussion cadenza since Horenstein, leading to an absolutely apocalyptic climax. Similarly, Gilbert brings thrilling energy to the start of the second movement. The ensuing quick fugue isn’t as swift as some, but the orchestra’s weight of tone, its attention to detail, makes the music unusually vicious, while the race to the closing bars has seldom sounded more exhilarating.

The Sixth Symphony can come off as sort of a bitter, denatured coda to the previous five. Again, without minimizing the work’s ethereal moments and often stark instrumental textures, Gilbert and the orchestra put the meat back on the music’s bony skeleton. … This is fantastic.

– David Hurwitz, ClassicsToday.com

Symphonies 1 & 4
These are strong, exciting performances of symphonies that demand the sort of bold muscularity in their execution that these artists offer. In Alan Gilbert’s hands the First Symphony sounds extremely confident and wholly mature. … The performance of the “Inextinguishable” Fourth Symphony also features some really impressive energy and power. In the first movement the brass play with a precision and clarity that few other versions can match, and in the finale the dueling timpani compete with real bravura. … This is a very impressive release.

– David Hurwitz, ClassicsToday.com
Works on This Recording
1. Symphony no 1 in G minor, Op. 7 by Carl Nielsen
Conductor: Alan Gilbert
Orchestra/Ensemble: New York Philharmonic
Period: 20th Century
Written: 1890-1892 ; Denmark
2. Symphony no 2 in B minor, Op. 16 "The Four Temperaments" by Carl Nielsen
Conductor: Alan Gilbert
Orchestra/Ensemble: New York Philharmonic
Period: 20th Century
Written: 1901-1902 ; Denmark
3. Symphony no 3, Op. 27 "Sinfonia espansiva" by Carl Nielsen
Conductor: Alan Gilbert
Orchestra/Ensemble: New York Philharmonic
Period: 20th Century
Written: 1910-1911 ; Denmark
4. Symphony no 4, Op. 29 "Inextinguishable" by Carl Nielsen
Conductor: Alan Gilbert
Orchestra/Ensemble: New York Philharmonic
Period: 20th Century
Written: 1914-1916 ; Denmark
5. Symphony no 5, Op. 50 by Carl Nielsen
Conductor: Alan Gilbert
Orchestra/Ensemble: New York Philharmonic
Period: 20th Century
Written: 1921-1922 ; Denmark
6. Symphony no 6, FS 116 "Sinfonia semplice" by Carl Nielsen
Conductor: Alan Gilbert
Orchestra/Ensemble: New York Philharmonic
Period: 20th Century
Written: 1924-1925 ; Denmark
7. Concerto for Violin, Op. 33 by Carl Nielsen
Performer: Nikolaj Znaider (Violin)
Conductor: Alan Gilbert
Orchestra/Ensemble: New York Philharmonic
Period: 20th Century
Written: 1911 ; Denmark
8. Concerto for Flute, FS 119 by Carl Nielsen
Performer: Robert Langevin (Flute)
Conductor: Alan Gilbert
Orchestra/Ensemble: New York Philharmonic
Period: 20th Century
Written: 1926 ; Denmark
9. Concerto for Clarinet, FS 129/Op. 57 by Carl Nielsen
Performer: Anthony [Clarinet] McGill (Clarinet)
Conductor: Alan Gilbert
Orchestra/Ensemble: New York Philharmonic
Period: 20th Century
Written: 1928 ; Denmark
Customer Reviews