Wednesday, August 14, 2013

An incredible Allegro from the Shostakovich 10th

I don't think I've ever heard the "hair on fire" (also known as the "Damn, I'm glad Stalin is dead") Allegro from Shostakovich's 10th Symphony conducted in anywhere near 4 minutes flat.

Until now. And this, by the Simon Bolivar Youth Symphony under Gustavo Dudamel (who I heard live in Dallas several years ago):

Man, that just bristles!

It's interesting in part because I am now listening to his Mahler 2, opening movement ... and it's slow. Not quite so slow as to be ponderous, but slow. Actually, as I listen further, I withdraw that. It at least hits the edges of ponderous later on.

He does have some good sonic work, but ... it's not fully to my taste. Mahler had a lot of tempo changes, but they were usually fairly subtle and nuanced. These are too heavy. So, not fully to my taste.

However, this is. Indeed.

(The Mahler slowness doesn't seem to be limited to the Second; I've sampled the First and Ninth, and same thing. His opening to the Ninth is pretty bad.)

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