Author Topic: Blind comparison : Mahler 2nd symphony [2nd round until March 16]  (Read 26379 times)

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Cosi bel do

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Hi, I'm back (well, just changed the order of the letters in my username, if you are wondering).

This has been almost 2 years since I organized my last comparison on La Mer. This time I will organize a new one on Mahler's 2nd symphony "Resurrection".

As usual we'll start with many versions (probably 30, I'm just finishing the pre-listenings before I confirm that), and eliminate them in several groups, movement after movement, until we keep 3 or 4 versions in the end and decide which is better. As usual too, you can start and stop participating when you wish, so that nobody gets scared about the involvement, and you can listen to as many groups as you wish.
I will organize the same listening on classik.forumactif.com, this has proven a great way to increase the number of participants tha last times.

Please just tell me if you wish to participate below.
I will give all informations about how to listen to the music right when the listening will actually start (in 2 weeks or so).

I will be happy to hear all your suggestions about versions to put in the comparison, but please do that in a personal message, as I wish to keep the topic clean of any open discussion about different recordings before the listening actually starts.

Also, I was thinking about starting the first round with the Urlicht (before taking the movements in the traditional order), as I believe this is the emotional peak of the whole symphony. It is so crucial that I have never heard a good version with a bad Urlicht, or a bad version with a good Urlicht (in a way, keeping a version during the first four rounds, when it is clear that the singer will make it impossible to progress to the big finals is kind of a waste of time, imo). Also, it is kind of short, that would make the first round easier, for instance if each group has 5 versions.
Also, the Urlicht was composed before the Symphony itself, as a lied from Die Knaben Wunderhorn, so it is not at all a musical contresens...
Not everyone seems to like this idea though, so just tell me if it really bothers you, and I will start with the 1st movement.

Participants (17) : Que, Jay F, Pat B, ChamberNut, fridden, TheGSMoeller, aukhawk, Papy Oli, NorthNYMark, Jeffrey Smith, mc ukrneal, Pim, nachtalberich, Drosera, madaboutmahler, Wanderer, zauberflöte, orfeo
+ 15 on classik.forumactif.com
+ 3 on classicalmusicguide.com
= 35
« Last Edit: March 04, 2014, 04:43:03 AM by Cosi bel do »

Offline Que

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Re: Blind comparison : Mahler 2nd symphony
« Reply #1 on: February 06, 2014, 02:46:54 PM »
Welcome back :)  (It's late here and my brain is moving slowly, who where you before? ::))

Anyway, please count me in.

Q

Offline Brian

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Re: Blind comparison : Mahler 2nd symphony
« Reply #2 on: February 06, 2014, 03:28:12 PM »
Welcome back :)  (It's late here and my brain is moving slowly, who where you before? ::))

Anyway, please count me in.

Q
Discobole

I don't like this symphony enough to play. Heresy, I know :(

Offline Jay F

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Re: Blind comparison : Mahler 2nd symphony
« Reply #3 on: February 06, 2014, 03:50:02 PM »
In preparation, I'm listening to Claudio and the Wieners:


Offline Pat B

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Re: Blind comparison : Mahler 2nd symphony
« Reply #4 on: February 06, 2014, 03:59:20 PM »
I'm in, and I like the idea of starting with Urlicht.

Cosi bel do

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Re: Blind comparison : Mahler 2nd symphony
« Reply #5 on: February 06, 2014, 04:20:54 PM »
Thanks for warmly welcoming me back :)

Brian, won't you even try :) ?

Jay F, does that mean I can count you in ?

Offline OrchestralNut

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Re: Blind comparison : Mahler 2nd symphony
« Reply #6 on: February 06, 2014, 04:27:46 PM »
Hi, and welcome!  I'd be happy to participate.  Count me in!  :)

Offline Brian

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Re: Blind comparison : Mahler 2nd symphony
« Reply #7 on: February 06, 2014, 05:25:57 PM »
Brian, won't you even try :) ?
I've listened to the symphony just three times. The first two times were Fischer/Budapest, once in 2009 and once in 2013; both times I felt bored and, by the first movement especially, irritated. I don't understand the work's structure at all. But the third time was this past Sunday, immediately after learning of Philip Seymour Hoffman's death, and conducted by Bernstein (Columbia). That time I felt and shared all the emotion of the work, and felt its power...but I still don't think I really understand it. :(

Offline Jay F

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Re: Blind comparison : Mahler 2nd symphony
« Reply #8 on: February 06, 2014, 06:08:27 PM »
Thanks for warmly welcoming me back :)

Jay F, does that mean I can count you in ?
Yes. Definitely. I sent you a PM.

kishnevi

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Re: Blind comparison : Mahler 2nd symphony
« Reply #9 on: February 06, 2014, 07:35:05 PM »
In preparation, I'm listening to Claudio and the Wieners:



Possibly my favorite symphony of all.  How could I not, if technological limitations allow (PM to Cosi about that).    I have close to 40 recordings, and only one I really dislike.  Ironically, it's the one you show there.  I think he did a much better job in his CSO recording.

Offline Jay F

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Re: Blind comparison : Mahler 2nd symphony
« Reply #10 on: February 06, 2014, 07:56:19 PM »
Possibly my favorite symphony of all.  How could I not, if technological limitations allow (PM to Cosi about that).    I have close to 40 recordings, and only one I really dislike.  Ironically, it's the one you show there.  I think he did a much better job in his CSO recording. Since he died, I've been making a point of listening to his Mahler, which is most of what I have by Abbado.

I listened to it tonight, probably for the second time. I liked it more than I disliked it, but I'm no more familiar with Abbado's CSO recording. For whatever reason, except for 3 and 7, Abbado's Mahler has sat on the shelf for decades in favor (mostly) of Bernstein's (mainly CBS).

The M2 is a favorite of mine, too, and like you, I have only one I really didn't like, which was Bernstein's first CBS CD version, with the LSO in Ely Cathedral.

Offline Que

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Re: Blind comparison : Mahler 2nd symphony
« Reply #11 on: February 06, 2014, 10:53:10 PM »
Discobole

Thank you, Brian. It is coming back to me.  :)

Q

Offline amw

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Re: Blind comparison : Mahler 2nd symphony
« Reply #12 on: February 06, 2014, 10:58:21 PM »
I feel like Mahler is over-represented in these blind comparison games, but I can't stand his music so I guess I would feel that way regardless of reality.

(Orchestral music is definitely over-represented though.)

Offline Que

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Re: Blind comparison : Mahler 2nd symphony
« Reply #13 on: February 06, 2014, 11:17:28 PM »
I feel like Mahler is over-represented in these blind comparison games, but I can't stand his music so I guess I would feel that way regardless of reality.

(Orchestral music is definitely over-represented though.)

It reflects the distribution in taste on the forum, just look at the major threads: Mahler, Bruckner and Sibelius.

Though Gurn is holding out against all that late Romantic orchestral violence with his Haydn thread. 8)

We did had a blind comparison of a Bach harpsichord toccata once before, that was great fun! :)

Q

Offline North Star

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Re: Blind comparison : Mahler 2nd symphony
« Reply #14 on: February 06, 2014, 11:22:57 PM »
I feel like Mahler is over-represented in these blind comparison games, but I can't stand his music so I guess I would feel that way regardless of reality.

(Orchestral music is definitely over-represented though.)
Well it's no wonder you'd feel that way since Daniel (madaboutmahler) is going to do these blind comparisons of all the Mahler symphonies.
"Everything has beauty, but not everyone sees it." - Confucius

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Offline fridden

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Re: Blind comparison : Mahler 2nd symphony
« Reply #15 on: February 07, 2014, 12:01:06 AM »
Hi, I would like to participate!

/fridden

Cosi bel do

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Re: Blind comparison : Mahler 2nd symphony
« Reply #16 on: February 07, 2014, 02:54:21 AM »
Hi, I would like to participate!

/fridden

Great !

I feel like Mahler is over-represented in these blind comparison games, but I can't stand his music so I guess I would feel that way regardless of reality.

(Orchestral music is definitely over-represented though.)

Actually this is my first Mahler comaprison. And until now I've done a few comparisons and one on two was orchestral, others were on a harpsichord toccata by Bach (e minor), the Great Fugue by Beethoven, the Ravel piano trio... But I understand you would feel that way since madaboutmahler seems to be very mahlerian and purely orchestral in the comparisons he organizes (as Que just said).

Offline TheGSMoeller

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Re: Blind comparison : Mahler 2nd symphony
« Reply #17 on: February 07, 2014, 03:32:30 AM »
I feel like Mahler is over-represented in these blind comparison games, but I can't stand his music so I guess I would feel that way regardless of reality.

(Orchestral music is definitely over-represented though.)

It reflects the distribution in taste on the forum, just look at the major threads: Mahler, Bruckner and Sibelius.

Though Gurn is holding out against all that late Romantic orchestral violence with his Haydn thread. 8)

We did had a blind comparison of a Bach harpsichord toccata once before, that was great fun! :)

Q

You all are going to ruin my  Bruckner 6th comparison I was planning after the Brahms 2nd!!  ;D

Seriously I find that these blind comparisons bring out the best of GMG and would like to see more than one running at a time. I was thinking of creating a Haydn Farewell comp. but I was afraid the only users who would participate would recognize the performances right away.

And yes, I'll participate in the Mahler 2 comp. here, nice to meet you Cosi:)

I used to listen to Mahler quite a bit, mainly the brass-heavy moments. But drifted away with time. The only Mahler 2 recording I've retained is the one I like the most, Blomstedt/SFO on London. I'm sure I'm alone on this one, but it's lean and doesn't seem to linger too long in certain areas, but there's still plenty of passion and power in it.

Offline AnthonyAthletic

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Re: Blind comparison : Mahler 2nd symphony
« Reply #18 on: February 07, 2014, 04:00:07 AM »
Is it true to say that if each individual doesn't compare each of the sets A B C D (x8 clips in each set), then the comparison can not be true to itself?

I've done two sets in the past, but mainly only the one set as the norm.  If I don't review and compare all, submit results for all, as everyone should do...then doesn't any comparison fail?

So if I just compare set A, then ie Sarge, GS & Mirror Image compare A B C D and we have different views then the person who reviews only 1 set is wiped out straight away.  And the fact that I haven't reviewed B C D to balance Sarge, GS & Mirror Image sort of loses the point. 

Either we review 1 set each or we review all 4 sets each?  Why are some persons reviewing 2 or 3 in past comparisons? 

If I'm talking b******* then answers on a postcard.  Compare all, just the one or none at all  ;)

Live long and prosper

"Two possibilities exist: Either we are alone in the Universe or we are not. Both are equally terrifying"      (Arthur C. Clarke)

Cosi bel do

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Re: Blind comparison : Mahler 2nd symphony
« Reply #19 on: February 07, 2014, 04:36:51 AM »
This is why a comparison is always just an effort to try to define what a certain number of persons like and prefer, not at all a quest for the truth. ANyway, there is no truth in music, just disagreements. I really hate some versions of this symphony that others judge as "definitive"...

Anyway, imo, there is a logical impossibility in saying that reducing the number of persons in a jury would make the comparison less legitimate. Just saying.
« Last Edit: February 07, 2014, 04:52:45 AM by Cosi bel do »