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David Royko Psy.D

Daniel Barenboim's Staatskapelle Berlin Schumann Symphonies

June 16, 2006

I'd read a glowing review somewhere (no recollection where) about Barenboim's Staatskapelle Berlin Teldec Schumann symphonies set when they first came out, but not being in the market for additional Schumann symphony sets, I didn't buy them. I do remember liking his CSO set on DG LPs, but it's been many years since I listened to those. But then I joined and saw this set for $11.98 and thought, "Ah, what the heck."

Glad I did. This set sums up for me Barenboim at his best (I find him maddeningly uneven). Voluptuous but driving, a maybe self-conscious attention to detail that (in this case) works for me, glorious sound from the orchestra, and romantic, romantic, romantic! I can't imagine a better tonic for those of us tired of the HIP, lean and mean objectivity of (for example) someone like Norrington that has been applied to Schumann in recent years.

I don't think I have heard a set of these works that I like more. Great stuff.

Dave Royko