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Anton Bruckner - Symphony No. 7 - Orchestre de la Suisse Romande, Marek Janowski (2011) High-Fidelity DSF Stereo DSD64/2.82MHz

Сomposer: Anton Bruckner (1824-1896)
Artist: Orchestre de la Suisse Romande, Marek Janowski
Title: Bruckner - Symphony No. 7 in E major (1881-1883)
Genre: Classical
Label: © Pentatone Music B.V.
Release Date: 2011
Quality: DSF Stereo DSD64/2.82MHz
Source: nativeDSDmusic
Duration: 01:06:03
Recorded: Victoria Hall, Geneva, Switzerland (10/ 2010)


In the more than 100 years since his death in 1896, the appraisals by musicologists, critics and the public at large of Anton Bruckner, the man, and Anton Bruckner, the composer, have consistently been radical in character. From the beginning, the standpoints of Bruckner disciples and Bruckner haters have been virtually irreconcilable. Few cases in musical historiography have featured such a diversity of standpoints regarding the importance of an oeuvre and its creator for European music. For the longest time, clichés and stereotypes set the tone of Bruckner reception, with Bruckner himself tending to be the focus of attention. This approach was typically accompanied by questionable characterisations which stood in the way of any objective investigation, e.g., ‘God’s musician,’ ‘Upper-Austrian peasant,’ ‘hero of German composition’ and ‘half genius, half idiot.’ It was not until the 1980s that Bruckner’s musical oeuvre, as such, started being subjected to greater scrutiny (than its creator). In particular Germanspeaking musicologists, with the help of detailed work analyses, began to approach the phenomenon of Anton Bruckner using a method which set aside the questionable anecdotes and speculations surrounding the personage, Bruckner, and concentrated above all on the facts: i.e., the surviving musical texts (in which connection the version problem became the foremost priority).
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Anton Bruckner - Symphony No. 6 - Orchestre de la Suisse Romande, Marek Janowski (2009) High-Fidelity DSF Stereo DSD64/2.82MHz

Сomposer: Anton Bruckner (1824-1896)
Artist: Orchestre de la Suisse Romande, Marek Janowski
Title: Bruckner - Symphony No. 6 in A (1879-1881)
Genre: Classical
Label: © Pentatone Music B.V.
Release Date: 2009
Quality: DSF Stereo DSD64/2.82MHz
Source: nativeDSDmusic
Duration: 00:57:36
Recorded: Victoria Hall, Geneva, Switzerland, Jan. 2009


As this symphony is the first not to be subjected to extensive revision by the composer, an interested person scrutinising or listening to Anton Bruckner’s Symphony No. 6 in A major is not forced to deal with the complex aspect of the various versions available. Consequently, for a change, it is available in just the one version. Thus one might conclude that this positive fact facilitates the access to the Symphony No. 6. After all, in the past, musicologists, conductors and audiences alike have struggled – and still struggle to this day – with the tangled web of versions in numerous other symphonies written by Bruckner. Nevertheless, we are still a long way from giving the work a straightforward and unconditional reception – indeed, the Symphony No. 6 receives rather shabby treatment in the concert hall and in Bruckner discographies, despite the fact that it is the shortest symphony ever written by Bruckner. Then why is the Sixth allotted the role of a “hanger-on”? Perhaps because it does not tie in with our image of Bruckner – perhaps due to its novel structure, its patently obvious complex of themes, or the massive upgrading of its slow movement?
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Anton Bruckner - Symphony No. 5 - Orchestre de la Suisse Romande, Marek Janowski (2010) High-Fidelity DSF Stereo DSD64/2.82MHz

Сomposer: Anton Bruckner (1824-1896)
Artist: Orchestre de la Suisse Romande, Marek Janowski
Title: Bruckner - Symphony No. 5 in B-flat (1875-1878)
Genre: Classical
Label: © Pentatone Music B.V.
Release Date: 2010
Quality: DSF Stereo DSD64/2.82MHz
Source: nativeDSDmusic
Duration: 01:13:53
Recorded: Victoria Hall, Geneva, Switzerland, (7/2009)


In his novel “The Discovery of Slowness”, the German writer Sten Nadolny describes the life and death of the English naval officer and Arctic explorer John Franklin. The book is a subtle study on time. Franklin was a slow human being. He spoke slowly, thought slowly, and was slow to react. And even if he failes outwardly at the end, he yet emerges victorious, as in the old paradox of the race between Achilles and the tortoise. Because, from the perspective of slowness, the world does change. And the reader feels this. So what has that got to do with Anton Bruckner and his Fifth Symphony in B flat major? Well, at first glance, not a lot. But if we look more closely, it is not so difficult to credit this late Romantic composer with the “discovery of slowness”. The Fifth, like Nadolny’s book, is a deeply personal study on time.
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Anton Bruckner - Symphony No. 3 - Orchestre de la Suisse Romande, Marek Janowski (2012) High-Fidelity DSF Stereo DSD64/2.82MHz

Сomposer: Anton Bruckner (1824-1896)
Artist: Orchestre de la Suisse Romande, Marek Janowski
Title: Bruckner - Symphony No. 3 in D minor (1889 version)
Genre: Classical
Label: © Pentatone Music B.V.
Release Date: 2012
Quality: DSF Stereo DSD64/2.82MHz
Source: nativeDSDmusic
Duration: 53:18
Recorded: Victoria Hall, Geneva, Switzerland (10/2011)


It was by chance that Anton Bruckner’s Symphony No. 3 in D minor received the nickname of the “Wagner” Symphony. Early in September 1873, Bruckner set out for Bayreuth after taking the waters in Marienbad to submit and dedicate to Wagner – whom he greatly admired – his new symphonies No. 2 in C minor and No. 3 in D minor (in which he had as yet, incidentally, only outlined the finale). Bruckner wrote as follows: “It was about the beginning of September 1873 (the Crown Prince Frederick was in Bayreuth for a few days) when I asked the master if I could present to him my Symphony No. 2 in C Minor and Symphony No. 3 in D minor. He turned down my request, the glorious man, due to lack of time (the construction of his theatre), and said that he could not review the scores at that moment as he had still had to put pen to paper for the Nibelungen. I answered: ‘Maestro, I have no right to deprive you of even a quarter of an hour, I simply trust that, considering the Maestro’s great perspicacity, a glance would suffice for him to understand the matter at hand.’. Whereupon the Maestro answered, patting me on the shoulder: ‘Well, come then,’ and went into the salon to take a look at my second symphony.
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Anton Bruckner - Symphony No. 2 - Orchestre de la Suisse Romande, Marek Janowski (2013) High-Fidelity DSF Stereo DSD64/2.82MHz

Сomposer: Anton Bruckner (1824-1896)
Artist: Orchestre de la Suisse Romande, Marek Janowski
Title: Bruckner - Symphony No. 2 in C minor (Version 1877)
Genre: Classical
Label: © Pentatone Music B.V.
Release Date: 201
Quality: DSF Stereo DSD64/2.82MHz
Source: nativeDSDmusic
Duration: 54:50
Recorded: Victoria Hall, Geneva, Switzerland (10/2012)

To this day, Anton Bruckner’s Symphony No. 2 in C minor is the least frequently performed of all his symphonies. Rather odd, as the composer described the work in a letter dated October 9, 1878 as “probably, first and foremost, the symphony that is easiest for the audience to understand”, and the first performance, given in Vienna on October 16, 1873 was a great success for the composer. How can one explain this peculiar contrast? On the one hand, considered objectively, the audience could easily follow the work; yet on the other hand, the public at large displayed a predominant lack of interest in the symphony. Is there more involved in this case to fully comprehend precisely this symphony, than simply an understanding of its very clear formal concept? Or had the Symphony No. 2 simply fallen between two creative stools, thanks to its direct symphonic predecessors and successors? Let us take a brief look at the works in its direct vicinity.

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Anton Bruckner - Symphony No. 1 - Orchestre de la Suisse Romande, Marek Janowski (2012) High-Fidelity DSF Stereo DSD64/2.82MHz

Сomposer: Anton Bruckner (1824-1896)
Artist: Orchestre de la Suisse Romande, Marek Janowski
Title: Bruckner - Symphony No. 1 in C minor (Linz Version 1866)
Genre: Classical
Label: © Pentatone Music B.V.
Release Date: 2012
Quality: DSF Stereo DSD64/2.82MHz
Source: nativeDSDmusic
Duration: 47:05
Recorded: Victoria Hall, Geneva, Switzerland (6/2011)


Linz, the summer of 1861. Anton Bruckner sits hunched over a sheet of music paper. He is doing his homework. Today the curriculum set by his teacher Otto Kitzler includes a dance. In itself, not an unusual situation for a student; at least, were the “student”, Anton Bruckner, not already 37 years old. After six years of intensive instruction in music theory with Simon Sechter, he has now decided to also study “free composition”. And so once again, he has elected to return to the school benches, this time under the tutelage of the Linz conductor Otto Kitzler. Again, theory is the core subject, but this time placed in a more practical setting, dealing with form and instrumentation. For Bruckner is interested in composing. On July 10, 1863, after two years of study, he feels ready and receives his requested, formal “acquittal” from Kitzler, as was formerly given to the apprentice. Now, once again he is staring down at his sheet of music paper: the familiar blank page that needs to be filled. With bold ideas, new concepts, individual solutions. Although Bruckner probably never actually said that he felt “like a yard dog, which has broken loose from its chain” (Max Auer probably pu these words in the composer’s mouth) after his acquittal, he now felt safe in his acquired creative freedom.
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Max Bruch - Violin Concerto No 1 & other works - Jack Liebeck, BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra, Martyn Brabbins (2016) High-Fidelity FLAC Stereo 24bit/96kHz

Сomposer: Max Bruch (1838-1920)
Artist: Jack Liebeck, BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra, Martyn Brabbins
Title: Bruch - Violin Concerto No 1 & other works
Genre: Classical
Label: © Hyperion Records
Release Date: 2016
Quality: High-Fidelity FLAC Stereo 96kHz/24bit
Source: hyperion-records.co.uk
Duration: 72 minutes 11 seconds
Recorded: September 2014 at the City Halls, Candleriggs, Glasgow, Scotland

Max Bruch’s Violin Concerto No 1 is the daddy—the most popular ever written. Much recorded, Jack Liebeck turns in a dazzling performance of youthful vigour, prefacing the Concerto with the gorgeous Serenade and a Romance.
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Max Bruch - Scottish Fantasy; Violin Concerto No. 2 - Itzhak Perlman, New Philharmonia Orchestra, Jesus Lopez-Cobos (2015) High-Fidelity FLAC Stereo 24bit/96kHz

Сomposer: Max Bruch (1838–1920)
Artist: Itzhak Perlman, New Philharmonia Orchestra, Jesus Lopez-Cobos
Title: Bruch - Scottish Fantasy; Violin Concerto No. 2
Genre: Classical
Label: © Parlophone Records/Warner Classics
Release Date: 2015
Quality: High-Fidelity FLAC Stereo 96kHz/24bit
Source: Qobuz
Duration: 00:58:29
Recorded: No.1 Studio, Abbey Road, London, 27 & 28 February 1976

These two works for violin by Max Bruch owe a great deal to Jascha Heifetz, who was really the first to champion them and, most importantly, the first to record them: the Scottish Fantasy in 1947 and the Second Concerto in 1954. Itzhak Perlman, who has often acknowledged Heifetz’s influence on his taste in and choice of repertoire, recorded both works early in his career (1976) before returning to them a decade later (see volume 40). The Concerto in D minor, Op.44 was written for the great Spanish virtuoso Pablo de Sarasate, who gave its premiere in London in November 1878. Overshadowed, as was No.3, by Bruch’s First Violin Concerto, Op.26, it soon fell into neglect. It is, however, a work full of innovative touches, such as the choice of an Adagio to open the concerto, in place of the conventional Allegro, or the instrumental recitative that follows and both harks back to the first movement and anticipates the finale. Despite its dramatic gestures and the beauty of the solo part, however, this second work failed to match its predecessor’s success. Heifetz’s recording, as well as that made a few years later by Mischa Elman (1956), played an essential role in establishing its place in the repertoire.
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Breakbot - Still Waters (2016) High-Fidelity FLAC Stereo 24bit/44,1kHz

Artist: Breakbot
Title: Still Waters
Genre: Electronic, Pop, Club/Dance, French House, Nu-Disco
Label: © Ed Banger Records/Because Music
Release Date: 2016
Quality: High-Fidelity FLAC Stereo 44,1kHz/24bit
Source: HDTracks
Duration: 52:02

French touch is all about synthesis, uniting house, disco, electro, R&B, and pop into a sound that's eternally nostalgic and contemporary, and in some ways, Breakbot's music is its logical end. This most stylish of musical styles had been going strong for decades when Thibaut Berland proved that he, like the style's forefathers Daft Punk, excelled at bringing personality to its slickness. Breakbot's debut, By Your Side, punctuated its dancefloor workouts with tracks that sounded like they could be chart hits in an alternate universe, but it feels like a dress rehearsal for Berland's follow-up. Still Waters brings even more hooks and warmth to Breakbot's sound -- as "The Sweetest Romance"'s chorus suggests, this is music that's in love with music. Berland and vocalist Irfane, now an official member of the project, wrote much of the album while touring in support of By Your Side, so it's not surprising that Still Waters distills the most crowd-pleasing parts of their sound. This includes a focus on Irfane, who sounds especially good on "Get Lost" and "2Good4Me," a moody standout that borrows from 21st century R&B production. Meanwhile, the female vocalist who appears on several songs is as much of a revelation as Irfane was on By Your Side, particularly on "Too Soon," which feels like a long-lost sister to the classic "slow down" R&B and pop songs of the '80s. Sticking with just a few vocalists sets Breakbot and Still Waters apart from the tradition of dance music producers who work with a wide cast of singers, and this streamlined approach trickles down to the rest of the album. The handful of instrumentals have more drive and purpose than they did on By Your Side while maintaining, and even enhancing, Breakbot's playfulness. "Wet Dream" sounds like a French touch pool party, with wittily used filters adding to its underwater appeal, while "Still Waters" itself makes the most of Berland's fondness for peppy keyboard lines that sound like they're culled from the greatest '80s TV show theme that never existed. Nevertheless, Still Waters feels more controlled than the high-flying By Your Side. Breakbot described the album as "music for a barbecue," and there is a summery haze to these songs that makes them more suited to chilling out than working up a sweat. What Still Waters lacks in spontaneity it more than makes up for in an album that proves Berland and Irfane can take their music in a more cohesive -- but equally satisfying -- direction. --AllMusic Review by Heather Phares
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