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Wow, really enjoyed Jurowski's Mahler 2nd with the LPO

Not edited, I'm late for a get-together, but very anxious to share my enthusiasm for this release, after years of sitting through routine, slick, or interventionist Mahler 2nds.

The LPO play like angels (and devils!) throughout. I constantly found myself reminded of the whole-hearted, edge-of-seat music-making one encounters when listening to regional orchestras attempt music that's just a touch beyond their reach, but without, of course, a regional orchestras issues with polish and execution.

Jurowski's pacing and chord balancing serve the music very well. Percussion is given it's due, especially the low tam-tam, which really heightens the chill in the last pages of the 1st movt. The lyrical stretches of the 1st movt are joy as well, rising out of Wagnerian mists. The high, delicate horn material is blessedly rock-solid. A hair-raising funeral march follows, and I absolutely loved the String Basses' "attitude" as they commence with the halting, step-wise theme.

For once, the unusually rustic 2nd movt kept my attention, and the 3rd movts lyrical trumpet bit was as warmly nostalgic as I've ever heard.

At the beginning of the Urlicht I liked how the lovely-voiced Alto arose from the fading tam-tam of the preceding movt. The central section of the Urlicht, (in major), is spun beautifully, in fact, Jurowski and the LPO manage all of Mahler's nostalgic passages throughout with the utmost sensitivity.

The "Opening of the Graves" bit is almost blinding in its intensity. Epic here. First minor disappointment: off-stage brass not very menacing and get swallowed up pretty quickly during the Last Trump.

Once again a quick tribute to the dedication of the LPO players: immediately after the Last Trump, the strings hold on to their quiet, sustained chord with super-human intensity, as if the concert had just started. What physical and emotion stamina!

The two choruses leading up to the finale are well-done and Soprano soars as beautifully as any, (and certainly more rapturously than Schwarzkopf!), and the slight lack of razor-sharp execution in the final chorus IMHO actually added to the sense of "universal" elation. Even the final cacophony of bells and tam-tams seemed more musically-substantial than usual, and, thanks to Jurowski moving the very final music along, it felt part of the whole for once. Another minor quibble though, I wish the first entry of the organ was far more tummy-wobbling.

The warm recording is more than adequate, projecting a vast sense of space when need be, but also capturing a lot of detail. There are occasional moments of compression but none bothered me.

Edits: 06/11/17

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Topic - Wow, really enjoyed Jurowski's Mahler 2nd with the LPO - jdaniel@jps.net 13:38:19 06/11/17 (15)


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