GMG Classical Music Forum

The Music Room => Great Recordings and Reviews => Topic started by: TheGSMoeller on May 02, 2014, 04:05:52 AM

Title: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on May 02, 2014, 04:05:52 AM
So I've mentioned this in the past and seemed to receive some decent feedback, but wondering if there is still interest in another BC, this time of Bruckner's 6th. I currently own 18 recordings and plan on adding a few more to cover all the necessary grounds. I think the 6th would be a good one because it doesn't contain all the multiple revisions/editions that say the 3rd or 4th does, so it could be a little more difficult to figure out which recording it is.
I also realize Blind Comparisons are going heavy with the Brahms and Mahler right now, so I could wait until they are done, or could start sooner.
Let me know my friends, being my favorite Bruckner symphony and being on my "I must own every recording of this piece" list I would love to see which one ends up on top.

Peace!
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: ChamberNut on May 02, 2014, 04:14:04 AM
I'm in!  :)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: k a rl h e nn i ng on May 02, 2014, 04:21:36 AM
I'll give it a go!
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Drosera on May 02, 2014, 04:25:26 AM
Definitely in!

(Don't know about the Mahler 2 blind comparison, but it seems to have died. Organizer has gone AWOL.)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: ChamberNut on May 02, 2014, 05:25:02 AM
I'll give it a go!

Excellent!!  :)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Brian on May 02, 2014, 06:11:25 AM
I would join in! Maybe consult with amw, who is considering a Schubert chamber comparison - we could probably come up with a schedule for the rest of the year. In fact, depending on how much planning we wanna do, you could put me down for running a couple more "lightning round" games centered on short piano pieces.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: ChamberNut on May 02, 2014, 07:02:48 AM
I would join in! Maybe consult with amw, who is considering a Schubert chamber comparison - we could probably come up with a schedule for the rest of the year. In fact, depending on how much planning we wanna do, you could put me down for running a couple more "lightning round" games centered on short piano pieces.

Greg's Bruckner 6th should come first.  He's been wanting to do the B6 Blind comparison for months now.   And so have I.  :D
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on May 02, 2014, 08:24:40 AM
I didn't know about a Schubert BC, not trying to step on any toes.  8)

Also, let me know the preferred format, I for one am fine with media fire which Daniel (MadMahler) uses. But am open for suggestions.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Brian on May 02, 2014, 08:32:51 AM
I didn't know about a Schubert BC, not trying to step on any toes.  8)
I think it only got suggested yesterday.

I used Dropbox to post the files for my games, but it was my personal Dropbox so I always had to take care about space.

Hey... what if we created a GMG shared Dropbox account for blind comparison games?
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on May 02, 2014, 08:35:10 AM
Hey... what if we created a GMG shared Dropbox account for blind comparison games?

I don't know how Dropbox works but could be a good idea. Is it compatible with iMacs?
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Brian on May 02, 2014, 09:03:42 AM
I don't know how Dropbox works but could be a good idea. Is it compatible with iMacs?
I'm not an expert, so I might be about to say something very wrong, but I don't think you need necessarily download any software - just log in to a website where a folder of GMG files would sit.

Actually, now that I think about it, that might be completely wrong.

Somebody help us!
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Kytrarewn on May 02, 2014, 09:39:42 AM
I'm loving these blind games, and am not very familiar with Bruckner.

I'd definitely be interested in participating, just for the sake of improving my own knowledge.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Cato on May 02, 2014, 09:46:25 AM
Sure, just let us know how this works: I have a 7 year-old Macintosh laptop, and have been noticing that it will not support certain things any more, which are now in "higher" versions.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: amw on May 02, 2014, 05:38:43 PM
I would join in! Maybe consult with amw, who is considering a Schubert chamber comparison - we could probably come up with a schedule for the rest of the year.

No worries, go ahead and start this... I don't really know how to run a comparison, nor do I have enough recordings to do one, so Schubert D956 is still very much in the expressions-of-interest and planning phases.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Ken B on May 02, 2014, 06:03:55 PM
Will this involve full performances, or snippets?
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on May 03, 2014, 02:35:07 AM
Will this involve full performances, or snippets?

My initial thought was first round would be snippets of the opening and closing movements, second round would be a large portion of the adagio and small portion of the scherzo. Then the finale would be full performances. The snippets will be a good length because part of what makes this symphony work so well is the building of and around themes, but I am open for suggestions.

Also, I have 18 recordings but I need to add at least two more names that must be included, otherwise I would face the wrath of Bruckner fanatics everywhere. But I may still keep it at 18, three groups of 6, without any duplicates from conductors as in only one from Wand, Haitink and Jochum. <----Any issues with the one per conductor rule?
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: mc ukrneal on May 03, 2014, 02:41:16 AM
My initial thought was first round would be snippets of the opening and closing movements, second round would be a large portion of the adagio and small portion of the scherzo. Then the finale would be full performances. The snippets will be a good length because part of what makes this symphony work so well is the building of and around themes, but I am open for suggestions.

Also, I have 18 recordings but I need to add at least two more names that must be included, otherwise I would face the wrath of Bruckner fanatics everywhere. But I may still keep it at 18, three groups of 6, without any duplicates from conductors as in only one from Wand, Haitink and Jochum. <----Any issues with the one per conductor rule?
I would not have such a rule. In fact, I would announce that there is no limit. The reason for this is that once we know there is only one conductor, we may start guessing them as we eliminate others. By keeping it open, we won't be able to do that. Whether you decide to include a conductor only once won't even matter, but it will keep us honest.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on May 03, 2014, 02:51:32 AM
I would not have such a rule. In fact, I would announce that there is no limit. The reason for this is that once we know there is only one conductor, we may start guessing them as we eliminate others. By keeping it open, we won't be able to do that. Whether you decide to include a conductor only once won't even matter, but it will keep us honest.

I like it, thank you for the response, Neal.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: amw on May 03, 2014, 02:54:09 AM
My initial thought was first round would be snippets of the opening and closing movements, second round would be a large portion of the adagio and small portion of the scherzo. Then the finale would be full performances. The snippets will be a good length because part of what makes this symphony work so well is the building of and around themes, but I am open for suggestions.

Also, I have 18 recordings but I need to add at least two more names that must be included, otherwise I would face the wrath of Bruckner fanatics everywhere. But I may still keep it at 18, three groups of 6, without any duplicates from conductors as in only one from Wand, Haitink and Jochum. <----Any issues with the one per conductor rule?

With 18 recordings, if half of them are to be eliminated each round, the second round would be 9... the third... 4.5?
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on May 03, 2014, 03:02:29 AM
With 18 recordings, if half of them are to be eliminated each round, the second round would be 9... the third... 4.5?

Half wouldn't be eliminated, that would be too much from the first group.

And that .5 of the 4.5 could be Furtwangler's since I believe the first movement is still missing.  ;)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: amw on May 03, 2014, 03:07:38 AM
Hmm. The blind comparison games I've seen so far seem to eliminate half each round, so I guess that's what I default to assuming. 18 -> 12 -> 6 then?
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on May 03, 2014, 03:10:26 AM
Hmm. The blind comparison games I've seen so far seem to eliminate half each round, so I guess that's what I default to assuming. 18 -> 12 -> 6 then?

If I did go with 18 I wouldn't want to eliminate half right away, but that was with my original thought of only one per conductor, but after Neal's post I will probably delete that rule, which in turn will now increase that original number from 18 to closer to 24.

It actually would be interesting to see several conductors going head to head with themselves.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: G. String on May 03, 2014, 03:51:00 AM
No worries, go ahead and start this... I don't really know how to run a comparison, nor do I have enough recordings to do one, so Schubert D956 is still very much in the expressions-of-interest and planning phases.
I could upload 15 or maybe 20 recordings of 956 for you to download and prepare when you need
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on May 03, 2014, 03:56:11 AM
I could upload 15 or maybe 20 recordings of 956 for you to download and prepare when you need

Great! There are a few recordings I'm in search of so I'll PM you later with some names.
Thanks, G.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: G. String on May 03, 2014, 04:07:51 AM
Great! There are a few recordings I'm in search of so I'll PM you later with some names.
Thanks, G.

Let's re-read and rejoice  ::)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on May 03, 2014, 04:13:43 AM
Let's re-read and rejoice  ::)

Ah, my brain is stuck on Bruckner 6th.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on May 03, 2014, 04:22:26 AM
I'll wait a few more weeks to allow Mad's Brahms BC to possibly finalize, but it does look like the Mahler 2nd BC has hit a brick wall. Unless everyone is foaming at the mouth for this to begin I could start sooner.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: ChamberNut on May 03, 2014, 04:50:26 AM
I'll wait a few more weeks to allow Mad's Brahms BC to possibly finalize, but it does look like the Mahler 2nd BC has hit a brick wall. Unless everyone is foaming at the mouth for this to begin I could start sooner.

(http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-XbbXC8P4gxQ/T6p4UhUjZzI/AAAAAAAALQQ/IV67xDEA2yg/s400/emma.jpg)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on May 03, 2014, 04:52:43 AM
(http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-XbbXC8P4gxQ/T6p4UhUjZzI/AAAAAAAALQQ/IV67xDEA2yg/s400/emma.jpg)

Ray, I'm a little worried about you, that doesn't look good.  ???  ;D
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: amw on May 03, 2014, 05:11:47 AM
I could upload 15 or maybe 20 recordings of 956 for you to download and prepare when you need

That's a kind offer—I have ordered a lot of the versions I want through various libraries, but there are some I haven't found or that would need to be ordered from overseas (which could take 6-8 weeks) so I'll PM you. Bear in mind these will probably be the more difficult to find ones in general. >.>
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Ken B on May 03, 2014, 06:56:09 AM
Ah, my brain is stuck on Bruckner 6th.
There are worse things to be stuck on. And some of our regulars are!  >:D
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: ChamberNut on May 04, 2014, 08:03:59 AM
My initial thought was first round would be snippets of the opening and closing movements, second round would be a large portion of the adagio and small portion of the scherzo. Then the finale would be full performances. The snippets will be a good length because part of what makes this symphony work so well is the building of and around themes, but I am open for suggestions.

Also, I have 18 recordings but I need to add at least two more names that must be included, otherwise I would face the wrath of Bruckner fanatics everywhere. But I may still keep it at 18, three groups of 6, without any duplicates from conductors as in only one from Wand, Haitink and Jochum. <----Any issues with the one per conductor rule?

Oh Greg, please let it be the entire Adagio.  It is so gorgeous!  :)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: akiralx on May 04, 2014, 02:35:26 PM
I'm in - have a few recordings as I like the work a lot.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Brian on May 04, 2014, 05:39:46 PM
Oh Greg, please let it be the entire Adagio.  It is so gorgeous!  :)

The adagio of Bruckner's Sixth is one of the rare pieces where there's one recording which finally, definitely "sold" me on it - but I suppose, in this of all threads, I shouldn't mention which. Have said it before on GMG, though. :)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on May 04, 2014, 05:53:29 PM
The adagio of Bruckner's Sixth is one of the rare pieces where there's one recording which finally, definitely "sold" me on it - but I suppose, in this of all threads, I shouldn't mention which. Have said it before on GMG, though. :)

23 min adagio?  ;)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Brian on May 04, 2014, 06:16:36 PM
23 min adagio?  ;)
22  ;)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Kytrarewn on May 04, 2014, 07:56:06 PM
For the sake of "preparing" for the blind comparison, could someone let me know a very straightforward canonical orthodox Bruckner6 interpretation I can listen to? PM me if you like.

Not necessarily your favorite recording, just the one with the least "conductor" to it.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: madaboutmahler on May 06, 2014, 06:30:13 AM
Please do count me in!! :)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: ChamberNut on May 08, 2014, 03:59:24 AM
Avatar change:  In anticipation of the Bruckner 6 Blind Comparison!!  :D

Courtesy of Sir Sock Monkey!  8)

Thanks, Greg.  :)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on May 08, 2014, 09:35:07 AM
Possible new format for round one: I've been listening to recordings and trying to find the best place to splice the opening movement, and I've come to the conclusion that I don't want to splice it, or rather the movement doesn't deserve to be spliced. So I'm proposing the format of round 1 being the entire opening Maestoso movement, this will result in longer listening times than normal for a first round, but I think the results will benefit greatly from this. And I could start the first round much sooner.

Of course this would also mean that those participating could easily match the running time of the movement with recordings to find out which one they are listening to, I would hope that to be completely fair to all recordings this wouldn't be an issue and would keep it an honest blind comparison.

I look forward to your comments and feedback concerning this proposal.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Cato on May 08, 2014, 09:44:35 AM
Possible new format for round one: I've been listening to recordings and trying to find the best place to splice the opening movement, and I've come to the conclusion that I don't want to splice it, or rather the movement doesn't deserve to be spliced. So I'm proposing the format of round 1 being the entire opening Maestoso movement, this will result in longer listening times than normal for a first round, but I think the results will benefit greatly from this. And I could start the first round much sooner.

Of course this would also mean that those participating could easily match the running time of the movement with recordings to find out which one they are listening to, I would hope that to be completely fair to all recordings this wouldn't be an issue and would keep it an honest blind comparison.

I look forward to your comments and feedback concerning this proposal.

I am fine with the entire movement!

I have the DGG Jochum and the Lopez-Cobos on Telarc with the Cincinnati Symphony, i.e. I am unacquainted with most, so I will be almost "blind." And so be sure to explain how to access the other versions from the website.   0:)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: k a rl h e nn i ng on May 08, 2014, 10:10:07 AM
Proceed, O sublime Monkey!
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Ken B on May 08, 2014, 10:16:56 AM
Proceed, O sublime Monkey!
Indeed. There are two important groups of people here: those doing the work and those who get to decide. Greg is the sole memeber of each group!
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: amw on May 08, 2014, 05:20:13 PM
Of course this would also mean that those participating could easily match the running time of the movement with recordings to find out which one they are listening to, I would hope that to be completely fair to all recordings this wouldn't be an issue and would keep it an honest blind comparison.

Could always add a few seconds of silence before or after so as to throw people off the track.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: North Star on May 08, 2014, 11:44:08 PM
Could always add a few seconds of silence before or after so as to throw people off the track.
Nah - that relatively easy to take into account if someone is trying to match the recordings - what would really work is silences in the middle of the music  :laugh:
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: amw on May 09, 2014, 12:16:43 AM
Hmm, you guys go to a lot of trouble to cheat at these blind comparisons ;P
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: k a rl h e nn i ng on May 09, 2014, 04:53:09 AM
I think the honor system is fine;  if one wins by cheating, one still gets what one earned ;)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on May 22, 2014, 05:23:15 PM
UPDATE:

I have chosen 24 recordings that will compete for the ultimate title. I struggled with only choosing 18 but there were too many good names that would have been left out, and also decided to scratch my initial proposal of only one recording per conductor (or did I?  :o )
Point system will be simple, the higher the rank the higher the points, the lower the rank the lower the points, with 5 pts always being the highest per round, and the lowest pts depending on the round and how many recordings are still in the group.
There will be 4 rounds. Why? Because there are 4 movements. But the third round, which will feature only the Scherzo-Trio and will see the 4 groups combine to 2, will be given separate scores but then will also allow the points from the previous rounds to be added to the remaining recordings for a total point total to determine who makes the final four! So not only will the participants be scoring the Scherzo but could also just be trying to get their favorites more points to make the final.
It may be different but I think it will be fun!

Round 1 - 1st movement: 4 groups of 6 recordings. 2 from each group will be eliminated with the lowest points. (Haven't decided on a tiebreaker system for this round yet)

Round 2 - 2nd movement: 4 groups of 4 recordings. 2 from each group will be eliminated with the lowest points. (Tiebreaker will be point totals from round 1 and 2)

Round 3 - 3rd movement: 2 groups of 4 recordings (groups A and D will combine, and groups B and C will combine) 2 recordings from each group will move to the final four based on the highest total points from the three rounds. (Will allow another recording to continue to final if there is a tie)

Round 4 - final movement (or entire piece). 1 group of the final four. Highest points in this round win. (In the case of a tie, total points from all four rounds will be combined)

Too much to think about? Don't sweat it, just listen and rank and I'll do the rest.

I'm currently waiting on 3 recordings to be delivered and then I can finish uploading the tracks.

Looking at the second week of June for a start date at the latest, so please leave message on this board or PM me if you're interested in participating. Bear with me as I'm a busy man and this is my first BC where I'm in control of the recordings, but I do plan to keep rolling with no delay in between rounds once we begin.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Pim on May 22, 2014, 09:50:15 PM
I'd be happy to join. Thanks!
Pim
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Brian on May 23, 2014, 03:40:30 AM
Well, you can consider me excited. :)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: ChamberNut on May 23, 2014, 03:43:03 AM
Sounds really great, Greg!  :)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: k a rl h e nn i ng on May 23, 2014, 03:50:37 AM
Bruckner smackdown! Bring it!
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Moonfish on May 23, 2014, 08:10:28 PM
Can I join in as as well? This sounds like fun!   ::)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: ChamberNut on May 25, 2014, 05:37:35 AM
UPDATE:

I'm currently waiting on 3 recordings to be delivered and then I can finish uploading the tracks.

Some aid is on the way!  ;D
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on May 25, 2014, 11:34:56 AM
Some aid is on the way!  ;D

Thank you, sir!
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: akiralx on May 25, 2014, 07:37:19 PM
Yes, please include me!
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on May 29, 2014, 05:44:33 PM
Will continue to bump this thread for more participants, leave a post here on the thread or PM me. Hopefully by next week I'll start putting you into groups.
Recordings and their groups are set, just waiting on two more to arrive in the mail. Still working out a few bugs with the dropbox format (thanks to my test subjects who have so far shown no signs of side-effects).

Second week of June is my desired start, stay tuned.  8)

Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Brian on May 29, 2014, 06:11:11 PM
Huzzah!

Oh. I will be in France for almost the entire month of July, so probably will be skipping round 2 altogether and returning for the third.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on May 29, 2014, 06:16:00 PM
Huzzah!

Oh. I will be in France for almost the entire month of July, so probably will be skipping round 2 altogether and returning for the third.

That is not a good reason to miss this comparison, Brian.  >:D



Ok, it's a good reason. 
I'll send you the files to your email for round 2 and you can listen to the 16 Adagios while vacationing. Nothing says Viva La France like Bruckner!
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: ChamberNut on May 30, 2014, 03:26:47 AM
I'll send you the files to your email for round 2 and you can listen to the 16 Adagios while vacationing. Nothing says Viva La France like Bruckner!

 :D
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: jlaurson on May 30, 2014, 06:30:27 AM
color me interested.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on May 31, 2014, 04:57:56 AM
So far I have...

Cato, Karl, Moonfish, Pim, ChamberNut, Sarge, Jens, Brian, Drosera, Kytrarewn, akiralx, Neal, Mad Daniel, Lisztianwagner, MishaK ..

did I leave anyone off? Please leave a post of PM if you're interested or I left you off.  Getting close to beginning.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Lisztianwagner on May 31, 2014, 08:10:45 AM
Sounds interesting, I would like to take part too.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on May 31, 2014, 08:18:09 AM
Sounds interesting, I would like to take part too.

Splendid!  8)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: MishaK on June 02, 2014, 06:33:25 AM
I'm interested too. A few years ago I compared all the Bruckner symphonies available on Spotify, so this will be interesting to see if this confirms what I thought then.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on June 02, 2014, 03:05:13 PM
Got ya, MishaK.  :)

Waiting for one more recording to arrive! Once it does I'll finish uploading the tracks and then we will begin. It could possibly be as early as this Friday.
Please leave a post or PM if you're interested or if I've left off your name on the list above.

Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Brian on June 02, 2014, 05:13:47 PM
Greg, just a quick alert, I am about to post a "Lightning Round" blind comparison of a piano piece (like, tonight). I'm just letting you know as a courtesy - certainly do not hope it will affect your plans or your schedule or the Bruckner game at all, it should be over very fast and is in a totally different genre.  :)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on June 02, 2014, 06:05:49 PM
Greg, just a quick alert, I am about to post a "Lightning Round" blind comparison of a piano piece (like, tonight). I'm just letting you know as a courtesy - certainly do not hope it will affect your plans or your schedule or the Bruckner game at all, it should be over very fast and is in a totally different genre.  :)

As long as it's not a piano transcription of Bruckner's 6th symphony I don't see how it would interfere.  ;D
Thanks, Brian!
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: akiralx on June 02, 2014, 07:20:52 PM
Got ya, MishaK.  :)

Waiting for one more recording to arrive! Once it does I'll finish uploading the tracks and then we will begin.

Where are you uploading them to?
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on June 03, 2014, 01:11:27 AM
Where are you uploading them to?

Dropbox.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on June 04, 2014, 04:18:38 PM
Here We Go!

I will be leaving a PM to all participates that will be separating them into their respective groups. This will begin tonight and hopefully will be completed by tomorrow. I currently have 15 users who have shown interest, Groups A, C and D have four participants in each group and B only has three as of now. But of course you can judge any of the groups, the more votes the better, and perhaps more players will jump aboard as we move on.
I will be shooting for a deadline of June 20-21 for votes, which gives just over two weeks. If more time is needed we can discuss it for sure. But I would like to have round 2 begin on June 23rd or 24th.

Round 1 - 1st movement: 4 groups of 6 recordings. 2 from each group will be eliminated with the lowest points. 

The higher the ranking, the higher the points. For the first round it's 5 points for the highest ranked recording in a list, 0 points for the lowest ranked in a list.

I'm excited for the comparison to begin, it's filled with great performances.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Drosera on June 05, 2014, 07:22:15 AM
6 recordings (of full movements, I presume), that's quite a bit of listening. Thankfully, it's a long weekend here in the low countries.

Looking forward to it. Thanks for organizing this!
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Ken B on June 05, 2014, 12:12:19 PM


I'm excited for the comparison to begin, it's filled with great performances.

So we're not going to play Spot the Zubin Mehta then?
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on June 05, 2014, 12:49:14 PM
Groups A and B have been sent, C and D will follow in about an hour or two. Please let me know if there are any problems, I've tested them with two other users and no issues so far.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on June 05, 2014, 12:50:15 PM

Looking forward to it. Thanks for organizing this!

You're welcome! I hope you enjoy this.  ;D


So we're not going to play Spot the Zubin Mehta then?

Way to spoil the winner for the rest of the group.  :'(
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Brian on June 05, 2014, 05:01:12 PM
Hey Greg, I just discovered a "feature" I had never seen before. Dropbox told me that because I was using so much bandwidth from people listening to the Bach/Busoni clips (which are big files to be fair), my account had been temporarily suspended. On a first "offense" you can undo this, so I undid it. This has never happened to me before, including three or four blind listening games like the Ravel Gaspard. I don't know what the trigger is or when it will happen again.

I'm gonna quote the email so you're forewarned:

"Hi Brian,

This email is an automated notification from Dropbox that your Public links have been temporarily suspended for generating excessive traffic. Your Dropbox will continue to function normally with the exception of Public links.

For more information on suspended links, please visit the Help Center. If this is your first suspension, you may remove the suspension by visiting your account page.

- The Dropbox Team   "
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on June 05, 2014, 05:18:39 PM
Hey Greg, I just discovered a "feature" I had never seen before. Dropbox told me that because I was using so much bandwidth from people listening to the Bach/Busoni clips (which are big files to be fair), my account had been temporarily suspended. On a first "offense" you can undo this, so I undid it. This has never happened to me before, including three or four blind listening games like the Ravel Gaspard. I don't know what the trigger is or when it will happen again.

I'm gonna quote the email so you're forewarned:

"Hi Brian,

This email is an automated notification from Dropbox that your Public links have been temporarily suspended for generating excessive traffic. Your Dropbox will continue to function normally with the exception of Public links.

For more information on suspended links, please visit the Help Center. If this is your first suspension, you may remove the suspension by visiting your account page.

- The Dropbox Team   "

Interesting, and potential bad news for the comparison. I've always been a little uneasy about sharing these files over the internet but hopefully nothing of this sort will happen. Thanks for the heads up, Brian.

Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: amw on June 05, 2014, 06:31:57 PM
Dropbox isn't great for high traffic files—some other (semi-)reliable file sharing sites you can try:

http://mega.co.nz/
http://www.firedrive.com/
http://1fichier.com/

this being the internet there's of course no guarantee of any of them surviving very long.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on June 05, 2014, 06:40:47 PM
Dropbox isn't great for high traffic files—some other (semi-)reliable file sharing sites you can try:

http://mega.co.nz/
http://www.firedrive.com/
http://1fichier.com/

this being the internet there's of course no guarantee of any of them surviving very long.

I'll keep those in mind. Thanks, amw.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: k a rl h e nn i ng on June 06, 2014, 02:05:47 AM
Groups A and B have been sent, C and D will follow in about an hour or two. Please let me know if there are any problems, I've tested them with two other users and no issues so far.

At the ready! the files are;  this listener won't be, for a couple of days ;)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: mc ukrneal on June 06, 2014, 06:13:45 AM
FYI - rules from Dropbox

Quote
Bandwidth limits

Links are automatically banned if they generate an uncommonly large amount of traffic. For Basic accounts, the total amount of traffic that all of your links together can generate without getting banned is 20 GB per day. For Pro and Business accounts, the limit is 200 GB per day.

If your account hits our limit, we'll send a message to the email address registered to your account. Your links will be temporarily disabled, and those who try to access them will see an error page instead of your files.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on June 07, 2014, 05:17:14 PM
All groups have been sent through PM. If you didn't receive links to a group and want to participate please let me know, the more the merrier.
8)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Ken B on June 07, 2014, 05:38:03 PM
All groups have been sent through PM. If you didn't receive links to a group and want to participate please let me know, the more the merrier.
8)
What a lot of work Greg. We're in your debt.

I'm really keen to learn the results.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on June 09, 2014, 03:23:17 AM
We're in your debt.

I'll accept cookies. Peanut butter or ginger will do.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: ChamberNut on June 09, 2014, 03:22:32 PM
Completed all the A group 'first listen', where I don't really rate or pay too much focus on which is my favourite....just listen.  :)

All pretty good, with really only one performance that I for sure know is my 'lesser favourite'.  :)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on June 09, 2014, 03:34:47 PM
Completed all the A group 'first listen', where I don't really rate or pay too much focus on which is my favourite....just listen.  :)

All pretty good, with really only one performance that I for sure know is my 'lesser favourite'.  :)

Great, Ray! Excited to see your results. Let me know when you're ready for another group.  ;D
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Brian on June 10, 2014, 06:37:20 PM
D1
This is an odd soundscape. The trumpet, horn, and other brass leads, plus timpani, are really forward, as if the trumpeter in the intro is sitting, say, next to the podium. Other soloists are occasionally spotlit. I wonder if this is live? That would account for the sound and the occasional lack of orchestral sync in big tutti sections.

Overall, I like this account. Or I think I do; maybe I'm just really glad to be listening to this music again. There is a lot of quality detail here, like the churning basses at 4:20, which I haven't heard elsewhere. Because of the sound, the orchestra doesn't cohere as an ensemble; it sounds more like a bunch of soloists. Super exciting and mighty fine, though.

I think I will assign scores on my second listen, and edit them in at that point.

D2
Though I like the pace, the orchestral phrasing at times tends toward robotic, like the cellos at the very start. Like the (American?) oboist. The violins hit a rough patch around 11:00-12:00. Generally speaking, I'm not a huge fan of this violin section, although they're altogether drowned out of the coda by the brass and timpani, though overall this is another very good performance which will make scoring hard. Big slowdown in the last couple bars. Greg, you weren't kidding about including nothing but good recordings, were you? It would be easier if there were some stinkers!

D3
The quickest so far by a lot, revealing just how successful this piece can be under a number of different conditions. I have liked all three so far, and this conception is high-quality. Another very prominent trumpet soloist. Lighter texture than D2, or maybe the sound quality is like that: that is, in the big climaxes, you can hear much more stuff going on than just the overpowering brass. Does not sound like a chamber orchestra, however.

D4-6 tomorrow. Scores... maybe this weekend.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on June 13, 2014, 02:57:32 PM
*crickets*

Since no scores have been posted I was wondering if the links working for everyone? And did everyone that wanted to participate get the links?

Just checking in on a quiet thread.  ;D
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: ChamberNut on June 14, 2014, 05:04:43 AM
*crickets*

Since no scores have been posted I was wondering if the links working for everyone? And did everyone that wanted to participate get the links?

Just checking in on a quiet thread.  ;D

Hi Greg, the links are working fine, at least for me.

Went through my first run of listens.  Will go through the 2nd run this weekend!  :)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on June 14, 2014, 05:06:47 AM
Hi Greg, the links are working fine, at least for me.

Went through my first run of listens.  Will go through the 2nd run this weekend!  :)

Cool, Ray!  8)



Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: ChamberNut on June 15, 2014, 04:16:55 AM
Finishing up my 2nd full listen to Group A.

So far, I have an outright favourite, and two outright bottom (least favourites - although I still enjoyed the performances).

I have to give my #2, #3 and #4 favourites one more listen, as they are really, really close.  Then I think I'll be ready to post my results.  :)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: ChamberNut on June 15, 2014, 06:08:55 AM
Ready to post my results for Group A, but wonder if I should wait before divulging?  :)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on June 15, 2014, 06:16:59 AM
Ready to post my results for Group A, but wonder if I should wait before divulging?  :)

Please post!  ;D
This thread needs some results.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: ChamberNut on June 15, 2014, 06:30:54 AM
Group A - 1st Round - Maestoso 1st movement

Favourites (ranked from highest points to lowest)

1. A5 - 6 points - Great overall, dynamics are fantastic, well played but with punch, great sounding brass

2. A2 - 5 points - Very good energy, perhaps just a tad slow, but not a downfall because of that. Great dynamics, and I found this to have the best strings sound.

3. A3 - 4 points - Overall clean and well performed, nice woodwinds

4. A4 - 3 points - Fast and furious! Finishes off with tremendous emphasis, love the Mach speed in the coda.  Best recording quality.  The cohesion and unity in the orchestra is a bit lacking at times, IMO.

5. A6 - 2 points - Excellent colour and clarity from woodwinds, found it to be the best woodwinds in the bunch. However, this performance to me seems a bit sluggish.  Strings at times sound distant and thin to my ears.  So it is poorest on sound quality and dynamics.

6. A1 - 1 point - Quite sluggish, not enough momentum, especially in the key moments, overall sound quality and dynamics are OK.


Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: André on June 15, 2014, 07:41:15 AM
I'll be watching this thread with much interest. I don't know if my own favourites are part of the menu, so it will be a voyage of discovery through different ears !
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on June 15, 2014, 08:24:00 AM
I'll be watching this thread with much interest. I don't know if my own favourites are part of the menu, so it will be a voyage of discovery through different ears !

Ray, thank you for your comments/scores.

Andre, please frequent this thread often. Would love to see more discussions on this piece here.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: André on June 15, 2014, 08:51:01 AM
One of my fave Bruckner works. Only problem is I write on a tablet, therefore have no ability to downloand/listen to url clips.

Also and probably more important, I am of a different persuasion when it comes to comparing versions: I never listen to a single movement, rather the whole work. In the case of the sixth grave misconceptions can arise from a movement by movement listening. That is especially the case with the first version of the work (Swoboda's) or with conductors like Klemperer, who tend to take fast movements moderately, and slow movements...moderately (!). The 'centre of gravity', crucial to Bruckner symphonies, can be affected and the whole perception may be lost  or altered.

That being said, the sixth is the most 'classical' of the symphonies, therefore the least prone to architectural distortions induced by a movement-by-movement listening.

This thread it is a very valuable exercise and I look forward to read all comments !!
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: akiralx on June 15, 2014, 01:46:23 PM
*crickets*

Since no scores have been posted I was wondering if the links working for everyone? And did everyone that wanted to participate get the links?

Just checking in on a quiet thread.  ;D

I never got any links, just a PM about Group D.  Not sure how to locate the files on Dropbox.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on June 15, 2014, 02:10:10 PM
I never got any links, just a PM about Group D.  Not sure how to locate the files on Dropbox.

Check your PM, friend. I re-sent them.  :)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: akiralx on June 15, 2014, 06:49:30 PM
Check your PM, friend. I re-sent them.  :)

Hi, Gregory - these just appear as text not as links, I PM'd you.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on June 16, 2014, 02:31:36 AM
Hi, Gregory - these just appear as text not as links, I PM'd you.

Hm, nothing happens if you click on the separate 'Group D - D1' or 'Group D - D2' text?
They should be setup as hyperlinks, I know I sent Brian the same ones for Group D that I sent you and it worked. I'll look at them again and see if something changed.  8)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: ChamberNut on June 17, 2014, 04:25:51 AM
*chirp...chirp* - Calling Group A peeps - Cato, Ilaria and Pim.  :D  I'm just anxious to see your views on Group A.  8)

(http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-iddaG1cgS1g/U5hCIBoiwzI/AAAAAAAACRI/17A9kvVGUEU/s1600/fldcrckt.gif)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on June 17, 2014, 04:29:13 AM
*chirp...chirp* - Calling Group A peeps - Cato, Ilaria and Pim.  :D  I'm just anxious to see your views on Group A.  8)

(http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-iddaG1cgS1g/U5hCIBoiwzI/AAAAAAAACRI/17A9kvVGUEU/s1600/fldcrckt.gif)

The June 20th deadline isn't looking so good  :'( I'm hoping we get everyone's participation, this could really produce some interesting results.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: ChamberNut on June 17, 2014, 04:35:13 AM
The June 20th deadline isn't looking so good  :'( I'm hoping we get everyone's participation, this could really produce some interesting results.

I'm sure the results will start rolling in any day now, Greg.  Perhaps on the weekend, too.  :)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on June 17, 2014, 04:40:35 AM
I'm sure the results will start rolling in any day now, Greg.  Perhaps on the weekend, too.  :)

Do you want the other 3 groups, Ray? You could be the most important person in this BC and control it all on your own!  ;D
Also, your comments were great. Thanks again for posting them.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: ChamberNut on June 17, 2014, 04:41:49 AM
Do you want the other 3 groups, Ray? You could be the most important person in this BC and control it all on your own!  ;D
Also, your comments were great. Thanks again for posting them.

Thanks Greg, but I'll stick to one group.  I would find it too overwhelming.  Plus, with new fitness plan, I don't have as much time to devote.  :)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: k a rl h e nn i ng on June 17, 2014, 04:44:59 AM
Apologies, I felt a press to get back into production on White Nights;  how about Sunday the 22nd for a revised deadline?
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on June 17, 2014, 05:05:46 AM
Apologies, I felt a press to get back into production on White Nights;  how about Sunday the 22nd for a revised deadline?

No need to apologize, Karl.   8)  I know people are busy. And of course I'm going to push the deadline back.

Anyway, what I've heard from White Nights is very good, so I wouldn't want to interrupt that.  :)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Ken B on June 17, 2014, 08:53:55 AM
No need to apologize, Karl.   8)  I know people are busy. And of course I'm going to push the deadline back.

Anyway, what I've heard from White Nights is very good, so I wouldn't want to interrupt that.  :)
One of my professors did a funny thing in his first year classes he told me about. Day 1 he handed out a schedule with the assignment due dates. At the same time he handed out a separate sheet with automatic extensions for all the assignment due dates.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Brian on June 18, 2014, 06:11:02 PM
D1
This is an odd soundscape. The trumpet, horn, and other brass leads, plus timpani, are really forward, as if the trumpeter in the intro is sitting, say, next to the podium. Other soloists are occasionally spotlit. I wonder if this is live? That would account for the sound and the occasional lack of orchestral sync in big tutti sections.

Overall, I like this account. Or I think I do; maybe I'm just really glad to be listening to this music again. There is a lot of quality detail here, like the churning basses at 4:20, which I haven't heard elsewhere. Because of the sound, the orchestra doesn't cohere as an ensemble; it sounds more like a bunch of soloists. Super exciting and mighty fine, though.

I think I will assign scores on my second listen, and edit them in at that point.

D2
Though I like the pace, the orchestral phrasing at times tends toward robotic, like the cellos at the very start. Like the (American?) oboist. The violins hit a rough patch around 11:00-12:00. Generally speaking, I'm not a huge fan of this violin section, although they're altogether drowned out of the coda by the brass and timpani, though overall this is another very good performance which will make scoring hard. Big slowdown in the last couple bars. Greg, you weren't kidding about including nothing but good recordings, were you? It would be easier if there were some stinkers!

D3
The quickest so far by a lot, revealing just how successful this piece can be under a number of different conditions. I have liked all three so far, and this conception is high-quality. Another very prominent trumpet soloist. Lighter texture than D2, or maybe the sound quality is like that: that is, in the big climaxes, you can hear much more stuff going on than just the overpowering brass. Does not sound like a chamber orchestra, however.

D4-6 tomorrow. Scores... maybe this weekend.

D1
On second listen, more favorably impressed with this recording, although it can feel a bit fast at some climaxes and a bit slow at some quiet moments. Can't prove that there are such wild swings in tempo, though; perhaps it's a trick of perception. Reverberant acoustic, but this is a very fine orchestra, better than I gave them credit for. There are some balance quirks nevertheless, like the French horns around 8:00, when they appear to be sitting in my ear canal. Good, but I suspect it can be bettered. 6.8/10

D2
I love this pace. The second listen is helping this recording out; also, it seems maybe to be live, which now makes me more willing to forgive the very rare miscue given that there is also some very fine, expressive playing, particularly from about 4:30-5:00. This is broadly excellent, and fine in most details, even if those imperfections are, well, imperfect. By the way, I'm pretty sure this is slower than Celibidache. 7.31/10

D3
This couldn't be more different from D2, but I still like it a lot. An opposite, equally valid interpretation, nimble and graceful at times, warlike at others. I really like this account. 7.315/10

D4
This is even faster still! Well, by 8 seconds. It's a little less subtle and the orchestra is a little less together, in fact sometimes second-rate. Starting around 4:50, there are some melodic lines in the woodwinds that, at this speed, sound trivial and even a little ugly. Generally I prefer D3. 6.000001/10

D5
Whoa, I LOVE the way the cellos phrase their opening phrase. They really dig into it, express way more than anyone else does. The trumpet is kinda nasally, but everything else is fantastic. Love the violas at 2:30. Checking in at 6:00 to say that this is bearing down on a 10/10 score. Man, I don't even have anything to say about this impressive orchestra, flawless conducting, and expressive phrasing, except to say the standard has been set. The quick diminuendo-crescendo thing around 16:00, which is definitely not in the text (?), is the only moment of controversy here. 9.8765/10

D6
This starts weak, with sloppy repeated notes by the violins, but by 4:00 it's really cooking. Lots of reverb, almost to Slovak Naxos levels around 5:20. The music at 8:15 is cartoonish. Gotta say, all the climaxes are spectacular. The brass of this orchestra is more interesting than the strings, for sure. The timpani are family-size. 6.4/10

1. D5
2. D3
3. D2
4. D1
5. D6
6. D4
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on June 19, 2014, 01:05:55 AM
Thank you, Brian!  ;D
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: mc ukrneal on June 19, 2014, 03:16:44 AM
Overall, a weaker group I think. None of them really give me the euphoria I can get from Bruckner when done well. D3 comes closest, but I imagine would be a second or third place finisher in other groups.

Here are my comments for Group D:

D1 –  Sounds a bit scrappy and the intro does not have quite the assurance of rhythm. But the impact is still quite decent. But as it goes on, it is just dull and lifeless. This just lacks that tension that is so critical in Bruckner. I think the phrasing is partly to blame as it seems quite static. Don’t really like it.  Ranking: 6

D2 –  Slower, but with some menace. Not everyone will like the slow speed here, but I find it has much more impact and tension than D1 despite being noticeably slower. Still, the phrasing is not quite as nuanced as it could be. Loudness is just too uniform/static at times. The playing is really of outstanding quality despite everything.   Ranking: 3

D3 – Faster, but some initial inaccuracy in tempo that soon rights itself. Much more tension here. The rubato is quite effective. Though faster than D1 and D2, it never feels rushed. Quite enjoyable.   Ranking: 1

D4 –In general, this is well played, but seems to have some imprecision in tempo (often in the underlying string runs). As it goes on, orchestra sounds a bit strained at times. Though the fastest timing so far, it feels strangely slower than any of them. This one has more dramatic tempo changes, which is disruptive to the overall flow.    Ranking: 5

D5 – Slower start, and right from the start, much more nuance and even more menace than D2. Fantastic climax. This doesn’t seem quite as successful at gluing all the different sections together as D3, but it is still a hair better than the others so far: 2

D6 –Nice start, though some small tempo differences between departments (soon resolved). More legato phrasing and stronger rubato in places, but there doesn’t seem to be a uniform agreement of tempo across the departments.  But some of the climaxes are very enjoyable. Ranking: 4

A decent, but not super group. D1 and D2 just don’t give me enough of the topline in terms of where the pieces is going. D2 has the edge due to phenomenal playing (so precise despite going slower, which is part of what makes the orchestra so impressive). D4 (like D1) is forgettable. D5 has some wonderful qualities, but ultimately stumbles along the way. D6 seems to do best when building to climaxes (or in the climaxes themselves). D3 is on the only real winner here for me. It does a little bit of everything right. At the moment I predict the D group will not be among the top 3 and could be shut out of the finale entirely if they don’t pick up the pace.

That leaves us with:
D3 >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>D5, D2, D6, D4, D1.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on June 19, 2014, 03:58:00 AM
Thank you, Neal.

Let me know if you (or Brian) would like to score another group. Obliviously June 20 deadline will be extended.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Pim on June 20, 2014, 05:29:25 AM
For me it was the first time that I listened with care to this symphony. I used the  piano score of Stradal in the piascore app (http://piascore.com) to keep track, a full score would have been too complex for me. I’m not even sure that I ever heard it all, I have to admit. Bruckner wasn’t among my favorites, although this is changing now….
At first I found it hard to overcome the associations with movie soundtracks (Do some of you have this too? Initially I got this ‘star wars /star trek’ type of feeling ???, no fault of Bruckner obviously, but a handicap when you’re trying to pay attention). Fortunately after repeated listening that totally disappeared. What a great piece of music!

A2: starts out great and is full of tension or suspense (well, something like that) throughout. Easy to get immersed into.

A3: less mesmerizing start than A2, but wonderfully balanced, keeps me involved, e.g. the slowly moving about that starts around 3:50 is beautifully done.

A5: very beautiful, not as haunting as A2 but definitely great. Sound is a bit thin sometimes (e.g. around 7:40-50)

A4: good, but nothing that genuinely grips me

A6: too slow, missing the drive that makes the beginning of A2 so enticing

A1: dragging along a bit, not very captivating

A2 > A3 > A5 >> A4 > A6 > A1

Thanks GSM! Looking forward to round 2
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: ChamberNut on June 20, 2014, 05:47:37 AM
For me it was the first time that I listened with care to this symphony. I used the  piano score of Stradal in the piascore app (http://piascore.com) to keep track, a full score would have been too complex for me. I’m not even sure that I ever heard it all, I have to admit. Bruckner wasn’t among my favorites, although this is changing now….
At first I found it hard to overcome the associations with movie soundtracks (Do some of you have this too? Initially I got this ‘star wars /star trek’ type of feeling ???, no fault of Bruckner obviously, but a handicap when you’re trying to pay attention). Fortunately after repeated listening that totally disappeared. What a great piece of music!

A2: starts out great and is full of tension or suspense (well, something like that) throughout. Easy to get immersed into.

A3: less mesmerizing start than A2, but wonderfully balanced, keeps me involved, e.g. the slowly moving about that starts around 3:50 is beautifully done.

A5: very beautiful, not as haunting as A2 but definitely great. Sound is a bit thin sometimes (e.g. around 7:40-50)

A4: good, but nothing that genuinely grips me

A6: too slow, missing the drive that makes the beginning of A2 so enticing

A1: dragging along a bit, not very captivating

A2 > A3 > A5 >> A4 > A6 > A1

Thanks GSM! Looking forward to round 2

Thanks for posting your thoughts and favorites from Group A, Pim!  Interesting, our bottom 3 picks are the same and in the same order.  Our top 3 are thus the same, only in different order.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Sergeant Rock on June 20, 2014, 06:01:10 AM
At first I found it hard to overcome the associations with movie soundtracks (Do some of you have this too?

The main theme of the first movement has always reminded me of Maurice Jarre's Lawrence of Arabia.

Sarge
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: jlaurson on June 20, 2014, 06:31:25 AM
B1

“At 5.43, German troops blazed through the Defenses at Dunkirk…”

Oh, no… it turns out I was THINKING I heard the music through my headphones when in fact it came through my computer speakers. Doesn’t sound that dated, after all.

B1B1 Taut, almost military-march-like rippling rhythm. But also delicate when called for. No nonsense. Forward and propulsive. Goalward.  Doesn’t try much and succeeds in doing little.

B2B2 Ostentatious opening from the depths… will this be exciting or just too much?
Funny woodwind-balances… turns around in the slow parts with sweetness and soft, buoyant playing.


B4 Massive, shapely, organic, wilful in the good sense… i.e. strongly shaped, and with purpose… powerful.

Good audibility of the bass lines. Unfortunately file corrupted and couldn’t be decoded after a few minutes. Makes me realize how little I can judge from even one movement – much less a few minutes – as to the whole performance.

B5: Good Lord… is this one stuck in molasses? Gets out of the holes extreeeeemly slow… and a bit in the sleepy sense, actually… not the “things-yet-to-come” way. Wakes up soon enough, granted… another fingerprint-heavy performance, slightly over the top in the first minute and not the most securely played… but wins over quite quickly with its charm. Guns-a-blazing… a bit crass but effective, damned. Torn between liking it a lot and not very much at all. Wonder how that baby would stand up to repeated listening.

B6: working on it.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Lisztianwagner on June 20, 2014, 01:50:26 PM
I need a bit of extra time; but I'll surely post everything on this weekend.
Title: Re: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: k a rl h e nn i ng on June 20, 2014, 04:39:08 PM
I need a bit of extra time; but I'll surely post everything on this weekend.

I am with you, cara Ilaria.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on June 20, 2014, 04:57:04 PM
I need a bit of extra time; but I'll surely post everything on this weekend.

Of course, I haven't set a new deadline since some groups haven't received any scores.  8)

Thank you Jens and Pim for the scores.

Jens - I see B1 then B1B1 and B2B2, but there is no B3? Also, let me know if B4 fails again, I could try to fix it.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: André on June 21, 2014, 05:56:10 PM
B1

“At 5.43, German troops blazed through the Defenses at Dunkirk…”

Oh, no… it turns out I was THINKING I heard the music through my headphones when in fact it came through my computer speakers. Doesn’t sound that dated, after all.

B1B1 Taut, almost military-march-like rippling rhythm. But also delicate when called for. No nonsense. Forward and propulsive. Goalward.  Doesn’t try much and succeeds in doing little.

B2B2 Ostentatious opening from the depths… will this be exciting or just too much?
Funny woodwind-balances… turns around in the slow parts with sweetness and soft, buoyant playing.


B4 Massive, shapely, organic, wilful in the good sense… i.e. strongly shaped, and with purpose… powerful.

Good audibility of the bass lines. Unfortunately file corrupted and couldn’t be decoded after a few minutes. Makes me realize how little I can judge from even one movement – much less a few minutes – as to the whole performance.

B5: Good Lord… is this one stuck in molasses? Gets out of the holes extreeeeemly slow… and a bit in the sleepy sense, actually… not the “things-yet-to-come” way. Wakes up soon enough, granted… another fingerprint-heavy performance, slightly over the top in the first minute and not the most securely played… but wins over quite quickly with its charm. Guns-a-blazing… a bit crass but effective, damned. Torn between liking it a lot and not very much at all. Wonder how that baby would stand up to repeated listening.

B6: working on it.


Why is the text in pale yellow against pale grey. It's unreadable ???
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on June 21, 2014, 06:00:39 PM
Why is the text in pale yellow against pale grey. It's unreadable ???

I believe it's so to not influence others who might be in the same group.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: amw on June 22, 2014, 10:14:36 PM
Non-Brucknerian weighing in here...

So far I have listened to A1 (as background music while making dinner, to get an idea of the structure), A2, A3 and A1 again (blasted through the speakers as only Bruckner can be). Note that these are my only exposure to this piece so far; haven't heard it before and don't have a score.

I liked A1 the most, it had a vividness and presence and "explained" the music to me in a way the others didn't. After that A2, and finally A3 which didn't make much of an impression on me. I'll try to listen to the other 3 shortly and come up with a ranking of some sort.

Something in Bruckner's use of major/minor modes and harmonic progressions, as well as the brass-heavy orchestration, reminds me intensely of Nielsen. I wouldn't have ordinarily thought of a link between the two, and don't know if Bruckner got much play time in Denmark circa 1890s, but wouldn't be surprised if Nielsen knew his music.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: mc ukrneal on June 22, 2014, 11:19:24 PM
I can try to do another one, so send me the links. Maybe C? I don't see any comments on that one.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: ChamberNut on June 23, 2014, 04:54:59 AM
I'm itching to get to the Adagio movement!   :D
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on June 23, 2014, 07:29:46 AM
I'm itching to get to the Adagio movement!   :D

I hear ya, Ray. But it looks as if this BC needs more time with the first round. I would like to get at least 3 scores from each group, preferably more, before we move on. I will be patient however, my goal is for the most fair and accurate results.

Good news for Brian then, we might just be starting the second round when he gets back from his European vacation!  ;D
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Ken B on June 23, 2014, 07:34:30 AM
I will be patient however, my goal is for the most ... accurate results.

Some short cuts then. Eliminate Wand, Barenboim, and naturally Mehta.  :blank:

 Or just promote Herbie to first place and save a lot of bother!  :D

 :laugh:
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on June 23, 2014, 07:39:32 AM

 Or just promote Herbie to first place and save a lot of bother!  :D

 :laugh:

Don't have time for a photoshop session, but if I did I would definitely use this one right about now...

(http://g-ecx.images-amazon.com/images/G/01/ciu/e5/88/5b53228348a0faf38e052110.L._SX300_.jpg)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Brian on June 23, 2014, 07:48:14 AM
Don't have time for a photoshop session, but if I did I would definitely use this one right about now...

(http://g-ecx.images-amazon.com/images/G/01/ciu/e5/88/5b53228348a0faf38e052110.L._SX300_.jpg)
Is this close enough? (http://www.good-music-guide.com/community/index.php/topic,301.msg762231.html#msg762231)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Sergeant Rock on June 23, 2014, 07:52:15 AM
Or just promote Herbie to first place and save a lot of bother!  :D

 :laugh:

One of my least favorite Sixths. If he wins, I'm going to throw myself off the Rheinbrücke.

Sarge
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on June 23, 2014, 08:42:58 AM
One of my least favorite Sixths. If he wins, I'm going to throw myself off the Rheinbrücke.

Sarge

Knowing your history with BC's, Sarge, you'll shoot Herbie right to the top!
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: k a rl h e nn i ng on June 23, 2014, 09:02:46 AM
Knowing your history with BC's, Sarge, you'll shoot Herbie right to the top!

Oh, never do that to a friend!  0:)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: ChamberNut on June 23, 2014, 09:33:17 AM
Is this close enough? (http://www.good-music-guide.com/community/index.php/topic,301.msg762231.html#msg762231)

 :D  My favourite of all photoshops!   :)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Sergeant Rock on June 23, 2014, 11:00:58 AM
Knowing your history with BC's, Sarge, you'll shoot Herbie right to the top!

 ;D :D ;D  ...yes, given my record of eliminating my favorites I'm almost certain to do that.

Sarge
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Lisztianwagner on June 23, 2014, 12:06:42 PM
A1 – The orchestral sound is clear and melodious, instruments well handled and balanced, but the rhythm is too slow and makes the movement lack energy and intensity, with a sense of heaviness.

A2 – Great opening with enigmatic and mysterious atmosphere, sharp and clear violins in the Bruckner rhythm; quietly intense main theme, energetic in fortissimo. Passionate and expressive second theme (gorgeous violins in the first section and powerful brass in the third one); nice climax at the beginning of the recapitulation; glorious, powerful finale in the coda. Beautiful and harmonic orchestral playing,  fine dynamics, the rhythm is a bit too slow but that doesn't ruin the intensity of the movement.

A3 – The opening is not as mesmerizing and mysterious as the previous recording, but suggestive enough; the faster tempo gives great power and intensity, especially in the fortissimi. Beautifully atmospheric second theme, very lyrical in the second section; strings and woodwinds are splendid. Very fine phrasing.

A4 – Very fast rhythm that works finely anyway, maybe apart from the too hasty first theme; orchestral playing and dynamics are well handled, but brass sounds a bit too dull in the main theme, both in the exposition and in the recapitulation and in the coda.

A5 – Very good opening, suggestive and enigmatic; the solos of orchestra are clear and well played. Powerful, energetic fortissimo in the first theme, though the instruments almost sounds to lose the pace at some point. Great intensity and dymanics, especially in the brass. The second theme is lyrical and expressive. The development is a bit too slow, but intense and majestic anyway. Vigorous, involving finale in the coda.

A6 -  Remarkable recording in the second theme, strings and woodings are passionate and melodious. Instead the brass has a poor sound quality. Good dynamics and energy, but a bit too slow rhythm.


A3>A2>A5>A4>A6>A1
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: jlaurson on June 23, 2014, 12:56:50 PM
B1

At first I was THINKING I heard the music through my headphones when in fact it came through my computer speakers. Doesn’t sound that dated, after all. Taut, almost military-march-like rippling rhythm. But also delicate when called for. No nonsense. Forward and propulsive. Goalward.  Doesn’t try much and succeeds in doing little.

B2 Good lord, what a ridiculous crawl. If that doesn’t put you to sleep, what will? At least the opening doesn’t work for me at all.. the gathering of energy after that is better. Still, I don’t like it. It’s so slow, of course, that I think: If that’s Celi, and the Celi Munich performance (it’s not, the sound is off, at the least, nor do I think the brass of Munich sounds like that), then I have egg on my face for professing to love that Sixth above all others except Haitink/Dresden, perhaps.

Oh… bloody rallentando there… not my thing. Climax is fine.

Ostentatious opening from the depths… will this be exciting or just too much?
Funny woodwind-balances… turns around in the slow parts with sweetness and soft, buoyant playing.



B3 Stuffed horns, tempestuous, brass that is glaring and overbearing.
Fast as the dickens, it sounds…
Tubby. Something about it… but not sure if it strikes me as special. At least not today, not this hour.


B4 Massive, shapely, organic, wilful in the good sense… i.e. strongly shaped, and with purpose… powerful.

Good audibility of the bass lines. Unfortunately file corrupted and couldn’t be decoded after a few minutes. Makes me realize how little I can judge from even one movement – much less a few minutes – as to the whole performance. Sound quality of the live performance compromised… though if the performance is worth it, nothing to not consider it…

Now that the file works…  not particularly special, actually…  though… I am quietly beginning to like it… it leaves Bruckner alone, it seems to me… but then, I just do love the calm part of that movement very much, so perhaps it’s not unusual for any performance to win me over at that point. But it strikes me as unhurried…



B5: Good Lord… is this one stuck in molasses? Gets out of the holes extreeeeemly slow… and a bit in the sleepy sense, actually… not the “things-yet-to-come” way. Wakes up soon enough, granted… another fingerprint-heavy performance, slightly over the top in the first minute and not the most securely played… but wins over quite quickly with its charm. Guns-a-blazing… a bit crass but effective, damned. Torn between liking it a lot and not very much at all. Wonder how that baby would stand up to repeated listening.

B6 Dark, overtly dramatic beginning… sound not great… levels seem messed with. Bruckner as Schumann… from all the detailing I can’t imagine this being a particularly long-line performance. Anti-Bloomstedtian. Still, goddamn gorgeous quiet second (??) theme of the first movement… oceanic or maybe more sea-like… Vaughan Williams should have liked to listen to Bruckner like that… But out come the bloody exclamation marks again, after that.

Smudging, dragging of violin figures in opening



1: B1

2: B4

3: B6

4: B5

5: B2

6: B3
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: mc ukrneal on June 23, 2014, 11:09:11 PM
Here are my comments for Group C:

C1 –  Somewhat tame/softer opening (softer in approach, not sound volume). Once the brass comes in, they create a gorgeous sound, but this seems like a sleepy version to me. The best I can put it is ‘all soft corners and no hard edges’. Climaxes are beautiful to look at, but are offset by everything else.    Ranking: 5

C2 –  Similar tempo to start (as C1), but already a bit more life to it. But some of the brass doesn’t  have quite a forward enough sound/placement, which doesn’t make it as forceful as it could be. Tempo picks up at times as well. Bit of a mixed picture here, but I enjoy the precision of the orchestra.  A solid version.     Ranking:  2

C3 –  Much more intense and menacing start with lots of details already in phrasing. Much more bite here, though tempo is fairly ‘middle of the road’ with some noticeable tempo changes at times (generally faster). This one has more of a pulse throughout than the previous recordings. There is a certain scrappiness at times, but surprisingly I enjoy it anyway.  Ranking: 1

C4 –  Brisk start, but mushy articulation. Timpani seem too loud in relation to the rest. However, it moves along nicely. Live version. Trumpets don’t really seem to have much bite (not sure if you will like this, but I’d prefer a bit more prominence).  Much more variance in tempo, which seemed a bit random to me (or done for drama, though I would think there is enough drama without having to create it). Big climaxes come in too anemic sometimes and unison is occasionally lost. Slowdown at end just exemplifies the problems.  Ranking: 6

C5 –  Slower start. It’s somewhat menacing, but lacking in real bite. It sounds a bit plodding at times.  Not crazy about the horn tone at times either. I think ultimately, it just feels a bit episodic, though I prefer the second half more.  Ranking: 4

C6 –  Another slower version, but more menacing with some nice phrasing.  Here we have a more exciting version despite a slower tempo, partly because it seems to do more with the phrasing and in the way it differentiates the tempo. But the tempo is a sticking point. It slows down sooooooo much after the beginning section – too much (and in other places too).  Still, a lot of pluses here, and nicely done.  Ranking: 3

Hmmm. I am beginning to wonder if I am looking for the performances to be played a certain way rather than just taking them for what they are. But I also cannot help that that there are certain signposts that should be there along the way. C3 hit more of them in this group, but there are a number of questionable calls even there. So having listened to two groups, I am still looking for that opening movement that hits my sweet spot.

Ranking: C3, C2, C6, C5, C1, C4.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: amw on June 24, 2014, 12:34:24 AM
Predictably, I am the weirdo here in that I like A1 and A4 the best of the lot.

The tempo, phrasing & instrumental balance of A1 feel very natural—I didn't even realise it was 2 minutes longer than the others until I lined them up in a playlist. The orchestra has the requisite Late Romantic klang with full but not too brassy brass, and gets a ton of mileage out of both quiet moments (the veiled menace of the 1st theme, the twisty woodwind counterpoint in the middle) and the climaxes (which were, needless to say, the most glorious of the lot).

A4 is my second choice due to being completely different; if A1 is the "cathedral of sound" interpretation A4 is more like a force of nature. (A3 is also like this, but I don't like the phrasing there as much.) The lines seem more continuous due to the faster tempi. Mostly it's just more exciting.

Then comes A2 (points docked for too much cuivré from the horns), and A5, A3 and A6, none of which interested me quite as much.

I wonder why Bruckner decided to head the movement "Majestoso" (which is not a real Italian word) instead of "Maestoso"... or for that matter "Feierlich" which is what he usually seemed to use for that meaning.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on June 24, 2014, 03:26:28 AM
Predictably, I am the weirdo here in that I like A1 and A4 the best of the lot.


But this is the beauty of a BC, everyone's contrasting preferences are on display. I wouldn't want to do this unless there would be some discrepancy between scores. Thank you, amw!  8)

And thank you Lisztianwagner, Jens (I think your scores are in there  :) ) and Neal (again) for the scores!

Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on June 25, 2014, 04:52:17 PM
Here's the results so far, group A could be done, but will wait for the other three to pick up some more scores.
Again, thank you all for participating!  ;D



Group A

Ray         Pim      LisztianWagner      amw
A5           A2         A3                       A1
A2           A3         A2                       A4
A3           A5         A5                       A2
A4           A4         A4                       A5
A6           A6         A6                       A3
A1           A1         A1                       A6


Group B

Jens
B1
B4
B6
B5
B2
B3


Group C

Neal
C3
C2
C6
C5
C1
C4


Group D

Brian     Neal
D5           D3
D3           D5
D2           D2
D1           D6
D6           D4
D4           D1
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Ken B on June 25, 2014, 04:57:51 PM
Here's the results so far, group A could be done, but will wait for the other three to pick up some more scores.
Again, thank you all for participating!  ;D



Group A

Ray         Pim      LisztianWagner      amw
A5           A2         A3                       A1
A2           A3         A2                       A4
A3           A5         A5                       A2
A4           A4         A4                       A5
A6           A6         A6                       A3
A1           A1         A1                       A6


Group B

Jens
B1
B4
B6
B5
B2
B3


Group C

Neal
C3
C2
C6
C5
C1
C4


Group D

Brian     Neal
D5           D3
D3           D5
D2           D2
D1           D6
D6           D4
D4           D1

Tease! Has Sarge voted out Szell or Barbirolli?  >:D
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on June 25, 2014, 05:02:10 PM
Tease! Has Sarge voted out Szell or Barbirolli?  >:D

Gilbert Kaplan is in the lead.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: amw on June 25, 2014, 05:22:26 PM
Here's the results so far, group A could be done, but will wait for the other three to pick up some more scores.
Again, thank you all for participating!  ;D
I'm surprised by how few people voted (also with how little participation there was on Brian's piano comparison)... are blind comparisons losing their allure for GMG?
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Brian on June 25, 2014, 05:24:16 PM
I'm surprised by how few people voted (also with how little participation there was on Brian's piano comparison)... are blind comparisons losing their allure for GMG?
I'm starting to think the same thing. I was going to do Beethoven's Op. 59 No. 3 after the Bruckner game, but it looks like enthusiasm is waning.

Part of me wants to listen to every other group, but part of me realizes that I ain't got time for that. Maybe could do one at work tomorrow, Greg, if you want to send me Group B or C but with no expectation of a result...
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Sergeant Rock on June 25, 2014, 06:11:21 PM
Tease! Has Sarge voted out Szell...?  >:D

I would if I could  ;D ...but the Sixth wasn't in his repertoire. He conducted 3, 7, 8, 9 and the Te Deum but only recorded 3 & 8.

Sarge
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: mc ukrneal on June 25, 2014, 06:58:31 PM
At 15-17 min each, these require 1.5 hours listening time. That could be part of the problem as well. These were never terribly popular to begin with, but I am not sure why.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: amw on June 25, 2014, 07:54:49 PM
That's true. (A1 is ~19 minutes and I listened to it 3 times... that'd be a complete group in most other BCs.)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on June 26, 2014, 01:43:02 AM
I understand that this requires a lot of listening time, which is why the deadline has been pushed back. However, if you devoted 15-20 minutes from your daily music listening sessions (one recording a day), and take down notes on your thoughts to reference for when your ready to score the group, then you could easily complete a group in a week.
Just a friendly BC. listening tip  :)

I do hope this one continues to receive scores, I've really been enjoying the comments and am already shocked by some of the positive and negative criticism given to certain recordings.



Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: jlaurson on June 26, 2014, 02:34:54 AM
I understand that this requires a lot of listening time, which is why the deadline has been pushed back. However, if you devoted 15-20 minutes from your daily music listening sessions (one recording a day), and take down notes on your thoughts to reference for when your ready to score the group, then you could easily complete a group in a week.
Just a friendly BC. listening tip  :)

I do hope this one continues to receive scores, I've really been enjoying the comments and am already shocked by some of the positive and negative criticism given to certain recordings.

Gimme another group, like Brian... and I'll see what I can get my ears round.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on June 26, 2014, 02:42:25 AM
Gimme another group, like Brian... and I'll see what I can get my ears round.

Very cool, Jens. Group C just PM'd to you.
Thanks!  :)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Jo498 on June 26, 2014, 03:05:23 AM
As I just joined the forum a few days ago, I missed all these blind comparisons. Would it be possible to receive links to the latest batch even now?
It sounds fascinating, althoug I have to admit that I find the scope extremely ambitious. Especially with whole movements from Bruckner symphonies maybe it would be better to stick to only 8 versions or less.

In any case, I'd be interested to participate in further installments and want to encourage to keep the good work going!
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: ChamberNut on June 26, 2014, 03:32:26 AM
Here's the results so far, group A could be done, but will wait for the other three to pick up some more scores.
Again, thank you all for participating!  ;D



Group A

Ray         Pim      LisztianWagner      amw
A5           A2         A3                       A1
A2           A3         A2                       A4
A3           A5         A5                       A2
A4           A4         A4                       A5
A6           A6         A6                       A3
A1           A1         A1                       A6


I think Cato will still chime in with his results on Group A.  :)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: k a rl h e nn i ng on June 26, 2014, 04:22:44 AM
Aye, Cato has suffered a box breakdown, so he's been incomunicado.  He should be back on line today or tomorrow.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Brian on June 26, 2014, 06:37:32 AM
B1
I'm not a big fan of the choice to de-staccato-ize those opening violin rhythms, but otherwise, hardly anything to complain about here. Well-judged pace that's well-stuck-to and an unusually fluid second subject. Almost balletic? The climax around 4:40 is maybe a little underwhelming. Greg, did you edit this file so the artist would be "Chart Pimp"? Or "Part Chimp"? My media player is showing both of those. OH it's because there is an album called Chart Pimp by Part Chimp, and the first track is called "B1", so the software must have assumed... Anyway. I also am not 100% keen on the not 100% commitment of the brass in the final coda; you can hear a couple guys wishing they could take a break. Still, a nice, portable, lightweight account for sure. 6.8/10

B2
Wow, Jens wasn't kidding. This is intimidatingly, broodingly, creepily slow. The second time so far I've heard a clip that's slower than Celibidache. The woodwinds are rather perky about two-and-a-half minutes in, though. Especially forward oboist. The quieter bits in the middle movement are startlingly good, particularly anything involving wind players. Of course, the tempo is much faster here than it was at the start. Why'd they have to go and make the start that slow if the rest isn't? Listening to the insanely slow opening, you'd never expect that the final chord would be so short! Oh well, I would give the first two minutes a 5/10 and the last 15 minutes an 8/10, and mathematically that comes out to 7.6/10.

B3
Holy crap, this opening is fast. This is, like, record-setting fast. Oh, what's with the gigantic slowdown for the second theme? I thought they were going to stick with that superfast tempo the whole way through but instead it's like they came down from a sugar high and want to take a nap. Two minutes in, I've heard enough. I'll listen to the rest, but there is a fine line between flexible conducting and over-the-top conducting. This is over-the-top. 3/10

Okay, time to watch USA v. Germany... the other scores will follow this afternoon!
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Sergeant Rock on June 26, 2014, 06:45:10 AM
B2 Very slow initial tempo,  an air of mystery and anticipation firmly established. This can only be one conductor (the forward woodwinds later confirm). This proves my assertion that Bruckner cannot be played too slowly. I love almost everything about this performance (would like a bit more timpani when the first theme is played forté but that's a niggle). The buildup to the recapitulation, the central climax, is thrilling, the swirling strings creating almost unbearable tension before the orchestra explodes. Goosebump producing. The coda is well-balanced, all the contrapuntal strands heard clearly, the final chord delivered like a hammerblow: short and decisive. The overall impression this version delivers is one of inevitability, from first note to last. The parts are just put together well.

B3  The conductor whips this baby out of the gate like it's the Preakness. I thought at first this might be Norrington, but in fact it's even faster!--not over the length of the movement but the introduction and first theme. The initial double forté blast  is poweful, the timpani prominent, the rhythm distinct. I like. With the arrival of the second theme the brakes are appled, slowing things down considerably, but beautifully so. It creates quite a contrast between the two themes. After that I heard and felt nothing terribly interesting. The third theme is pedestrian, having none of the rhythmic thrill those Bruckner third themes are supposed to deliver. The central climax moved me not at all. So, an unusual and promising beginning that goes nowhere interesting. The sound is detailed in a technicolor sort of way, heavy on the brass; the trumpets can be piercing.

B4 A typical Sixth, MOR. Nothing really stands out. I suppose that's a good thing but also a bit boring. The central climax was odd. It just sort of happened with no sense that things were building towards it. Compared to B2 those swirling strings were deeply recessed.  The final chord lingers, outstaying its welcome but then most conductors do it this way.

The rest of the notes to follow along with the rankings.

Sarge
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Ken B on June 26, 2014, 07:06:21 AM
B1

B2
Wow, Jens wasn't kidding. This is intimidatingly, broodingly, creepily slow. The second time so far I've heard a clip that's slower than Celibidache. The woodwinds are rather perky about two-and-a-half minutes in, though. Especially forward oboist. The quieter bits in the middle movement are startlingly good, particularly anything involving wind players. Of course, the tempo is much faster here than it was at the start. Why'd they have to go and make the start that slow if the rest isn't? Listening to the insanely slow opening, you'd never expect that the final chord would be so short! Oh well, I would give the first two minutes a 5/10 and the last 15 minutes an 8/10, and mathematically that comes out to 7.6/10.



OK, now I am curious about B2. Creepy. Can someone post/pm me B2? DONE
Danke sehr
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Sergeant Rock on June 26, 2014, 07:17:32 AM
OK, now I am curious about B2. Creepy. Can someone post/pm me B2?
Danke sehr

Check your mail.

Sarge
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Ken B on June 26, 2014, 07:20:48 AM
Check your mail.

Sarge
Thanks
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on June 26, 2014, 08:43:00 AM
As I just joined the forum a few days ago, I missed all these blind comparisons. Would it be possible to receive links to the latest batch even now?
It sounds fascinating, althoug I have to admit that I find the scope extremely ambitious. Especially with whole movements from Bruckner symphonies maybe it would be better to stick to only 8 versions or less.

In any case, I'd be interested to participate in further installments and want to encourage to keep the good work going!

I can send you the links to one of the groups, it's not too late. And welcome to the forum!


Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on June 26, 2014, 08:44:50 AM
Aye, Cato has suffered a box breakdown, so he's been incomunicado.  He should be back on line today or tomorrow.

Cool. Maybe I can get him to do group b or c if he hasn't already listened to A. Group A's results won't change with one more score, the bottom 2 have such low scores at the moment.

Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Ken B on June 26, 2014, 09:24:51 AM
[
B2
Wow, Jens wasn't kidding. This is intimidatingly, broodingly, creepily slow. The second time so far I've heard a clip that's slower than Celibidache. The woodwinds are rather perky about two-and-a-half minutes in, though. Especially forward oboist. The quieter bits in the middle movement are startlingly good, particularly anything involving wind players. Of course, the tempo is much faster here than it was at the start. Why'd they have to go and make the start that slow if the rest isn't? Listening to the insanely slow opening, you'd never expect that the final chord would be so short! Oh well, I would give the first two minutes a 5/10 and the last 15 minutes an 8/10, and mathematically that comes out to 7.6/10.

B2 Very slow initial tempo,  an air of mystery and anticipation firmly established. This can only be one conductor (the forward woodwinds later confirm). This proves my assertion that Bruckner cannot be played too slowly. I love almost everything about this performance (would like a bit more timpani when the first theme is played forté but that's a niggle). The buildup to the recapitulation, the central climax, is thrilling, the swirling strings creating almost unbearable tension before the orchestra explodes. Goosebump producing. The coda is well-balanced, all the contrapuntal strands heard clearly, the final chord delivered like a hammerblow: short and decisive. The overall impression this version delivers is one of inevitability, from first note to last. The parts are just put together well.

I listened to this twice. My reaction is quite different from the two worthies above.
First I like the overall shape of the performance pretty well. I *like* the slow beginning,
and in general think slow in Bruckner a good approach. I rather wish the rest of it were a bit slower
than it is, but not radically. I am less happy with the details. In some of the quieter passages
especially the orchestra sometimes seems on the verge of unravelling. In the final section section
I don't get a sense of swell and ascent very strongly (which I do at the beginning quite well),
and the abrupt final chord does not help.
There are in passing some grating sounds, and some loose ensemble sounds too.
Under rehearsed?
Imagine you see from some yards an attractive looking mosaic on a wall. As you approach you notice problems,
such as crude figuration or misplaced tiles. That's more or less how I feel about this performance.
I think I like the conductor, but I think I caught him (or his band) on an off day.

6/10
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Brian on June 26, 2014, 09:49:27 AM
B4
Sarge is right that this is middle-of-road and standard, but I kinda like it. I certainly find it hard to fault, and I appreciate the excellent work the horn players are putting in. I also appreciate that the slightly brisker pace is maintained, instead of swooning like B3. Hey! Was that a cough? Is this live? This is in many ways similar to B1, though I prefer the slightly more refined orchestra, and especially the superior brass. The too-long final chord confirms that B2 spoiled me. 7/10

B5
The first thing that made me want to open this window and take notes was the remarkably laid-back violin phrasing starting at 7:30. It's more of a far-sighted buildup than usual, I think. There are some moments of lethargy, and overall I think this is just an OK one. 6/10
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Brian on June 26, 2014, 12:07:41 PM
B6
Okay, sorry, Greg, but I've finally reached Over-Listening Burnout for this movement. I admire this one for maintaining a consistent tempo, but is it too rigid? Are the textures too light? I'm not sure. The smeared string rhythms are a bigtime problem. Oh gosh, I was going to give this the benefit of the doubt, but I can't approve of the weaksauce coda. God, the last bars are awful. 5/10

To eliminate: B3, B6
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on June 26, 2014, 12:49:29 PM

Group A

Ray         Pim      LisztianWagner      amw
A5           A2         A3                       A1
A2           A3         A2                       A4
A3           A5         A5                       A2
A4           A4         A4                       A5
A6           A6         A6                       A3
A1           A1         A1                       A6


Group B

Jens    Brian
B1       B2   
B4       B4
B6       B1
B5       B5
B2       B6
B3       B3


Group C

Neal
C3
C2
C6
C5
C1
C4


Group D

Brian     Neal
D5           D3
D3           D5
D2           D2
D1           D6
D6           D4
D4           D1
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Sergeant Rock on June 28, 2014, 05:55:14 AM
B1  Bruckner as light as a summer breeze, seems swifter than its timing suggests. Nothing to fault and much to love even though it's not my preferred way with Bruckner 6. This has the finest sound too. Great timpani.

B2  Very slow initial tempo,  an air of mystery and anticipation firmly established. This can only be one conductor (the forward woodwinds later confirm). This proves my assertion that Bruckner cannot be played too slowly. I love almost everything about this performance (would like a bit more timpani when the first theme is played forté but that's a niggle). The buildup to the recapitulation, the central climax, is thrilling, the swirling strings creating almost unbearable tension before the orchestra explodes. Goosebump producing. The coda is well-balanced, all the contrapuntal strands heard clearly, the final chord delivered like a hammerblow: short and decisive. The overall impression this version delivers is one of inevitability, from first note to last. The parts are just put together well.

B3  The conductor whips this baby out of the gate like it's the Preakness. I thought at first this might be Norrington, but in fact it's even faster!--not over the length of the movement but the introduction and first theme. The initial double forté blast  is poweful, the timpani prominent, the rhythm distinct. I like. With the arrival of the second theme the brakes are appled, slowing things down considerably, but beautifully so. It creates quite a contrast between the two themes. After that I heard and felt nothing terribly interesting. The third theme is pedestrian, having none of the rhythmic thrill those Bruckner third themes are supposed to deliver. The central climax moved me not at all. So, an unusual and promising beginning that goes nowhere interesting. The sound is detailed in a technicolor sort of way, heavy on the brass; the trumpets can be piercing.

B4  A typical Sixth, MOR. Nothing really stands out. I suppose that's a good thing but also a bit boring. The central climax was odd. It just sort of happened with no sense that things were building towards it. Compared to B2 those swirling strings were deeply recessed.  The final chord lingers, outstaying its welcome but then most conductors do it this way.

B5  Brian mentioned "lethargy", Jens "sleepy" and maybe that's what I needed when I listened to it because it worked for me. Very detailed but without the highlighting of B2. I was constantly aware of the horns (my fetish satisfied  8) )  but those repetitious string figurations, those obsessive Brucknerian rhythmic patterns that drive the music  forward, were always clear. The build-up to the coda was nicely done, almost delicate, and certainly mysterious and haunting.

B6  The most rigidly conducted of the six. Like having a metronome in front of the orchestra instead of a human being. Too harsh, perhaps, but I really didn't hear anything that stirred my emotions. It was mechanical...until the final bars when the brakes are applied so heavily it interrupts forward momentum and orchestral cohesion (the strings disappear too, buried under the brass onslaught). Celi does the coda in a similar fashion on his EMI recording but with a lighter, more natural, touch. Is this Celi, a different performance, one I'm not aware of?

1-B2
2-B5
3-B1
4-B3
5-B4
6-B6
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on June 28, 2014, 06:32:42 AM
Great comments, Sarge. Thank you!

Let me know if you would like to hear group C or D, they need love too.  8)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Sergeant Rock on June 28, 2014, 06:38:54 AM
Great comments, Sarge. Thank you!

Let me know if you would like to hear group C or D, they need love too.  8)

Pick C or D for me. And send me A too. I might not comment on A but I must hear the performances that are dividing amw from the rest of the group  :)

Sarge
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Brian on June 28, 2014, 07:14:20 AM
That reminds me, I just want to chime in and say that it's really interesting reading amw's thoughts about the symphony and performances given amw's lack of background with the music.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on June 28, 2014, 07:31:23 AM
Pick C or D for me. And send me A too. I might not comment on A but I must hear the performances that are dividing amw from the rest of the group  :)

Sarge

Ill send group D, it has less recordings you already own. Ill send it in a few hours, at work now.
Ill get A in there also.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: amw on June 28, 2014, 02:41:16 PM
That reminds me, I just want to chime in and say that it's really interesting reading amw's thoughts about the symphony and performances given amw's lack of background with the music.

Thanks. That reminds me, too, some comments about the music itself.

First of all, clarinet solo at ~40 seconds... it's Beethoven's First Symphony! That has to be intentional.

Second... on reflection, the only part of this movement that I sort of lost interest in was the very long buildup in the coda. That endless descending sequence in the bass with "epic" horn fanfares over the top... seriously, Anton, get on with it. Someone did once say that what sets Bruckner's conclusions apart is that they seem to come out of nowhere, like a metaphorical "leap of faith". Perhaps that's part of the reason I appreciated A1, as well—the dynamics and tempo are kept restrained for most of the coda, so it doesn't feel like a buildup but rather the substance of the movement reduced to an endless cycle, then the timpani and trumpets + 'bones come in like a thunderclap (first time I was like "whoa, is this the end? We're not even in A major!") and it's only about halfway through the final 17 bars that it becomes obvious that, yeah, this is the only way the movement could have possibly ended.

Third, I did go on IMSLP to look for a score and ended up downloading Bruckner's autograph manuscript of the first movement to listen along with the next one in my random playlist (I think it was A5). Two things that stood out to me: he numbers the bars not continuously but starting over from 1 with every phrase (usually 8 bars, sometimes 10 or 12). That gave me a bit more insight into his compositional process: those 8- (or 10- or 12-)bar units are the basic building blocks of the piece, and a successful performance should make them sound like units rather than breaking them up to focus more on details. Also: He does not switch to 6/4 at any point as I originally thought (it stays in 4/4 the whole way through), but the entire second theme group is written in sextuplets and at a slower tempo (minim = 50 as opposed to minim = 72) which has the same effect but allows him to alternate triplets and duplets/dotted rhythms as he desires. I don't know what it is with Romantic composers and 2 against 3s, Brahms was heavily into that stuff as well.

Oh and another thing: most of the recapitulation is in F-sharp minor/major rather than A, only resolving to A at the start of the coda (when the main theme comes in in the oboe + horn). Somewhat unconventional, but foreshadowed in the way the main theme turns to F-sharp minor during the very first tutti. Good long-term planning there.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Sergeant Rock on June 29, 2014, 03:37:31 AM
I don't know what it is with Romantic composers and 2 against 3s

It's the Bruckner Rhythm...it shows up so often it's like a musical fingerprint.

Sarge
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Drosera on June 30, 2014, 10:21:00 AM
Apologies for the tardiness:

B1
Rather brisk and literal. There's too little mystery or indulgence. Many small uncertainties in tempo suggest someone with not a huge amount of experience in Bruckner. You don't quite feel in safe hands. After a while the straightforwardness gets annoying, than dull.
6,5/10

B2
Opens very measured, but still straightforward. Does manage to grab you early on. You immediately get the impression that this won't be deep, but it will be a very enjoyable, big-boned performance. And indeed, that is what follows. Transitions can be a bit awkward. And there's a serious need for more atmosphere. But the terrific brass really makes you smile.
7-7,5/10

B3
This really gets going rightaway, very assured. Very well judged tempo changes. Feels completely natural. But it does come across as a bit plain and fails to really grab me.
7/10

B4
Opens almost threatening, but continues in a nicely middle-of-the-road way. Good tempo changes and some lovely brass again. There is a bit of trouble in keeping the overall tension and overall it tends to be slightly superficial, but it does manage to be very nice warm 'Bruckner-bath'.
7,5/10

B5
Gets off to a slightly cautious start. The orchestra is definitely not of the world-class/jet-set variety, but the performers let you hear many melodic lines that remain hidden, or are swamped or overlooked in most performances. That is especially true of the woodwind. I very much like how this performance isn't focused on momentum, but really dwells in the melodic richness; without losing the underlying pulse. This feels much more true to the rustic, modest and simple spirit of Bruckner than the majority of performances. To me this is rather special. (Could this be Tintner?)
8,5/10

B6
Very smooth and well-balanced, but there's too little variation in tempo. This appears to be deliberate. And yet there are some uncomfortable tempo changes as well. It's all quite pretty, but is constantly in danger of becoming 'Bruckner wallpaper'. The overall buildup is very well judged. Hard to assess this performance, on the whole it manages to get most things right. But the rallentando at the end is a bit much.
7,5-10

Result:
1. B5
2. B6
3. B4
4. B2
5. B3
6. B1
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: ChamberNut on July 01, 2014, 03:07:44 PM
*munches popcorn*
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on July 01, 2014, 03:34:22 PM

Group A

Ray         Pim      LisztianWagner      amw
A5           A2         A3                       A1
A2           A3         A2                       A4
A3           A5         A5                       A2
A4           A4         A4                       A5
A6           A6         A6                       A3
A1           A1         A1                       A6


Group B

Jens    Brian     Drosera
B1       B2         B5
B4       B4         B6
B6       B1         B4
B5       B5         B2
B2       B6         B3
B3       B3         B1


Group C

Neal
C3
C2
C6
C5
C1
C4


Group D

Brian     Neal
D5           D3
D3           D5
D2           D2
D1           D6
D6           D4
D4           D1
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on July 01, 2014, 03:36:35 PM
*munches popcorn*

 :'(

I'm gonna stick to my guns and try to get 4 scores per group before I move on or change the format. I've got all summer, I'm not going anywhere.  :D

Later that evening...

Perhaps if I closed Group A and revealed the two eliminated recordings it would garner up some more interest in finishing up Groups B, C and D. This could also begin to open up more discussions on the performers and their style/interpretation. Consider it a little teaser.  >:D  ;)
What say you, my friends?
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: mc ukrneal on July 01, 2014, 06:55:42 PM
:'(

I'm gonna stick to my guns and try to get 4 scores per group before I move on or change the format. I've got all summer, I'm not going anywhere.  :D

Later that evening...

Perhaps if I closed Group A and revealed the two eliminated recordings it would garner up some more interest in finishing up Groups B, C and D. This could also begin to open up more discussions on the performers and their style/interpretation. Consider it a little teaser.  >:D  ;)
What say you, my friends?
Sure. Cosi did this all the time. I think it did precisely that.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: amw on July 01, 2014, 07:40:25 PM
Aren't we expecting one more vote for group A? Or did that person back out?
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: jlaurson on July 02, 2014, 12:52:22 AM
I'm working my way through Group C, now... and hope to finish with that tomorrow.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on July 02, 2014, 01:40:05 AM
Aren't we expecting one more vote for group A? Or did that person back out?

I think Cato is the other with Group A, but he's been on computer vacation for a while it seems, when he does return I was going to ask if he would listen to C or D instead of A.


I'm working my way through Group C, now... and hope to finish with that tomorrow.

Thanks, Jens!
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Sergeant Rock on July 02, 2014, 02:26:43 AM
Greg, you didn't include my votes for Group B in your latest compilation. Don't I count?  :(

I'm working through Group D now. Should have it finished before the weekend.

Sarge
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on July 02, 2014, 02:38:36 AM
Greg, you didn't include my votes for Group B in your latest compilation. Don't I count?  :(

I'm working through Group D now. Should have it finished before the weekend.

Sarge

Ouch!  :o  I didn't, Sarge, and I apologize!
(I'm now envisioning R. Lee Ermey insulting me for my failure)
When I get home I'll add your scores.  ;D
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Sergeant Rock on July 02, 2014, 02:42:27 AM
When I get home I'll add your scores.  ;D

I'll do it. I have nothing better to do at the moment  :)

Sarge
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Sergeant Rock on July 02, 2014, 02:44:44 AM
Group A

Ray         Pim      LisztianWagner      amw
A5           A2         A3                       A1
A2           A3         A2                       A4
A3           A5         A5                       A2
A4           A4         A4                       A5
A6           A6         A6                       A3
A1           A1         A1                       A6


Group B

Jens    Brian     Drosera   Sarge
B1       B2         B5          B2
B4       B4         B6          B5
B6       B1         B4          B1
B5       B5         B2          B3
B2       B6         B3          B4
B3       B3         B1          B6


Group C

Neal
C3
C2
C6
C5
C1
C4


Group D

Brian     Neal
D5           D3
D3           D5
D2           D2
D1           D6
D6           D4
D4           D1
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: k a rl h e nn i ng on July 02, 2014, 02:48:31 AM
Greg, you didn't include my votes for Group B in your latest compilation. Don't I count?  :(

I'm working through Group D now. Should have it finished before the weekend.

Sarge

I accept the Sarge Challenge!  I shall see to my batch before the weekend!  :)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on July 02, 2014, 02:52:44 AM
Thank you, Sarge!
And I love how mixed group B is, B2 and B5 have really split it's listeners.

Currently B3 and B6 are being eliminated, although if another B score shows up B6 has a chance to survive but B3 is all but toast (which might make me cry a little)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: jlaurson on July 02, 2014, 02:58:57 AM
Thank you, Sarge!
And I love how mixed group B is, B2 and B5 have really split it's listeners.

Currently B3 and B6 are being eliminated, although if another B score shows up B6 has a chance to survive but B3 is all but toast (which might make me cry a little)

How can B6, ranked 2nd and 3rd (and 5 / 6) be eliminated? Oh, OK. Doing the math... indeed. What a split group.  :)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: k a rl h e nn i ng on July 02, 2014, 03:03:00 AM
The Secret Word for tonight is: Balkanization!  8)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on July 02, 2014, 03:13:54 AM
How can B6, ranked 2nd and 3rd (and 5 / 6) be eliminated? Oh, OK. Doing the math... indeed. What a split group.  :)

With a scoring system of 5 pts for first place and zero for last place...

B1 – 11
B2 - 13
B3 – 3
B4 – 12
B5 – 13
B6 - 8

I'm posting in case anyone sees a discrepancy.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Ken B on July 02, 2014, 03:46:22 AM
Thank you, Sarge!
And I love how mixed group B is, B2 and B5 have really split it's listeners.

Currently B3 and B6 are being eliminated, although if another B score shows up B6 has a chance to survive but B3 is all but toast (which might make me cry a little)

B2 was the only one I listened to, and it split me! I liked the overall approach, but thought it fell short in the details. Is a conductor's job to set the overall reading, or to keep the piece together? I think it's the latter, so I think he (or she) had an off day.

I remember going to a smallish concert a few years ago, by a good amateur group. We both commented , I wonder if you need a conductor for such a small group. Part way through it started to come apart. The conductor suddenly began singing in a loud voice, switching atttention from one part of the group to the other, and pulled them back from the brink. Then he shut up.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: ChamberNut on July 02, 2014, 03:59:28 AM
Group A

Ray         Pim      LisztianWagner      amw
A5           A2         A3                       A1
A2           A3         A2                       A4
A3           A5         A5                       A2
A4           A4         A4                       A5
A6           A6         A6                       A3
A1           A1         A1                       A6


Current Group A tally (after 4 votes):

A1 = 5
A2 = 16
A3 = 13
A4 = 10
A5 = 16
A6 = 3
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: jlaurson on July 02, 2014, 04:24:51 AM
Bruckner Group C


C1
Opening. Muted, dark. Steady rhythm. Slow. Good! Dynamic shading isn’t super subtle, but effective. Outbreak quite vociferous…  Lusty build-up into a strong finale. That’s already much above average of what I had in Group B. Glorious lead up to the finale… calm and very steady pule. Nice, secure acellerando and crisp lapping sea-sawing violin figures… brass intrusions can’t be avoided, so might as well make them count… Is it my mood, today, and the fact that it’s my first Bruckner 6th of the day… but somehow I’m liking almost everything about this first movement.


C2
Soft, reticent sound. Calm but not dragging. Not what I would like, just right now… but very well. Recording quality isn’t top notch; the soft strings blend into a background haze instead of standing in front of a ‘real black’. Very organic, almost unnoticeable ratcheting up of the energy and right back… this would suggest a real Brucknerian and also a very fine opera conductor. I know it ain’t Thielemann, because it can’t be (and it’s just a touch straighter than CT might do the Sixth), but that skill of the invisible fast forward button – to the extend I can claim so much after just a few minutes. Doing something on the side, the performance didn’t reign me back in until the finale… which is perhaps the downside of subtlety. Not subtle, that finale, but sneaks up on you.


C3
Corrupted file; have to download again. Didn’t pay attention and certainly didn’t make me.
Let’s try again. Hello… loud! Brass-heavy and brass-lusty. Wide dynamic range. Brass like old trees being felled… robust and crusty Lederhosen. Neither like nor dislike particularly… more like, actually. Where other orchestras make lapping waves of seas, this makes a subterranean gurgle and then a hasty, slightly pasticky sound. Strings seem not well caught; brass has off-moments (one-off live recording, I hope) and gets carried away and man, there’s someone thwacking his timpani, in the back. Horrible and lovely. Not actually crazy, but within the limited bandwith of this group it’s crazy enough. Strings later on sound better, and more wavy-lapping. Horns with real bloomers, though, and transitions a bit choppy. Nearly grounds for disqualification, probably. But not yet. It’s too easy, to hone in on the obvious and the objective. In this.


C4
I love Bruckner’s Sixth very much… but perhaps this repeated hearing of mvt. 1 is getting on my nerves.
Fast, hasty, jarring is what I hear—where, had I heard it first, I might have heard propulsion, excitement, eagerness. It settles down like a good boy and has me involved a good deal… sort-of casually liking it a lot.


C5
Yes, OK… Ok… Haha! Terrific climax… very involving, very good Bruckner-rhythm… steady and with a deal of bite. Having belated fun with this one. Bit brash, yes. But hey. Unedited live recording? Not even commercial? Sound isn’t bad for that. Radio broadcast, presumably.


C6
Regal, royal, certainly short on mystery (but then I’m not looking for that in Sy.6 – any movement thereof). Straight-laced… tempi seem moderate. Playing is excellent. If this turned out to be an earlier Haitink recording, I wouldn’t kick myself… (Not saying it is…) Organ-like and a little bombastic in the finale, a little dense – with the inner voices sounding like distractions, rather than adding to the overall structure.


not ready to rank group C yet, but getting there.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Sergeant Rock on July 02, 2014, 04:47:30 AM
Current Group A tally (after 4 votes):

A1 = 5
A2 = 16
A3 = 13
A4 = 10
A5 = 16
A6 = 3

Listened to A1, the performance that polarized the group. I can see why amw likes it...and I can also see why the others rated it last. I was torn between intellectual doubt and emotional cheering. The interpretation is very unusual with abrupt differences in tempo that, I don't think, are justified by the score. The first and second themes are played at a fairly brisk pace and I thought, How is this going to be stretched out to almost 19 minutes? The answer came with the third theme and the development, taken at a snail's pace ??? I initially rebelled but kept listening. The development really is enchanting. Then there was an accelerando into the central climax that thrilled with thunderous timpani. The coda likewise had two very different tempos, the first initially slow, almost like a trudging pilgrim approaching a celestial goal, then suddenly a quick dash to the end with a decisive final chord (no lingering), just how I like it.

The sudden shifts in speeds are jarring but they kept me awake ;D It's the kind of interpretation I tend to like: something different. I couldn't wait for the reveal; I did some research to find out who it is, and ordered it.

I probably won't be voting (I have to listen to group D first before getting back to Group A) but even if I gave it a first it probably wouldn't prevent its elimination.

Sarge
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on July 02, 2014, 12:38:27 PM
Current Group A tally (after 4 votes):

A1 = 5
A2 = 16
A3 = 13
A4 = 10
A5 = 16
A6 = 3

Thank you for the tally, Ray!
I will more than likely close Group A and reveal the first two eliminated this evening. The only way it would change is if A1 received a first place=5 pts and A4 received last place=0 pts. If someone within the next 4-5 hours either chimes in or wants to score it I will allow it, otherwise I think this BC could use a little discussion to ignite some extra interest in the remaining groups and further rounds.
 
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Brian on July 02, 2014, 02:16:45 PM
I have to pack for France so I don't have time to listen to any, but now I'm really curious about A1!
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on July 02, 2014, 03:05:52 PM
I have to pack for France so I don't have time to listen to any, but now I'm really curious about A1!

You will know soon!  ;D
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on July 02, 2014, 05:03:27 PM
Group A - Round 1 Eliminations

A1

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51GOWYaP07L._SY350_.jpg)

“rhythm is too slow and makes the movement lack energy and intensity”

“Quite sluggish, not enough momentum”

“The tempo, phrasing & instrumental balance of A1 feel very natural”


A1 has become a popular figure already. Receiving three last place votes and one first place, also gathering a late “thumbs up” review from Sarge. And if you thought the opening movement is slow, then you may not be prepared for the 18-minute finale, but it needs to be heard, certainly a different universe of Bruckner. Dennis Russell Davies may be the new Cool Kid of the Haydn Haus, but has yet to be offered a key into Bruckner’s Abbey, perhaps over time, and with amw and Sarge’s seal of approval, it may find its way into a better looking position. But not today, not now. Sorry, DRD.




A6

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51lLMB%2BMZKL._SL500_AA280_.jpg)

“missing the drive that makes the beginning of A2 so enticing”

“Good dynamics and energy, but a bit too slow rhythm.”

“Strings at times sound distant and thin to my ears.”



A6 just seemed doomed from the start. It’s made a few appearances on GMG in the past, and this combo has made some hits (along with equal misses) on Telarc, but it didn’t seem that Lopez-Cobos/Cinn. had what it takes to match up with the big boys and girls of the Abbey.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: amw on July 02, 2014, 07:17:29 PM
The interpretation is very unusual with abrupt differences in tempo that, I don't think, are justified by the score.

Interesting... according to the manuscript, that's exactly what you're supposed to do.

The opening is marked Majestoso and (in a different hand) half note = 72.
The second theme is marked Bedeutend langsamer and half note = 50. There is no accelerando into the third theme or the development—both are supposed to be played at the Bedeutend langsamer tempo. Finally there is an accelerando and Tempo wie anfangs at the central climax (retransition -> recapitulation).
Similarly, in the recapitulation the second theme again slows down to Bedeutend langsamer, and Tempo wie anfangs is not indicated again until 17 bars before the end (the big timpani + brass entrance) with no accelerando leading into it.
The final chord has an obvious staccato mark so yes, lingering there would be wrong.

I don't know if the published score differs from this, but it seems to indicate that Bruckner sort of wanted things that way, with a slow-ish third theme, development section and coda. DRD's third theme does sound a little bit too held back to me, now—I'd like it to feel a little faster, possibly w/crisper articulation or something—but I still think his development and coda are pretty spot on.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Sergeant Rock on July 03, 2014, 03:09:14 AM
Interesting... according to the manuscript, that's exactly what you're supposed to do.

The opening is marked Majestoso and (in a different hand) half note = 72.
The second theme is marked Bedeutend langsamer and half note = 50. There is no accelerando into the third theme or the development—both are supposed to be played at the Bedeutend langsamer tempo. Finally there is an accelerando and Tempo wie anfangs at the central climax (retransition -> recapitulation).
Similarly, in the recapitulation the second theme again slows down to Bedeutend langsamer, and Tempo wie anfangs is not indicated again until 17 bars before the end (the big timpani + brass entrance) with no accelerando leading into it.
The final chord has an obvious staccato mark so yes, lingering there would be wrong.

I don't know if the published score differs from this, but it seems to indicate that Bruckner sort of wanted things that way, with a slow-ish third theme, development section and coda. DRD's third theme does sound a little bit too held back to me, now—I'd like it to feel a little faster, possibly w/crisper articulation or something—but I still think his development and coda are pretty spot on.

When the comparison began, I tried to follow the score but I had trouble reading the hand-written manuscript copy. I gave up. I'm glad you had no such problem. Thank you very much for checking the score on those points of tempo. My "intellectual" doubts about DRD's interpretation have been erased and I can enjoy, guilt free, the emotional ride 8)

Sarge
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Sergeant Rock on July 03, 2014, 03:10:55 AM
A1 has become a popular figure already. Receiving three last place votes and one first place, also gathering a late “thumbs up” review from Sarge. And if you thought the opening movement is slow, then you may not be prepared for the 18-minute finale, but it needs to be heard

Amazon confirmed shipment of my copy a few minutes ago. I should be able to hear that finale tomorrow.

Sarge
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: amw on July 03, 2014, 03:55:07 AM
When the comparison began, I tried to follow the score but I had trouble reading the hand-written manuscript copy. I gave up. I'm glad you had no such problem.

Bruckner's not got the neatest handwriting I've ever seen I'll admit. Still much more legible than Beethoven, and at least he took out the time to write a fair copy. >.>

(http://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/32084883/Screen%20Shot%202014-07-04.png)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Brian on July 03, 2014, 05:56:39 AM
Wow, thanks for posting all of that information. See - coming at the piece afresh with a score in hand is going to force people like me to totally rethink how the symphony is supposed to go. I knew a non-staccato final chord bothered me, but didn't realize just how much people are reinterpreting Bruckner...

Also, the string parts on the page you posted remind me that I'm always amazed classical music lasted for centuries with people having to write everything out by hand. That looks like a truly monotonous task for Bruckner's hand...
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: aukhawk on July 03, 2014, 01:19:17 PM
I think he probably liked monotonous ...

(I refer to his tendency to count railings, not to anything in his music)

Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on July 05, 2014, 08:51:41 AM
I know it's only been 2 days....but, BUMP!

As I said, I'll accept a minimum of 4 scores per group in order to move on. I know Jens is about to score group C, so that only leaves 2 more for C and 3 more D, of course I'll leave it open if some of you would like to add your vote to a group before I close it. That could always help decrease the chances of a tie.

Also, keep in mind how beautiful that Adagio is and how wonderful it would be to hear it over, and over, and over, and over, and......
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: ChamberNut on July 05, 2014, 10:10:34 AM
Also, keep in mind how beautiful that Adagio is and how wonderful it would be to hear it over, and over, and over, and over, and......

This is so true!   :)  However, I'm satisfied with continuing with my Stravinsky binge in the mean time.  :D
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on July 05, 2014, 10:39:55 AM
This is so true!   :)  However, I'm satisfied with continuing with my Stravinsky binge in the mean time.  :D

It had been a while since I spun some Igor, will continue later with more. And you've got time, Ray, probably another 3 weeks before the Adagio portion gets under way.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: ChamberNut on July 05, 2014, 10:53:48 AM
It had been a while since I spun some Igor, will continue later with more. And you've got time, Ray, probably another 3 weeks before the Adagio portion gets under way.

Plenty of time to listen to more Igor.  And my personal summer holiday tradition - listening to Solti's Ring.  :)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: jlaurson on July 07, 2014, 05:51:44 AM
busy weekend. am on it.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on July 07, 2014, 06:04:30 AM
busy weekend. am on it.

Cheers, Jens. Hope you had a good weekend!
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: jlaurson on July 07, 2014, 06:20:12 AM
Cheers, Jens. Hope you had a good weekend!

Terrific. Being away from Vienna always is.  ;) Friends got together and made White Sausages (almost) from scratch... and then ate the lot.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on July 11, 2014, 04:20:25 AM
*bump*  :'(
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on July 13, 2014, 06:52:10 AM
Will close Group B this evening.  :)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: ChamberNut on July 14, 2014, 03:54:08 AM
*gentle nudge*

 :)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: jlaurson on July 14, 2014, 04:43:23 AM

Ranking of Group C...

C1
C2
C3
C5
C4
C6

All of them fine, actually... not keen on eliminating anything from this group, but I suppose it has to be done.

Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Lisztianwagner on July 14, 2014, 04:47:56 AM
I'm looking forward to seeing the result! :)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on July 14, 2014, 05:00:32 AM
*gentle nudge*

 :)

 ;D I actually crashed last night, woke up and realized I wasn't on time with my Strauss post, so chose that over this. I will post the new losers when I get home. :)

And thank you, Jens, for the C score!
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on July 14, 2014, 06:40:00 AM
Jens is shaking up Group C!  :o  ;D


Group B

Jens    Brian     Drosera   Sarge
B1       B2         B5          B2
B4       B4         B6          B5
B6       B1         B4          B1
B5       B5         B2          B3
B2       B6         B3          B4
B3       B3         B1          B6


Group C

Neal.   Jens
C3.      C1
C2.      C2
C6.      C3
C5.      C5
C1.      C4
C4.      C6


Group D

Brian     Neal
D5           D3
D3           D5
D2           D2
D1           D6
D6           D4
D4           D1
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Cato on July 14, 2014, 11:09:58 AM
Okay, a little late!  Greg has kindly placed me in Group C: I just finished listening to C 1, and it is very good.  Energetic, and (most) of the crescendos are handled with great drama.  The assorted lines of the score are quite clear, and the delicate sections are delicate without being too slow.

(I heard A1 this morning and thought it was fairly arthritic   ???  , except for the final measures.)

Five more to go!
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Cato on July 14, 2014, 11:28:54 AM
My "window of opportunity" stayed open longer than I thought it would, so I have just finished C 2!

Good, in general "crisp" performance: but at times too fast, e.g. the section after the proclamation of the opening theme seemed almost perfunctory, and again, like with C 1, not every crescendo was handled with the requisite drama.  The mystery in the movement was lost at times because of the rushing through  certain sections, especially the quieter, more reflective passages.

Still, a good number of things are excellent, like the last 2 minutes or so.

So right now, I have:

C1
C2
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Cato on July 14, 2014, 11:45:52 AM
Okay, C 3!  Let me wonder whether this is the Jochum/Dresden recording from the 1970's!  I have only heard that set once, about 7 years ago, but this performance reminds me of it!  The raw power in the opening with the brass almost overstating their case, and then later on as well!  (The slightly excessive vibrato in the trumpets and horns also makes me wonder if this is not an "eastern" orchestra.)

Again, a little raw, the bass fiddles growling unsmoothly now and then, but the power is there for sure when you need it!

Tempos are fine, clarity of the lines is not always the best, yet at times it is exquisite in the last pages!  Full of energy without sacrificing the mystery or subtlety in the score: what a ride with the brass!

So now this is becoming difficult!   0:)

Subject to change, but right now:

C 3
C 1
C 2
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Cato on July 14, 2014, 12:07:23 PM
C 4 should be explosive!   8)

A live-audience performance, but we will not hold that against it!  Ignoring the audience noise and a creaking chair somewhere  ??? ...

A good performance, but not great.  The tempos are in general fine, but the crescendos again are not always handled properly, and the climax in the middle of the movement lacks that knockout punch one would like to hear.  Dynamics are at times not quite right: soft sections are occasionally still too loud.  Clarity of the lines is in general good, only occasionally muddy.  The attack of the brass is at times on target, but at others it is rather mushy.

The last two minutes are well done!

A note on C 3: I understand both why Neal chose it as his #1, and why Jens demoted it: see my notes above.

So now I have:

C 3
C 1
C 2
C 4

As a teacher, let me say that the ranking is not from A to F, but from A to B-   :D

All of these are better than A 1!   :D

Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Cato on July 14, 2014, 12:28:02 PM
C 5: this is fun!

Another performance recorded before an audience, or else the orchestra members cough a lot!   $:)

Opening is good, perhaps a little blurred in the brass lines, but later things are done nicely with the minor second in the violins coming across with the right expression.  Subtle points in the score are occasionally brought out well.

The tempo is a little slower than it should be at times, making certain sections lumber around, or seem staid. The mystery in the score, however, is often preserved.

Crescendos again are not quite on target, and the horns are sometimes swallowed by the trumpets and trombones.

The last two minutes or so, like many of the others, are right on target!

So, with great difficulty, I now have:


C 3
C 1
C 5
C 2
C 4

One more to go...but my window is closed for a while!  ;)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on July 14, 2014, 01:11:32 PM
Cato is on fire!  8) Thanks for the (almost complete) score and comments!  ;D
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on July 14, 2014, 01:12:46 PM
Group C seems to be the most balanced so far regarding the criticism of each performance , The two being possibly eliminated at the moment will surprise some I think.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on July 14, 2014, 04:20:44 PM
Group B - Round 1 Eliminations

B3

I'm surprised it only received 3 points! Not that I thought it would win, perhaps it's my bias towards the Blomsedt/SFS recordings on London, but I thought it would last longer. It didn't impress enough to move on though.
 
(http://g-ecx.images-amazon.com/images/G/01/ciu/e9/31/6ea7b220dca0e9867e7f7010.L._SX350_.jpg)


B6

Georg Tintner, the most polarizing figure on GMG when it comes to Bruckner. He makes headlines with his original recordings of Nos. 2, 3 and 8. But no headlines here, other than C'ya later!

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51F0DIhoDML._SY350_.jpg)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Moonfish on July 14, 2014, 11:11:00 PM
These are hard choices......     ??? ???

Here are my rankings for the C group (finally - sorry about taking so long). This was pretty difficult even after repeated listenings. They were all interesting and engaging in different ways. None of them seemed like a bad apple. Choices, choices....

Peter (aka Moonfish)

C3
C5
C6
C2
C1
C4


C3 clearly stood out and was utterly engaging (almost alive) to my ears. A bit blurry in terms of the sound at times, but the performance makes up for the recording.  The horn section was full of fire and flames! I thought it was a real gem!

Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on July 15, 2014, 02:50:42 AM
Thank you, Peter, for your scores!  ;D
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Cato on July 15, 2014, 03:04:51 AM
These are hard choices......     ??? ???

Here are my rankings for the C group (finally - sorry about taking so long). This was pretty difficult even after repeated listenings. They were all interesting and engaging in different ways. None of them seemed like a bad apple. Choices, choices....

Peter (aka Moonfish)

C3
C5
C6
C2
C1
C4


C3 clearly stood out and was utterly engaging (almost alive) to my ears. A bit blurry in terms of the sound at times, but the performance makes up for the recording.  The horn section was full of fire and flames! I thought it was a real gem!


Quite true above!

Okay, time for my final decisions!

C 6  -  The overall tempo is a little slower than I believe it should be.  The changes in dynamics are done nicely, and that sense of mystery comes through.  Again, I find the crescendos don't always hit the mark, and there is an interpolated "sp" in the central climax which I found jarring and unnecessary.  And yet there is some gorgeously expressive string playing in the last half, and that delicate mysteriousness is brought out quite well.

And two more interpolated "subito pianos" are placed in the final page!

That did it!  To quote Stravinsky: "I HATE interpretation!"  *  :D

C 3
C 1
C 5
C 2
C 4
C 6


* In one of the Robert Craft books, so maybe he did not quite say it!   ;)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on July 15, 2014, 05:51:13 AM
Group C

Neal.   Jens    Moonfish    Cato
C3      C1       C3             C3
C2      C2       C5             C1
C6      C3       C6             C5
C5      C5       C2             C2
C1      C4       C1             C4
C4      C6       C4             C6


Group D

Brian     Neal
D5           D3
D3           D5
D2           D2
D1           D6
D6           D4
D4           D1


Current rankings for Group C
C3 - 18 PTS
C2 - 12 PTS
C5 & C1 - 11 PTS
C6 - 6 PTS - eliminated
C4 - 2 PTS - eliminated


I'll allow for the remainder of the day in case the others with Groups C decide to vote, otherwise I will close it and reveal the eliminated.

Also, since it seems some participants have recognized a few of the recordings, I may rename each group for the future rounds, I will keep the groups in tact and obviously keep track of the overall scores, but I believe that this will add more blind to the blind comparison!   8)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Cato on July 15, 2014, 06:11:15 AM
Group C

Neal.   Jens    Moonfish    Cato
C3      C1       C3             C3
C2      C2       C5             C1
C6      C3       C6             C5
C5      C5       C2             C2
C1      C4       C1             C4
C4      C6       C4             C6

Current rankings for Group C
C3 - 18 PTS
C2 - 12 PTS
C5 & C1 - 11 PTS
C6 - 6 PTS - eliminated
C4 - 2 PTS - eliminated


I'll allow for the remainder of the day in case the others with Groups C decide to vote, otherwise I will close it and reveal the eliminated.

The excitement builds!  I hope Lorin Maazelis not responsible for C 6  or C 4!   :D
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: North Star on July 15, 2014, 08:01:24 AM
The excitement builds!  I hope Lorin Maazelis not responsible for C 6  or C 4!   :D
On the other hand, we wouldn't have more of that, if it was the case.  0:)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on July 15, 2014, 08:37:55 AM
The excitement builds!  I hope Lorin Maazelis not responsible for C 6  or C 4!   :D

 :-X

On the other hand, we wouldn't have more of that, if it was the case.  0:)

 :o
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: North Star on July 15, 2014, 12:25:07 PM
:-X

 :o
Such eloquence.  :blank:


 ;)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: snyprrr on July 15, 2014, 01:29:23 PM
wow- so this is what a Deathmatch looks like? mm- like it!! Just tell me who to BuyItNow! later!! :laugh:

"the clarinets were smooth but I just could take the strings"
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Ken B on July 15, 2014, 02:04:25 PM
The excitement builds!  I hope Lorin Maazelis not responsible for C 6  or C 4!   :D
Me too. I hope Wand is!  >:D
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on July 15, 2014, 04:11:52 PM
Group C - Raound 1 Eliminations

C4

So yes, Cato did foreshadow what is an unfortunate elimination, not sure if he knew for sure or was just cracking a joke, if it's the latter than damn that is weird  :o  ;D.
But it is Maazel with the Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra.
Our apologies, Maestro. R.I.P.

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51FnuGttc6L._SS350_.jpg)


C6

Another somewhat surprise elimination, but after reading the comments it sounds as if Chailly/Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra deserved it.

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/41BZTM6955L._SS350_.jpg)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Cato on July 15, 2014, 05:33:24 PM
Group C - Round 1 Eliminations

C4

So yes, Cato did foreshadow what is an unfortunate elimination, not sure if he knew for sure or was just cracking a joke, if it's the latter than damn that is weird  :o  ;D.
But it is Maazel with the Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra.
Our apologies, Maestro. R.I.P.


Heh-heh, a little bit of both, with the joke predominating, but when Maazel went awry, he went willfully awry.

That Chailly is behind C 4 is fascinating: his CD of Schoenberg's Gurrelieder is my favorite next to the 1970's Boulez recording.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Cato on July 16, 2014, 02:10:19 AM
Greg has kindly allowed me to be in Group D.

This morning: D 1!!!!!!!!!!!!

I am practically 110% positive that this is the classic Jochum DGG recording from the 1960's, where practically everything is perfect.

Clarity, drama, mystery, and the crescendos are crescendos with great power at the peaks!

D 1 RAWKS!   ;)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: mc ukrneal on July 16, 2014, 02:38:23 AM
Greg has kindly allowed me to be in Group D.

This morning: D 1!!!!!!!!!!!!

I am practically 110% positive that this is the classic Jochum DGG recording from the 1960's, where practically everything is perfect.

Clarity, drama, mystery, and the crescendos are crescendos with great power at the peaks!

D 1 RAWKS!   ;)
I don't know who it is. I wrote, "But as it goes on, it is just dull and lifeless. This just lacks that tension that is so critical in Bruckner. "
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Cato on July 16, 2014, 02:40:25 AM
I don't know who it is. I wrote, "But as it goes on, it is just dull and lifeless. This just lacks that tension that is so critical in Bruckner. "

Wow!  My ears find it exciting all the way through!

On to D 2: a little slower at the beginning than I would like, but not an impossible tempo.

At times there is a wonderful chamber-like clarity throughout to the contrapuntal lines in the score: the orchestra sounds like a smaller group than usual, which might account for that impression.  Or the conductor and the recording engineers are simply able to bring them out well!

The more meditative aspects in the score are well done.  The brass playing, however, sounds occasionally odd, at times like large kazoos. 

On the other hand, the crescendos are nicely executed!

D 1
D 2
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: jlaurson on July 16, 2014, 02:56:48 AM
Heh-heh, a little bit of both, with the joke predominating, but when Maazel went awry, he went willfully awry.

That Chailly is behind C 4 6 is fascinating: his CD of Schoenberg's Gurrelieder is my favorite next to the 1970's Boulez recording.

Quote
Regal, royal, certainly short on mystery (but then I’m not looking for that in Sy.6 – any movement thereof). Straight-laced… tempi seem moderate. Playing is excellent. If this turned out to be an earlier Haitink recording, I wouldn’t kick myself… (Not saying it is…) Organ-like and a little bombastic in the finale, a little dense – with the inner voices sounding like distractions, rather than adding to the overall structure.

Hehe... I shan't kick myself. The inner voices I complained about were probably the typical haze that Het Concertgebouw puts over orchestras (which can't hear themselves very exactingly on stage). Often, but not always, to great coloring effect.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Cato on July 16, 2014, 02:58:30 AM
And now: D 3!

Brass playing is better than in D 2: their attack is a little soft at times.  After the opening proclamation I find the next sections rushed and perfunctory, as if the conductor is saying "let's get to the loud parts as quickly as we can."  On the other hand, at times the brass seem to be held back, when they should be unleashed.

So, the dynamics in the meditative sections are nicely done, but can go awry suddenly with a somewhat too-fast tempo.  The crescendos are not always on target, and did I hear some interpolated "subito pianos" now and then?!  (Yes! In the central climax.)

The last minutes are excellent!

So a good, but somewhat erratic performance.

So...

D 1
D 3
D 2
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Cato on July 16, 2014, 03:15:19 AM
Hehe... I shan't kick myself. The inner voices I complained about were probably the typical haze that Het Concertgebouw puts over orchestras (which can't hear themselves very exactingly on stage). Often, but not always, to great coloring effect.


For Chailly to bite the dust was a surprise!

And now D 4: excellent power and precision in the brass, and clear lines throughout in the orchestra!  But things are sabotaged - again! - by a tempo that is too fast in the quieter sections, making them seem unimportant. 

The crescendos are nearly on the excellent level found in D 1 (the 1960's Eugen Jochum?).

Very nice playing by the brass!  (I detected the slightest burble in a flute after the 12:00 minute mark).  The last minutes are a slam dunk!  An excellent performance throughout.  Just a little too fast for me in the quieter sections.

Soooo...

D 1
D 4
D 3
D 2


Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: mc ukrneal on July 16, 2014, 03:30:32 AM
And now: D 3!

Brass playing is better than in D 2: their attack is a little soft at times.  After the opening proclamation I find the next sections rushed and perfunctory, as if the conductor is saying "let's get to the loud parts as quickly as we can."  On the other hand, at times the brass seem to be held back, when they should be unleashed.

So, the dynamics in the meditative sections are nicely done, but can go awry suddenly with a somewhat too-fast tempo.  The crescendos are not always on target, and did I hear some interpolated "subito pianos" now and then?!  (Yes! In the central climax.)

The last minutes are excellent!

So a good, but somewhat erratic performance.

So...

D 1
D 3
D 2
And here I wrote, "Though faster than D1 and D2, it never feels rushed." I wonder if I have the same inverse relationship with you as I have with Sarge!
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Cato on July 16, 2014, 03:36:46 AM
And here I wrote, "Though faster than D1 and D2, it never feels rushed." I wonder if I have the same inverse relationship with you as I have with Sarge!

Ha!  Sarge and I are close in age and in taste!


Mrs. Cato is still sleeping, so... ;)

D 5! 

Great opening, on the level of D 1!  And the recording quality is crystal clear with great bass sound!  I can even hear an echoing resonance in the pizzicato of the basses.

Tempo is just perfect, again like in D 1: and the crescendos are handled well, with one exception.  I am really digging the clarity in the bass sound and everywhere else!  The dynamic range is usually broad.

And then...two "interpretations" to spoil things!  Again a "subito piano" is inserted in the central and final sections!

In the end, a near great performance on the level of D 1, with excellent sound!

Sooo...

D 1
D 5
D 4
D 3
D 2



Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Cato on July 16, 2014, 03:55:53 AM
And now - finally - D 6!

A large echoing hall or a cathedral must be the venue for this recording: great for Bruckner!

The opening is a little ragged in the lower strings, and - again - the tempo after the initial outburst is much too fast for my taste.  And I am hearing occasional noise from chairs or music stands, which is a little distracting.

But there is a good deal of energy in the performance, although in the central climax the brass were rather suddenly restrained.  Elsewhere they were allowed to do their thing.  The last 8 minutes are performed very well, as if the group gained confidence from the first half! 

And only the hint of an illegal subito piano on the last page!

I love the "big-outdoors" resonance of the performance, but there is that noise issue from chairs and music stands.

Sooo...

D 1
D 5
D 4
D 6
D 3
D 2     

Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: k a rl h e nn i ng on July 16, 2014, 04:08:05 AM
Cato is an animal!  0:)   8)   :)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Cato on July 16, 2014, 05:01:57 AM
Cato is an animal!  0:)   8)   :)

OWOOOOH!  To quote Warren Zevon!

So far from what I have heard, the ultimate Bruckner would be either D 1 or D 5 recorded in the hall/cathedral where D 6 took place!
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Sergeant Rock on July 16, 2014, 10:59:56 AM
Greg, I'm two-thirds through group D. Need to take a Bruckner break now. I'll finish it tomorrow.

Sarge
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: k a rl h e nn i ng on July 16, 2014, 11:00:52 AM
Greg, I'm two-thirds through group D. Need to take a Bruckner break now. I'll finish it tomorrow.

Sarge

Pace yourself, dude!
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Sergeant Rock on July 16, 2014, 11:06:06 AM
Pace yourself, dude!

Cato has more stamina apparently  ;D

Sarge
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: k a rl h e nn i ng on July 16, 2014, 11:13:56 AM
He's the man!
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Cato on July 16, 2014, 11:22:53 AM
Greg, I'm two-thirds through group D. Need to take a Bruckner break now. I'll finish it tomorrow.

Sarge

We await your decisions with bated breath, and maybe even baited breath in the case of Moonfish!

Now there is a case where the spelling is really important!   :D
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: ChamberNut on July 16, 2014, 11:30:41 AM
B6

Georg Tintner, the most polarizing figure on GMG when it comes to Bruckner. He makes headlines with his original recordings of Nos. 2, 3 and 8. But no headlines here, other than C'ya later!

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51F0DIhoDML._SY350_.jpg)

Oh no, Tintner is gone.  I need a sleep relief alternative.  :D

(http://www.just-health.net/images/10416250/image001.jpg)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Moonfish on July 16, 2014, 12:29:04 PM
We await your decisions with bated breath, and maybe even baited breath in the case of Moonfish!

Now there is a case where the spelling is really important!   :D

 :)

Bruckner barrages bring boisterous bodacious blather!      >:D
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Cato on July 16, 2014, 01:05:44 PM
:)

Bruckner barrages bring boisterous bodacious blather!      >:D

Ain't that the truth, brother!   0:)

Anyway, the excitement builds whether we are breathing or not!
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on July 16, 2014, 04:17:16 PM
Group D

Brian     Neal        Cato
D5           D3        D1
D3           D5        D5
D2           D2        D4
D1           D6        D6
D6           D4        D3
D4           D1        D2

Current Rankings
D1 - 7 pts
D2 - 6 pts
D3 - 10 pts
D4 - 4 pts
D5 - 13 pts
D6 - 5 pts

D3 and D5 are almost guaranteed a trip to the next round, but the final two spots could easily change hands depending on Sarge's score. I will allow another day to go by after Sarge presents his scores in case there is someone else with D's clips.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Ken B on July 16, 2014, 04:20:35 PM
Group D

Brian     Neal        Cato
D5           D3        D1
D3           D5        D5
D2           D2        D4
D1           D6        D6
D6           D4        D3
D4           D1        D2

Current Rankings
D1 - 7 pts
D2 - 6 pts
D3 - 10 pts
D4 - 4 pts
D5 - 13 pts
D6 - 5 pts

D3 and D5 are almost guaranteed a trip to the next round, but the final two spots could easily change hands depending on Sarge's score. I will allow another day to go by after Sarge presents his scores in case there is someone else with D's clips.

Ooooooooooo. This way we get to see which Sarge votes out. The chant of Szell rose from the bleachers
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Moonfish on July 16, 2014, 06:14:37 PM
Group D

Brian     Neal        Cato
D5           D3        D1
D3           D5        D5
D2           D2        D4
D1           D6        D6
D6           D4        D3
D4           D1        D2

Current Rankings
D1 - 7 pts
D2 - 6 pts
D3 - 10 pts
D4 - 4 pts
D5 - 13 pts
D6 - 5 pts

D3 and D5 are almost guaranteed a trip to the next round, but the final two spots could easily change hands depending on Sarge's score. I will allow another day to go by after Sarge presents his scores in case there is someone else with D's clips.

Drastic variation for D1 !!!!!     ???
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Cato on July 17, 2014, 02:31:19 AM
Drastic variation for D1 !!!!!     ???

Yes!

D 5 almost got my #1 spot because of the superior clarity of sound, but then went slightly awry (see below).  D 1 - which I suspect is the Eugen Jochum DGG performance from the 1960's - hits my ears as the practically perfect performance.   8)

But that is the fascinating aspect about human perception!

We shall see what Sarge thinks!   :D
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Sergeant Rock on July 17, 2014, 05:07:29 AM
D1  I recognized this immediately...well, with the first trumpet entry anyway, an unmistakable sound. It was one of my first Bruckner Sixths. The other was B2. Which came first is lost in the fog of time but B2 always ranked higher in my estimation. I  might have to rethink that. I like the vintage sound. Most everything is clear without being spotlit (I mean everything seems upfront, right in your face); impressive sounding low strings.  I have less trouble now with the swift speeds at climactic moments than I used to. The ensemble seems a bit scrappy in places but the excitement carries the day. The coda is glorious and ends properly with a sharp blow (not quite the decisive finality of B2 but close enough).

D2  I know who this is and I'm trying hard not to let that fact influence me. Begins slower than D1 (the slowest I've yet heard in this comparison) and even slower than Celi! So that goes in the plus column. The recording has more depth than D1, which I don't prefer. I hate depth. When I hear an orchestra live from the front row balcony (my preferred seat) or from the front row right in front of the stage (Mrs. Rock's preferred seat), the solo violin doesn't sound closer than the horn in the back row and yet here the horns in this recording occasionally sound distant, at times muffled. Anyway, a small point. The large points are, the performance doesn't move me emotionally and I do not like the way the end is handled: brakes applied, the last chord stretched out. I should give it credit though for some very impressive drums in the central climax and coda. Wow.

D3  Like D2, in its very different way, this also failed to grab me emotionally despite having a fantastic sense of atmosphere and great delicacy in the quieter moments. The performance as a whole is well integrated, the parts mesh well, and yet, paradoxically, it sounds almost un-Brucknerian. I want to hear more seams. I do like the last two and a half minutes very much. I have no idea how I'm going to rank this.

D4  Feels rushed and hectic, even confused in places, most damagingly in the coda.

D5  From the beginning, it seems the perfect Bruckner 6. The sonics are gorgeous, the pace just right, the orchestra accomplished, the conductor knows the score. Yes, perfection...and yet, once again I felt no emotional pull and I'm not sure why. Maybe because there were no surprises?  (It played out exactly the way I thought it would.) Maybe because the climactic moments were marginally underplayed?  Can I downgrade perfection? Watch me  ;)

D6  Not perfect (including orchestral clarity), and yet I finally get an emotional charge. It scores very high on the goosebump meter.  Climaxes are built superbly and really hit home. Not since D1 has the music sounded so alive and thrilling. So thrilling that I can even forgive the conductor ignoring the staccato marking on the final chord. His way works here.

From first to last:

D1
D6
D3
D5
D2
D4
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: k a rl h e nn i ng on July 17, 2014, 05:12:13 AM
This is a fascinating process to observe, thank you all.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: ChamberNut on July 17, 2014, 05:12:40 AM
Yes!  With Sarge's vote, are we soon headed for Adagio heaven?  :)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: mc ukrneal on July 17, 2014, 05:39:32 AM
Gosh. All this love for D1 - I went back to listen to it again. God-awful. This is as dull and lifeless as it was the first time! There are several problems: 1) They play on the back of the beat too often (so much so that it feels like they are slowing down). This is often a cardinal sin for me and makes the thing feel lackluster. This clearly isn't affecting others, but I don't understand why not.
2) The brass sound like they are playing through a haze. There is no brightness to them. I feel like they are playing through plastic wrap. It bothers the heck out of me. Not to mention, the horns have a sickly sound. The brass should shine in this movement, and they seem like they need a little polish.
3) There is no detail. Maybe this is what Sarge means when he says things are not spotlit. The problem is that it creates the feeling that there is no development. For example, the climax at 9-9:30 sounds so dull and back on its feet. It goes splat instead of transporting us. And it doesn't develop organically. It feels pasted in.
4) The tempo, despite being on the faster side, actually feels slow. I just couldn't wait for this to finish...again.

I could go on, but I think I am talking to myself on this one. A dreadful movement that you all seem to like...woe is me! :)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on July 17, 2014, 05:41:15 AM


Brian     Neal        Cato.   Sarge
D5           D3        D1.      D1
D3           D5        D5.      D6
D2           D2        D4.      D3
D1           D6        D6.      D5
D6           D4        D3.      D2
D4           D1        D2.      D4

Current Rankings
D1 - 12 pts
D2 - 7 pts
D3 - 13 pts
D4 - 4 pts
D5 - 15 pts
D6 - 9 pts


 :o this might be more shocking than the last elimination! Unless someone else chimes in before sundown.
And I will be changing the names of the groups, D1 seems to have been found out (or has it?) but the groupings will remain the same.

Thank you all for the votes and scores!
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: ChamberNut on July 17, 2014, 05:42:22 AM

Brian     Neal        Cato.   Sarge
D5           D3        D1.      D1
D3           D5        D5.      D6
D2           D2        D4.      D3
D1           D6        D6.      D5
D6           D4        D3.      D2
D4           D1        D2.      D4

Current Rankings
D1 - 12 pts
D2 - 7 pts
D3 - 13 pts
D4 - 4 pts
D5 - 15 pts
D6 - 9 pts


 :o this might be more shocking than the last elimination! Unless someone else chimes in before sundown.
And I will be changing the names of the groups, D1 seems to have been found out (or has it?) but the groupings will remain the same.

Thank you all for the votes and scores!

I think that is a bloody fantastic idea, Greg!!  :)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on July 17, 2014, 05:44:58 AM
Gosh. All this love for D1 - I went back to listen to it again. God-awful. This is as dull and lifeless as it was the first time! There are several problems: 1) They play on the back of the beat too often (so much so that it feels like they are slowing down). This is often a cardinal sin for me and makes the thing feel lackluster. This clearly isn't affecting others, but I don't understand why not.
2) The brass sound like they are playing through a haze. There is no brightness to them. I feel like they are playing through plastic wrap. It bothers the heck out of me. Not to mention, the horns have a sickly sound. The brass should shine in this movement, and they seem like they need a little polish.
3) There is no detail. Maybe this is what Sarge means when he says things are not spotlit. The problem is that it creates the feeling that there is no development. For example, the climax at 9-9:30 sounds so dull and back on its feet. It goes splat instead of transporting us. And it doesn't develop organically. It feels pasted in.
4) The tempo, despite being on the faster side, actually feels slow. I just couldn't wait for this to finish...again.

I could go on, but I think I am talking to myself on this one. A dreadful movement that you all seem to like...woe is me! :)

Interesting points, Neal, thank you for this. As the moderator of the comparison I will leave my comments out, but Neal offers a detailed insight into the performance, I hoping for a few responses from the two that helped D1 complete the comeback!

Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Ken B on July 17, 2014, 05:47:20 AM
I think that is a bloody fantastic idea, Greg!!  :)
As a non-voter, me too. 
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Sergeant Rock on July 17, 2014, 06:05:35 AM

Interesting points, Neal, thank you for this. As the moderator of the comparison I will leave my comments out, but Neal offers a detailed insight into the performance, I hoping for a few responses from the two that helped D1 complete the comeback!

Obviously Neal is somehow listening to a completely different performance than I am  ;)

Seriously, I cannot fathom Neal's objections. Usually I can understand and hear the differences others hear, but in this case I'm just flabbergasted. Jochum, dull and lifeless? WTF?  ;D  But hey, our differences are what make the comparisons so fun...and illuminating.

No time right now, but I'll try to give a more detailed rebuttal later.

Sarge
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: ChamberNut on July 17, 2014, 06:18:46 AM
Obviously Neal is somehow listening to a completely different performance than I am  ;)

Seriously, I cannot fathom Neal's objections. Usually I can understand and hear the differences others hear, but in this case I'm just flabbergasted. Jochum, dull and lifeless? WTF?  ;D  But hey, our differences are what make the comparisons so fun...and illuminating.

No time right now, but I'll try to give a more detailed rebuttal later.

Sarge

I thought you didn't like Jochum?  Perhaps D1 is Szell, your favourite conductor?
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Sergeant Rock on July 17, 2014, 06:25:57 AM
I thought you didn't like Jochum?

True but there are exceptions (his last Concertgebouw Fifth; his Dresden Ninth; his Bavarian Second). But I would never characterize any performance I've heard of his as dull and lifeless. Just the opposite: they are usually too exciting, lacking a certain majesty. But I like this Sixth very much, at least in the context of the D group.

Sarge
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Ken B on July 17, 2014, 06:53:39 AM

Seriously... Jochum, dull and lifeless? WTF?  ;D

Jochum is gone, but his music lives on
And Kempe don't go shopping no more
You'll never meet Szell or Boehm again
And Maazel doesn't answer the door

Karajan and Celi used to chuckle and laugh
Whilst conducting a long symphony
But a dozen or so years later
There's very little of them left to see

They're decomposing conductors
There's nothing much anyone can do
You can still hear Abbado
But Abbado cannot hear you


Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on July 17, 2014, 06:57:23 AM
Jochum is gone, but his music lives on
And Kempe don't go shopping no more
You'll never meet Szell or Boehm again
And Maazel doesn't answer the door

Karajan and Celi used to chuckle and laugh
Whilst conducting a long symphony
But a dozen or so years later
There's very little of them left to see

They're decomposing conductors
There's nothing much anyone can do
You can still hear Abbado
But Abbado cannot hear you

And just one look from the dashing Paavo
Will make anyone stand from their chair and scream, Bravo!
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Cato on July 17, 2014, 08:22:06 AM
Interesting points, Neal, thank you for this. As the moderator of the comparison I will leave my comments out, but Neal offers a detailed insight into the performance, I hoping for a few responses from the two that helped D1 complete the comeback!

Different ears!  ;)  Thanks to Neal for listening to the performance again!

D 1 is saved by Sarge to the rescue!!!  :D

If it is the Jochum DGG from the 1960's as I (and Sarge?) suspect, I have always found it a prime performance.

The tempo is just right, the dynamics are quite distinguishable, the build-ups to the climaxes are exciting, the more tender and meditative aspects do not sound perfunctory (like they are in some of the faster performances), and the brass chorales are powerful.

Again, if this is the Jochum, he does not monkey around with the dynamics either!   $:)  (He does monkey around with the tempo severely in his DGG recording of the Finale of the Fifth Symphony.)

I am in the middle of several projects, but hope to respond later with references to the Nowak score.

Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Moonfish on July 17, 2014, 10:34:17 AM
This is better than the World Cup!    ;D ;D
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: ChamberNut on July 17, 2014, 10:36:48 AM
This is better than the World Cup!    ;D ;D

 :D  We are now shortly going on to the quarter-finals!  :)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Cato on July 17, 2014, 11:01:11 AM
This is better than the World Cup!    ;D ;D

MUCH more excitement than Germany vs. Argentina, which was basically Germany vs. Germany anyway!   ??? ??? ???   0:)

:D  We are now shortly going on to the quarter-finals!  :)

Go Team Go!

The Adagio beckons, one of the greatest movements ever!
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Cato on July 17, 2014, 11:11:37 AM
From my (still unpublished) novel: The Seven Souls of Chaos: A Center of the Universe.  A young organist named Tom has excerpted the last minutes of the Adagio from Bruckner's Sixth Symphony and arranged it for the organ.  He plans on using it as a Communion meditation for the funeral of Fourth Grader.

The excerpt begins with the little funeral march a few minutes before the end:

Quote
So then Tom began to play the Bruckner excerpt.  The first two bars seemed more tragic than in practice, and he had to ignore an impulse to cut the repetition of the opening four-bar theme that he had interpolated into the piece.  The next two bars rose and evoked more of a cry of anguish than any hope!  What was happening?  Those two bars were supposed to argue with the first ones, not commiserate!  When the repetition came, Tom quickly changed the stops and made the music softer.  That was better.  Now a short dialogue in the upper register ensued, followed by a chorale that gave a distant angelicity to the opening.  Then an upward struggle with sixteenth notes, ending in a huge, slow, climactic descent in eighth notes.  But this was no descent into hopelessness, rather it was an affirmation of a foundation and of a connection between heaven and earth, a Jacob’s Ladder being extended downward to all those who had the faith to take the first step.  And then the farewell most serene, the flute-and-clarinet melody slowly hovering on high, waving good-bye, as it faded away into the blissful otherworld
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on July 17, 2014, 03:25:04 PM
Group D - Round 1 Eliminations

Current Rankings

D5 - 15 pts
D3 - 13 pts
D1 - 12 pts
D6 - 9 pts
D2 - 7 pts
D4 - 4 pts


 :o :o :o :o :o :o :o :o :o :o :o :o :o

D2

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51Xi2dITPHL._SS350_.jpg)


D4

(http://g-ecx.images-amazon.com/images/G/01/ciu/50/e0/1ff7c060ada0c16e09178110.L._SX350_.jpg)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on July 17, 2014, 03:30:38 PM
Once again, because I can't believe you have added the beloved Karajan to misfit island...

 :( Let's begin the parade of the eliminated  :(....

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51GOWYaP07L._SY350_.jpg) (http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51lLMB%2BMZKL._SL500_AA280_.jpg) (http://g-ecx.images-amazon.com/images/G/01/ciu/e9/31/6ea7b220dca0e9867e7f7010.L._SX350_.jpg) (http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51F0DIhoDML._SY350_.jpg) (http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51FnuGttc6L._SS350_.jpg) (http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/41BZTM6955L._SS350_.jpg)  (http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51Xi2dITPHL._SS350_.jpg) (http://g-ecx.images-amazon.com/images/G/01/ciu/50/e0/1ff7c060ada0c16e09178110.L._SX350_.jpg)

Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Ken B on July 17, 2014, 03:48:05 PM
I am glad I am not part of THIS comparison!
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Cato on July 17, 2014, 04:10:16 PM
Apparently we are the BANDIDOS of Bruckner Sixth Symphony Reviewers   8) 8) 8)

"I don't need no Solti!  And I don't know notheenk about no steenkeenk Von Karajan!"  ???

I am shocked as well, but the ears say nay!
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: ChamberNut on July 17, 2014, 04:56:44 PM
Once again, because I can't believe you have added the beloved Karajan to misfit island...

 :( Let's begin the parade of the eliminated  :(....

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51GOWYaP07L._SY350_.jpg) (http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51lLMB%2BMZKL._SL500_AA280_.jpg) (http://g-ecx.images-amazon.com/images/G/01/ciu/e9/31/6ea7b220dca0e9867e7f7010.L._SX350_.jpg) (http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51F0DIhoDML._SY350_.jpg) (http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51FnuGttc6L._SS350_.jpg) (http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/41BZTM6955L._SS350_.jpg)  (http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51Xi2dITPHL._SS350_.jpg) (http://g-ecx.images-amazon.com/images/G/01/ciu/50/e0/1ff7c060ada0c16e09178110.L._SX350_.jpg)

Wow!  That's a lot of heavy hitters out of the Bruckner 6 World Cup!  :D
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: amw on July 17, 2014, 05:43:03 PM
Hey, this thread is alive again. Maybe blind comparisons were only sleeping >.>

I didn't know Karajan even recorded Bruckner, and I guess for good reason. ;) On the other hand, given my voting preferences, I wonder if I'll enjoy the eliminated ones more than the survivors. (I already like Chailly)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Ken B on July 17, 2014, 05:51:03 PM
Apparently we are the BANDIDOS of Bruckner Sixth Symphony Reviewers   8) 8) 8)

"I don't need no Solti!  And I don't know notheenk about no steenkeenk Von Karajan!"  ???

I am shocked as well, but the ears say nay!
Some ears. i already knew that Neal was like my brother. My brother is the best movie critic, because if he likes it I know I won't and if he hates it it's a must see.

Keeping my eye on Brian now too.  :laugh:
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Moonfish on July 17, 2014, 10:39:50 PM
Once again, because I can't believe you have added the beloved Karajan to misfit island...

 :( Let's begin the parade of the eliminated  :(....

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51GOWYaP07L._SY350_.jpg) (http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51lLMB%2BMZKL._SL500_AA280_.jpg) (http://g-ecx.images-amazon.com/images/G/01/ciu/e9/31/6ea7b220dca0e9867e7f7010.L._SX350_.jpg) (http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51F0DIhoDML._SY350_.jpg) (http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51FnuGttc6L._SS350_.jpg) (http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/41BZTM6955L._SS350_.jpg)  (http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51Xi2dITPHL._SS350_.jpg) (http://g-ecx.images-amazon.com/images/G/01/ciu/50/e0/1ff7c060ada0c16e09178110.L._SX350_.jpg)

 ??? ??? ??? ??? ???
I am surprised that Chailly & Karajan (well, even Solti and Maazel actually) disappeared from the field.  It just proves that we have had too much exposure to Stockhausen!  >:D   
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: mc ukrneal on July 17, 2014, 10:49:53 PM
??? ??? ??? ??? ???
I am surprised that Chailly & Karajan (well, even Solti and Maazel actually) disappeared from the field.  It just proves that we have had too much exposure to Stockhausen!  >:D   
That's one thing you don't have to worry about with me! :)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Cato on July 18, 2014, 02:24:46 AM
That's one thing you don't have to worry about with me! :)

Three words, Dude: Helikopter String Quartet!  ;)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on July 18, 2014, 02:39:26 AM
Three words, Dude: Helikopter String Quartet!  ;)

That's it! My next blind comparison has been chosen!
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: mc ukrneal on July 18, 2014, 02:47:28 AM
Three words, Dude: Helikopter String Quartet!  ;)
Helikopter?!?! I'm going to have to report you in your own thread! :)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Sergeant Rock on July 18, 2014, 02:54:49 AM
I am not surprised Karajan got the boot. His Sixth has never been considered great by the critical establishment. It's the weak link in an otherwise superb Bruckner cycle. When I did my own death match a few years ago (Wand box vs Karajan box) I couldn't choose a Sixth winner. I disliked them both! My opinion wasn't changed with a blind listen.

Solti? Well, he's never been known as one of the great Brucknerians. One of my first Bruckner purchases (1972) was his Vienna Eighth. I returned it the next day, exchanged it for Szell. Best musical decision I ever made  ;D

Sarge
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Sergeant Rock on July 18, 2014, 02:59:12 AM
Once again, because I can't believe you have added the beloved Karajan to misfit island...

Is this where we finally part musical ways, my brother?  :(

Sarge
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on July 18, 2014, 03:05:10 AM
I am not surprised Karajan got the boot. His Sixth has never been considered great by the critical establishment. It's the weak link in an otherwise superb Bruckner cycle. When I did my own death match a few years ago (Wand box vs Karajan box) I couldn't choose a Sixth winner. I disliked them both! My opinion wasn't changed with a blind listen.

Solti? Well, he's never been known as one of the great Brucknerians. One of my first Bruckner purchases (1972) was his Vienna Eighth. I returned it the next day, exchanged it for Szell. Best musical decision I ever made  ;D

Sarge

Sarge, your earlier comments on the Karajan 6th were spot on. It seems to be neither a calculated presentation of the score or a passionate reading, very middle of the road if there is one here.

Oops, just broke my rule commenting. Anyone need a recording of Karajan/Berlin performing Bruckner 6th?  ;D
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Sergeant Rock on July 18, 2014, 03:20:54 AM
Sarge, your earlier comments on the Karajan 6th were spot on.

This is, perhaps, the most satisfying blind comparison I've yet participated in. After the first round, not a single favorite has been eliminated  :)  (DRD is new to me; doesn't count as a favorite going into this comparison.) Usually at this point 90% of my forces are gone  ;D

Although I don't know how many of my favorite Sixths have been included, I assume some of them are here: Dohnányi, Stein, Haitink/Dresden, Sawallisch, Celi, Klemperer, Norrington.

Sarge
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: k a rl h e nn i ng on July 18, 2014, 04:03:53 AM
Once again, because I can't believe you have added the beloved Karajan to misfit island...

López-Cobos can hold up his head in that crowd!  8)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: k a rl h e nn i ng on July 18, 2014, 04:04:43 AM
Sarge, your earlier comments on the Karajan 6th were spot on. It seems to be neither a calculated presentation of the score or a passionate reading, very middle of the road if there is one here.

Oops, just broke my rule commenting. Anyone need a recording of Karajan/Berlin performing Bruckner 6th?  ;D

It's in the box?  If so, I've got it . . . though I don't recall giving that one a listen as yet.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: k a rl h e nn i ng on July 18, 2014, 04:07:03 AM
I didn't know Karajan even recorded Bruckner . . . .

Whaaaaaaaat?!

Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Cato on July 18, 2014, 04:16:16 AM
López-Cobos can hold up his head in that crowd!  8)

I heard that CD some years ago, and at the time thought it was quite fine: it apparently was not in Groups C or D.

Sarge, your earlier comments on the Karajan 6th were spot on. It seems to be neither a calculated presentation of the score or a passionate reading, very middle of the road if there is one here.

Amen!   0:)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on July 18, 2014, 05:36:32 AM

Although I don't know how many of my favorite Sixths have been included, I assume some of them are here: Dohnányi, Stein, Haitink/Dresden, Sawallisch, Celi, Klemperer, Norrington.

Sarge

Holy crap! I had no idea all those conductors have recorded Bruckner's 6th!  :o
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Cato on July 18, 2014, 06:57:24 AM
Holy crap! I had no idea all those conductors have recorded Bruckner's 6th!  :o

Let's have another Round I: Group E!   ;)   ???
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: ChamberNut on July 18, 2014, 07:02:36 AM
Holy crap! I had no idea all those conductors have recorded Bruckner's 6th!  :o

Or do you?  ;)  Hmmm..... :D
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on July 18, 2014, 07:37:57 AM
Or do you?  ;)  Hmmm..... :D

I know nothing!  :-X
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: k a rl h e nn i ng on July 18, 2014, 07:44:27 AM
Or do you?  ;)  Hmmm..... :D

Poker face!
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: k a rl h e nn i ng on July 18, 2014, 07:57:26 AM
I know nothing!  :-X

At FB, I posted a Will Durant quote, One of the lessons of history is that nothing is often a good thing to do and always a clever thing to say.

To which my brother Keith appended, Also, to know.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Cato on July 18, 2014, 02:52:10 PM
I know nothing!  :-X


https://www.youtube.com/v/kp9BJxFHDYI
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: ChamberNut on July 19, 2014, 09:09:10 AM
Dreaming of Bruckner Adagio Dreamland!  :-*

Meanwhile, current forecast:

(http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/2529499/tumbleweed.gif)

 :D
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on July 19, 2014, 10:25:29 AM
Dreaming of Bruckner Adagio Dreamland!  :-*

Meanwhile, current forecast:

(http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/2529499/tumbleweed.gif)

 :D

Maybe a week to ten days and it'll be ready. This should be a most interesting round.

Perhaps now is a good time to ask if there are any users that did not participate in Round 1 that would interested now. If so leave a post here or PM me.
All users that did participate I will automatically send links to.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Cato on July 19, 2014, 11:09:30 AM
Maybe a week to ten days and it'll be ready. This should be a most interesting round.

Perhaps now is a good time to ask if there are any users that did not participate in Round 1 that would interested now. If so leave a post here or PM me.
All users that did participate I will automatically send links to.

Many thanks for taking the time to put everything together!

Here is a nice version of Bruckner Adagio Land!

(http://digital-art-gallery.com/oid/91/1600x706_15897_Cloudscape_2d_landscape_spaceship_clouds_sky_picture_image_digital_art.jpg)







Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Moonfish on July 19, 2014, 11:12:08 AM
Maybe a week to ten days and it'll be ready. This should be a most interesting round.

Perhaps now is a good time to ask if there are any users that did not participate in Round 1 that would interested now. If so leave a post here or PM me.
All users that did participate I will automatically send links to.
Looking forward to it! This time I will not procrastinate!!   :)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Ken B on July 19, 2014, 12:37:22 PM
Dreaming of Bruckner Adagio Dreamland!  :-*

Meanwhile, current forecast:

(http://assets.sbnation.com/assets/2529499/tumbleweed.gif)

 :D
Ah downtown Winnipeg, nice to see it again.

 8)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on July 28, 2014, 01:10:35 PM
Sorry for the delay...

Round 2 - The Adagio will be available in about two days, hopefully by Tuesday evening. Any new participants?  ;D
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: EigenUser on July 28, 2014, 04:00:24 PM
I have had the Bruckner 6 score sitting on my bookshelf for over a month and I finally listened to it today. I only got to hear the first movement (I got called in for dinner), but I loved it!! I certainly don't know the piece so I don't want to participate here, but I anxiously wait the outcome as I want to get a recording of it.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on July 28, 2014, 04:04:38 PM
I have had the Bruckner 6 score sitting on my bookshelf for over a month and I finally listened to it today. I only got to hear the first movement (I got called in for dinner), but I loved it!! I certainly don't know the piece so I don't want to participate here, but I anxiously wait the outcome as I want to get a recording of it.

So glad to read your enthusiasm about the 6th. It's a great piece, and arguably Bruckner's best!  ;)  ;D
Don't wait until the very end, Nate. There were even a few good ones that got canned in Round 1. It's pretty exciting to think about the next round, there are some heavy hitters in there.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Ken B on July 28, 2014, 04:12:14 PM
I have had the Bruckner 6 score sitting on my bookshelf for over a month and I finally listened to it today. I only got to hear the first movement (I got called in for dinner), but I loved it!! I certainly don't know the piece so I don't want to participate here, but I anxiously wait the outcome as I want to get a recording of it.
Confucius say true wisdom is buy Karajan or Jochum set, get all symphony good recording cheap.

Confucius is grammar-challenged but wise.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on July 29, 2014, 04:52:09 PM
Groups will begin being sent this evening. If you don't receive a PM by tomorrow afternoon and want to participate in Round 2 please let me know.

And no spoilers this round please.  :-X  ;)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Brian on July 29, 2014, 05:43:34 PM
Huh. I called Herbie's Berlin PO "second-rate," but I really liked Solti. Solti was, surprisingly, slower than Celibidache! Too bad that got cut.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on July 30, 2014, 06:46:14 AM
Groups will begin being sent this evening. If you don't receive a PM by tomorrow afternoon and want to participate in Round 2 please let me know.

And no spoilers this round please.  :-X  ;)

I should also add that I only sent links to those users who gave scores in Round 1. But of course the more scores the better, also better the chance that Mehta doesn't run away with this thing, I wouldn't want to anger Ken.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: mc ukrneal on July 30, 2014, 11:46:30 PM
B Group

B1 - Nice start, but woodwinds seem too light in its phrasing (though not as bad as B4). Impact from the brass and the strings is just gorgeous though. Place where horn and woodwind play together, seems a bit out of tune (the horn). I think I would prefer a slightly faster tempo, but I can't fault this execution. The crescendo in the middle is T O  D I E  F O R! (I went back and listened to that part like 4-5 times in a row, after listening to the rest). I like this version - it has nibbles and quibbles, but overall the impact comes across very well. Orchestral sound is very good. Rank: 1
 
B2 - More gravitas here from the woodwinds. Here is a dark and moving opening. Frankly, it's another good version. I think the strings aren't quite as good as in B1, nor do the lower brass/strings make quite the same impact as in B1. Despite being faster, when it gets to the quiet parts, it loses momentum just a bit (which I never got from B1). The big crescendo in the middle seems to fizzle a bit. But overall, still pretty decent.  Rank: 4

B3 - Another nice start, though here a bit of rubato/expressivity from the woodwinds. There is a certain lightness to this, a result of the faster speed I think, but it seems to float effortlessly and yet still packs a punch where it needs to. The middle crescendo is good, though B1 is the one that really hits it best so far. The ending (coda), however, is exquisite.  Rank: 2

B4 - Yet another beautiful start. Woodwinds do not seem to have the same gravitas and are too perky, like in B1. I think B3 actually did the opening best. I wish the strings had just a bit fuller sound. Faster into the crescendo section. Maybe too fast, but execution is still good.   Rank: 3

I don't know if it was a conscious decision or not, but they move from slowest to fastest, with a difference of 6.30 betwwen B1 and B4. To put this in perspective, B4 was at the pub enjoying a pint while the guys from B1 were still only just over 2/3 of the way through! I clearly preferred the tempo faster, and yet, perhaps a surprise to the reader, I have put B1 in first place. In the end, we are evaluating the performances (not my preferences) and B1 just nailed it throughout. They were helped by a gorgeous sound as well. This is an orchestra to revel in frankly.

So overall, B1 in first. I liked B2 the least, but it is not actually a bad version at all. That leaves a tough decision between B3 and B4. I think I will put B3 ahead of B4, mostly due to the fabulous ending (coda) that seems so right. They are otherwise closely matched. But I have to add, they all have some wonderful moments. 

B1, B3, B4, B2.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on July 31, 2014, 03:18:17 PM
Thank you, Neal, for the scores and greatly detailed comments.  8)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Brian on August 04, 2014, 09:44:19 AM
Blorp, I've listened to C1, C2, and C3, and I can tell they're all different, but I'm so taken with this music that I loved them all. Unless they're just all really good. Will have to listen twice, at least!
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Brian on August 04, 2014, 10:42:31 AM
Blorp, I've listened to C1, C2, and C3, and I can tell they're all different, but I'm so taken with this music that I loved them all. Unless they're just all really good. Will have to listen twice, at least!
And C4 is just perfect. Dang this is gonna be hard.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on August 04, 2014, 10:59:07 AM
All the talk in Bruckner's Abbey about the finale had me thinking that perhaps we should have done the finale for the second round. Perhaps that would have made scoring a bit easier?  8)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Moonfish on August 08, 2014, 10:36:09 PM

Many thanks for taking the time to put everything together!

Here is a nice version of Bruckner Adagio Land!

(http://digital-art-gallery.com/oid/91/1600x706_15897_Cloudscape_2d_landscape_spaceship_clouds_sky_picture_image_digital_art.jpg)

Cato,

I now understand why you picked that picture as an analogy to the adagio.....     ???     :D
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Moonfish on August 09, 2014, 12:00:17 AM
Greg - my scores for the second round!

Bruckner 6 is a great symphony making this a difficult task.  Here goes…

D1
Opening builds well. The wind is haunting indeed and rises magically with the horns by 130 w/ good phrasing. Hesitant at 2min, but quickly followed by great playing and balance towards 4min.  Nice nexus at 5 min. Yum.  Very delicate and well phrased leading towards 7min. Great climax at 9-11. Powerful and enchanting.  Ends beautifully with a delicate whisper (almost like a beam of light). Nice!
Dreamy textures – well performed and maintaining an excellent balance between delicate and power throughout the movement. Charming and endearing! While listening I thought that this candidate simply has to move forward to the next round.  A few noises here and there in the live performance, but nothing that distracted from the power of the music making.  Does not seem like perfection, but I found it to be an excellent performance. Perhaps lacking in individualism..?

8.5/10


D2
The strings sound a bit deeper than D1. Early portion the wind instruments seem a bit aggressive relative to D1, but adds urgency to the opening. However, there is a bit of tameness in the buildup in this section that I did not like [1:45-2:15). The wind, string and horn sections seemed asynchronous in the section that followed (almost sounded like a synthesizer in my ears -  yikes). The strings were horrible here.  D1 had much more life and vividness (humanity) in this portion.  The orchestral soundscape is a bit sharp in my ears [5-7min], which bothered me a bit.  Powerful, but a bit edgy.    The orchestra had plenty of power, but I felt as if the Bruckner magic wasn’t captured.   I warmed up to it towards the end of the movement being impressed with the subtle phrasing. Overall, I think it could have been performed better.

7/10


D3
I liked the start quite a bit.   Great timbre at the start followed by the haunting wind section. The buildup is indeed magical and well played.   The slower pacing at this point[2-3 min] is appropriate in my opinion.  The string section is perhaps a bit too sweet and honey-like [4min], but builds well.  Hesitant at 5-6 min and perhaps a bit too slow at this point.  Hmm.  Slow indeed. Catches up at a slow peak at 10 min. The previous slow weaving now allows one to appreciate the power , but it slows down again too quickly.  The pacing seems all off here. Beautiful, but sleepy…..Zzzzzzzzzzz.
A very good performance. Slow is good as it allows one to appreciate the phrasing of the music, but I felt as if it permeated the movement a bit too much.  Still, it was better than D2.  Perhaps this is perfect if one wants Bruckner at a slow pace? It was a bit too delicate – and definitely needed more umphhhh! Sweet poetic ending. Sloooooow. Better than D2 for sure.


8/10



D4
Great build up  at the start– the wind section sound like they are from a fairy world and build well towards the horns as they blend in.  Great control of the slow section at 2 min. Nice! Lovely buildup towards 3 min and shaping an engaging soundscape with both power and poetry by 4 min.  Phrases well at 430-530.  Brucknerian magic in place!  Doing well at 5-7min – seems like a scape of tonal questions and the orchestra does it very well.  Full-bodied with great sound!  Builds nicely at 830 – very Brucknerian. Yay!  I love this part [9-10] with its power.  A bit syrupy with the strings at 1030.  But forgiven as it builds so well here towards 11.  Slow and dreamy nicely paced after the peak.  I liked D4 quite a bit, but thought things were missing at times. Its orchestra and pacing easily places it before D3 and D2 in my mind.

9/10

For the top spot I debated between D4 and D1, but felt as if D4 had more of the things I enjoy in Bruckner so D4 it is.  It had plenty of magic in several places and great sound/orchestration.

My scores for round 2:

D4 > D1  >D3>  D2

Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Cato on August 10, 2014, 04:19:27 AM
Cato,

I now understand why you picked that picture as an analogy to the adagio.....     ???     :D

I thought the picture "fit" in several ways!  0:)

Many thanks for your reviews of D Group: yes, it will become more difficult to choose a top recording now! 

Tomorrow I will deal with the A Group: too many things happening today!  But tomorrow I should have most of the day free.

Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: ChamberNut on August 10, 2014, 04:50:38 AM
Now that I've completed the Round 1 Schubert Quintet in C listen, I will be visiting the Group A Bruckner Adagio Heaven!   0:)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on August 10, 2014, 06:11:48 AM
Thank you for scores, Moonfish!

Looking forward to reading more comments! And I also need to get to my Schubert listening.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: ChamberNut on August 10, 2014, 07:41:10 AM
Thank you for scores, Moonfish!

Looking forward to reading more comments! And I also need to get to my Schubert listening.

Which Schubert group are you, Mr. Sock?  :)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Brian on August 10, 2014, 11:54:39 AM
C1. Beautiful pacing. The violins sound rather thin and glassy, but it sounds like compression of the sound file down to a tiny size, so that's not a problem with the recording. Overall, superb "Brucknerian" orchestra. Live recording? I heard a cough. Well, anyway, I love this recording. Almost understated, the last few minutes remind me of the adagio to Elgar 1? 8.5/10

C2. Again: spectacular. A "darker" orchestral sound, maybe, with a little stronger tilt toward cellos and bass? Slightly higher volume than C1, also. I think I like this slightly better than C1, but for no rational or explicable reason. Possibly those richer, deeper strings. Yeah, that's it. They are both so darn great. Last chord is a liiittle sloppy. 8.8/10

C3. I'm afraid this one is going to get short shrift among the voters. The older recording results in some clashing instruments - you can tell right from the very first climax, when everyone clamors to be heard over each other. But the unusually fast pace works beautifully, indeed flawlessly. This is an interpretation I will definitely seek out after the competition is over. The ending is the only place where its terseness makes me a little unsatisfied. Kudos for being unsentimental, though. 7/10

C4. Sloooooow. Perrrrrrfect. Maybe too slow? Is everything kind of disjointed? Or do I love this? I think I love it despite being aware of its flaws. The orchestra is superb. The final coda is perfection itself. My head tells me C2 is probably the best here, but my heart lies elsewhere. 9.5/10

C4
C2
C1
C3

Which recordings I want to advance: all  :(

By the way, this was the last movement of the symphony that I "figured out," and it's the one where I have the toughest standards. Or so I thought. Do I have really low standards, or is this the Group of Death?
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: ChamberNut on August 10, 2014, 01:21:04 PM

By the way, this was the last movement of the symphony that I "figured out," and it's the one where I have the toughest standards. Or so I thought. Do I have really low standards, or is this the Group of Death?

I just finished my first run through of Group A, and that may indeed be the group of death.   :'( :'( :'( :'(  Four sublime performances, I wish I could put all four of them through to the next round.  :'( :'( :'( :'(
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Brian on August 10, 2014, 01:30:19 PM
I just finished my first run through of Group A, and that may indeed be the group of death.   :'( :'( :'( :'(  Four sublime performances, I wish I could put all four of them through to the next round.  :'( :'( :'( :'(
Part of me really wants to hear this, but part of me dreads having to rate them!
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Cato on August 11, 2014, 07:16:22 AM
I just finished my first run through of Group A, and that may indeed be the group of death.   :'( :'( :'( :'(  Four sublime performances, I wish I could put all four of them through to the next round.  :'( :'( :'( :'(

Yes, and two of the performances in Group A (I will predict) are done...

by the same conductor!!!   ??? ??? ??? :D :D :D   * (See spoiler down below!   0:)  )

In reverse order:

A 4 - Everything is perfect!  The tempo is perfect, the dynamics, the big Bruckner sound, the plaintive expressivity in the oboe.  The climaxes are powerful: listen to the near hysteria in the strings at the central climax, and how the brass rise up to calm them down, and then everything is united to become more positive.  The little funeral march is twice played with dark tragedy (check out the violas), and after the second time the ineffably beautiful ending is played in an ineffably beautiful fashion.

A 3 - Again, the big Bruckner sound is heard in the fullness of the strings right at the opening.  The oboe is perhaps not quite on the same level of pathos as in A 4, but the brass and strings make up for it.  Tempo is somewhat slower than in A 4, but quite acceptable.  There is great clarity in the lines most of the time, and like in A 4 the funeral march sections are most excellent.  The lower brass sound "raw" somewhat at times, but that - oddly - only adds to the drama!   The level of intensity in the last pages is not quite on the same level as A 4, but still a great performance.

A 2 - Another excellent version!  The A Group really is the "Group of Death" !   ;)   Tempo is about the same as in A 4.  The clarity of the lines and of the whole recording is excellent (from a concert performance? I believe there is some occasional, but negligible, audience noise, unless it is from the orchestra: you can occasionally hear inhaled breaths.)  The intensity and epic sound needed for this movement - and for any Bruckner performance! - are both present throughout!  Somebody in the horns has the slightest bobble in one of the central climaxes, but again it is negligible. The final pages are performed quite well, but perhaps not quite to the same degree as A 4 or 3, although I did like the way the oboe stands out near the end!

A 1 - The fastest of the four recordings, but it does not sound particularly rushed.  The sound is excellent: listen to the cellos and basses at the beginning!  The hall has a big echoing resonance, which is marvelous for the work!  The funeral march is played with the requisite sadness: the middle voices are brought out especially well.  The drama of the central section is really marvelous! 

Very difficult to choose, and I can easily understand why somebody might like A 1 or A 2 or A 3 as the top recording of the four.  In fact, I can understand any arrangement of the group!

So here goes:

A 4

A 3

A 1

A 2






*  Spoiler below:


*  I am practically positive that A 4 and A 3 are the DGG and EMI recordings by Eugen Jochum.






Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on August 11, 2014, 03:42:28 PM
Lookout! Cato spoilers!   8)
And you're only half right. But don't try to guess which one is right!!  ;D

Thank you for the scores and comments, Brian & Cato, fantastic as usual.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Cato on August 11, 2014, 04:20:19 PM
Lookout! Cato spoilers!   8)
And you're only half right. But don't try to guess which one is right!!  ;D

Thank you for the scores and comments, Brian & Cato, fantastic as usual.

Aha!  Well, so I am batting.500!  I suspect I am right about A 4!   ;)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: ChamberNut on August 11, 2014, 04:28:37 PM
Here are my votes for Group A - The stab at thy heart Adagio x 4.  Seriously, Greg??  Are you trying to kill me with these??  4 absolutely lovely, breathtaking performances of the Adagio.   :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'(

This was so difficult, it was like chosing which knife to stab myself with!  :( :( :( :(

Vote, from favourite to less favourite:

A3
A4
A2
A1

Wow, I've listened to these, twice.  I need my Mommy now.  :'( :'( :'( :'(
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on August 11, 2014, 05:27:18 PM
Here are my votes for Group A - The stab at thy heart Adagio x 4.  Seriously, Greg??  Are you trying to kill me with these??  4 absolutely lovely, breathtaking performances of the Adagio.   :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'(

This was so difficult, it was like chosing which knife to stab myself with!  :( :( :( :(

Vote, from favourite to less favourite:

A3
A4
A2
A1

Wow, I've listened to these, twice.  I need my Mommy now.  :'( :'( :'( :'(

Soooooo I shouldn't ask you later if you want to listen to another group?  :'(  8) 

Thank you much for your scores, Ray. Go eat some ice cream, that should cheer you up.  ;D
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Cato on August 11, 2014, 05:37:19 PM
Here are my votes for Group A - The stab at thy heart Adagio x 4.  Seriously, Greg??  Are you trying to kill me with these??  4 absolutely lovely, breathtaking performances of the Adagio.   :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'(

This was so difficult, it was like choosing which knife to stab myself with!  :( :( :( :(

Wow, I've listened to these, twice.  I need my Mommy now.  :'( :'( :'( :'(

Group A!  The Group of Death and/or Motherly Consolation!   :laugh:

What about that eccentric Scherzo?   8)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: ChamberNut on August 12, 2014, 04:50:54 AM
Soooooo I shouldn't ask you later if you want to listen to another group?  :'(  8) 


You cruel, cruel Monkey!!  ;D  Don't think I could handle it.  :)

Now, I'm going to have to brace myself for the Schubert Quintet Scherzo blind listen.   :'(
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: ChamberNut on August 12, 2014, 04:52:47 AM
Group A!  The Group of Death and/or Motherly Consolation!   :laugh:

Oh, indeed.  That was the most difficult grouping I've ever had to judge in a 'blind listen comparison'.  There were no obvious, outright winners.  Yet, they all were winners.

Is there a 'wild card' option to bring all of group A into the next round?  :D
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on August 12, 2014, 05:34:00 AM
I figured I would go with a 2-5 point range since there doesn't seem to be any Adagio performances getting a bad review. This way even the last place score gets 2 points to assist in a possible advancement if it also receives a first place vote.

Group A
Cato           ChamberNut

A4             A3 - 9 pts. total
A3             A4 - 9 pts. total
A1             A2 - 5 pts. total
A2             A1 - 5 pts. total


Group B
Neal
B1 - 5 pts
B3 - 4 pts
B4 - 3 pts
B2 - 2 pts

Group C
Brian
C4 - 5 pts
C2 - 4 pts
C1 - 3 pts
C3 - 2 pts


Group D
Moonfish
D4 - 5 pts
D1 - 4 pts
D3 - 3 pts
D2 - 2 pts
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Trout on August 12, 2014, 05:56:21 AM
Mathematically speaking, you would get the same results if you used 1-4 points as if you used 2-5 points since all the recordings are "gaining" an extra point per vote, meaning that point does not change the point differential among them (which is the only thing that really matters in this system). The extra point would be, thus, inconsequential.

But never mind my pedantry, carry on! I am rather enjoying all the comments and seeing which of our beloved recordings gets the ax next.  >:D
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: ChamberNut on August 12, 2014, 06:06:00 AM
I figured I would go with a 2-5 point range since there doesn't seem to be any Adagio performances getting a bad review. This way even the last place score gets 2 points to assist in a possible advancement if it also receives a first place vote.

Group A
Cato           ChamberNut

A4             A3 - 9 pts. total
A3             A4 - 9 pts. total
A1             A2 - 5 pts. total
A2             A1 - 5 pts. total


Group B
Neal
B1 - 5 pts
B3 - 4 pts
B4 - 3 pts
B2 - 2 pts

Group C
Brian
C4 - 5 pts
C2 - 4 pts
C1 - 3 pts
C3 - 2 pts


Group D
Moonfish
D4 - 5 pts
D1 - 4 pts
D3 - 3 pts
D2 - 2 pts

Greg, if there is a tie breaker situation in any of the groups (say between 2nd and 3rd spot in a group), I'll volunteer to listen to that group (or the two that are in a tie-breaking situation).
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on August 12, 2014, 06:06:40 AM
Mathematically speaking, you would get the same results if you used 1-4 points as if you used 2-5 points since all the recordings are "gaining" an extra point per vote, meaning that point does not change the point differential among them (which is the only thing that really matters in this system). The extra point would be, thus, inconsequential.

But never mind my pedantry, carry on! I am rather enjoying all the comments and seeing which of our beloved recordings gets the ax next.  >:D

Don't be shy, speak up! I can't read that small text anyway.  ;D

This is true. I thought of that after posting the scores, I originally was thinking this was the round I was going to combine the total points from each round, but it's for the next one.

Feel free to join, Trout. I could send you a Group...or two.  :)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on August 12, 2014, 06:07:22 AM
Greg, if there is a tie breaker situation in any of the groups (say between 2nd and 3rd spot in a group), I'll volunteer to listen to that group (or the two that are in a tie-breaking situation).

Thank you, Ray.  8)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Brian on August 12, 2014, 08:55:20 AM
D1: God this one is great too! Or, maybe, as Moonfish says, it's not quite as distinctive as some - and yet the playing is so consistently beautiful, and the final coda so aching, so heartfelt, that I am captivated. Wonderful. 9/10

D2: Is this Norrington? (I could be wrong; I'm guessing after 21 seconds.) (Note from later: Nope, there's no way I'm wrong. It is.) The violins seem dead set against using any vibrato in the opening bars. Why? The string tone is just too needlessly coarse. In a way I'm very happy to finally have a performance I dislike and can give a low score! Around 10:30 the violins are just so unpretty. Near the end, the big string swell which was so massively affecting and moving in D1 is here - but it makes the tiniest of ripples, not even registering emotionally. I think in hindsight I will add a half-point to my score for D1 - and subtract a few more from this. The last fadeout is excellent, though! 3/10

D3: Now this is more like it! Haunting timpani strokes at 5:50, but overall I'm maybe slightly less engaged than with D1. Brass entrances are not always subtle. Love the low double bass: they sound like an organ. Overall, nice, but one has to draw the line somewhere. 7/10

D4: Note to D2: if you're going to play fairly quickly, this is the way to do it. A fairly flexible account, compared to some. And the orchestra exudes an old-world Germanic majesty, making me wonder instantly if this is from Berlin or Dresden. Man, this orchestra has great trumpets. Overall, I love the gorgeous sound of this orchestra, but will choose D1 for its more heart-on-sleeve lyricism and impact. 8/10

D1
D4
D3
D2
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Trout on August 12, 2014, 09:08:21 AM
Feel free to join, Trout. I could send you a Group...or two.  :)

Sure, I suppose it cannot hurt even if I may not have the time in the next few days (unless someone would like to help me with my Communications paper ;D).
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on August 12, 2014, 11:36:16 AM
Group A
Cato           ChamberNut

A4             A3 - 9 pts.
A3             A4 - 9 pts.
A1             A2 - 5 pts.
A2             A1 - 5 pts.


Group B
Neal
B1 - 5 pts
B3 - 4 pts
B4 - 3 pts
B2 - 2 pts

Group C
Brian
C4 - 5 pts
C2 - 4 pts
C1 - 3 pts
C3 - 2 pts


Group D
Moonfish             Brian
D4                         D1 - 9 pts
D1                         D4 - 9 pts
D3                         D3 - 6 pts
D2                         D2 - 4 pts
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: amw on August 19, 2014, 02:25:12 AM
D1 - Beautiful, middle-of-the-road... not much else to say for me. Except that at one point the trumpets have that wobbly Soviet-style vibrato which is always a bit endearing. Nothing really special for me though

D2 - Gorgeous strings, which immediately kick it up a notch from D1, and lots of character—the most "willful" interpretation and those always seem to do well by me. There are many odd moments (e.g. intrusive violas at 2 before letter K) which seem designed primarily to disabuse us of the notion that this is some big Celibidache Adagio and only secondarily to illuminate the music, but the clarity of the lines is superb and the orchestra sounds pretty great. It's far from "HIP", I imagine Bruckner purists won't like this, but I like many of the interpretive choices. What else can I say? Character!

D3 - Over-the-top, almost to the point of camp. Still pretty entertaining, especially the Largo funeral march at letter D, which could be Mahler's 12th Symphony. Overall I'm not sold though. Lines don't have very good definition, phrasing doesn't hold my interest.

D4 - Perfect phrasing. Literally perfect. Also perfect balance. This group really gets letter B right by balancing the violins and cellos equally, instead of letting the cellos take over and drown out the equally important version of the main theme* in the violins. Similarly, the change to Largo at 5 after C is observed more strictly, as are (most of) Bruckner's dynamic indications, so I'll call this "HIP" Bruckner. Perhaps it's not as daring or characterful as D2, but it's also less egotistical—an "everyday" version as opposed to a "special occasions" version, one that can be lived with, as it were.

So: D4 is objectively the best, but I do like D2 almost as much, and more in some passages (particularly those in which the strings play alone—I think D2's string section is lovely, Brian and Moonfish are clearly deluded). So I will abuse my powers to give it a chance at survival.

#1 - D2
#2 - D4
#3 - D1
#4 - D3

* Side note: The two main themes of the Adagio are variations of the main theme of the first movement! I don't know if anyone else noticed this while listening, or maybe that's just common knowledge and I only didn't know because I never listen to Bruckner.
(http://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/32084883/br1_0001.png)
and for that matter
(http://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/32084883/br2_0001.png)
(the lower voice—here the cellos—being modified, I think, in order to allow the upper voice to come into relief)

(not to mention the relationship of the 2nd bar of the Adagio to the 2nd bar of the Majestoso's main theme)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Cato on August 19, 2014, 04:44:51 AM


* Side note: The two main themes of the Adagio are variations of the main theme of the first movement! I don't know if anyone else noticed this while listening, or maybe that's just common knowledge and I only didn't know because I never listen to Bruckner.
(http://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/32084883/br1_0001.png)
and for that matter
(http://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/32084883/br2_0001.png)
(the lower voice—here the cellos—being modified, I think, in order to allow the upper voice to come into relief)

(not to mention the relationship of the 2nd bar of the Adagio to the 2nd bar of the Majestoso's main theme)


Yes, very good!  You have deduced some of Bruckner's tricks for keeping things unified, despite the length of some of the symphonies!

I will be reporting this afternoon - I hope! - on Group C: assorted problems have delayed me again.  My left ear has a severe infection, causing a low humming at various levels of volume, i.e. it sounds at times like I am standing next to a blowing, medium-sized air conditioner.   :o

Right now, the tinnitus has subsided to where I can ignore it.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on August 19, 2014, 05:17:35 AM
Thank you for the scores, amw.

I'm willing to move on with only 2 scores per group, although I would really prefer 3 scores.

Next round will combine to only 2 groups with the Scherzo and will combine scores from previous rounds.

 :)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Cato on August 19, 2014, 12:00:47 PM
Okay, here we go!

C 1 - A live performance, with very little audience noise.  We have a strong orchestra here, with good pacing, and the oboe's plaintive song is handled quite well.  The dialogue between the clarinet and the oboe was also nicely done, as were the central portions, with the requisite big swelling brass.  For some reason, the final pages were not rendered as strongly: they were good, perhaps even very good, but a little too subdued for me.  (Compare to A 4 or A 3.)

C 2 - Another live performance with audience noise right at the beginning, and at other sections, more obvious than in C 1.  But...wow!  What a huge sound from the orchestra, especially the cellos and basses!  Brian is quite right!  More stately than C 1, and the expression and clarity in the strings are particularly striking in the opening pages.  Dynamics are done well.  The little funeral march is played with almost too much vibrato the first time around. (Its return in the final section is played without this feature.)  The central climax builds very nicely!  In the final pages, the dialogue in the strings seemed a little perfunctory, but the oboe's few notes are done quite well.  The final page is about as heavenly as it can be.  A wee bit of wobbliness in the strings right around the end.

C 3 - A "bright" recording, which seems to be heavy on the treble!  And yes, there is some tape hiss, as Brian pointed out.  And the tempo is somewhat faster than with the other candidates, but quite acceptable.  This faster tempo gives a somewhat "sprightly" feel to certain passages, thereby contrasting quite well the somber moments, like the funeral march, which I found almost too fast.  It isn't, but some might consider it improper.  The clarity of the lines is extremely good.  The central section is big, but one might quibble that the faster tempo lessens its impact.  And the final pages are quite fine: wistful, hopeful, and elegant.

C 4 - The slowest of them all, so one might immediately think of "Celi" here!   8)   But this is not so slow that incoherence in the lines results!  The result is a heightening of the expression in certain parts, and listen to those string dialogues, and the attention to accents and dynamics!!!  Here is someone who knows what Bruckner meant when he wrote pianissimo in the score!  The build-ups to the central climaxes are masterpieces in clarity, and the final pages are also nicely done, resigned in tone, not as dramatic as in some other versions, but still a fine way to hear the music.

I believe I agree completely with Brian!


C 4

C 2

C 1

C 3


Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on August 19, 2014, 03:59:12 PM
So as of now D2 and D3 would be eliminated, I did send Group D to Sarge as well but he hasn't done the listening  :'(  I was going to wait to see if he wanted to listen to these, however the outcome is already determined, the only possible change could be a tie between D2 (if it received another 5pts) and D1(if it received another 2 pts) but the tiebreaker is combined points from the previous round giving the victory to D1.

Perhaps Sarge would like Group B?  ;)  8)

So, if there are no objections to this, then I will post Group D eliminations later this evening.

Group D
Moonfish           Brian          amw
D4                    D1                  D2 - 9 pts
D1                    D4                  D4 - 13 pts
D3                    D3                  D1 - 12 pts
D2                    D2                  D3 - 8 pts

Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on August 19, 2014, 04:02:13 PM
Updated C - this is becoming the most interesting group so far, I like the way it's headed.

Group C
Brian         Cato
C4              C4 - 10 pts
C2              C2 - 8 pts
C1              C1 - 6 pts
C3              C3 - 4 pts


Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: amw on August 19, 2014, 06:41:39 PM
I can try to do Group B sometime in the next few days (though no guarantee). Any group with me, mc ukrneal and Sarge in it should yield interesting results ;)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: mc ukrneal on August 19, 2014, 08:56:42 PM
I can do one more group as well, either tomorrow or Friday if you want.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on August 20, 2014, 12:02:59 AM
new PMs sent.  :)

Since two beers did me in last night it will be another day before Group D's eliminations are revealed.

Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Brian on August 20, 2014, 03:34:17 AM
Since two beers did me in last night it will be another day before Group D's eliminations are revealed.
I hope they were strong beers...!
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on August 20, 2014, 03:42:16 AM

I hope they were strong beers...!

Brooklyn Lager, not strong, but delicious.
Sooo we'll blame it on being tired then. :) yeah, that's the ticket.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Sergeant Rock on August 20, 2014, 05:47:35 AM
Since the D group fate is already decided, I won't spend too much time commenting. Briefly:

1 - D2  I know this (Brian was correct); one of my favorites. I tried to maintain objectivity but probably failed. The older I get the more I want Bruckner slow movements to move along at a good clip. This conductor, more than any other, has weened me from my decades long "slow is better in Bruckner" obsession. The lack of vibrato somehow works (like amw, I love the string sound and find, in comparison, the strings in the other D competitors to be as mushy as pablum). I love the orchestral balance. The woodwinds really stand out; the horn at 6:25 makes obvious the Beethoven quote (or was Bruckner prescient, anticipating the Bernstein Broadway tune from 1957?  8) ). Love the skeletal sound here of the funeral march

2 - D1  Objectively the best performance...but as I said, objectivity failed me in this group.

3 - D3  I do believe Robert Simpson was correct, that you can't play this movement too slowly, but I simply became impatient with it. The conductor loved it to death.

4 - D4  I do not like the balance at the beginning...the strings swamp the woodwind; that plaintive oboe melody unfortunately buried (relative to D2). The string dominance continued, even obliterating the brass at some points. It put me off the entire performance.


Sarge
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on August 20, 2014, 06:30:30 AM
Since the D group fate is already decided, I won't spend too much time commenting. Briefly:

1 - D2  I know this (Brian was correct); one of my favorites. I tried to maintain objectivity but probably failed. The older I get the more I want Bruckner slow movements to move along at a good clip. This conductor, more than any other, has weened me from my decades long "slow is better in Bruckner" obsession. The lack of vibrato somehow works (like amw, I love the string sound and find, in comparison, the strings in the other D competitors to be as mushy as pablum). I love the orchestral balance. The woodwinds really stand out; the horn at 6:25 makes obvious the Beethoven quote (or was Bruckner prescient, anticipating the Bernstein Broadway tune from 1957?  8) ). Love the skeletal sound here of the funeral march

2 - D1  Objectively the best performance...but as I said, objectivity failed me in this group.

3 - D3  I do believe Robert Simpson was correct, that you can't play this movement too slowly, but I simply became impatient with it. The conductor loved it to death.

4 - D4  I do not like the balance at the beginning...the strings swamp the woodwind; that plaintive oboe melody unfortunately buried (relative to D2). The string dominance continued, even obliterating the brass at some points. It put me off the entire performance.


Sarge

Thank you! However another D vote might actually turn this one, I'll have to calculate later....
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on August 20, 2014, 06:30:44 PM
Group D
Moonfish           Brian          amw                          Sarge
D4                    D1                  D2                       D2 - 14 pts
D1                    D4                  D4                       D1 - 17 pts
D3                    D3                  D1 -                     D3 - 11 pts
D2                    D2                  D3                       D4 - 15 pts


There could potintially be a change in the eliminations if there was another vote, but the original three i sent the links to have voted and Brian joined in as well, so I will wait until tomorrow morning to hear from any one else who's interested, other wise I'll reveal the two eliminated.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: mc ukrneal on August 20, 2014, 11:35:37 PM
C Group:

C1 - Very fast to start, which I like, but does not really make so much of the rise and fall. It's a bit reserved. Some rubato before launching into the beautiful next section. This orchestra has a beautiful sound for Bruckner, mostly because of brass and lower pitched instruments. The build up to the early climax is spine tingling good, though the actual peak is not as full and awesome as it could be, so a slight disappointment there. Middle build up and climax misses the mark, though it has a nice sway to it. Probably would have been last in my B group ranking if this were there. I think it misses some nuance and detail compared to the best (though the overall line is well done).  Ranking: ??

C2 - Beautiful start. The first crescendo is 'meh', but the climax itself is satisfying. This one seems to be a bit more flexible on tempo, which I like - allows for some bits to be emphasized and such. Middle climax seems to start well, but this conductor just doesn't let it go all the way - build that climax and unleash the fury dammit. I find this just isn't satisfying. Ranking: ??

C3 - Now here is a start with intensity, and it is positively flying, but oh, here's a group that finally know what they are doing in the C group!  The rubato and the vibrato are so well integrated. You might think this one was cold and all business (because it is so fast), but it is exactly the opposite - warm and feeling. But then at 6.54 there is some technical fault - oh major bummerness! Until that moment, nearly ideal.   And the middle climax is expertly done. SO here is an interesting conundrum. THis version is the class of the group in terms of performance. But there is a technical fault in the middle where music is lost (like the skip of a record to some degree). Does this fault mean it should be at the bottom despite being a FAR better performance than C1 and C2 (and maybe C4 - yet to hear) or should I ignore that and put it above them? Because, this is version that just oozes Bruckner. Ahh, what a choice!! Ranking: ??

C4 - Dark, intense opening, but much (much) slower. Woodwinds almost drowned out at the beginning (and they seem to miss notes in other area too) - you really need to hear those above or part of the impact is lost. Rubato is very extreme within some phrases - very unusual. I think the conductor focuses a bit too much on the beauty of the moment and not enough on connections in the music. As a result, it drags and drags and drags, and...would you believe I listened to B1 several times and yet here I cannot wait for the suffering to end? By the time you get to the middle climax, who cares. Ranking: Last, regardless!

Ok, so the issue is what to do with C3, but does a technical issue make it an automatic lower ranking? And the answer is...for me...no. The reason is that despite the issue, I'd STILL rather hear C3 than any of the others by a significant margin!! So that means C3 is first and C4 is last (would be last of any version I have ever heard I think).  C1 and C2 both have some issues, but I think I'd rather listen to C1 than C2.

So final order is C3, C1, C2, C4.

By the way, if we were using the Schubert methodology C3 would be a yea/Thumbs up, C1 and C2 would be a meh, and C4 would be a humungous THUMBS DOWN.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: mc ukrneal on August 20, 2014, 11:48:53 PM
C1. Beautiful pacing. The violins sound rather thin and glassy, but it sounds like compression of the sound file down to a tiny size, so that's not a problem with the recording. Overall, superb "Brucknerian" orchestra. Live recording? I heard a cough. Well, anyway, I love this recording. Almost understated, the last few minutes remind me of the adagio to Elgar 1? 8.5/10

C2. Again: spectacular. A "darker" orchestral sound, maybe, with a little stronger tilt toward cellos and bass? Slightly higher volume than C1, also. I think I like this slightly better than C1, but for no rational or explicable reason. Possibly those richer, deeper strings. Yeah, that's it. They are both so darn great. Last chord is a liiittle sloppy. 8.8/10

C3. I'm afraid this one is going to get short shrift among the voters. The older recording results in some clashing instruments - you can tell right from the very first climax, when everyone clamors to be heard over each other. But the unusually fast pace works beautifully, indeed flawlessly. This is an interpretation I will definitely seek out after the competition is over. The ending is the only place where its terseness makes me a little unsatisfied. Kudos for being unsentimental, though. 7/10

C4. Sloooooow. Perrrrrrfect. Maybe too slow? Is everything kind of disjointed? Or do I love this? I think I love it despite being aware of its flaws. The orchestra is superb. The final coda is perfection itself. My head tells me C2 is probably the best here, but my heart lies elsewhere. 9.5/10

C4
C2
C1
C3

Which recordings I want to advance: all  :(

By the way, this was the last movement of the symphony that I "figured out," and it's the one where I have the toughest standards. Or so I thought. Do I have really low standards, or is this the Group of Death?
Holy cowsers! We weren't just 'not on the same page', but we were in different freaking galaxies! C4!?!?! Are you kidding me! Holy moly. Perfection?!?! Oh my. Breathe...ukrneal...just breathe....

Our rankings were exactly the opposite. We'll need some help on this one for sure!!!!!!

By the way, I am not allergic to slow, as the winner for the B group (for me) was 2 minutes slower than C4.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on August 21, 2014, 01:44:04 AM
 $:) * WARNING * PLEASE READ  $:)

It has been brought to my attention that file C2 still has the cover attached, I will send out new C2 links to those that I sent Group C to. Please let me know if you have the original PM sent with all 4 Group C links, I haven't been saving my sent PMs so I may miss someone.

Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on August 21, 2014, 01:54:03 AM
Thanks, Neal, for the scores!  ;D

Updated C -

Group C
Neal
C3
C1
C2
C4

Brian         Cato
C4              C4 - 12 pts
C2              C2 - 11 pts
C1              C1 - 10 pts
C3              C3 - 9 pts

I still have more Group C's out there, if my math is correct there is a potential for a 4-way tie if only one more score gets posted!  ???  8)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: mc ukrneal on August 21, 2014, 02:29:35 AM
Thanks, Neal, for the scores!  ;D

Updated C -

Group C
Neal
C3
C1
C2
C4

Brian         Cato
C4              C4 - 12 pts
C2              C2 - 11 pts
C1              C1 - 10 pts
C3              C3 - 9 pts

I still have more Group C's out there, if my math is correct there is a potential for a 4-way tie if only one more score gets posted!  ???  8)
WHAT?!?!?!?! Cato voted for C4 too!!??! But see, I expect that from him - we have already established that he is sometimes Sarge! :) But Brian - he was one of the good guys and not yet on the dark side! Alas, it may be too late...we may have lost him...
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Brian on August 21, 2014, 03:35:26 AM
$:) * WARNING * PLEASE READ  $:)

It has been brought to my attention that file C2 still has the cover attached, I will send out new C2 links to those that I sent Group C to. Please let me know if you have the original PM sent with all 4 Group C links, I haven't been saving my sent PMs so I may miss someone.

Oh. See, I was using Windows Media Player and WMP always invents artist info using its horrible, horrible version of Gracenote. Thus several of the tracks from the first round of this game were labeled by WMP as being tracks from obscure post-punk bands. So I assumed that that info was completely false.

Yay!
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: k a rl h e nn i ng on August 21, 2014, 03:37:49 AM
Whoa, Bruckner played by post-punk bands?  What a groooovy project!
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Brian on August 21, 2014, 05:57:08 AM
WHAT?!?!?!?! Cato voted for C4 too!!??! But see, I expect that from him - we have already established that he is sometimes Sarge! :) But Brian - he was one of the good guys and not yet on the dark side! Alas, it may be too late...we may have lost him...

Please be aware that I loved all four C group recordings and, if possible, I would like all four of them to advance.

C3, "the fast one," is a perfect example of how to be fast, economical, and unsentimental without being insensitive. Norrington could have learned from it, since he makes all the mistakes C3 avoids, and fails to achieve the best highs of C3's interpretation.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Ken B on August 21, 2014, 06:26:45 AM
Whoa, Bruckner played by post-punk bands?  What a groooovy project!
Crossover baby!
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on August 21, 2014, 07:17:10 AM
Whoa, Bruckner played by post-punk bands?  What a groooovy project!

Bruckner: Symphony No. 10 in C Minor, "Venus in Fur"
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Cato on August 21, 2014, 07:32:22 AM
WHAT?!?!?!?! Cato voted for C4 too!!??! But see, I expect that from him - we have already established that he is sometimes Sarge! :) But Brian - he was one of the good guys and not yet on the dark side! Alas, it may be too late...we may have lost him...

Heh-heh!   :D  And sometimes vice versa! 8)

I easily understand any arrangement here, and can see why the slowest (is it Celibidache and his Munich oompah-pah band?) would not rank first with some.  I must admit: I was highly skeptical when I saw the file break 20 minutes! 

But at the end: it worked!  And somewhat better than the c. 16-minute C 3.

Bruckner: Symphony No. 10 in C Minor, "Venus in Fur"

It would be a fur fur better thing to hear than one might have ever heard!   ???
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: k a rl h e nn i ng on August 21, 2014, 07:34:22 AM
Cato is not Sarge, but they are both Buckeyes!
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: ChamberNut on August 21, 2014, 07:38:37 AM
Can't wait to see the revelation of the "outs" for the Adagio Round 2.  Should be interesting!  :)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Cato on August 21, 2014, 07:40:06 AM
Cato is not Sarge, but they are both Buckeyes!

Amen!  "Cleveland RAWKS!"   8)

Can't wait to see the revelation of the "outs" for the Adagio Round 2.  Should be interesting!  :)

You 'n' me both, brother!   :o   0:)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Brian on August 21, 2014, 09:40:03 AM
I easily understand any arrangement here, and can see why the slowest (is it Celibidache and his Munich oompah-pah band?) would not rank first with some.  I must admit: I was highly skeptical when I saw the file break 20 minutes! 
I think Celi is actually even slower! But I'm not certain. Maybe it is him after all...
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: mc ukrneal on August 21, 2014, 10:32:05 AM
I easily understand any arrangement here, and can see why the slowest (is it Celibidache and his Munich oompah-pah band?) would not rank first with some.  I must admit: I was highly skeptical when I saw the file break 20 minutes! 
You should hear B1. I placed it first in the group, but it is 2 minutes longer than C4 (at 22 min). Yet C4 feels much slower to me.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Cato on August 21, 2014, 11:41:08 AM
You should hear B1. I placed it first in the group, but it is 2 minutes longer than C4 (at 22 min). Yet C4 feels much slower to me.

Okay!  So would you say one's perception of the expression or the intensity trumps tempo in this case?
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on August 21, 2014, 04:43:45 PM
Group D
Moonfish           Brian          amw                          Sarge
D4                    D1                  D2                       D2 - 14 pts
D1                    D4                  D4                       D1 - 17 16 pts
D3                    D3                  D1 -                     D3 - 11 pts
D2                    D2                  D3                       D4 - 15 pts



I miss counted, D1 has 16 points, not 17, but that didn't change anything, Group D is closed, wait for it....

Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on August 21, 2014, 04:53:44 PM
Group D eliminations...


D2

Uncle Woger, a performance that is enjoyed by Sarge and myself. Just barely missed the cut, but I knew it would divide listeners...

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51cSkWJCjtL.jpg)


D3

Skrowaczewski/Saarbrucken

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/71qYdH9hAML._SL450_.jpg)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: mc ukrneal on August 21, 2014, 07:47:01 PM
Okay!  So would you say one's perception of the expression or the intensity trumps tempo in this case?
Tempo is merely the vehicle. I may prefer a certain tempo, but a well executed piece (regardless of tempo) is certainly more important.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Sergeant Rock on August 22, 2014, 02:44:29 AM
Group D eliminations...


D2

Uncle Woger, a performance that is enjoyed by Sarge and myself. Just barely missed the cut, but I knew it would divide listeners...

 :(

In the first round (where it was A4) amw was the only one who gave it a high score (a second place) but Ray, Pim and L/W didn't seem to dislike it either (few negative comments) although they all placed it fourth (of six). That was high enough to keep it in play though. amw stayed consistent, placing it first in the second round. I wonder if it might not have been eliminated had those three been in the second round D group too.

Sarge
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Brian on August 22, 2014, 03:38:47 AM
:(

In the first round (where it was A4) amw was the only one who gave it a high score (a second place) but Ray, Pim and L/W didn't seem to dislike it either (few negative comments) although they all placed it fourth (of six). That was high enough to keep it in play though. amw stayed consistent, placing it first in the second round. I wonder if it might not have been eliminated had those three been in the second round D group too.

Sarge

I can't speak for them, but as I posted on the previous page, tempo and phrasing aren't the problems with Norrington for me; the problem is the denial of vibrato, and that's the biggest factor in the adagio. In fast movements, I would probably like him a lot more.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Pim on August 22, 2014, 03:48:42 AM
Given the standings (sorry, couldn’t help noticing), my first attention went to C3 and C4. Both great, and although I preferred the clarinet & hobo in C4 more than in C3 (that may be due to the sound of C3, not the playing), the tempo difference does it: C4 is just too slow to my taste. Beautifully done, but far from as gripping as C3. Especially at the pp and ppp moments, I got this sense of almost losing track.
So C3 > C4
Then C1, which turned out to be the most convincing for me, right tempo, great urgency, especially around 9.00 (section G in my score, with “Tempo I” indicated). What a build up. Simply marvelous.
C2 I liked least, oboe standing out too much, orchestra almost harsh. I do appreciate the way details are made to stand out, e.g. just before the Grave, around 4.40 (sehr ruhig, ohne zu schleppen), but then the funeral march following that isn’t mournful. Just not adding up for me.
In short: C1 > C3 > C4 > C1
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Sergeant Rock on August 22, 2014, 04:03:11 AM
I can't speak for them, but as I posted on the previous page, tempo and phrasing aren't the problems with Norrington for me; the problem is the denial of vibrato, and that's the biggest factor in the adagio. In fast movements, I would probably like him a lot more.

I've done a 180 concerning vibrato. Although I still think Norrington's theory is BS (that orchestras didn't employ vibrato until the mid-20th century), in practice I've come to appreciate the lean sound of the LCP and Stuttgart strings. Not only in Mozart, Haydn and Beethoven, but Mendelssohn, Smetana...Wagner! I don't always prefer it but it's a valid alternative for me now...even in Romantic-era slow movements.

Sarge
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: k a rl h e nn i ng on August 22, 2014, 04:17:42 AM
. . . I've come to appreciate the lean sound of the LCP and Stuttgart strings. Not only in Mozart, Haydn and Beethoven, but Mendelssohn, Smetana...Wagner! I don't always prefer it but it's a valid alternative for me now...even in Romantic-era slow movements.

Sarge

Same here.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on August 22, 2014, 04:51:58 AM
Very well put, Sarge.

And thank you for the scores, Pim.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Brian on August 22, 2014, 05:14:02 AM
I've done a 180 concerning vibrato. Although I still think Norrington's theory is BS (that orchestras didn't employ vibrato until the mid-20th century), in practice I've come to appreciate the lean sound of the LCP and Stuttgart strings. Not only in Mozart, Haydn and Beethoven, but Mendelssohn, Smetana...Wagner! I don't always prefer it but it's a valid alternative for me now...even in Romantic-era slow movements.

Sarge

I think I like a modified version of this philosophy: that vibrato is a spice, like cayenne or cilantro, that you should not use all the time, but you should definitely use some of the time, otherwise it would lose its effect. Or another example would be "bad words"  ;D

So in my book, vibrato is like dropping the f-bomb... a weapon to be deployed strategically.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: amw on August 24, 2014, 02:41:40 AM
I only hate vibrato in vocal music, but in instrumental music it seems that usually performances with less vibrato do more for me.

Also, for some reason I always seem to like Norrington better than Gardiner, Brüggen or Immerseel when I'm blind comparing, though he's not as well regarded as they are in some quarters (did my own personal b/c with the Eroica, ended up listening through the entire LCP set and finding it some of the best Beethoven I'd heard). Harnoncourt is also a favourite but he's practically MI by now, with all those Berlin Phil recordings.

B1 - Funereal, with the very slow tempo creating almost painful tension and suspense on its own; a unique and unrepeatable interpretation. Not a cough or rustle from the live audience until long after the movement's over. I wonder if they're holding their breath; were I there, I probably would be. >.> The conductor can hold a long line together, and the clarity of the lines and inner parts lends interest to the performance. However the funeral marches lose their march quality altogether. In other passages the rock-steady slow tempo combined with Bruckner's obsession with fitting everything into 4- and 8-bar phrases yields a hypnotic effect; the build-up to the coda, with soft string figures and horn chords over a deep sustained note, gains a massive amount of tension without needing to ramp up the dynamics as B2 and B4 do simply by refusing to move forwards. Definitely held my attention throughout, though I was fidgeting and playing with my hair quite a bit.

B2 - Another slow performance that fails where B1 succeeded by simply not committing to its very slow tempo, speeding up with every crescendo and increase in surface tension. The result was a lack of command over the long lines. My mind wandered a good deal more during this performance. Some ugly vibrato from the violins (damn you Woger) didn't help either.

B3 - A more extraverted performance, deserving of special mention for its funeral march section, as well as for more successfully capturing the variegated moods of the movement than B1 did. Not as dramatic though, and with some rather distracting changes in tempo.

B4 - I spoke too soon; this has distracting changes in tempo, B3's are much more moderate. At the same time I like some aspects of this better than I liked B3. The second theme's better for instance, and the funeral march is as good (B3 and B4, along with D2, are the best funeral march sections so far). Balance is weird with various orchestral details sometimes being too prominent or not prominent enough (where are the trumpets at the climax???). Overall, a bit too nice and pastoral for my tastes. Underpowered.

B1 - Thumbs up (w/reservations)
B3 & B4 - Meh, first class
B2 - Meh, second class

Final score
D2
B1 = D4
(large gap)
D1
B3 = B4
D3 = B2
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on August 24, 2014, 04:34:35 AM
Thanks for the scores, amw!
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: mc ukrneal on August 24, 2014, 08:10:12 AM
B1 - Funereal, with the very slow tempo creating almost painful tension and suspense on its own; a unique and unrepeatable interpretation. Not a cough or rustle from the live audience until long after the movement's over. I wonder if they're holding their breath; were I there, I probably would be. >.> The conductor can hold a long line together, and the clarity of the lines and inner parts lends interest to the performance. However the funeral marches lose their march quality altogether. In other passages the rock-steady slow tempo combined with Bruckner's obsession with fitting everything into 4- and 8-bar phrases yields a hypnotic effect; the build-up to the coda, with soft string figures and horn chords over a deep sustained note, gains a massive amount of tension without needing to ramp up the dynamics as B2 and B4 do simply by refusing to move forwards. Definitely held my attention throughout, though I was fidgeting and playing with my hair quite a bit.
It was amazing to me how slow it goes and yet the line is so easy to follow. I agree that it is unique and I would not want it to be my only version, but what an amazing interpretation.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Sergeant Rock on August 24, 2014, 10:28:49 AM
I've had no time today (thought I would) but I should have B group done by tomorrow.

Sarge
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on August 24, 2014, 11:14:25 AM
Thanks, Sarge.

So Group C can close. One more Group C vote is on its way!

Will try to get 4 scores per group since the third round combines all three rounds.
 B needs two which Sarge will provide one. Group A needs two also, which Jens has one, so could use another volunteer.

Thanks, friends!
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: jlaurson on August 25, 2014, 07:09:43 AM
C1: Forgettable. Good. But not grab-you-by-the-lapel stuff. In a way not as offensive as C2 is, in some places, but C2 is too good to have that mean C1 beats C2. It just doesn’t. It’s to vanilla. It might work as part of the whole symphony, if the other movements make sense of it… and in that sense this is a shame… but as a single movement, it’s just not enough.
No.4

C2: Muffled, old sound. Portentous opening, but in the best of possible ways. Plaintive, forresty. Too slow, but works, actually. Bad sound, muffled and hissy and with switch in quality intermittently. Not, admittedly, listened to on good equipment (computer sound card but good headphones), but still, it really ought to sound better. Broad and broad-minded, sweeping yet conventional. Transitions are good: none too abrupt and effective. Very live recording; many coughs and extraneous instrument sounds. On the one hand, this seems experienced Brucknerizing… on the other hand, I’m not quite sure I buy it.
No.3

C3: Good and calm. Except for very few instrumental hiccups, this is good and well played and unspectacularly above average. My sound card must suck; this, too, sounds like muffled crap. Perhaps I should use *lesser* headphones to get more out of this.
No.2

C4: Is there not a single recording with good sound in this group????
But holy COW, what an opening! PAINFULLY searing from the first notes. I’m all yours! Goosebumps. And there I thought there wasn’t a really good B6 among the whole lot. Totally stead tempo changes (invisible accelerando). OK, not quite holding up like that, throughout, but still top notch.
No.1
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: jlaurson on August 25, 2014, 07:15:41 AM
C1: Forgettable. Good. But not grab-you-by-the-lapel stuff. In a way not as offensive as C2 is, in some places, but C2 is too good to have that mean C1 beats C2. It just doesn’t. It’s to vanilla. It might work as part of the whole symphony, if the other movements make sense of it… and in that sense this is a shame… but as a single movement, it’s just not enough.
No.4

C2: Muffled, old sound. Portentous opening, but in the best of possible ways. Plaintive, forresty. Too slow, but works, actually. Bad sound, muffled and hissy and with switch in quality intermittently. Not, admittedly, listened to on good equipment (computer sound card but good headphones), but still, it really ought to sound better. Broad and broad-minded, sweeping yet conventional. Transitions are good: none too abrupt and effective. Very live recording; many coughs and extraneous instrument sounds. On the one hand, this seems experienced Brucknerizing… on the other hand, I’m not quite sure I buy it.
No.3

C3: Good and calm. Except for very few instrumental hiccups, this is good and well played and unspectacularly above average. My sound card must suck; this, too, sounds like muffled crap. Perhaps I should use *lesser* headphones to get more out of this.
No.2

C4: Is there not a single recording with good sound in this group????
But holy COW, what an opening! PAINFULLY searing from the first notes. I’m all yours! Slooooooooooow goosebumps. Celi-in-Japan-style. (Not that there is such a thing, I think.) And there I thought there wasn’t a really good B6 among the whole lot. Totally stead tempo changes (invisible accelerando). OK, not quite holding up like that, throughout, but still top notch.
No.1

I'm not sure... C3 as No.2 seems too much for simply delivering something that isn't offensive. In a way C3 isn't THAT much better than C1. But I can't have the calculatingly fine C2 be No.2, either... Uh well...
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Brian on August 25, 2014, 07:15:58 AM
My sound card must suck; this, too, sounds like muffled crap. Perhaps I should use *lesser* headphones to get more out of this.
C1 has thin violin tone, and C3 really is as old and "muffled" as you say it is, but the other two sounded fine to me.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on August 25, 2014, 12:29:33 PM


Updated C -

Group C

Pim
C1
C3
C4
C2

Neal
C3
C1
C2
C4

Jens
C4
C3
C2
C1

Brian         Cato
C4              C4
C2              C2
C1              C1
C3              C3

C1 - 17 pts
C2 - 16 pts
C3 - 17 pts
C4 - 20 pts

A tie!!!
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on August 25, 2014, 12:33:04 PM
Wow, Group C is close. I have previous round scores at home and I'll figure out the tie later. Will be which ever recording has most combined from both rounds, since I changed up the "Letter/Number" of each group I can't remember which one is which.  :o

To be continued  8) ...
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Cato on August 25, 2014, 03:15:19 PM
Wow, Group C is close. I have previous round scores at home and I'll figure out the tie later. Will be which ever recording has most combined from both rounds, since I changed up the "Letter/Number" of each group I can't remember which one is which.  :o

To be continued  8) ...

The excitement builds!  I just wrote over at the Schubert Quintet blind comparison that the Adagio of the work (I believe) is perhaps the hardest one to perform from an interpretive standpoint.  For the Sixth, the next two movements ought to cause the conductor and the orchestra some nervousness!
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on August 25, 2014, 06:46:35 PM

C1 - 17 pts
C2 - 16 pts
C3 - 17 pts
C4 - 20 pts

A tie!!!

C1 and C3 both had 13 points in the first round.  :'(
So, the tiebreaker for a tiebreaker is going to be which ever recording had more 1st place votes...

In Round 1 the recording now known as C1 received one 1st place vote, and another one here in Round 2.
In Round 1 the recording now known as C3 received two 1st place votes, and another one here in Round 2,

which means that C1 will be eliminated along with C2.
C3 and C4 survive! 
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Brian on August 25, 2014, 06:54:43 PM
I'm actually rather happy with that outcome. I loved all the recordings in Group C.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on August 25, 2014, 06:57:48 PM
Group B
Neal       amw
B1         B1 - 10 pts
B3         B3 - 8 pts
B4         B4 - 6 pts
B2         B2 - 4 pts


Group A
Cato           ChamberNut
A4             A3 - 9 pts. total
A3             A4 - 9 pts. total
A1             A2 - 5 pts. total
A2             A1 - 5 pts. total

Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on August 25, 2014, 07:29:27 PM
More Round 2 Eliminations.....

C2

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51zioJG6dcL.jpg)


C1

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51lZJDMs3-L.jpg)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: ChamberNut on August 26, 2014, 03:39:12 AM
C1 and C3 both had 13 points in the first round.  :'(
So, the tiebreaker for a tiebreaker is going to be which ever recording had more 1st place votes...

In Round 1 the recording now known as C1 received one 1st place vote, and another one here in Round 2.
In Round 1 the recording now known as C3 received two 1st place votes, and another one here in Round 2,

which means that C1 will be eliminated along with C2.
C3 and C4 survive! 

Wow, this was closer than the 2000 Florida vote count!  ;D
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Brian on August 26, 2014, 03:40:43 AM
Can you please also let us know who they were in the first round? If I liked it in the first, I'd seriously contemplate acquiring Barenboim.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on August 26, 2014, 06:13:59 AM
Can you please also let us know who they were in the first round? If I liked it in the first, I'd seriously contemplate acquiring Barenboim.

Barenboim was B4/C2
Wand/Munich was B5/C1
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Sergeant Rock on August 26, 2014, 06:32:05 AM
Wand/Munich was B5/C1

Surprising, because I don't care for his Kölner RSO Sixth (the one in the RCA box), but I really liked this Munich first movement.

Sarge
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: jlaurson on August 26, 2014, 07:24:00 AM
Barenboim was B4/C2
Wand/Munich was B5/C1

Not liking Wand/Munich that much blind gels with my never quite getting into those recordings when I was listening to them knowingly. Despite being a Wand disciple and certainly positively inclined toward the Munich Philharmonic... esp. in matters Bruckner. Funny how I found the first movement finger-print heavy, but the second a leave-it-alone kind of approach. Rarely do I find Wand performances of anything fingerprint-heavy.

Not surprised, in retrospect, that B4/C2 was Barenboim...

Heard a very fine B7 last night, with Eschenbach and the Gustav Mahler Youth Orchestra. Preceded by premiere of Rihm's first proper (nominally second) Piano Concerto which was a Debussy-Chopin-Rihm dream of a work. Will get lots of play on tour with the GMYO and then the NSO in Washington.

(https://fbcdn-sphotos-g-a.akamaihd.net/hphotos-ak-xpa1/v/t1.0-9/p526x296/1545566_10152373731587989_5037492562558849322_n.jpg?oh=1c1a6ba452e328d2d9a94767664d6f20&oe=5477E902&__gda__=1416500423_8725d63de15dd2daee4c3636760711cb)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Ken B on August 26, 2014, 09:36:20 AM
Can you please also let us know who they were in the first round? If I liked it in the first, I'd seriously contemplate acquiring Barenboim.
I am sure you'd like it Brian. I had it, was not impressed, and sold it!  :laugh:
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: jlaurson on August 31, 2014, 12:16:36 PM


(http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-kbBJMf2qoKg/U85r_6z2dcI/AAAAAAAAHeM/BDnyUcuWMIM/s1600/notesfromthesalzburgfestival2014.gif)


Notes from the 2014 Salzburg Festival ( 17 )
Anton Bruckner Cycle • Bruckner VI


(http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-Ppxpu0XAcTA/VAGQSIHZ6qI/AAAAAAAAHso/tcPmGaiMOLM/s1600/Salzburg_Muti-3_Vienna-Phil_Bruckner6_(c)Silvia-Lelli_laurson_600.jpg)

http://ionarts.blogspot.com/2014/08/notes-from-2014-salzburg-festival-17.html (http://ionarts.blogspot.com/2014/08/notes-from-2014-salzburg-festival-17.html)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on August 31, 2014, 12:54:19 PM
So it was the 6th that Muti butchered. That's a shame, perhaps he'll still win this comparison 
:o  ;D
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: mc ukrneal on September 04, 2014, 01:17:37 AM
Where are we on this? Do you need more votes?
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on September 04, 2014, 01:33:54 AM
Where are we on this? Do you need more votes?

Yes, I've sent out some A and B links but haven't seen anything yet. I'll be happy with three scores for these final groups to move on. Have had some no shows but I know this was a daunting task with a lot of listening.

I may change the format, was going to have third round be the Scherzo and also combine scores from previous rounds, but since we have uneven number of scores for the groups I was thinking of having third round be the Finale and then four from there move on to final which will be entire piece.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: mc ukrneal on September 04, 2014, 01:54:39 AM
I might be able to do A tomorrow if you wanted to close that one. I did B, so no help there.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Moonfish on September 04, 2014, 05:40:36 AM
I will get my act together and finish A tonight!   8)  Been busy busy busy.....
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on September 04, 2014, 06:22:34 AM
Thank you, Neal and Peter!

Peter, have you already started on Group A? If not let me know I'll send you B instead, that way Neal can do A and you have B and we close round 2!
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Moonfish on September 04, 2014, 09:49:38 PM
Thank you, Neal and Peter!

Peter, have you already started on Group A? If not let me know I'll send you B instead, that way Neal can do A and you have B and we close round 2!

Yes, I listened to all the A's when I got them from you, but then I decided to let them ferment in my mind. However, I have been distracted by other things since then. Just got all the B's so I will do those instead so you can synchronize with Neal.   :)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: mc ukrneal on September 04, 2014, 10:39:57 PM
A Group

A1 - Starts too fast with too little mystery, but the sound impact is good. It's just a little too jolly for me at the beginning. But after that, it is really very good.  I think it ultimately just feels a bit rushed at times (and you can feel it in some unison on ocassion). The middle crescendo is handled well considering the speed. There is a feeling of breathless excitement with this one though (which works better in some parts better than others). Ranking: 2.

A2 - A beautiful start with a bit of darkness and the woodwinds sound beautiful. It could have a hair more detail, but really hard to fault this one. The middle crescendo is also nicely done. That silence before the middle crescendo is brilliantly done (sometimes conductors don't use those silences as well as they should). I think ultimately I would have liked the brass to have bit more oompf at times. Ranking: 1.

A3 - Slower yet, but a rich sound and just the right amount of darkness. Didn't like woodwinds, which seemed a bit too staccato and not nuanced enough in their phrasing (and they are ocassionally hard to hear over the rest of the orchestra). Although I have some issues with this one, it's actually not bad at all. Ranking 3

A4 - Nicely mysterious and beautiful in sound, although the woodwinds could have been stronger. Brass sometimes seem out of tune (and ocassionally lack weight). But those strings! And the crescendo is good, but not as good as some others. I really would not want to hear that opening over and over though, and with things so close in this group, it's the deal breaker for this one.  Ranking: 4

Wow - tough group all around, but A4 has that disappointing opening - a deal breaker. A4 was my least favorite for sure, so we can get that one out of the way. A3 is nice, but I think the phrasing is sometimes distracting, so that is third. That leaves A1 and A2 (overly fast, but exciting VS traditional goodness, but perhaps lacking the very thing that makes A1 so exciting). I really want to hear both of these further on, but with Cato in the group, I know he must have chosen A4 or A3! Which means I may only have a chance with my #1 choice. I think this movement needs some darkness/angst/mystery and I think A2 has more of that, so will go with A2.

Final order: A2, A1, A3, A4
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: mc ukrneal on September 04, 2014, 10:43:11 PM
Figures - I am often the odd man out in my groups. Moonfish - maybe you can vote in both groups?!?!?! :)

Did I have Cato pegged or what!?!  :-*
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on September 05, 2014, 06:37:34 AM
Yes, I listened to all the A's when I got them from you, but then I decided to let them ferment in my mind. However, I have been distracted by other things since then. Just got all the B's so I will do those instead so you can synchronize with Neal.   :)

You can post both scores if you remember A.


And thank you, Neal, for the scores.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Moonfish on September 05, 2014, 11:33:59 PM
My scores for Group B:

B1
Tempo a bit too slow. The instruments seem a bit undefined, but builds pretty well into the initial crescendo. Still, the pace is too slow for me and the orchestra seems hesitant.  Slow, slow, slow, slow.  Lacking in the sublime. It has clarity, but not the life I normally sense in Bruckner. I found myself waiting and the music wanting. I feel as if the orchestra just is playing and not truly partaking in the mystery of Bruckner’s 6th symphony.  The slow pace definitely made the adagio less approachable from my perspective. I have a feeling of that this could be Celibidache’s rendition of Bruckner 6?  The individualistic approach taken is of course a valid one, and comes across a bit better in the central build-up (@13min). Alas, at that point I was losing interest in the performance.  The slow phrasing made it find its own angles of power and mystery.  I found myself appreciating the take on Bruckner, but longed for the expected oscillation.  Beautifully performed, but at a too slow pace.  Impressive that the rendition held up at the slow approach in a live performance.

B2
Slow, but the phrasing and build-ups are coming along a bit better compared to B1. Regardless, slow pace is dominating here.  It seems as if slow is a common approach in the adagio for many conductors.  I have similar impressions as B1. Slow unfolding in an attempt to find a unique clarity and grace.  It is well played and comes across as beautiful and pretty rather than full of wonder and mystery.  This rendition seems a bit erratic in terms of tempos and phrasing. It picks up nicely in the middle section, but there I sense a lack of harmony and synchronicity in terms of the orchestra’s playing. It seems off.

B3
The instruments have character & personality from the very beginning as the crescendo builds. Wonderful start.  Haunting in its phrasing by 3min.  A bit more hesitant. Definitely more mystery and fulfillment within this performance. Its threads blend much better than B1/B2.  @8 I find that I really like it as I sense it coming alive and fulfill its promise. Great peaks at 930 with horn and strings bringing out a full peak with strength and at a good pace. The end is delicately phrased. Seems like a finalist to me.

B4
Colorful with great pacing building well into the initial peak.  The orchestra seemed hesitant at times with instrumental solos that sounded off.  The center peak is polished but lacks in mystery and grace.  The orchestra seems to not always reach its full potential in harmony and tend to not transcend into the mystery and grace of Bruckner.

My top pick in this group is easily B3.
The slow pace and irregular orchestra places B2 in the last spot. 
I had a harder time deciding between B1 and B4 since I am not a fan of slow pacing in Bruckner (especially a prolonged one). B1 was a bit too slow for me. At the same time B4 was not played with the ability I expect. The tempo was fine, but it did not come across well [especially the strings).


My Final Ranking
B3 > B1 > B4  > B2


Peter
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Sergeant Rock on September 06, 2014, 03:58:15 AM
I'm listening to the A & B groups now (really  ;D )  I'll have them done in a couple of hours.

Sarge
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on September 06, 2014, 04:01:30 AM
I'm listening to the A & B groups now (really  ;D )  I'll have them done in a couple of hours.

Sarge

Tearin it up!  8)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Ken B on September 06, 2014, 04:43:21 AM
I'm listening to the A & B groups now (really  ;D )  I'll have them done in a couple of hours.

Sarge
Ripping the heart out of Klemp, Barbirolli, and Celi one imagines.  >:D
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Sergeant Rock on September 06, 2014, 04:48:49 AM
Ripping the heart out of Klemp, Barbirolli, and Celi one imagines.  >:D

Three of my favorite conductors?  :o  ...I hope not! Although in the past, in these comparisons, I have been known to blindly murder a few favorites  ;D


Sarge 
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Ken B on September 06, 2014, 04:50:52 AM
Three of my favorite conductors?  :o  ...I hope not! Although in the past, in these comparisons, I have been known to blindly murder a few favorites  ;D


Sarge
A closet Roegner fan ...  >:D
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Sergeant Rock on September 06, 2014, 06:19:02 AM
Second Round, Group B

B1 The Apotheosis of the Dirge. We all know who this is. He gets a free pass to the next round. Love the way the slow tempo and the prominent, rude, almost dissonant horns emphasize the struggle towards the central climax.

B2 I don't, in principle, dislike tempo treated like taffy. I'm less concerned with architecture than with emotional truth. As long as it serves an emotive purpose I can happily live with it. But this performance didn't move me. (I think I know the conductor so it doesn't surprise me.) I didn't like the string dominance either. I often wanted more horn and woodwind. The horns were especially deficient in the bars leading to the central climax.

B3 A performance with few negative qualities (horns disappointed occasionally) although no real heart-wrenching highs either.  Great sonics. I just sat back and wallowed in the gorgeous sounds of Bruckner. I'll probably be surprised when the conductor is revealed. I expect it's someone I wouldn't have guessed.

B4 I think the taffy pull works here. It kept me interested, waiting for what would happen next; what the next surprise would be. The instrumental balance was almost always perfect (yeah, amw, the trumpets do go missing at the climax); woodwind standing out when needed, great horns and lower brass. The funeral march was deeply felt.

1 - B1
2 - B4
3 - B3
4 - B2

Sarge
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Sergeant Rock on September 06, 2014, 12:22:30 PM
Second Round, Group A

I had to take a break to feed Mrs. Rock. We had baked ocean perch prepared Greek style (at least it's Greek according to the recipe I found online). Drank a Slovenian white wine. Fortified thusly, I tackled group A.


A1  Technicolor sound, intense drama, Bruckner kicking ass. This is Bruckner playing and interpreting quite different from the performances in the B group where Zen-like spirituality reigned. And look amw! here are B4's missing trumpets  ;D

A2  The funeral march was interesting, with timps more recessed than I usually like but producing a ghostly ambience that's quite fitting.  "That silence before the middle crescendo is brilliantly done" ---agree with Neal here. Bruckner taking one of his deep breaths, the conductor fearless in letting it happen. Overall a quite beautiful performance and recording, nicely paced. Hard to fault...but I will: I wanted more detail at certain points.

A3  There's a minute and half difference in time between this and A2 but they sound like twins in many respects. Very hard to choose between them. Another ghostly funeral march. There's a delicacy in much of the solo playing I find compelling. The climb to the central climax was a bit more intense than A2 although I wanted even more horn (who would've guessed  ;) ). Brilliant trumpets in the climax, ringing out triumphant. Is that the deciding factor?

A4  Oboe is a bit shaky in the beginning. Does that add or detract? It was like hearing little lost souls. Central climax relatively weak. I don't particulary like the sound of this (Central European?) orchestra. But....I gave it a second chance. And damn, I'm liking it more now. This really is the Group of Death  :(  But the brass is still weak in the central climax (may be the recording, not the players' fault).

1 - A1
2 - A3
3 - A2
4 - A4


Sarge
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Sergeant Rock on September 06, 2014, 12:42:15 PM
A closet Roegner fan ...  >:D

No...you're mistaking me for André...although he's been out of the closet for years now  ;D

Sarge
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on September 06, 2014, 01:19:04 PM
Yay! I think I can close this round. And I'll reveal the eliminated recordings this evening. I'm ready to move on!

Also, any objection to making semi-final round the finale movement rather than Scherzo? And make it a true playoff round rather than combined scores?
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Sergeant Rock on September 06, 2014, 01:27:00 PM
Yay! I think I can close this round. And I'll reveal the eliminated recordings this evening. I'm ready to move on!

Also, any objection to making semi-final round the finale movement rather than Scherzo? And make it a true playoff round rather than combined scores?

Will the Scherzo be the final round then? If so, I don't understand your reasoning.

Sarge
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on September 06, 2014, 01:34:03 PM
Will the Scherzo be the final round then? If so, I don't understand your reasoning.

Sarge

Entire piece will be in final. And I believe that there's more to judge in terms of interpretation/performance from the finale than the scherzo. After my initial proposal of the rounds I realized that I don't think the Scherzo's would split the listeners as much.
Now this was also when I thought I had more participants and hoping that those who were involved weren't judging every Group, which it pretty much has become that. Which I really don't mind in the end, and hopefully by changing the labeling of the groups helped with disguising some discs that were recognized.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Sergeant Rock on September 06, 2014, 01:36:09 PM
Entire piece will be in final. And I believe that there's more to judge in terms of interpretation/performance from the finale than the scherzo. After my initial proposal of the rounds I realized that I don't think the Scherzo's would split the listeners as much.
Now this was also when I thought I had more participants and hoping that those who were involved weren't judging every Group, which it pretty much has become that. Which I really don't mind in the end, and hopefully by changing the labeling of the groups helped with disguising some discs that were recognized.

Ah, I see. Sounds good to me.

Sarge
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on September 06, 2014, 01:41:08 PM
How's my math?  8)

Group B
Neal       amw     Moonfish     Sarge
B1         B1         B3             B1 - 19 pts
B3         B3         B1             B4 - 13 pts
B4         B4         B4             B3 - 15 pts
B2         B2         B2             B2 - 8 pts




YIKES!  ???  :o  :'(  Hey, Peter! Do you remember your Group A listening?  ;D 
Kidding, I will just do a tie breaker of combined points from Round 1.

Group A
Cato           ChamberNut     Sarge        Neal
A4             A3                      A1           A2 - 13 pts
A3             A4                      A3           A1 - 13 pts
A1             A2                      A2           A3 - 16 pts
A2             A1                      A4           A4 - 13 pts
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Sergeant Rock on September 06, 2014, 01:45:13 PM
YIKES!  ???  :o  :'(  Hey, Peter! Do you remember your Group A listening?  ;D

Group A
Cato           ChamberNut     Sarge        Neal
A4             A3                      A1           A2 - 13 pts
A3             A4                      A3           A1 - 13 pts
A1             A2                      A2           A3 - 16 pts
A2             A1                      A4           A4 - 13 pts

The Group of Death indeed!

Sarge
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Trout on September 06, 2014, 03:02:21 PM
I believe A1 should be at 14 points, meaning A2 and A4 would be sent into oblivion by a single point.  >:D

(also less important, but B3 is at 16, according to my calculations)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on September 06, 2014, 03:36:16 PM
I believe A1 should be at 14 points, meaning A2 and A4 would be sent into oblivion by a single point.  >:D

(also less important, but B3 is at 16, according to my calculations)

That's why I asked about my math. Thank you, Trout!
Watching a 5 year old and calculating didn't blend well.  ;D
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on September 06, 2014, 04:53:00 PM
Updated scores, results are on the way..

Group B
Neal       amw     Moonfish     Sarge
B1         B1         B3             B1 - 19 pts
B3         B3         B1             B4 - 13 pts - eliminated
B4         B4         B4             B3 - 16 pts
B2         B2         B2             B2 - 8 pts - eliminated



Group A
Cato           ChamberNut     Sarge        Neal
A4             A3                      A1           A2 - 13 pts - eliminated
A3             A4                      A3           A1 - 14 pts
A1             A2                      A2           A3 - 16 pts
A2             A1                      A4           A4 - 13 pts - eliminated
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on September 06, 2014, 04:55:27 PM
Remembering the Round 2 Eliminations so far

C2

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51zioJG6dcL.jpg)


C1

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51lZJDMs3-L.jpg)

Group D eliminations...


D2


(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51cSkWJCjtL.jpg)


D3

Skrowaczewski/Saarbrucken

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/71qYdH9hAML._SL450_.jpg)
[/quote]
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on September 06, 2014, 05:16:31 PM
The Rest of Round 2 Eliminations

Group A

A2

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/41rPv6acbRL._SX350_.jpg)

A4

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/516wfyD3WOL._SX350_.jpg)


Group B

B2

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/81l1p-ziY4L._SL350_.jpg)

B4

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51AD%2BNW-baL._SX350_.jpg)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Brian on September 06, 2014, 05:30:16 PM
Jochum double death!??!?!?!  ??? ???
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Ken B on September 06, 2014, 05:31:52 PM
Jochum double death!??!?!?!  ??? ???
Sarge.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: amw on September 06, 2014, 05:40:46 PM
Wow, everyone put Jochum/EMI in last place. XD

I am also surprised by the elimination of Wand. (I didn't hear that performance, but he's usually quite well regarded by 'purists'.)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on September 06, 2014, 05:52:06 PM
The semifinal is going to be way too much fun! I'm actually listening to some of the Finales from the recordings that moved on right now.  ;D

There are now two Groups, X and Y, each with 4 recordings. I will have these ready to go in a few days, I'm leaving on Saturday for a week but will have limited access to WiFi, when I decide to drive into town and find the Barnes and Noble or Starbucks. PM me or leave a message here on this thread if you want in a group. Otherwise I will split up the two groups between only those who participated in Round 2, but new participants are always welcomed!

Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Moonfish on September 06, 2014, 10:04:24 PM
The Rest of Round 2 Eliminations

Group A


A4

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/516wfyD3WOL._SX350_.jpg)


oh no!!!  I wish I had finished the A set - only listened to A1-A3!   
Jochum on DG is my favorite Bruckner 6.    :'( :'( :'(
All hope is lost.......
A bottle of wine is needed!


Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Sergeant Rock on September 07, 2014, 03:13:05 AM
Sarge.

The Jochum/Dresden elimination was a group effort...but yeah, my late entry into the A group doomed Jochum/SOBR. Sorry, Cato!

Sarge
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Ken B on September 07, 2014, 04:59:09 AM
oh no!!!  I wish I had finished the A set - only listened to A1-A3!   
Jochum on DG is my favorite Bruckner 6.    :'( :'( :'(
All hope is lost.......
A bottle of wine is needed!



The Jochum/Dresden elimination was a group effort...but yeah, my late entry into the A group doomed Jochum/SOBR. Sorry, Cato!

Sarge
I thought you nixed both Jochums Sarge?
Sarge is right, the voters all dissed the Joch, but can I infer from this Sarge that had I asked you last week you'd have listed Jochum as a favourite?

Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Sergeant Rock on September 07, 2014, 05:07:27 AM
I thought you nixed both Jochums Sarge?
Sarge is right, the voters all dissed the Joch, but can I infer from this Sarge that had I asked you last week you'd have listed Jochum as a favourite?

I did nix both but everyone in the group placed the EMI last so I can't take complete credit for that. Actually Jochum is one of my least favorite Bruckner conductors. That I placed both last in their groups does not surprise me. There are exceptions: I like his Dresden Fourth and Ninth, the Concertgebouw Fifth, the Bavarian Second. Favorite Sixths are: Dohnányi, Stein, Sawallisch, Klemperer, Celi, Norrington.

Sarge
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: mc ukrneal on September 07, 2014, 08:34:24 AM
I thought you nixed both Jochums Sarge?
Sarge is right, the voters all dissed the Joch, but can I infer from this Sarge that had I asked you last week you'd have listed Jochum as a favourite?


No dissing here, just a question of preference. I actually own the Jochum/EMI set, but did not recoginze it. I actually thought I liked the EMI set, but now I am starting to wonder!! :)

And it wasn't Sarge's fault at all. For once, the stars aligmed, and we actually voted on the same party line. I'm sure it won't last!! :)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Lisztianwagner on September 07, 2014, 10:58:08 AM
I was quite busy in the last two weeks, I'm deeply sorry to have missed the second round of the Bruckner Blind Comparison, hope to take part to the next one! The results are interesting, I wonder which are the recordings still in the running!
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on September 07, 2014, 02:09:10 PM
I was quite busy in the last two weeks, I'm deeply sorry to have missed the second round of the Bruckner Blind Comparison, hope to take part to the next one! The results are interesting, I wonder which are the recordings still in the running!

No need to apologize! And yes please join the next round, I'll include you! Thanks!
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: amw on September 07, 2014, 02:12:45 PM
Could we have some information about what the eliminated recordings were in the previous round as well? I'm slightly curious...
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on September 07, 2014, 04:16:47 PM
Here are the Round 2 eliminations and their labeling, Round 1/Round 2

B4/C2 – BARENBOIM/BERLIN
B5/C1 – WAND/MUNICH

A3/D3 – SKROWACZEWSKI/SAARBRUCKEN
A4/D2 – NORRINGTON/STUGGART

C1/B4 – GIELEN/BADEN-BADEN
C3/B2 – JOCHUM/DRESDEN

D1/A4 – JOCHUM/BRSO(DG)
D5/A2 – NAGANO/DEUTSCHES-BERLIN


Round 3 Groups so far, will send links out on Wednesday, let me know if you wish to join!  8)
Group X - Jens, ChamberNut, Brian, Moonfish, amw
Group Y - Sarge, Cato, Neal, LisztianWagner, Pim
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: mc ukrneal on September 08, 2014, 02:38:23 AM
Here are the Round 2 eliminations and their labeling, Round 1/Round 2

B4/C2 – BARENBOIM/BERLIN
B5/C1 – WAND/MUNICH

A3/D3 – SKROWACZEWSKI/SAARBRUCKEN
A4/D2 – NORRINGTON/STUGGART

C1/B4 – GIELEN/BADEN-BADEN
C3/B2 – JOCHUM/DRESDEN

D1/A4 – JOCHUM/BRSO(DG)
D5/A2 – NAGANO/DEUTSCHES-BERLIN


Round 3 Groups so far, will send links out on Wednesday, let me know if you wish to join!  8)
Group X - Jens, ChamberNut, Brian, Moonfish, amw
Group Y - Sarge, Cato, Neal, LisztianWagner, Pim
Foul! Yellow card! Cato and Sarge in the same group?!?! With me??@!! As they say, "Oi Vey!"

Interesting that I had Jochum first and second in the first round and dead last in the second.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Sergeant Rock on September 08, 2014, 02:50:51 AM
Interesting that I had Jochum first and second in the first round and dead last in the second.

Yeah, same here. I had the Jochum DG first in round 1 and last in round 2. Curious.

Sarge
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: ChamberNut on September 08, 2014, 03:28:28 AM
Jochum double death!??!?!?!  ??? ???

No!!!!!!  :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'(
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Brian on September 08, 2014, 03:30:13 AM
I gave Nagano my highest rating in the first round, of any clip from any group I heard. It was in fact my only 10! I did not hear it in the second round, so you jerks knocked out my apparent #1 favorite. Will have to listen to that one in full to see if the rest is as good as the first movement.

Quote
D5.Whoa, I LOVE the way the cellos phrase their opening phrase. They really dig into it, express way more than anyone else does. The trumpet is kinda nasally, but everything else is fantastic. Love the violas at 2:30. Checking in at 6:00 to say that this is bearing down on a 10/10 score. Man, I don't even have anything to say about this impressive orchestra, flawless conducting, and expressive phrasing, except to say the standard has been set. The quick diminuendo-crescendo thing around 16:00, which is definitely not in the text (?), is the only moment of controversy here.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on September 08, 2014, 03:48:00 AM
Foul! Yellow card! Cato and Sarge in the same group?!?! With me??@!! As they say, "Oi Vey!"

Interesting that I had Jochum first and second in the first round and dead last in the second.

Placing Sarge in a group is most difficult, I think I figured out that he owns about 65% of the recordings used. But history has shown that he doesn't always keep his favorites in these comparisons.  ;)
Plus, Sarge and Cato's Group A scoring from round 2 was nothing alike so I have faith that will split on these four.



I gave Nagano my highest rating in the first round, of any clip from any group I heard. It was in fact my only 10! I did not hear it in the second round, so you jerks knocked out my apparent #1 favorite. Will have to listen to that one in full to see if the rest is as good as the first movement.


I'm a little bummed to see Nagano out myself, I think its a fantastic performance, in fact I believe Nagano's finale would have beaten some of the ones in the semi's right now, but that's the way the playoffs go!

I will say that there are 2 underdogs that have gone further than I really expected.

Also, I did purchase several of these recordings just for the comparison, so at the end I may put some up for a disc swap if anyone is interested. Even though I love this piece, I think I could live with a little less than 22 recordings.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: mc ukrneal on September 08, 2014, 07:57:12 AM
I gave Nagano my highest rating in the first round, of any clip from any group I heard. It was in fact my only 10! I did not hear it in the second round, so you jerks knocked out my apparent #1 favorite. Will have to listen to that one in full to see if the rest is as good as the first movement.

I put it in first in the second round - alas, it was not enough.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Brian on September 08, 2014, 07:57:27 AM
Just listened to Nagano complete. LOVED it. Looking back at the ballots, A was Cato's "Group of Death" and all four voters actually liked Nagano, Neal and Sarge in particular. Guess the other entries in group A are just that good.

I am really taken with the Nagano performance. I have hopes of hearing an even better one in the final round, but if not, the game will still be worth it for me!
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: mc ukrneal on September 08, 2014, 09:47:56 AM
Just listened to Nagano complete. LOVED it. Looking back at the ballots, A was Cato's "Group of Death" and all four voters actually liked Nagano, Neal and Sarge in particular. Guess the other entries in group A are just that good.

I am really taken with the Nagano performance. I have hopes of hearing an even better one in the final round, but if not, the game will still be worth it for me!
This is why I like these exercises. You get a chance to hear all sorts of different ideas about the same piece of music. It also helped me solidify what I enjoy most in the music and what approach gives me that. Interestingly in this piece, I have chosen some wildly different interpretations.

The A group was a very good group - I think this one would have gotten through in a different group (or perhaps with more voters).
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Sergeant Rock on September 08, 2014, 11:52:22 AM
Also, I did purchase several of these recordings just for the comparison, so at the end I may put some up for a disc swap if anyone is interested. Even though I love this piece, I think I could live with a little less than 22 recordings.

I have 20...seems about right  ;)

Sarge
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Sergeant Rock on September 08, 2014, 12:02:25 PM
A was Cato's "Group of Death" and all four voters actually liked Nagano, Neal and Sarge in particular.

I did like it. I had to almost invent something to dislike about it, in both rounds. I called it "perfection" in the first round, but still placed it fourth  :o  And yes, the A group in the second round was brutal. I even came to like the old Jochum in the end. I suppose the only reason I couldn't score the Nagano higher was its, to my ears, relative emotional reticence.

Sarge
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Brian on September 08, 2014, 12:05:33 PM
I did like it. I had to almost invent something to dislike about it, in both rounds. I called it "perfection" in the first round, but still placed it fourth  :o  And yes, the A group in the second round was brutal. I even came to like the old Jochum in the end. I suppose the only reason I couldn't score the Nagano higher was its, to my ears, relative emotional reticence.

Sarge
Which works in context. In the first round, only that artificial sudden diminuendo-crescendo right near the end kept me from awarding a perfect 10/10.

This game IS hard. Conductors really bringing their best. Not like the Berlioz game, where I disliked most all but Martinon, of the finalists. (EDIT)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: ChamberNut on September 09, 2014, 04:01:28 AM
Well, I feel better knowing that I didn't have a hand in eliminating A4 (Jochum DG).  :(
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: ChamberNut on September 09, 2014, 04:03:14 AM
I also think I've found an even more polar opposite GMG member than Sarge, when it comes to recordings.

Neal.   :D  Both in the Bruckner 6 and Schubert String Quintet blind comparisons.  ;D
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: mc ukrneal on September 09, 2014, 04:14:17 AM
I also think I've found an even more polar opposite GMG member than Sarge, when it comes to recordings.

Neal.   :D  Both in the Bruckner 6 and Schubert String Quintet blind comparisons.  ;D
Maybe lately, but usually I am the opposite of Sarge, born out by several blind listenings. But, gasp! Maybe I HAVE been lured over to the dark side but didn't notice it! Those crafty buggers! :)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Sergeant Rock on September 09, 2014, 04:18:23 AM
Maybe lately, but usually I am the opposite of Sarge, born out by several blind listenings. But, gasp! Maybe I HAVE been lured over to the dark side but didn't notice it! Those crafty buggers! :)

Maybe you and I will end up on opposite sides in the next round, thereby bringing, once again, balance to the universe   8)

Sarge
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on September 09, 2014, 04:21:10 AM
Look for links to the semi-finals later today! Let's get this thing rolling!  8)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: mc ukrneal on September 09, 2014, 04:26:09 AM
Maybe you and I will end up on opposite sides in the next round, thereby bringing, once again, balance to the universe   8)

Sarge
Or maybe we have a similar taste in Bruckner, after all I did like the really slow one. We both like the Haitink's Bruckner 9 and we were both similar on the Jochums. Ah, Bruckner has brought balance to the universe indeed. I think we should both have some German white and call it a day! :)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: k a rl h e nn i ng on September 09, 2014, 05:08:56 AM
Just say yes to Harmony!
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Ken B on September 09, 2014, 07:58:09 AM
Just say yes to Harmony!
Don't let Pierre Boulez know where you live.



Britney Spears either.

 >:D
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Cato on September 09, 2014, 08:01:34 AM
No!!!!!!  :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'(

No!!!!!!  :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'(

No!!!!!!  :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'(

No!!!!!!  :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'(

Oh well!  I just had to get that out of my system!

On to Round 3!
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on September 09, 2014, 10:11:59 AM
Links sent. Enjoy!  8)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: k a rl h e nn i ng on September 09, 2014, 10:16:19 AM
Don't let Pierre Boulez know where you live.

I'm not worried;  he's fundamentally lazy.  Being a gadfly is a pretty low-threshold investment.

8)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: mc ukrneal on September 09, 2014, 10:58:48 PM
I had some unexpected time today, so here is Group Y

Y1 - Strings not quite as full as I'd like, and brass blatt a bit when they enter. The sound of the full orchestra is beautiful, but I feel the flow is constantly disrupted, which is driven home by the fluctuating tempo. The quieter sections seem to work a bit better, but I feel this one just misses the mark a bit. There also seem to be some unison issues (the issue is that I lose the rhythm sometimes) in multiple locations. The tempo is sometimes sluggish. The maddening thing about this one was that it hard moments that were 'so right'. It could have been a contender. Ultimately - disappointing.  Ranking: 4

Y2 - Not particularly exciting beginning. This one has more consistant tempo, but somehow does not quite touch me much in the climaxes.  Again, unison issues when the full orchestra comes in (and in several other places later on - and much worse later on). The transitions here work a bit better than in Y1, but are still problematic at times. The inner voices seem difficult to make out sometimes. Entrances are often ineffective. So now two in a row that don't really cut it.   Ranking: 4

Y3 - Slower beginning. This one seems to breathe more, though brass entrance is perhaps too laid back. This one has better trasitions and interconnection between the parts, which gives it much more cohesiveness (something Y1 and Y2 lacked). In this regard, it is much better. But the tempo sometimes seems to hold it back, as does the sometimes restrained playing. Better than Y1 and Y2 in some ways, but not in others. I was impatient for it to end. Ranking: 4

Y4 - A bit more taut at the start with a slightly faster tempo. Would have liked a bit more expressiveness. But then they speed up into the unison part and that makes the difference as it is the first one that has some excitement. The tempo tends to change at times (too abruptly for my tastes), but the beat and the integration of the different parts is finally well done. This is not ideal either and could have more intensity and expressiveness, but it is galaxies ahead of the other three. Ranking: 1

We'e all heard of the Group of Death. Well, this was the Group of Deathly Hollows, because 3 of 4 rang hollow and were something of a chore to listen to (aka deathly). And I am guessing that the #1 choice would have been second or third in a different group. Ranking them was nearly impossible. Even my first choice lacked the forward momentum or excitement that can't really be so hard to accomplish, can it? So here is what I would like to do - if I am allowed:

Ranking: First Place - Y4, Last Place - everyone else.

The last three (Y1, Y2 and Y3) don't deserve to go through in my opinion. 

EDIT: My ranking in order is: Y4, Y1, Y3, Y2.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Sergeant Rock on September 10, 2014, 01:33:12 AM
Links sent. Enjoy!  8)

Ranking: First Place - Y4, Last Place - everyone else.
The last three (Y1, Y2 and Y3) don't deserve to go through in my opinion. 


Neal, you ignored the imperative. You didn't enjoy   :laugh:

Sarge
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: mc ukrneal on September 10, 2014, 06:09:07 AM

Neal, you ignored the imperative. You didn't enjoy   :laugh:

Sarge

I tried! I really did! But they made it so hard! :(
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Cato on September 10, 2014, 06:26:14 AM
I tried! I really did! But they made it so hard! :(

Possibly the terrible result of bidding farewell to BOTH recordings by Eugen Jochum  ??? ??? ???   ?
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on September 10, 2014, 06:30:07 AM
I will go 1st place = 4 pts, 2nd = 3pts, 3rd = 2pts and last place will get 1 pt.

Neal do you want Y4-4 pts and the others split so each gets 2 pts? Are you sure there's not one of those 3 you liked better?
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Ken B on September 10, 2014, 06:42:07 AM
Possibly the terrible result of bidding farewell to BOTH recordings by Eugen Jochum  ??? ??? ???   ?
I gotta say, as a lazy by-stander, this is turning out to be good theatre. Wailing, gnashing of teeth, great recordings zapped.  Fun stuff.  :laugh:
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: mc ukrneal on September 10, 2014, 08:41:10 AM
I will go 1st place = 4 pts, 2nd = 3pts, 3rd = 2pts and last place will get 1 pt.

Neal do you want Y4-4 pts and the others split so each gets 2 pts? Are you sure there's not one of those 3 you liked better?
I was afraid you might say that, so I was prepared just in case. I added in rankings.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on September 13, 2014, 03:43:12 AM
Oy!
I'm about to leave for a week, I'll have access to the Internet but only through mobile devices. Let me know by the end of the day if you need links.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Sergeant Rock on September 13, 2014, 03:55:46 AM
Oy!
I'm about to leave for a week, I'll have access to the Internet but only through mobile devices. Let me know by the end of the day if you need links.

Send me the links to the X group please.

Sarge
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on September 13, 2014, 05:31:18 AM
Send me the links to the X group please.

Sarge

Did you get the PM with Group Y?
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Sergeant Rock on September 13, 2014, 05:34:20 AM
Did you get the PM with Group Y?

I did. I want to do both groups.

Sarge
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Ken B on September 13, 2014, 05:36:29 AM
I did. I want to do both groups.

Sarge
Doubles his chances to eliminate Celi.

 :laugh:
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Moonfish on September 13, 2014, 09:53:51 AM
Greg,
As this is the semi-finale I think that you should either keep the groups defined or, alternatively,  send the links to all the participants on the tier.  As the blind comparison has proceeded it seems to become more of an arbitrary (although fun) exercise in listening to Bruckner's 6th. I do think that the outcomes are greatly affected by people voting on several sets of 4, 8 or 12 rather than the initial assigned set. On the other hand this is not the World Cup......  or is it...?   He he he        ;)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Brian on September 13, 2014, 07:39:31 PM
On the other hand this is not the World Cup......  or is it...?
This just in, the Sao Paulo Symphony recording has lost 7-1
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Cato on September 17, 2014, 02:03:30 PM
Here we go!  ??? ??? ???

Y 1 A live audience is barely audible only now and then.  IN the opening, the brass is just a little ragged, but the recorded sound is very good.  Tempo in general is a little slow for my taste, but acceptable.  At times the strings sound a little stodgy, perhaps because of the tempo.  Dynamic contrasts are good, as are the crescendos.  The final minutes have the requisite wonder and power.

Y 2 WOW!  Very impressive opening: crisp clear brass sound, all the lines are audible, just wonderful!  The brass players sound like the steroid shots have kicked in!  Energy stays high throughout the performance without sacrificing subtlety and mystery in the slower sections.  The dynamics and clarity of the lines remain outstanding: great excitement at c. 8:50 onward, and the final minutes are as perfect as you will find!

The conductor was obviously  ???  communing with the  0:) Great Spirit  0:) of SAINT EUGEN JOCHUM while leading this performance!  8)

Y 3 Call this the Drum Roll Performance!  The timpanist must have had steroid shots!  He lets you know that he is part of the orchestra and has something to say!   The brass power at the beginning is a little more restrained than in the others.  Tempo is similar to Y 1, but has more expressivity, perhaps due to greater dynamic contrast.  Recording is more spacious by a small amount than the others   Great power in the climax at 4:40 onward.  And again, an excellent slide into homeplate to win the game!

Y 4  WOW again!  BIG opening to rival Y 2!  This is another crisp, headlong performance!  Lines are fairly clear, although the brass obviously think the symphony is all about them at times!  Tempo is close to that of Y 2, i.e. nothing drags, but the slower softer sections are handled well.  (A few creaking chairs now and then, and other minor noises are audible at those times).  Final minutes are an addictive drug to be handled with care!

 0:) Saint Eugen Jochum  0:)  may indeed have left the building after this performance!  :laugh:

Very difficult!

However, my votes:

Y 2

Y4

Y 3

Y 1






Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on September 17, 2014, 04:17:12 PM
Group Y
4,1,3,2 - Neal
2,4,3,1 - Cato

Nice contrast so far, thank you, Gents!
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Ken B on September 17, 2014, 05:40:41 PM
Here we go!  ??? ??? ???

Y 1 A live audience is barely audible only now and then.  IN the opening, the brass is just a little ragged, but the recorded sound is very good.  Tempo in general is a little slow for my taste, but acceptable.  At times the strings sound a little stodgy, perhaps because of the tempo.  Dynamic contrasts are good, as are the crescendos.  The final minutes have the requisite wonder and power.

Y 2 WOW!  Very impressive opening: crisp clear brass sound, all the lines are audible, just wonderful!  The brass players sound like the steroid shots have kicked in!  Energy stays high throughout the performance without sacrificing subtlety and mystery in the slower sections.  The dynamics and clarity of the lines remain outstanding: great excitement at c. 8:50 onward, and the final minutes are as perfect as you will find!

The conductor was obviously  ???  communing with the  0:) Great Spirit  0:) of SAINT EUGEN JOCHUM while leading this performance!  8)

Y 3 Call this the Drum Roll Performance!  The timpanist must have had steroid shots!  He lets you know that he is part of the orchestra and has something to say!   The brass power at the beginning is a little more restrained than in the others.  Tempo is similar to Y 1, but has more expressivity, perhaps due to greater dynamic contrast.  Recording is more spacious by a small amount than the others   Great power in the climax at 4:40 onward.  And again, an excellent slide into homeplate to win the game!

Y 4  WOW again!  BIG opening to rival Y 2!  This is another crisp, headlong performance!  Lines are fairly clear, although the brass obviously think the symphony is all about them at times!  Tempo is close to that of Y 2, i.e. nothing drags, but the slower softer sections are handled well.  (A few creaking chairs now and then, and other minor noises are audible at those times).  Final minutes are an addictive drug to be handled with care!

 0:) Saint Eugen Jochum  0:)  may indeed have left the building after this performance!  :laugh:

Very difficult!

However, my votes:

Y 2

Y4

Y 3

Y 1

Am I misremembering? Didn't you vote out St EJ yourself?
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Cato on September 18, 2014, 02:09:25 AM
Am I misremembering? Didn't you vote out St EJ yourself?

No, in keeping with the chaos in the world today, he was voted out, but I was not one of the perpetrators!  ;)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Sergeant Rock on September 18, 2014, 02:10:04 AM
Am I misremembering? Didn't you vote out St EJ yourself?

No, he put Jochum in first place (A4):

Group A

Cato           ChamberNut     Sarge        Neal
A4             A3                      A1           A2 - 13 pts
A3             A4                      A3           A1 - 13 pts
A1             A2                      A2           A3 - 16 pts
A2             A1                      A4           A4 - 13 pts
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Ken B on September 18, 2014, 06:51:37 AM
No, in keeping with the chaos in the world today, he was voted out, but I was not one of the perpetrators!  ;)
Ah, good man. Sorry for the implication!
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: ChamberNut on September 18, 2014, 08:44:43 AM
Ah, good man. Sorry for the implication!

Neither was I.  I had St. Jochum as my # 2, although had I put him # 1, he might still be alive (the recording, that is)  ;D
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Cato on September 18, 2014, 09:34:44 AM
Neither was I.  I had St. Jochum as my # 2, although had I put him # 1, he might still be alive (the recording, that is)  ;D

(Voice of James Earl Jones) "If you only knew the POWER" of Bruckner: Resurrection is always possible!   0:)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: mc ukrneal on September 18, 2014, 10:02:03 AM
Ah, good man. Sorry for the implication!

It was Sarge and I that gave him the heeve ho. Frankly, he didn't cut it in the 2nd movement. I have no loyalties when it comes to blind listening! :)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on September 18, 2014, 12:08:17 PM
I have no loyalties when it comes to blind listening! :)

+1

Since there's so much talk about those that did get eliminated, perhaps I'll throw in a 3-recording group of finales from eliminated performances and see who wins that!
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on September 22, 2014, 01:44:16 PM
*crickets*
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Ken B on September 23, 2014, 07:08:03 AM
*crickets*
Blooooooood, bloooooooood! I want bloooooood! More recordings left broken and discarded, more gnashing of teeth and wailing.

Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: ChamberNut on September 23, 2014, 05:23:41 PM
I will try to get to round 3 this weekend, Greg.   :)

Been busy the last few weeks, including meeting a special woman.  ;D
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on September 23, 2014, 05:26:48 PM
I will try to get to round 3 this weekend, Greg.   :)

Been busy the last few weeks, including meeting a special woman.  ;D

And I'm sure the last thing you'd want to tell her is, "Sorry, would love to get know you better buuuut I've really got to listen to the finale of Bruckner's 6th symphony about 4 times tonight. How about coffee tomorrow?"  :)

And congratulations and good luck, my friend!  8)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: ChamberNut on September 23, 2014, 06:28:26 PM
And I'm sure the last thing you'd want to tell her is, "Sorry, would love to get know you better buuuut I've really got to listen to the finale of Bruckner's 6th symphony about 4 times tonight. How about coffee tomorrow?"  :)

And congratulations and good luck, my friend!  8)

LOL, Greg!  :D  It has been going really well, and she is intrigued and wants to know about my classical music passion.  ;D  I did tell her I have a few 'blind listen comparisons' to do on a forum called GMG and she said "Wow, that is awesome'.  :)  I've already introduced her to Mozart's 40th Symphony, Wagner's Die Walkure Act I, and Bach's 6 Cello Suites.

She genuinely liked the music!  :)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Mirror Image on September 23, 2014, 06:32:55 PM
LOL, Greg!  :D  It has been going really well, and she is intrigued and wants to know about my classical music passion.  ;D  I did tell her I have a few 'blind listen comparisons' to do on a forum called GMG and she said "Wow, that is awesome'.  :)  I've already introduced her to Mozart's 40th Symphony, Wagner's Die Walkure Act I, and Bach's 6 Cello Suites.

She genuinely liked the music!  :)

Great news, Ray! She sounds like a keeper. :) Best of luck!
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: ChamberNut on September 23, 2014, 06:34:14 PM
Great news, Ray! She sounds like a keeper. :) Best of luck!

Thanks, John.   :)  That means a lot.  She is a fantastic person, and I appreciate the well wishes.  :)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Mirror Image on September 23, 2014, 06:51:40 PM
Thanks, John.   :)  That means a lot.  She is a fantastic person, and I appreciate the well wishes.  :)

You're welcome. I'm sure she is a fantastic person, Ray. 8)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: ChamberNut on September 23, 2014, 07:43:51 PM
You're welcome. I'm sure she is a fantastic person, Ray. 8)

She is, John!!  :)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Ken B on September 24, 2014, 08:47:47 AM
LOL, Greg!  :D  It has been going really well, and she is intrigued and wants to know about my classical music passion.  ;D  I did tell her I have a few 'blind listen comparisons' to do on a forum called GMG and she said "Wow, that is awesome'.  :)  I've already introduced her to Mozart's 40th Symphony, Wagner's Die Walkure Act I, and Bach's 6 Cello Suites.

She genuinely liked the music!  :)
Anyone who can listen to that much Bruckner has the ability to concentrate and lots of stamina. Hint hint.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Cato on September 24, 2014, 10:22:57 AM
Anyone who can listen to that much Bruckner has the ability to concentrate and lots of stamina. Hint hint.

And has the finest deepest soul worth more than platinum and unoctquadium combined!  0:)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: ChamberNut on September 29, 2014, 02:55:10 PM
OK, here are my thoughts on Round 3, Group X:

X1 - Double basses and Cellos sound simply amazing here!  Good balance, and overall sound is OK, but not super clear.   Very passionate performance that I thoroughly enjoyed, very lyrical performance but restrained and not over the top.  Great one!  :)

X2 - Great dynamics, and sizzling high strings.  The sound may be slightly better than X1, but I much preferred the approach and performance in X1.

X3 - Brass is not quite up to snuff.  Poor sound quality, and it seems way too bass heavy and can't hear the treble/higher registers as well.  Muffled.  This was the only "blah" performance for me.  :-\

X4 - Fantastic sound and dynamics.  Overall feels and sounds like a flawless performance, an I really love the brisk pace for this final movement.  Just a great, roller coaster ride energy from start to finish.   :)

Vote:

1 - X4 Yay! +1
2 - X1 Yay!
3 - X2 Meh
4 - X3 Nay
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on September 29, 2014, 03:25:39 PM
Thank you, Ray. Great comments.  8)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on September 30, 2014, 02:43:29 AM
Brian, jlaurson, ChamberNut, amw, Moonfish, Sergeant Rock, Cato, mc ukrneal, Lisztianwagner, Pim

These are the names I sent links to for the third round, did any of you not receive them in their PM box? Cato just sent me a message about this, please let me know before the deadline of September 31st.  >:D



Ok, there is no September 31st, and there really is no deadline, but let me know!  ;D
 Also if anyone else wants to join I'll add you to the list. 
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: ChamberNut on September 30, 2014, 03:15:49 AM
Cato did group Y already, I believe?  :)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Cato on September 30, 2014, 03:25:03 AM
Cato did group Y already, I believe?  :)

Yes, but is there another movement to do with Group Y?  That is what I was not sure about!   ;)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Sergeant Rock on September 30, 2014, 03:26:09 AM
Brian, jlaurson, ChamberNut, amw, Moonfish, Sergeant Rock, Cato, mc ukrneal, Lisztianwagner, Pim

These are the names I sent links to for the third round, did any of you not receive them in their PM box? Cato just sent me a message about this, please let me know before the deadline of September 31st.  >:D



Ok, there is no September 31st, and there really is no deadline, but let me know!  ;D
 Also if anyone else wants to join I'll add you to the list.

Mrs. Rock has been home the last three weeks (vacation). I didn't want to subject her to the same Bruckner over and over again. I'm not sadistic  ;D  But she went back to work today. I'll be reporting for comparison duty soon.

Sarge
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Cato on September 30, 2014, 04:02:09 AM
Mrs. Rock has been home the last three weeks (vacation). I didn't want to subject her to the same Bruckner over and over again. I'm not sadistic  ;D  But she went back to work today. I'll be reporting for comparison duty soon.

Sarge

I found it exhilarating, but everything - and everyone - has a limit!   :laugh:

Greg explained about Group Y, so everything is clear.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on September 30, 2014, 04:04:47 AM
My week at the beach cleared my head of all past events, just had to regroup mentally.  ???


 :)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Brian on September 30, 2014, 04:56:27 AM
Oops, I will be able to do something probably Thursday or definitely sometime on the weekend, like Sunday morning. Just catered my best friend's wedding, so I've been busy.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on September 30, 2014, 05:05:02 AM
Just catered my best friend's wedding, so I've been busy.

Unacceptable, Brian. But I hope it went well.  :-X


 ;)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: amw on September 30, 2014, 11:55:22 PM
Just had a first listen to the finale courtesy of X1. I do not detect any noticeable structural problems, and think it makes a perfectly convincing and satisfactory conclusion to the symphony, though I can definitely envision a better performance. As a sonata form in which the home key of A major does not really appear until the recapitulation, it has a notable precedent in Beethoven's Op. 101 (though resembles it in no other respects).

That "walking" theme is a little bit infectious....

Don't know that I'll have time to listen to the others tonight, but should be able to do it soon.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: amw on October 01, 2014, 12:17:49 AM
X2 is much better—crisper, livelier, "explained" some aspects of the structure to me better than X1 did. Substitutes judicious rubato for actual changes in tempo, which somewhat relieves the relentless Bruckner ostinati. (Bruckner gets a lot of mileage out of turning themes upside down in this movement. I think I like the "climbing" version of the walking theme better than the "descending" one—maybe it's those F-sharps...)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on October 03, 2014, 04:11:15 PM
Hey, Guys and Gals. I just wanted to say that I really miss you all, and would love to have you return soon. I promise I won't disappoint.


Your friend,
Symphony No. 6
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: ChamberNut on October 03, 2014, 04:15:06 PM
Hey, Guys and Gals. I just wanted to say that I really miss you all, and would love to have you return soon. I promise I won't disappoint.


Your friend,
Symphony No. 6


I am here.  I'm scared of your avatar visage.  Scary.   :o :'( :'( :'(   :D
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Daverz on October 03, 2014, 04:24:35 PM
Hey, Guys and Gals. I just wanted to say that I really miss you all, and would love to have you return soon. I promise I won't disappoint.
Your friend,
Symphony No. 6


But I can't listen to the 6th until y'all tell me which one is the best.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Moonfish on October 03, 2014, 05:41:58 PM
Hey, Guys and Gals. I just wanted to say that I really miss you all, and would love to have you return soon. I promise I won't disappoint.


Your friend,
Symphony No. 6


 :D ;D
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Pim on October 04, 2014, 01:55:12 AM
My (new) friend indeed! I really like these blind comparisons, great way to get to know a piece.
Here my votes:

y1
Something slightly wooden, as if they have to work hard to keep up with all the tempo changes indicated in the score. Btw, is this finale the piece with the most tempo change indications? Btw if anything convinces me that it is really hard to be a conductor it is this. Just imagine having to make all these decisions about tempo trying to follow the score. I’m sure I would just start crying in front of the orchestra.

y2
Clearer in sound and better at the tempo changes in making them sound more natural, like following from the constraints of the terrain the orchestra has to ‘walk through’. There’s this naturalness of the tempo changes, in contrast with the more artificial tempo changes that I thought I heard in Y1.

y3
Great the way the clarinet stands out in the opening, then meshes with the orchestra again. The molto lugubre was not lugubre enough to my taste however  8). Overall good, but not gripping.

y4
Yep. Great clarinet, great brass. Brisk overall pace with natural tempo changes as in y2. The lugubre is just rightly eery this time, and it all just seems to fit the overall hysteria (e.g. around 8.30-8.50!) of the piece. Hard not to jump up and start cheering at the end. Clear winner for me.

y4 > y2 > y3 > y1
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Cato on October 04, 2014, 02:40:02 AM
My (new) friend indeed! I really like these blind comparisons, great way to get to know a piece.
Here my votes:

y1
Something slightly wooden, as if they have to work hard to keep up with all the tempo changes indicated in the score. Btw, is this finale the piece with the most tempo change indications? Btw if anything convinces me that it is really hard to be a conductor it is this. Just imagine having to make all these decisions about tempo trying to follow the score. I’m sure I would just start crying in front of the orchestra.

y2
Clearer in sound and better at the tempo changes in making them sound more natural, like following from the constraints of the terrain the orchestra has to ‘walk through’. There’s this naturalness of the tempo changes, in contrast with the more artificial tempo changes that I thought I heard in Y1.

y3
Great the way the clarinet stands out in the opening, then meshes with the orchestra again. The molto lugubre was not lugubre enough to my taste however  8). Overall good, but not gripping.

y4
Yep. Great clarinet, great brass. Brisk overall pace with natural tempo changes as in y2. The lugubre is just rightly eery this time, and it all just seems to fit the overall hysteria (e.g. around 8.30-8.50!) of the piece. Hard not to jump up and start cheering at the end. Clear winner for me.

y4 > y2 > y3 > y1

Yes, a difficult group: I chose Y 2 over Y 4 because of some extraneous noise in the latter, otherwise both were excellent performances.

Concerning your comments on difficult scores, tempo changes, etc.: if you want a score to make a conductor weep, check Schoenberg's Erwartung!
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: amw on October 04, 2014, 08:02:05 AM
Btw, is this finale the piece with the most tempo change indications?

Yes, but it's still not too bad:

Bewegt, doch nicht zu schnell (opening)
langsamer... ritard. ... tempo I (letter F)
Bedeutend langsamer (letter M)
Tempo I (letter Q)
langsamer ... a Tempo (letter V)
langsam ... accel. ... ritard. ... a Tempo (from letter W to letter X)

So you have one basic tempo (with one rit.) from the beginning to letter M, another from M to Q, then back to the first tempo from Q to the end with two significant slowdowns in the coda. Should be easily manageable. It's the tempo changes in, e.g. Messiaen (switching back almost every other bar from "Modéré, presque vif" to "Très lent" to "Vif" to something else, usually with a specific metronome marking) that would give me pause.

Results coming in the next 24 hours btw.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on October 04, 2014, 10:59:03 AM
So far...

Group Y
Neal: Y4, Y1, Y3, Y2.
Cato: Y2, Y4, Y3, Y1
Pim: Y4, Y2, Y3, Y1

Y1 = 5 pts
Y2 = 8 pts
Y3 = 6 pts
Y4 = 11 pts

Group X
ChamberNut:  X4, X1, X2, X3
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: amw on October 04, 2014, 09:09:11 PM
X1 - On second listen: meh.

X2 - See comments above. I like the sense of a "spiritual journey" one gets from this performance (if it's the one I think it is, I'm pretty sure I liked them in a previous round as well) and in some respects (sound, particularly) prefer it to X4, even if it's not quite as immediate. This is a conductor who definitely understands Bruckner's sense of time.

X3 - Everything exaggerated, tempi pulled around carelessly (perhaps in an attempt to overcome the tyranny of the four-bar phrase). This is not the way to play Bruckner. You have to submit to the four-bar phrase, to allow the obsessive repetition to spin like a prayer wheel and alter our perception of time. The conductor here is trying to play Bruckner as though it were Mahler. I can see why some people would have structural problems with the finale if they listened to this recording.

Also the fortissimos are wimpy. When Bruckner marks more than one f I expect to deafen my flatmates.

Also, they linger on the last chord way too much. It should be short and sharp like the first movement's.

X4 - Much better. Super high energy and the conductor actually more or less follows Bruckner's tempo marks. I could quibble with some of the dynamics, and the brass are definitely too brassy (is this A2 from the first round?) but probably the best performance in this group. I'll let it tie with X2.

Scores:

X2 - 4 pts
X4 - 4 pts
X1 - 1.5 pts
X3 - 0.5 pts
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Pim on October 05, 2014, 12:21:46 AM

So you have one basic tempo (with one rit.) from the beginning to letter M, another from M to Q, then back to the first tempo from Q to the end with two significant slowdowns in the coda. Should be easily manageable. It's the tempo changes in, e.g. Messiaen (switching back almost every other bar from "Modéré, presque vif" to "Très lent" to "Vif" to something else, usually with a specific metronome marking) that would give me pause.


Thanks amw, I can see how that might work: don't look at all the tempo changes separately, but first identify the overall pattern. And I will take a look at (and maybe even listen to  :P) Messiaen and Schonberg's Erwarting (thanks Cato) to find out how difficult it can get.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Sergeant Rock on October 05, 2014, 06:30:32 AM
Group X. This has been difficult for me to rate, especially second and third places. It contains my All-Time Top 3 Bruckner Sixths which means I'll probably be helping eliminate one :(

4 - X3 I actually like it despite the flaws in sound (muffled) and instrumental balance, the weak climaxes. It's the beauty of the softer passages, the phrasing, the lingering that appeals to me. But not enough to place it higher than fourth.

The battle, in brief, between X1 and X2:

3 - X2 The second subject has a folksy lilt, a spring to the rhythm that seems more in character than X1's smoother take. The transitions between sections are more seamless, more natural. X2 is probably the better "interpretation", closer to what Bruckner wanted but it's also less emotionally gripping than X1. What I didn't like: the clarinet at the beginning was a bit recessed; the third subject could've packed more punch (X1 explodes here); the coda lacked the clarity of X1.

2 - X1  I love the drama of this performance and the dramatic and clear sonics (all the voices in the final pages of the coda are heard for example). After much deliberation I'm giving my homies second place.


1 - X4  I should recuse myself. I know this one too well (undoubtedly imprinted on it) but I really do think it's near perfection as architecture (the parts fit so well together) and in instrumental balance and detail (woodwind are not going to let themselves be overwhelmed by the brass). It's also a thrilling performance, the coda magnificent, the final chord properly short and decisive.

1 - X4
2 - X1
3 - X2
4 - X3


Sarge


Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Brian on October 05, 2014, 07:26:46 AM
X1: I'm leveling the sound quality playing field by blasting all these on my laptop speakers. This seems like a really good account: straightforward, on the level, pretty freaking exciting. Everything, even the second theme, seems emphatic and decisive.

X2: Okay, I love the extra staccato snap this conductor brings to the first theme. It's so menacing! The second theme, by contrast, is softer, slower, and more lyrical than in X1, and transitions are handled more sensibly. Maybe it's those cruddy laptop speakers, but other than those two things I could not hear a very significant difference between X1 and X2. amw and Ray could, obviously. Still, I agree that this one has an edge.

X3: Nice timpani. This orchestra feels smaller. The other kids are right, lots of luftpause and teensy-weensy stretching of phrases. Nice horns. Oh the ending is way too drawn out and artificial. Overall, it's okay, but not as good as the first two.

X4: Love the detailing of violas and clarinets in the opening. It's clarinetapalooza, hooray! This is very fast. Holy SHIT the clarinet trill at 3:50. Did I mention clarinets are my favorite wind instrument? Great woodwinds overall, superb balance, great ending.

1. X2
tie-2. X1 and X4. I will do a shootout tomorrow with headphones to determine the winner of this.
4. X3
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: ChamberNut on October 05, 2014, 08:21:50 AM
1 - X4
2 - X1
3 - X2
4 - X3


Sarge

OMG!!!!  :o  We have found Brotherly Bruckner Bliss in this round, Sarge!  :D  An historic day!  8)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on October 05, 2014, 08:51:58 AM
Great job, listeners! Wonderful comments!
And thank you, Sarge, for not revealing the performances, I know it's less blind for you at this point.  ;D

I originally had 5 participants per group, I will give at least another 4-5 days for their scores. If not I have Cato to help out, who has proven in the past to be the Superman of comparisons!
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Cato on October 05, 2014, 10:55:48 AM
Great job, listeners! Wonderful comments!
And thank you, Sarge, for not revealing the performances, I know it's less blind for you at this point.  ;D

I originally had 5 participants per group, I will give at least another 4-5 days for their scores. If not I have Cato to help out, who has proven in the past to be the Superman of comparisons!

 ??? ??? ???  :o :o :o :  Heh-heh! 

Now I really am interested in X 4 since Sarge is positive that it is his favorite! 
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Moonfish on October 05, 2014, 12:42:48 PM
Finally listened through the Y group!     :)

Y1: Great beginning. The pace a bit hurried at first, but it has character and power.  It lets Bruckner’s light shine through in its timbre (1st part) to then gently hover over the section that follows.  The pace decreases.  I like the horns in this rendition. Personally I think the oscillation between power and delicacy as well as in pacing (rapid to slow) allows Bruckner’s musical poetry to shine through in a unique fashion.
B+


Y2: Pace is good. Brings good power forward.  Poetic. Enjoying it. A little hurried at times. Doesn’t sculpt as well as Y3. Loses definition towards the end.
B


Y3:  Starts in a haunting fashion with the whispering entries with horns that have “character”. Brawny. Definitely has umph and power. Transitions nicely into the sweeter theme while still sculpting a very much alive piece of music.
Rolls nicely into the section that follows and maintains the oscillations between delicacy and power. Goes delicate. Swirls in a poetic wonder. I really like this movement and how it is played by the orchestra.  Keeps up its delicate power. Not sure if I like the solo horn in the mid-section but the accompanying growth of the horn section and the repeats make up for it.  Returns to softness and tranquility in a sweet fashion.  Ends in bravura. Excellent version of this movemement. 
Haunting and powerful. I prefer the slower pace. Definitely my top choice in the Y category. A

Y4: Lots of energy and fast paced. Keeps up the energy throughout the movement. At first I placed this last, but after listening to Y1 and Y2 over and over I felt that those two slackened in their focus towards the latter part of the movement while Y4 kept it going. So.. I had to side with Y4 in second place although Y1 was a very strong competitor. They all were actually.  Y4 shines in its own unique way. It has a bright clarity throughout, but the continued focus/energy throughout the movement made me side with Y4 in second place. I preferred the slower pace of Y3 over Y4.
A-


My ranking:
Y3 >  Y4 >  Y1  > Y2

Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on October 05, 2014, 01:49:13 PM

So far...

Group Y
Neal: Y4, Y1, Y3, Y2.
Cato: Y2, Y4, Y3, Y1
Pim: Y4, Y2, Y3, Y1
Moonfish:  Y3, Y4, Y1, Y2

Y1 = 7 pts
Y2 = 9 pts
Y3 = 10 pts
Y4 = 14  pts

Group X
ChamberNut:  X4, X1, X2, X3
Sarge: X4, X1, X2, X3
Brian:  X2, X1, X4 ,X3
amw: X2, X4, X1, X3

X1 = 11 pts
X2 = 12 pts
X3 = 4 pts
x4 = 13 pts
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: amw on October 05, 2014, 01:56:25 PM
Make it X2 I guess.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on October 05, 2014, 02:05:34 PM
Make it X2 I guess.

thank you, kind sir.  :)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on October 05, 2014, 02:10:06 PM
So, X3 has no chance of surviving, which is interesting considering it scored the highest points in the Adagio 2nd Round of the comparison.  :)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: amw on October 05, 2014, 02:30:14 PM
B1? Hmmmm. I can't say I'm shocked, but I expected better.

edit: no, C4, I am dumb. I didn't hear that one so whatever.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Brian on October 05, 2014, 04:13:41 PM
edit: no, C4, I am dumb. I didn't hear that one so whatever.

Shoot, I gave that a 9.5/10. :(
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on October 05, 2014, 04:37:25 PM
Shoot, I gave that a 9.5/10. :(

I realized I didn't wait until your headphone session to undo your tie. Did you decide?
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Brian on October 05, 2014, 05:35:17 PM
I realized I didn't wait until your headphone session to undo your tie. Did you decide?
No, are we at the deadline?
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on October 05, 2014, 05:57:59 PM
No, are we at the deadline?

No, waiting another few days for the 5th voters of Group X and Y to see if they still want in.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on October 10, 2014, 05:17:02 PM
I'm fine with four votes from each group for this round, I will post the eliminated as soon as Brian breaks his tie. And then on to the finals!!!!

Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Sergeant Rock on October 11, 2014, 06:19:32 AM
I'm fine with four votes from each group for this round, I will post the eliminated as soon as Brian breaks his tie. And then on to the finals!!!!

I'm doing Y group now. Give me a few minutes to get my vote in.

Sarge
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Sergeant Rock on October 11, 2014, 07:28:53 AM
The only one I recognize in this group is Y4. In a Sixth comparison I did on my own several years ago it didn't do so well. I still find the pace unrelentingly fast and furious which seems to be anti-Bruckner but it has fewer problems with instrumental balance than Y1 and Y2 which gives it second place. The primary reason I chose Y3 for first place is it's better sense of mystery and anticipation. The measures leading to the Coda illustrate what I mean. (13:22 to 13:50). And notice how the horns stand out.

1 - Y3
2 - Y4
3 - Y2
4 - Y1

Sarge
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Moonfish on October 11, 2014, 07:32:47 AM
The only one I recognize in this group is Y4. In a Sixth comparison I did on my own several years ago it didn't do so well. I still find the pace unrelentingly fast and furious which seems to be anti-Bruckner but it has fewer problems with instrumental balance than Y1 and Y2 which gives it second place. The primary reason I chose Y3 for first place is it's better sense of mystery and anticipation. The measures leading to the Coda illustrate what I mean. (13:22 to 13:50). And notice how the horns stand out.

1 - Y3
2 - Y4
3 - Y2
4 - Y1

Sarge

Go Y3!!!!!

 :D :D

Your vote seems to keep Y3 and Y4 as winners in the Y category.
I very much agree with your comments in regards to Y3 and Y4. I was a bit repelled by Y4's pace but its continuity in quality made it redeem itself. Like you I found more of a Bruckner spirit in Y3. More mystical and haunting qualities which I enjoy (and of course, a slower pace).

BUT, I thought Greg didn't want us to vote in both the X and Y groups...??  Greg?
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on October 11, 2014, 09:55:30 AM
Go Y3!!!!!

 :D :D

Your vote seems to keep Y3 and Y4 as winners in the Y category.
I very much agree with your comments in regards to Y3 and Y4. I was a bit repelled by Y4's pace but its continuity in quality made it redeem itself. Like you I found more of a Bruckner spirit in Y3. More mystical and haunting qualities which I enjoy (and of course, a slower pace).

BUT, I thought Greg didn't want us to vote in both the X and Y groups...??  Greg?

Oh it's, fine. The number one rule of comparisons is that there are no real rules  8) And if Sarge took the time to listen to Y, then I'm going to count it.
Moon, do you have X? I think you do, if you wanted to add your Group X scores you can.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Moonfish on October 11, 2014, 01:50:24 PM
Oh it's, fine. The number one rule of comparisons is that there are no real rules  8) And if Sarge took the time to listen to Y, then I'm going to count it.
Moon, do you have X? I think you do, if you wanted to add your Group X scores you can.

No real rules....      >:D
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on October 11, 2014, 02:36:20 PM
No real rules....      >:D

I kid, I kid...there are rules, otherwise I would have found a way to keep Nagano from getting eliminated in Round 2.  ;D
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Moonfish on October 11, 2014, 02:46:47 PM
I kid, I kid...there are rules, otherwise I would have found a way to keep Nagano from getting eliminated in Round 2.  ;D

Or DG Jochum..... :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'(
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on October 11, 2014, 06:27:54 PM
Group Y
Neal: Y4, Y1, Y3, Y2.
Cato: Y2, Y4, Y3, Y1
Pim: Y4, Y2, Y3, Y1
Moonfish:  Y3, Y4, Y1, Y2
Sarge: Y3, Y4, Y2, Y1

Y1 = 8 pts - Eliminated
Y2 = 11 pts - Eliminated

Y3 = 14 pts
Y4 = 17  pts

Wow! Moonfish and Sarge pushing Y3 into the finals!  :o  ;D

Group Y is closed, results of the two new losers will be revealed soon. I will allow one more day for some Group X votes, otherwise it will close tomorrow with four votes.
Stay Tuned!!!
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on October 11, 2014, 07:59:31 PM
Group Y Eliminations.


Y1
Haitink - Staatskapelle Dresden (A5/D1)

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51SDdJFRJLL.jpg)



Y2
Stein - Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra (A2/D4)

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51G5K554WRL.jpg)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: amw on October 11, 2014, 08:26:38 PM
Hmm. So this eliminates all of the first round's Group A, and thus all but 2 of the recordings I've heard so far (B1 and B3 from round two are the only survivors, and I've likely helped eliminate them from the other group >.>)

My presence seems to be a Bruckner killer.

Horst Stein wasn't bad though, I might try to hear that sometime.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Daverz on October 11, 2014, 08:37:48 PM
Stein - Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra (A2/D4)

How's that for unbiased: it's a blind and deaf comparison.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Sergeant Rock on October 12, 2014, 06:19:50 AM
How's that for unbiased: it's a blind and deaf comparison.

The inner voices seem difficult to make out sometimes.

I agree with Neal. That was my primary problem with Stein, and why I voted him down in both the Adagio and Finale rounds (didn't hear him in the first round). Some details were smothered by the recording; sometimes it was the winds, sometimes the horns. Stein remains one of my favorite Sixths as an interpretation but the sonics and performance leave something to be desired, at least in comparison to the competition in its groups.

Sarge
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Daverz on October 12, 2014, 03:24:43 PM
I agree with Neal. That was my primary problem with Stein, and why I voted him down in both the Adagio and Finale rounds (didn't hear him in the first round). Some details were smothered by the recording; sometimes it was the winds, sometimes the horns. Stein remains one of my favorite Sixths as an interpretation but the sonics and performance leave something to be desired, at least in comparison to the competition in its groups.

No need to take me very seriously.  My level of appreciation is mostly at "Oooo, listen to that Decca sound".  I would probably only notice egregious balance problems.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on October 12, 2014, 03:44:06 PM
 >:D No more X votes, I'll reveal the eliminated soon  $:)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on October 12, 2014, 04:33:08 PM
Group X
ChamberNut:  X4, X1, X2, X3
Sarge: X4, X1, X2, X3
Brian:  X2, X1-X4 ,X3
amw: X2, X4, X1, X3

X1 = 10.5 pts - eliminated
X2 = 12 pts
X3 = 4 pts - eliminated
x4 = 13.5 pts

Brian never gave me his tie breaker (I think) so I awarded 2.5 pts to each X1 and X4, the placing of those two wouldn't change either way.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on October 12, 2014, 04:42:26 PM
Group X - Round 3 Eliminations

C2/B3 – X1 - DOHNANYI/CLEVELAND ORCHESTRA

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/A1johNl-LnL._SL500_.jpg)






B1/C4 – X3 - ESCHENBACH/LONDON PHILHARMONIC - with an Adagio that scored the most points in Round 2...


(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/41YT2DAU%2BhL.jpg)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Sergeant Rock on October 12, 2014, 04:44:12 PM
C2/B3 – X1 - DOHNANYI/CLEVELAND ORCHESTRA

 :(

Sarge
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on October 12, 2014, 04:46:53 PM
The Finals will begin in a few days.

4 recordings.
4 conductors.
4 orchestras.
Only 1 will survive.

(was that too dramatic?) Who wants in? Send me a PM or post here if you want to join, those who participated in the previous round will automatically get links.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Ken B on October 12, 2014, 04:48:30 PM
:(

Sarge

I looked at the numbers. We cannot blame this on you Sarge.  I tried, believe me.  8)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on October 12, 2014, 05:00:44 PM
:(

Sarge

I know, it's a good one. If only I used all 4 of Mehta's Bruckner 6th recordings then Dohnanyi could have made the finals.  ;D
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Brian on October 12, 2014, 05:18:23 PM
Onto the Amazon wishlist goes Dohnanyi! And onto tomorrow's NML workplace listening goes Eschenbach. I'll use it as my warmup for these super exciting finals!

By the way, Hurwitz rated the earlier Eschenbach/Houston SO a 10/10. "First, listen to the sonority he draws from the Houston Symphony: rich, dark, built from the basses up, the brass never blasting or covering the strings, and nicely differentiated between instrumental groups. This is, in short, a true “German” sound....Aside from a wonderfully grave, intense Adagio, it’s not especially slow, and yet never sounds hurried or pushed. Tempos move with natural aptness. Eschenbach’s transitions between sections, as well as his moments of interpretive “point making”, are always well timed and, even when fairly extreme, convincingly carried off. Passages such as the first movement coda possess a serene majesty that once heard reveal exactly what Bruckner must have intended. Eschenbach’s handling of the finale’s second subject is especially noteworthy. Although this music is often derided, even by Bruckner specialists (such as Tintner and Jochum), Eschenbach demonstrates that it has its own points to make when given room to breathe. He perfectly conveys the sense of something mysterious or sacred breaking through the superficially trivial surface."
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: amw on October 12, 2014, 05:42:12 PM
The finalists, as of round 2: A1, A3, B1, C3

The finalists, as of round 1: B2, C5, D3, D6

Interestingly it seems as though all of the recordings that received the highest ratings in round 1—and half of those that received the highest ratings in round 2—have now been eliminated. A3 and B1 in round 2, which led their respective groups, seem to be still in the running.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Dancing Divertimentian on October 12, 2014, 07:09:52 PM
Group X - Round 3 Eliminations

C2/B3 – X1 - DOHNANYI/CLEVELAND ORCHESTRA

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/A1johNl-LnL._SL500_.jpg)

Sad, but making it this far is something of an accomplishment, right? It's enough validation for me since I'm fast becoming a huge fan of Dohnanyi's near-cycle.


 
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on October 12, 2014, 08:05:56 PM
Sad, but making it this far is something of an accomplishment, right? It's enough validation for me since I'm fast becoming a huge fan of Dohnanyi's near-cycle.


 

It is an accomplishment, DD. Considering that names like Chailly, Karajan, Blomstedt and Maazel were gone in Round 1!  :o  ;D

And Dohnanyi's near-cycle is great, including one of the best 4th's I've ever heard.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Dancing Divertimentian on October 12, 2014, 08:22:03 PM
It is an accomplishment, DD. Considering that names like Chailly, Karajan, Blomstedt and Maazel were gone in Round 1!  :o  ;D

 :D Ah, I feel better now.

Quote
And Dohnanyi's near-cycle is great, including one of the best 4th's I've ever heard.

Oh, I don't have his 4th! Better remedy that. Any idea what his newer 4th with the Philharmonia is like?

Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Sergeant Rock on October 13, 2014, 03:44:20 AM
And Dohnanyi's near-cycle is great, including one of the best 4th's I've ever heard.

And my favorite Fifth.

Sarge
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Sergeant Rock on October 13, 2014, 04:18:56 AM
The finalists, as of round 2: A1, A3, B1, C3

The finalists, as of round 1: B2, C5, D3, D6

Interestingly it seems as though all of the recordings that received the highest ratings in round 1...have now been eliminated.

No quite. B2 is still alive as you noted. B2 tied with B5 in most points awarded, and B2 received more first place votes.



Group B

Jens    Brian     Drosera   Sarge
B1       B2         B5          B2
B4       B4         B6          B5
B6       B1         B4          B1
B5       B5         B2          B3
B2       B6         B3          B4
B3       B3         B1          B6



Sarge
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on October 13, 2014, 05:14:37 AM
And my favorite Fifth.

Sarge

It's a good one as well. I didn't know its your favorite. I have a difficult time choosing just one 5th, there are elements of many recordings that I find to be perfect. Like the coda, start with Barenboim/Berlin and but his super-charged coda, it's powerful, I love the energy it creates. Then add Skrowaczewski's octave higher re-scoring of the horns, and then Russell-Davies' tempo slowdown when the timpani roll begins until the final orchestral hit.
Perfect!  ;D
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Brian on October 13, 2014, 01:26:28 PM
B1/C4 – X3 - ESCHENBACH/LONDON PHILHARMONIC - with an Adagio that scored the most points in Round 2...


(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/41YT2DAU%2BhL.jpg)

Just listened to this in full. The adagio is indeed beautiful, almost Celibidachean in its scope, deep breaths, and lyrical flow. The last 5-6 minutes in particular are utter perfection. Eschenbach figures out how to keep this "light" - that is, not inconsequential, but beautiful without being heavy-handed or soggy or overly serious.

On the other hand, that same lightness visits the other movements a bit like a plague. It's a remarkably consistent interpretation, but I'm all about contrast rather than consistency when I listen. The outer movements just need more snap and firepower; the first, in particular, is weirdly soft and quiet for Bruckner Six. And of course there are both codas, with long final chords and underwhelming brass. The same qualities which make the adagio great make the overall recording below average. Question is, will we find a finalist who has the best of both worlds?

P.S. The LPO's weird insistence on a little star being Photoshopped into every album cover is here more subtle than usual.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: ChamberNut on October 13, 2014, 02:09:55 PM
Group X - Round 3 Eliminations

C2/B3 – X1 - DOHNANYI/CLEVELAND ORCHESTRA

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/A1johNl-LnL._SL500_.jpg)

I had no part in this.   :-X :'(
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: ChamberNut on October 13, 2014, 02:16:32 PM
Group Y Eliminations.


Y1
Haitink - Staatskapelle Dresden (A5/D1)

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51SDdJFRJLL.jpg)





Y2
Stein - Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra (A2/D4)

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51G5K554WRL.jpg)

These were respectively, my number 1 and 2 ranked in first round Group A.  :'(
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on October 13, 2014, 02:17:00 PM
Thanks for the comments, Brian. "A remarkably consistent interpretation" is a perfect description, but whether or not Bruckner's 6th requires that consistency from movement to movement is a good debate, and one that seems to have been answered by this elimination.

And for the record, Nagano's finale would have rocked it in Round 3!  >:D


I had no part in this.   :-X :'(

It's like a funeral for Dohnanyi on this thread, how can we possibly go on?  :'(  ;)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Ken B on October 13, 2014, 02:17:23 PM
I had no part in this.   :-X :'(
Well if you and Sarge had both placed it one slot higher ... You could have overcome amw's  semming dictatorial power >:D
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on October 13, 2014, 02:19:42 PM
These were respectively, my number 1 and 2 ranked in first round Group A.  :'(

And both very good records, Ray. I thought Haitink could have been a dark horse to win this comparison, and Stein's is a classic.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: ChamberNut on October 13, 2014, 02:20:24 PM
Well if you and Sarge had both placed it one slot higher ... You could have overcome amw's  semming dictatorial power >:D

Yes, indeed Ken!  :D   amw is a force to be reckoned with.  ;D

Collusion is in order for the final round.   ;)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: ChamberNut on October 13, 2014, 02:21:43 PM
And both very good records, Ray. I thought Haitink could have been a dark horse to win this comparison, and Stein's is a classic.

For me, in the first round, Haitink's had the best brass sound, while I found Stein's to have the best string sound.  Will be an interesting final round!!  :)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on October 13, 2014, 02:31:37 PM
:( Let's begin the parade of the eliminated  :(....


(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51GOWYaP07L._SY350_.jpg) (http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51lLMB%2BMZKL._SL500_AA280_.jpg) (http://g-ecx.images-amazon.com/images/G/01/ciu/e9/31/6ea7b220dca0e9867e7f7010.L._SX350_.jpg) (http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51F0DIhoDML._SY350_.jpg) (http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51FnuGttc6L._SS350_.jpg) (http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/41BZTM6955L._SS350_.jpg)  (http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51Xi2dITPHL._SS350_.jpg) (http://g-ecx.images-amazon.com/images/G/01/ciu/50/e0/1ff7c060ada0c16e09178110.L._SX350_.jpg)(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51cSkWJCjtL.jpg)(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/71qYdH9hAML._SL450_.jpg) (http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51zioJG6dcL.jpg)(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51lZJDMs3-L.jpg)   (http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/41rPv6acbRL._SX300_.jpg)(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/516wfyD3WOL._SX300_.jpg)(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/81l1p-ziY4L._SL300_.jpg)(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51AD%2BNW-baL._SX300_.jpg)  (http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51SDdJFRJLL.jpg) (http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51G5K554WRL.jpg)  (http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/A1johNl-LnL._SL500_.jpg)(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/41YT2DAU%2BhL.jpg)


Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Daverz on October 13, 2014, 02:41:19 PM
Very creative use of scrolling tag.  Don't try this at home, kids.

I note that conspicuous by their absence are:

Klemperer/EMI
Keilberth/Berlin
Muti/Berlin/EMI
Celibidache/Munich/EMI
Leitner/SWR (principal claim to fame on RMCR as the coupling for Leitner's recording of KA Hartmann's Symphony No. 6)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on October 13, 2014, 02:53:09 PM
Very creative use of scrolling tag.  Don't try this at home, kids.

I note that conspicuous by their absence are:

Klemperer/EMI
Keilberth/Berlin
Muti/Berlin/EMI
Celibidache/Munich/EMI
Leitner/SWR (principal claim to fame on RMCR as the coupling for Leitner's recording of KA Hartmann's Symphony No. 6)

You seem interested in who gets eliminated and who is possibly still alive, perhaps you would like to participate.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: ChamberNut on October 13, 2014, 02:58:25 PM
20 are gone, and how many are left, Greg?  :)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: amw on October 13, 2014, 03:00:11 PM
Hmm, Decca has a lot of recordings of this symphony.

Also, Horst Stein seems to be the only 'old school' recording I actually liked, while being 'meh' about Haitink, Dohnanyi and the Dresden Jochum. Third place in round 1 after the revisionists only due to the horns, and revisiting it, it still holds up quite well. Doesn't seem to be on any streaming service though, and I'm not sure I liked it enough to buy, so can't see if their finale (and the scherzo, which I have not listened to yet—it'll be the last variable for the final round I guess) holds up.

Very creative use of scrolling tag.  Don't try this at home, kids.

I note that conspicuous by their absence are:

Klemperer/EMI
Keilberth/Berlin
Muti/Berlin/EMI
Celibidache/Munich/EMI
Leitner/SWR (principal claim to fame on RMCR as the coupling for Leitner's recording of KA Hartmann's Symphony No. 6)
Spoilers!

(Admittedly I think I can guess which one was Celibidache/Munich in round 2)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Moonfish on October 13, 2014, 03:02:34 PM
20 are gone, and how many are left, Greg?  :)

Perhaps Greg will add some of his own favorites to the elected four at this point in time (that would be funny)!!
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Daverz on October 13, 2014, 03:04:55 PM
You seem interested in who gets eliminated and who is possibly still alive, perhaps you would like to participate.

I have to beg off with the excuse that I should be doing work.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on October 13, 2014, 03:09:47 PM
Perhaps Greg will add some of his own favorites to the elected four at this point in time (that would be funny)!!

 ;D Oh I like this plan. But I have been faithful to the scoring (at least up to this point  :-X ) and have been sad to see a few of my favorites go.


And... STOP WITH THE SPOILERS!  :)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Daverz on October 13, 2014, 03:12:41 PM
;D Oh I like this plan. But I have been faithful to the scoring (at least up to this point  :-X ) and have been sad to see a few of my favorites go.


And... STOP WITH THE SPOILERS!  :)

Spoilers?  I'm just reading listings off abruckner.com.

http://www.abruckner.com/discography/symphonyno6inamajo/
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Moonfish on October 13, 2014, 03:12:53 PM
;D Oh I like this plan. But I have been faithful to the scoring (at least up to this point  :-X ) and have been sad to see a few of my favorites go.


And... STOP WITH THE SPOILERS!  :)

I thought Jochum's DG recording would win for sure...   :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'(

*still hasn't recovered from the shock*

(http://www.psychologytoday.com/files/u594/shocking.jpg)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on October 13, 2014, 03:13:21 PM
Spoilers?  I'm just reading listings off abruckner.com.

http://www.abruckner.com/discography/symphonyno6inamajo/

That is a great site. Been there many times for info, especially when comparing recordings of Bruckner's 3rd and all its editions.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on October 13, 2014, 03:15:26 PM
I thought Jochum's DG recording would win for sure...   :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'(

*still hasn't recovered from the shock*

(http://www.psychologytoday.com/files/u594/shocking.jpg)

Nobody seems too upset over the Jochum/Dresden recording going bye-bye.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Daverz on October 13, 2014, 03:18:45 PM
I thought Jochum's DG recording would win for sure...   :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'(

*still hasn't recovered from the shock*

I blame it on a cabal of Jochum haters within the committee.  It's the BENGHAZI! of the Bruckner set, I tells ya.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Moonfish on October 13, 2014, 03:27:09 PM
Group X - Round 3 Eliminations

B1/C4 – X3 - ESCHENBACH/LONDON PHILHARMONIC - with an Adagio that scored the most points in Round 2...


(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/41YT2DAU%2BhL.jpg)

One reviewer on Amazon stated :"Beautifully executed performance let down by unexciting fourth movement"

Perhaps these comparisons really should include the whole symphony (which of course is time consuming), but how can one judge a symphony by listening to just one movement? In our first round we probably lost a few recordings that had a subpar first movement. Perhaps those recordings had stellar performances in the remaining three movements?  In a sense we are voting for the performances that held up the sequence of doing well in the 1st, 2nd and 4th movements. What if we listened to the movements in a 2nd/4th/1st sequence instead? Of course, this suggestion completely ignores our own subjective mindset as listeners.  >:D >:D >:D
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: ChamberNut on October 13, 2014, 03:31:56 PM
Nobody seems too upset over the Jochum/Dresden recording going bye-bye.

FALSE!!!  :'(  I am even more upset over that one being gone, than with the DG.  Waaahhh!!  :'( :'( :'( :'( :'(  Cato also, is probably pretty upset.  :'( :'( :'( :'( :'(
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Cato on October 13, 2014, 03:45:02 PM
Or DG Jochum..... :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'(

AMEN!!! 


0:)
FALSE!!!  :'(  I am even more upset over that one being gone, than with the DG.  Waaahhh!!  :'( :'( :'( :'( :'(  Cato also, is probably pretty upset.  :'( :'( :'( :'( :'(

Oh yes!  But...now the question of "who will be the winner?" is equivalent to asking "who is better than Saint Eugen Jochum?"  8)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Brian on October 13, 2014, 03:59:11 PM
Klemperer/EMI
Keilberth/Berlin
Muti/Berlin/EMI
Celibidache/Munich/EMI
Leitner/SWR (principal claim to fame on RMCR as the coupling for Leitner's recording of KA Hartmann's Symphony No. 6)

Greg said one unlikely contender is still in the race. That could be Venzago, van Zweden, or Marek Janowski. Barenboim/Chicago, Haitink/RCO, and Heinz Rogner are still out there.

EDIT: My SAG (Stupid Ass Guess) as to the final four: Celibidache, Klemperer, Leitner, and Haitink. You couldn't do it without Klemps or Celi. I think maybe Greg means Leitner is the improbable entry. Keilberth and Muti can't both be in, since he said 4 different orchestras. There's a chance Janowski is there. Rogner is eccentric enough that some philistine would have voted it out of the competition by now.   >:D
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Ken B on October 13, 2014, 04:04:48 PM
Very creative use of scrolling tag.  Don't try this at home, kids.

I note that conspicuous by their absence are:

Klemperer/EMI
Keilberth/Berlin
Muti/Berlin/EMI
Celibidache/Munich/EMI
Leitner/SWR (principal claim to fame on RMCR as the coupling for Leitner's recording of KA Hartmann's Symphony No. 6)
Also missing he hinted darkly is Paternostro/Membran.
There is no Mehta recording, so there's a limit to how embarassing this can prove.  ;D
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on October 13, 2014, 04:12:27 PM
FALSE!!!  :'(  I am even more upset over that one being gone, than with the DG.  Waaahhh!!  :'( :'( :'( :'( :'(  Cato also, is probably pretty upset.  :'( :'( :'( :'( :'(

Oh, I apologize, Ray.  :(


Greg said one unlikely contender is still in the race. That could be Venzago, van Zweden, or Marek Janowski. Barenboim/Chicago, Haitink/RCO, and Heinz Rogner are still out there.

EDIT: My SAG (Stupid Ass Guess) as to the final four: Celibidache, Klemperer, Leitner, and Haitink. You couldn't do it without Klemps or Celi. I think maybe Greg means Leitner is the improbable entry. Keilberth and Muti can't both be in, since he said 4 different orchestras. There's a chance Janowski is there. Rogner is eccentric enough that some philistine would have voted it out of the competition by now.   >:D

Oh boy, more spoilers.
Well I guess I'll join...don't forget Davis, Inbal, Eschenbach with Houston, Nezet-Seguin, Furtwängler (mvts 2-4), Andreae, Mehta, Bernstein, Boulez, and Masur.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Brian on October 13, 2014, 04:40:44 PM
Well I guess I'll join...don't forget Davis, Inbal, Eschenbach with Houston, Nezet-Seguin, Furtwängler (mvts 2-4), Andreae, Mehta, Bernstein, Boulez, and Masur.
(http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-uz1WXc35e_0/UGnVpGadmnI/AAAAAAAADOs/a6oyh-RvA4Q/s1600/spit-take.gif)

There's a BERNSTEIN???!

Confirmed on Bruckner discography, there IS a Bernstein.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Daverz on October 13, 2014, 04:47:13 PM
There's a BERNSTEIN???!

Confirmed on Bruckner discography, there IS a Bernstein.

He only performed 6 and 9, AFAIK.   I found the valedictory DVD of 9 with the VPO quite moving, but could not abide the NYP brass in 6.

Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on October 13, 2014, 05:13:29 PM
(http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-uz1WXc35e_0/UGnVpGadmnI/AAAAAAAADOs/a6oyh-RvA4Q/s1600/spit-take.gif)

There's a BERNSTEIN???!

Confirmed on Bruckner discography, there IS a Bernstein.

Apparently, but don't go searching for all the names i mentioned, they may or may not have recorded the 6th.  :-X  :)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: amw on October 13, 2014, 05:48:18 PM
Yes, I'm also curious as to what Greg's mysterious dark horse recording is.

Masur/Gewandhaus? Bolton/Mozarteum? Kempe/Tonhalle? Nezet-Seguin/Montreal? Bosch/Aachen? Svetlanov/USSRSO? Abravanel/Utah? Furtwängler live in Bratislava 1937? Nanut/Ljubljana? Savall/Concert des Nations???

Ok, probably none of those, but it's fun to imagine.

edit: Hmm, when I posted this we were on the previous page. So in sequence this now makes no sense. Whatever.

edit 2: Ok, while Svetlanov is pure fiction, there is a Rozhdestvensky 6th out there. Günter Wand's RCA 6th is also unaccounted for.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: ChamberNut on October 13, 2014, 06:06:42 PM
Apparently, but don't go searching for all the names i mentioned, they may or may not have recorded the 6th.  :-X  :)

Giulini didn't record the 6th, did he?  ???  He seems to have a great touch with AB's music.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on October 13, 2014, 06:32:21 PM
Giulini didn't record the 6th, did he?  ???  He seems to have a great touch with AB's music.

I don't think so, Ray. Or at least I've never seen it. The only Giulini I've heard is the 9th, and it's beautiful.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: kishnevi on October 13, 2014, 07:11:48 PM
Also absent from the casualties is Colin Davis/LSO Live.
Hopefully, that merely means Our Moderator had the good sense not to include him.
(Let us just say that was the recording I chose to become acquainted with B6 and it was very bad choice indeeed.)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: amw on October 13, 2014, 07:16:05 PM
Also absent from the casualties is Colin Davis/LSO Live.
Hopefully, that merely means Our Moderator had the good sense not to include him.
(Let us just say that was the recording I chose to become acquainted with B6 and it was very bad choice indeeed.)
He and Mehta are the finalists along with Boulez and Cantieri/Süddeutsche Philharmonie.

To be honest though, I'm not sure what else we expected after eliminating Karajan, Jochum twice, Haitink, Stein etc. ;)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: kishnevi on October 13, 2014, 07:22:10 PM
He and Mehta are the finalists along with Boulez and Cantieri/Süddeutsche Philharmonie.

To be honest though, I'm not sure what else we expected after eliminating Karajan, Jochum twice, Haitink, Stein etc. ;)
Not being part of this BC, I can claim innocence in this outburst of  bad taste.  If pressed I would probably pick Karajan as my go-to recording.
Meanwhile I need to buckle down and finish my duties as a Schubert BC juror.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Moonfish on October 13, 2014, 08:33:56 PM
Not being part of this BC, I can claim innocence in this outburst of  bad taste.  If pressed I would probably pick Karajan as my go-to recording.
Meanwhile I need to buckle down and finish my duties as a Schubert BC juror.

I need to remember not to join these comparisons so I can flap my criticism around as much as I want to, eh? Why don't you join in the finals so we can get some good individual taste as part of the winning selection since all participants have failed so far?   >:D
Frankly, I think the outcome has to do with listening to movements rather than complete symphonies plus the factor of groups that each will gear towards specific aspects (each group possibly unique in which aspects that are preferred). I think the whole exercise truly proves that music appreciation is a very subjective endeavor. If we ran the exercise over we would have a different outcome.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: aukhawk on October 14, 2014, 01:11:32 AM
Perhaps there's a little-known recording by Simone Young out there  >:D

Perhaps these comparisons really should include the whole symphony (which of course is time consuming), but how can one judge a symphony by listening to just one movement?

My theory: if listening to a recording, then the 1st movement makes or breaks it.  After all, you can always stop listening, so the 1st movement has to hook you.
In the concert hall, it's the last movement which is the most important.  You are a captive audience anyway, and it takes time for the musicians to warm to their task.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Ken B on October 14, 2014, 04:50:57 AM
I need to remember not to join these comparisons so I can flap my criticism around as much as I want to, eh?

Isn't there some rule about imitating Canadians?
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Moonfish on October 14, 2014, 06:36:08 AM
Isn't there some rule about imitating Canadians?

Ha! Michigan, eh?
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on October 14, 2014, 06:52:36 AM
Uploading final links...

There will be 4 folders, F1, F2, F3 and F4 each containing 4 files. Seriously, did I need to explain that?  ::)  ;D
Here's an example of how each track will look inside their respective "F" file , the only difference will be the F marking.

01 F1 - 1. Maestoso.m4a
02 F1 - 2. Adagio.m4a
03 F1 - 3. Scherzo.m4a
04 F1 - 4. Finale.m4a
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: k a rl h e nn i ng on October 14, 2014, 08:25:40 AM
Uploading final links...

There will be 4 folders, F1, F2, F3 and F4 each containing 4 files. Seriously, did I need to explain that?  ::)  ;D

Consider it Fair Disclosure 8)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Sergeant Rock on October 14, 2014, 08:27:27 AM
Not being part of this BC, I can claim innocence in this outburst of  bad taste.  If pressed I would probably pick Karajan as my go-to recording.

Then you definitely need to hear more Bruckner Sixths. That's the weak link in his otherwise great cycle. I'm not surprised he got the boot.

Also missing he hinted darkly is Paternostro/Membran.
There is no Mehta recording, so there's a limit to how embarassing this can prove.  ;D

There is no embarrassment here. Two of the last four are celebrated Brucknerians. The third is a darling of the critics whose Sixth is venerated by both Hurwitz ("...this Sixth remains the best version of that work yet committed to disc...") and the British critical establishment...a rare miracle of agreement there  ;D  The fourth finalist I have not identified but I trust that my fellow blind "comparitors" have chosen wisely  8)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Dancing Divertimentian on October 14, 2014, 08:49:23 AM
Then you definitely need to hear more Bruckner Sixths. That's the weak link in his otherwise great cycle. I'm not surprised he got the boot.

There is no embarrassment here. Two of the last four are celebrated Brucknerians. The third is a darling of the critics whose Sixth is venerated by both Hurwitz ("...this Sixth remains the best version of that work yet committed to disc...") and the British critical establishment...a rare miracle of agreement there  ;D  The fourth finalist I have not identified but I trust that my fellow blind "comparitors" have chosen wisely  8)

Sage* words. The peanut gallery needs to stuff it and let this BC wind to its natural conclusion.

*Interchangeable with "Sarge", obviously.

 
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on October 14, 2014, 06:18:29 PM
"LET THE GAMES BEGIN!!!" - The Monkey King

(http://s.wsj.net/public/resources/images/OB-WK457_0220JJ_G_20130220042659.jpg)



Links have been sent, if you didn't receive them and want them, PM me or leave a post here. Let's try at least the end of October for a deadline, I know it's 16 movements so I will be reasonable and allow the time needed.

And PLEASE no spoilers!  $:) <---BPD (Bruckner Police Dept)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Brian on October 14, 2014, 06:58:13 PM
Excitement level: 10

EDIT: I got so excited I listened to the first theme of the first movement, as played by all four. I wanted to judge them just by the intonation and phrasing of the cellos, the ways they emphasize the notes. None are as rich as Nagano (this is a place where Nagano took extra-special care), but all are very different. Very, very different.

I think we all knew there would be an eccentric in this final round. But I'm not sure. I think there are two eccentrics.

We'll see.  8)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Daverz on October 15, 2014, 09:47:03 AM
I misunderstood where you guys were in the competition.  I don't think I would put Stein in the very top spot, either, though I'm not sure what recording I would put there.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: mc ukrneal on October 15, 2014, 03:25:30 PM
I misunderstood where you goes were in the competition.  I don't think I would put Stein in the very top spot, either, though I'm not sure what recording I would put there.
Maybe you can help us decide? It's fun.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Daverz on October 15, 2014, 03:33:08 PM
Maybe you can help us decide? It's fun.

Seems a bit like poaching on others hard work at this late date, but if someone sends me links, I'll give it a shot.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: mc ukrneal on October 16, 2014, 06:52:30 PM
I am now half way through and very exciting stuff. I have a clear leader among the first two, and we'll see if one of the last two can unseat it.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Daverz on October 16, 2014, 10:08:21 PM
I class 2 of the 4 as also-rans, and I think I have a clear preference among the other 2, though I want to let them go another round.

To spice things up, I think I'll add some other recordings from my collection to my listening (which I'll keep to myself until the end).  Maybe I'll have the energy to add some from the previously eliminated as well.  The ones I have on my music server are Skrowaczewski, Stein, Blomstedt/SFS, Lopez-Cobos, and both Jochums.  I'm pretty familiar with Stein, so I'll probably try refreshing my memory of some of the others.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: mc ukrneal on October 18, 2014, 07:00:11 PM
I class 2 of the 4 as also-rans, and I think I have a clear preference among the other 2, though I want to let them go another round.
Same here. Exactly the same. I wonder if they are the same ones...find out soon enough....
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Brian on October 19, 2014, 08:12:00 AM
F1. The first movement is pretty much how it goes in my head, with a notable sense of purpose and mythic grandeur. This is a live recording, but an incredibly accomplished one; I think I heard a wrong note in the coda but that's it. To me, the tempo and fluidity sit squarely in the Brucknerian mainstream, so this is a good "normal" performance. The brass blares away without sacrificing the rest of the orchestra.

Adagio: Perfect. Beyond perfect. I'm pretty sure this is the performance that finally convinced me of this adagio's worth - early on I had always been flummoxed by the lack of a big "climax" like the Seventh or Eighth. And then I heard this performance and it all clicked. Still the best there is. Other people will say this is slow, but I'm too busy floating in the heavens to notice.

If anything, the adagio works against the performance as a whole, because interpreted like this, there's just no way the rest of the symphony can possibly measure up. The last two movements just aren't as well-written by Bruckner as the adagio is when it's co-written by Bruckner and Conductor F1. Despite a ringing, outstanding final coda, I do hear a little why Tintner says the finale does not live up to what came before. That's not to complain about the performances; they're at a very high level. (Wish that crazy clarinet trill after 4:00 in the finale was more audible.) Maybe it would have helped if the finale was a little...slower!?

Rating 9.2/10; second

F2. Significantly quicker in the first movement. Quicker, but after F1 it feels shallow. The longer I listen and get away from the mind-altering state of F1, the more I like this. It is a very good performance. Boomy timpani, always a plus. First movement, final seconds are a bit on the edge: sounds like a second-rate orchestra putting in an amazingly heroic effort.

Good adagio. I think this is going to be a very good performance. I love the dark crackling of the trombones in the scherzo. Like F1, that nutso clarinet trill is MIA in the finale. It must be rare to get to hear it as characterful as it was in X4 - which is still alive in the finals! Does the tension drop a bit halfway through the finale? (Around 8:00-9:00?) That's a liability. Brass does drown out some wind details at times, unlike F1. All in all this is a good "conventional" account: not going to blow any minds, or open any doors, but never does anything wrong either. It's certainly a plausible finalist.

Rating 7.5/10; fourth

F3. When I listened to the first 30 seconds of each recording earlier this week, I thought I had this one identified easily as You-Know-Who. But, of course, it's somebody else. The extremely slow violin rhythm at the start is a deceptive front, as the first movement slowly builds energy. Pretty much glorious woodwind and brass playing. I love how the French horns are always circling, like a shark. This is fairly glorious.

I heard this adagio in the adagio round and awarded it second place behind Dresden/Haitink. It was a close call, though. I loved the old-school sound and brilliant phrasing and warned Norrington, if you want a fast version, this is how to do it. Yup. Sounds right.

This is a case of the old sound actually helping. The brass are just stupendous recorded like this, and that wacky clarinet trill blows up in the finale at about 3:50. Although I have to say the timpani could cut through a little better at times. That occurred to me in the finale, and was the first thought of criticism I had.

How do I choose between F1 and F3??? How do you choose between your children? Here we have two recordings which got here, not like F2 on competence and sheer nothing-wrong-ness, but on genuine inspiration. F1 has the slow movement to die for, perfect in every way. And yet I think that there's a good argument that the 22 minutes of sheer Olympian majesty plunked in the middle of F1 makes for an impossible act to follow. F3 has nothing wrong with its adagio, and it just plain fits in better with the surroundings. It's a balanced, near-perfect whole. And I never had that thought about the finale being inadequate. I am interested in hearing what other listeners think of this adagio/finale balance theory as they submit their scores. Only the deceptive beginning and a recording that sometimes lets the timpanist go AWOL prevents this from being an hour-long perfect 10. Holy cow, this is great.

Rating 9.7/10; first

F4. There's a reverb factor in this acoustic. Fast, driven, passionate first movement - not at all cold. I find myself nodding along in the big passages. Some of the other performances have demonstrated remarkable flexibility, but this one is so strict that its rhythm becomes part of the power of the work - irresistible, unstoppable. It works.

The adagio feels too fast at times (though it is a bit slower than F3's), but is saved by the beautiful sounds of the strings. The thrill-ride interpretation returns for the second half, and the finale has a lot of guts. F2 should hear this and see how not to let momentum down. Interesting, if not preferable, how the trombones and tuba make a giant crescendo of their part 11:32-11:48. Thrilling final coda.

Now, how am I supposed to rate this versus F1 and F3? What we have here are three Great Recordings, three plausible champions, three reference versions. How do we break the tie? Personal taste, probably. F4 is the heavy metal thriller. F1 is the adagio from heaven. F3 is old-school warmth. F2 is the only wrong answer here; all the others are right answers. I'm ranking them based only on my own preference - although my real preference is for all three! If this took place last month, or next month, my ordering might be completely different!

Rating 9.0/10; third

4. F2
3. F4
2. F1
1. F3

If you had told me before the competition started that I would not rank Conductor F1 first, I would have been very surprised.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on October 19, 2014, 09:03:00 AM
Wonderful comments, Brian. Thank you for participating.  ;D
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Brian on October 19, 2014, 12:32:07 PM
Oh, and if amw gets bored and decides to write up a thing about each conductor's (non-)conformity to the score, I will read with great interest.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: North Star on October 19, 2014, 12:35:49 PM
I take it that Greg is in no hurry with the votes.. I might be able to participate too.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: amw on October 19, 2014, 01:16:52 PM
I won't have a chance to start listening until next week, most likely, but will probably go into detail about something. Can't guarantee it will be that.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on October 19, 2014, 02:17:35 PM
I won't have a chance to start listening until next week, most likely, but will probably go into detail about something. Can't guarantee it will be that.

I'll wait for a while, at least another week. Would love to get your comments in for the final round. And I will for sure hit up the Schubert Quintet BC this week!



I take it that Greg is in no hurry with the votes.. I might be able to participate too.

Please do!
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: North Star on October 19, 2014, 02:47:48 PM
Please do!
I'll need the links, though.  8)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: kishnevi on October 19, 2014, 03:59:58 PM
Listening to first movement of one candidate---I think I have found a winner.  Now let us see if the other three movements are up to the same standard.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Pat B on October 19, 2014, 09:01:14 PM
I won't have a chance to start listening until next week, most likely, but will probably go into detail about something. Can't guarantee it will be that.

I'm hoping for sordid details about the performers' personal lives. Though I guess Brian's idea would be okay too.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: mc ukrneal on October 20, 2014, 06:41:11 PM
Bruckner Final

F1 – Good start. Brass section is nice and intense. Some minor (?) intonation and unison issues. These guys have a good sound, though on occasion the trumpets seem a bit distant. A solid first movement, though at key moments important instruments seem to disappear.  Second movement continues on the slower side, perhaps a bit draggy. Third movement appears to be a similar pace. I wish there was more differentiation to create more contrast (probably its downfall). Faster fourth movement adds some contrast, but still it seems to stay within certain parameters. And the trumpet calls at the beginning are VERY laid back and even timid I would say (as well as being very legato).  It’s an ok performance, but not one I would ever return to. Ranking: 3

F2 – Faster, but also quite a good start. Brass again quite good and overall sound is excellent. This one has better nuance and detail. Here again, some key sounds are subdued. But the adagio is much better. This is fantastic. The flow and crescendos are excellent. And the third movement starts intense. A fine scherzo. Ah, the last movement starts relatively slow, and a bit too legato on the trumpet entrances. I’d prefer a touch faster, but still nicely done. F2 blows the F1 adagio out of the water.   Ranking: 1

F3 – Slow.  Some unison issues, despite this. I don’t like how some instruments stick out. Transitions are very disorganized and lacking in flow. Sounds great at times, but then as raw as a school orchestra – too inconsistent.  I’d be happy if they could just follow the bloody beat. Fast Adagio and rather matter of fact. There are a lot of technical issues in their playing. Some sort of technical issue around the 7 minute mark.  Slow start to scherzo. Lacks cohesiveness. Finale is ok, but I was already lost. Disappointed.  Ranking: 4

F4 – A more intense start than the previous. Much better in the details and much more enjoyable. Brass a bit wonky in moments. But the excitement is just off the charts.  A bit fast to start the Adagio, but gorgeously played. The approach is just right in my opinion, and I adjust to the speeds soon enough.  Scherzo is slower. I’d like a bit more crispness at times, but the overall impact is good. A good pace in the finale, though perhaps slows just a bit. Oh, this gets to be exciting – they build well. I like that throughout the flow is always there and the structure of the piece always on display.
Ranking: 2

F1 and F3 lag behind. It’s clearly between F2 and F4. Let’s do a head to head.  Neither is my ideal first movement, but both do a good job – F1 has good flow with occasional details lost and some occasional distance in certain instruments though the crescendos here are outstanding, while F4 is faster and tighter (but I think the crescendos could have been more, and inner transparency isn’t my ideal here either). I think flow wins it, so I give it to F2. In the adagio – well, both are excellent and I love them both. F4 is faster, but it seems natural and flows just right (good propulsion). It’s exciting. The buildups are so well done (though the actual climaxes don’t quite have that earth-shattering power). F2 is a different beast entirely. It’s darker and creates an entirely different impact – one that touches the soul. The transitions are exquisite and the details/nuances are just right. Buildups (the way they draw out the line in the middle buildup – wow) and climaxes are spot on. End is exquisite. So while I loved both, F2 again takes it (by a hair).

In the Scherzo, F2 doesn’t do the transitions as well, but there is a lightness that is just right after that adagio. And the climaxes are strong. F4 inverts the relationship with a faster adagio and slower scherzo. The transitions are sharper (probably in part because it is slower), but the propulsion isn’t quite as strong. The pulse is there, but slightly more static. I think the middle section is not quite as well integrated with the other portions. So again, I think F2 takes it (though neither is perfect here).

And then the finale. F4 has a lot of excitement and intensity. The finale is a bit of a minefield and transitions are decently handled (sometimes the very first beat or two seems off before they recover). Everything feels connected, though tempos are occasionally forced. F2 is slower here, but after the scherzo, feels ok. The tempos are pulled and pushed a bit, but the transitions are done well. Again, the crescendos (and decrescendos) are just so good! I think F4 is more exciting, but this is more coherent and ultimately more convincing.

When I listened to the first time, I was leaning F2 until the finale, where the excitement of F4 made me question which should be first. But listening to just the two, F2 was the clear winner.

It has been a fun exercise and thanks for organizing it Greg!!!!

Final Ranking: F2, F4, F1, F3.

FYI – I did not look at any previous rankings or try to match up these ratings with early ratings. Listening to the whole piece is a different from listening to each section separate from the rest. And I wanted to give it a fresh listen.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Brian on October 20, 2014, 06:52:21 PM
That settles it. Neal is my sworn enemy for life!  ??? ;D
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: kishnevi on October 20, 2014, 06:57:20 PM
I think I am ready to vote.  As usual I went for the overall effect, so I will just say thatmy first choice grabbed me and held me, the others were good but did not have the same effect. Scores on a scale of 1 to 10, with 10 the theoretical best.

F1 7
F2 8
F3 8
F4 9
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: mc ukrneal on October 20, 2014, 07:07:56 PM
Comments hidden to protect the guilty!  ???
Well, that was interesting. I am actually a bit shocked. We are the exact opposite. You disliked what I loved and vice versa.

About your favorite and my worst (same one):
You wrote: This is fairly glorious.  It's a balanced, near-perfect whole.
I wrote: Sounds great at times, but then as raw as a school orchestra – too inconsistent.  I’d be happy if they could just follow the bloody beat.

About my favorite and your worst (same one):

You wrote:  sounds like a second-rate orchestra putting in an amazingly heroic effort. good "conventional" account.
I wrote: Brass again quite good and overall sound is excellent.   touches the soul.

It is times like these I wish we could listen to these in groups. I'd set you straight.  :P :-*
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on October 20, 2014, 07:16:58 PM
Oh my goodness this is too good!  :laugh:

3 scores in so far with 3 different first place votes. This is the type of contrast I was hoping for the final round.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: kishnevi on October 20, 2014, 07:19:03 PM

(In reply to Neil)
And to further the fun, both of those I placed equally in middle of the pack.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Brian on October 20, 2014, 07:22:31 PM
(In reply to Neil)
And to further the fun, both of those I placed equally in middle of the pack.
Well, as I said, not only could I easily imagine awarding F1, F3, and F4 first place, I could also easily imagine MYSELF awarding any of those first place, based purely on mood at the time. F4's propulsive rhythms and electric charge make it probably the most immediately gripping...maybe?
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: mc ukrneal on October 20, 2014, 07:24:00 PM
(In reply to Neil)
And to further the fun, both of those I placed equally in middle of the pack.
If you have some time to add a few comments about what you liked or disliked about each (whenever you have the time), that would be of interest to me (and probably others).
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Daverz on October 20, 2014, 07:28:39 PM
I happened to listen to F1 just before taking up the comparison, so I don't have "unbiased" notes for that one.

Here are my original notes on F2-F4.  I tend to judge recordings of the 6th based on the build up to the end of the first movement and whether the finale seems like a real finale rather than an appendage.


F2: Beautiful string playing.  Lot of personality in winds.  Flowing tempi (not Jochum-like, though).  Not a huge dynamic range.  Closing of movement I not as cosmic or goose-bump inducing as I like.  No complaint in II: as warm and tender as one could want.  III dances nicely, but perhaps a little deliberate.  IV also seems a bit stiff.

F3: First movement opens very deliberately.  But end is pretty well judged.  Majestic, but perhaps not as cosmic as I like.  II is moderate (NB: had not checked timings!)  but not rushed.  III is good, but I would like more swing.  IV is perfect.

F4: Strings too recessed.  End of first movement very earthbound and we get there much too fast.  II & III: Meh.  Seems to wake up a bit in IV.



Some comments on F1:


Beautifully played and recorded.  I'd rate this as near perfect in I, III and IV, but II is going to be the sticking point for most folks.  I haven't decided yet whether the Adagio is stretched beyond the breaking point or not.  Even though the Adagio of F3 is swift by the clock, this interpretation may wear better.  Otherwise I rate them as

F1
F3
F2
F4

with the caveat that F1 is my top recording only for this round, as I haven't participated in the others.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: North Star on October 21, 2014, 01:40:00 AM
I'll need the links, though.  8)
Just saying.   0:)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Sergeant Rock on October 21, 2014, 01:44:25 AM
Just saying.   0:)

You have mail.

Sarge
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: North Star on October 21, 2014, 01:48:29 AM
You have mail.

Sarge
Thanks, Sarge. I'll probably get to them over the weekend (not before then, anyway).
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on October 21, 2014, 02:53:22 AM
Just saying.   0:)

Sorry , Karlo. I failed, I apologize.  :(
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: North Star on October 21, 2014, 03:17:46 AM
Sorry , Karlo. I failed, I apologize.  :(
No need to worry, your squad leader cleaned up your mess.   8)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on October 21, 2014, 03:25:32 AM
No need to worry, your squad leader cleaned up your mess.   8)

Let's just hope he doesn't have to use the bazooka.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Sergeant Rock on October 25, 2014, 01:40:34 PM
Due to circumstances beyond my control, I will not be able to post comments (unless the comparison lasts beyond Wednesday) but I do want to get my vote in:

1 - F3 (of course)
2 - F1
3 - F2
4 - F4


Sarge
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on October 25, 2014, 01:42:05 PM
Due to circumstances beyond my control, I will not be able to post comments (unless the comparison lasts beyond Wednesday) but I do want to get my vote in:

1 - F3 (of course)
2 - F1
3 - F2
4 - F4


Sarge

Thank you, Sarge! It will still be going by Wednesday, unless the other 5-6 voters get done by then.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Moonfish on October 25, 2014, 01:42:34 PM
When are our votes due? Wednesday night?
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on October 25, 2014, 01:52:52 PM
Here's the score after Brian and Neal's votes.  ;D

F1 - 5
F2 - 5
F3 - 5
F4 - 5



Total scores, allowing a half point for Jeffrey's F2/F3 tie.

F1 - 13
F2 - 11.5
F3 - 14.5
F4 - 11




When are our votes due? Wednesday night?

We could shoot for Wednesday night. But like I said, there are about 5 voters still out there, this race is too close, I would love to get the rest of them in so I would allow more time.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Brian on October 25, 2014, 03:20:40 PM
Due to circumstances beyond my control, I will not be able to post comments (unless the comparison lasts beyond Wednesday) but I do want to get my vote in:

I'd be interested in your comments whenever they are posted. Especially curious why you're not fond of ____. I assume because of the speed and the relentless focus on surface drama?
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: mc ukrneal on October 25, 2014, 03:28:06 PM
I assume because of the speed and the relentless focus on surface drama?
As opposed to the version where they cannot even keep the beat?  >:D
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Brian on October 25, 2014, 03:29:41 PM
As opposed to the version where they cannot even keep the beat?  >:D
Hey, I AM fond of ____.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on October 25, 2014, 03:29:57 PM
As opposed to the version where they cannot even keep the beat?  >:D

 :-X
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: amw on October 25, 2014, 03:51:36 PM
Started my listening with F4 just to be contrary. I don't have time & energy right now to listen to more, so my notes, to start with:

The conductor likes to drive right through all of Bruckner's tempo changes (rits, accels etc) and dynamic terracing (lots of places where Bruckner abruptly reduces to pp from p/mp he doesn't bother to get quieter in). He's evidently not a details kinda guy. Sadly that negatively impacts this performance, not only in terms of meaning but in terms of the orchestral playing as well: the string sections are not in perfect unison through most of the Adagio, the very difficult horn and trumpet parts are "belted" with little concern for intonation or tone (partly due to the unremitting fast tempi), the orchestra almost never achieves a real pianissimo when it's called for. The finale is quite exciting, probably more so than anyone but Super Fast Clarinet Trills Guy from last round (& Norrington)—the very end is great—but it doesn't make up for all the smudged passages, ignored fermatas and ritardandi, etc, etc, which divest the music of most of its mystery or spirituality or whatever in favour of pure adrenaline. Probably my last place finisher unless one of the others is even worse.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: amw on October 26, 2014, 07:58:10 PM
F3
This is a good recording, for the most part. I won't sing its praises since that's Sergeant Rock's job. But:
- The very slow tempo to start with is odd, since the conductor doesn't really commit to it (there is no discernible slowdown at Bedeutend langsamer, if anything the music seems to get faster). I'm not very convinced it was necessary.
- The final coda of the 1st movement doesn't hit home strongly enough. That may be, for me, because the final fff at Tempo wie anfangs (bar 353) isn't markedly set off from the previous 'trudging' music (bars 309 to 352): Conductor has a tendency to get louder and more exciting throughout the course of the piece anyway.
- Slow movement doesn't really prepare the finale. I'm not sure how else to put this. But the whole point of the finale (and scherzo to some extent) is this opposition between F, the key of death or whatever, which is associated with descending scales and spookiness and quiet and so forth, and which the music keeps drifting towards, and A, the key of life or joy or whatever, which is only ever achieved by brute force shifts sort of like a 'leap of faith'. And what sets this up is the slow movement: its core is this extremely dead, hushed music, but which finally presents a normal dominant 7th resolution into F (whereas in the first movement, again, A major was only established by a blind leap out of an endless series of plagal Amens). The 21 bars of pure F major that end the adagio are the longest stretch of music in a single key in the whole piece. I expect this music to be transformative, and to make every subsequent recollection of F major call to mind the funeral march and those deep bass pedals and the last, ragged breaths of a dying person (the last 3 chords of the adagio) etc. So for me the slow movement here was both too happy and too overtly demonstrative—too 'extraverted'.
- Similarly, the F/A duality is not always on track in the finale. Two points I will single out: 1) the crescendo from 113 to 124, on the dominant of F, is paired with an accelerando—this makes it too superficially exciting and actually cuts out some of the tension. (Much better done when this passage recurs at 359-370, actually the best performance of those 12 bars in this competition.) 2) Another bedeutend langsamer is ignored—bars 177 to 244 are taken at the main tempo. This is the dark heart of the movement, where F asserts itself most strongly, and the music comes closest to dissolution (main theme inverted in F major, inexplicable brass outbursts, tension generally being ratcheted up). The performance here is simply too matter-of-fact, particularly at the start of the passage, and that causes the movement to lose its main crisis and source of drama.
The instrumental balance throughout is the best of the 4, though whether that's Conductor, Engineer or the 24-bit remastering being just that good, I have no idea.

F2
This version apparently uses a newer version of the score, but following along with the old Haas/Novak edition suggested that the differences involved are not that significant. Perhaps GSM could flip through the booklet and tell us more about it after the comparison's over.
I would like to give F2 first place just for the amazing job done by the orchestra here. (or maybe it's Studio Magic, who knows.) Consistently characterful playing from everyone involved, genuine terraced dynamics (p, pp and ppp all made to sound different), everyone's dead on the beat etc. Balance is not as good as F3, whose fault that is I'm not sure. This is however let down by the conductor's handling of tempo, which is stiff and a bit lifeless throughout. The orchestra sings out gloriously in the coda of the first movement, but without the conductor shaping phrases organically and allowing them to breathe, the effect is somewhat diminished. A similar stiffness affects many bits of the finale, particularly the recapitulation and coda which then suffer by comparison with the extremely powerful F4 in particular, though the dramatisation of the tonal conflict is better brought out (at the cost of some of the energy). However Conductor does much better in the adagio, which manages to be far more poetic, deeper, darker, more tender, etc than F3 or F4—slow without losing rhythmic definition, if not quite breath-holding material. It is the highlight of this recording, just one the finale doesn't manage to live up to; one wonders if Conductor himself finds the finale unsatisfactory, or whether he's just not able to do justice to it.

Comparing the last 2 1/2 minutes of the first movement of F2 to the last 3 minutes of Davies, and then the last 3 minutes of F1, definitely highlighted how much phrasing can make or break a performance of this piece (and gave me a feeling that F1 is going to be my #1 pick, but I have yet to listen to the whole thing to verify this).

For now, in order:
F2
F3
F4
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: ChamberNut on October 27, 2014, 06:42:38 AM
Haven't had time for the final round blind listen.  Been dealing with a death in the family and haven't been on GMG.  Don't know when I'll get to it.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: amw on October 27, 2014, 03:00:25 PM
F1
Yeah, this one's the best. Most of the advantages of F2, plus superb phrasing: the music breathes and flows much more naturally. The orchestra's hearts are definitely in it, their only deficiency being some unison issues (and the clarinets often getting buried). If I have one main complaint, it's, well... don't laugh at me... it's just a bit too slow.

Sorry. But it is. The adagio is what most people are going to point to (average tempo under this conductor: eighth note = 65), and it does come close to falling apart several times, but is saved for me by the cumulative effects of bars 93-112, 149-156, and the Mahler 9/Shostakovich 4-esque 'dying of the light' that follows (bars 157-the end), none of which could have been effective without the very slow tempo of the rest of the movement—in essence, the 'funeral march' sections were sacrificed in order to create a more elegiac and dramatic overall effect, which I'm fine with after the fact. Actually I think the first and last movements suffer more from the slower tempi, which leach a good deal of drama and excitement from passages like e.g. the very end of the 1st movement (smeared final chord doesn't help), or bars 332-356 of the finale. The last two movements are stronger than the first two—the scherzo is close to ideal, the finale doesn't need excitement and can subsist on majesty and a deep understanding of the material. Still, I would have to put the finale as second best after F4, which has majesty, a deep understanding of the material and is also pretty awesome. I still don't like the other three movements of F4 very much, but the finale pushes it a bit higher—still fourth place, but a 'meh' instead of a 'nay' maybe.

Overall, in order—
phrasing: F1, F3
understanding of piece that is similar to mine: F1, F2 (orchestra at least)
excitement, drama: F3, F4
sound: F2, F1
tempi: F2 (mvts I-III), F4 (IV)
detail: F1, F2
poetry, tenderness, etc: F1, F2, F3

All of these have something to recommend them. But these are my preferences:
F1 90%
F2 85%
F3 82%
F4 70%
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on October 27, 2014, 03:30:54 PM
Overall, in order—
phrasing: F1, F3
understanding of piece that is similar to mine: F1, F2 (orchestra at least)
excitement, drama: F3, F4
sound: F2, F1
tempi: F2 (mvts I-III), F4 (IV)
detail: F1, F2
poetry, tenderness, etc: F1, F2, F3

Now that's detail. Thank you, amw.



Total scores. I will push the deadline back to Thursday night. If you would like more time that's fine. The more votes the better.  ;D 
But soon, the crown will be placed, the throne will be taken, the golden baton will be awarded, the....ok, I'll stop.  8)

F1 - 17
F2 - 14.5
F3 - 16.5
F4 - 12


Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Ken B on October 27, 2014, 03:41:27 PM
Now that's detail. Thank you, amw.



Total scores. I will push the deadline back to Thursday night. If you would like more time that's fine. The more votes the better.  ;D 
But soon, the crown will be placed, the throne will be taken, the golden baton will be awarded, the....ok, I'll stop.  8)

F1 - 17
F2 - 14.5
F3 - 16.5
F4 - 12


It looks like amw's reign of terror continues; his choices always win!
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on October 27, 2014, 04:04:31 PM
It looks like amw's reign of terror continues; his choices always win!

Well, 2-3 more votes can swing this thing either way. But F1 did receive another 1st place vote and one 2nd place.

Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: amw on October 27, 2014, 06:51:41 PM
It looks like amw's reign of terror continues; his choices always win!
Every recording I listened to in rounds 1 and 2, except one (the current F1), was eliminated, so it's about time I get my revenge >:{D

Seriously though, I didn't like conductor F1 in the 8th when I heard it, yawn-inducing apart from the final movement (I'm not sure whether that was the fault of conductor, Bruckner or me), so I wasn't expecting to respond to this so positively. It's possible that this time we just eliminated all the good ones already. :P
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Brian on October 27, 2014, 07:00:12 PM
Well, amw, thank you for your amazing series of posts. I'm utterly fascinated by them and this makes me want to relisten to all four. Oops!

Oddly, although we disagreed on our ultimate ordering...
Overall, in order—
phrasing: F1, F3
understanding of piece that is similar to mine: F1, F2 (orchestra at least)
excitement, drama: F3, F4
sound: F2, F1
tempi: F2 (mvts I-III), F4 (IV)
detail: F1, F2
poetry, tenderness, etc: F1, F2, F3
...I agree entirely on this more detailed listing.

The passage of the finale which you believe F3 glosses over ("the dark heart of the movement") is the passage where F2 finally lost me. It's too much slower, for me, and kills the momentum altogether. Otherwise a fairly well-judged performance.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: amw on October 27, 2014, 07:34:27 PM
The passage of the finale which you believe F3 glosses over ("the dark heart of the movement") is the passage where F2 finally lost me. It's too much slower, for me, and kills the momentum altogether. Otherwise a fairly well-judged performance.
Yes, that's a tough balancing act. F2's tempi are close to perfect except for most of the finale—that one passage sacrifices too much energy for its deathness—and except for the fact that the conductor doesn't allow them to breathe. Really, the orchestra carries F2. Which is a surprise to me because the orchestra is nowhere near as well known as the conductor (or the other 3 orchestras involved in this final round), so you'd think it was a case where a great conductor inspired an orchestra to awesomeness, but apparently not.

My extensive verbiage surrounding F3 is basically just a roundabout way of saying 'classic performance, just didn't move me'
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Brian on October 27, 2014, 07:41:16 PM
Yes, that's a tough balancing act. F2's tempi are close to perfect except for most of the finale—that one passage sacrifices too much energy for its deathness—and except for the fact that the conductor doesn't allow them to breathe. Really, the orchestra carries F2. Which is a surprise to me because the orchestra is nowhere near as well known as the conductor (or the other 3 orchestras involved in this final round), so you'd think it was a case where a great conductor inspired an orchestra to awesomeness, but apparently not.

My extensive verbiage surrounding F3 is basically just a roundabout way of saying 'classic performance, just didn't move me'

F2's orchestra may not be as well-known as the conductor, but the conductor isn't exactly a star/fixture/Major Artist either. (S)he is a demanding one, however. I think it's maybe a sign of how high a standard a certain class of orchestra has/had at the time the recording was made.

That was really hard to write without giving away spoilers.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: amw on October 27, 2014, 08:06:25 PM
I suppose that's true, standards are/were/will be much higher at the time F2 was/is being/will be recorded than they are/were/will be at the time F4, for instance, was/is being/will be recorded. Possibly.

(Actually F4 is the only one whose identity I still don't know, though judging from the remarks on the previous couple of pages, it appears to be one of the old-world classics. Nonetheless, since I'd not heard any recordings of Bruckner 6 before this comparison, knowing the names doesn't make it much less blind for me.)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: mc ukrneal on October 29, 2014, 07:29:41 AM
understanding of piece that is similar to mine: F1, F2 (orchestra at least)
Does this mean that you are going to be predisposed to some renditions because of how you think the piece should be played? And if they don't play it that way, does that mean you are giving a version short shrift? I ask because this comment and another you make further on make it sound like you are evaluating the piece against how you think it should sound rather than basing on whether or not they are successful at what they try to do (and whether that interpretive decision is a good one or not is yet another issue).
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Brian on October 29, 2014, 07:45:19 AM
Does this mean that you are going to be predisposed to some renditions because of how you think the piece should be played? And if they don't play it that way, does that mean you are giving a version short shrift? I ask because this comment and another you make further on make it sound like you are evaluating the piece against how you think it should sound rather than basing on whether or not they are successful at what they try to do (and whether that interpretive decision is a good one or not is yet another issue).

amw hadn't heard any recordings of the symphony before this competition, so I'm not sure (s)he had a predisposition in the way you describe. As for the bigger philosophical issue, I think that touches on the "Ebert Principle": movies should be judged based on whether they achieve their goals (and satisfy their target audience) or not.

But these four recordings are far less apples/oranges than comparing zombie movies vs. Fellini movies. And I don't think we're being asked to evaluate them based on "whether or not they are successful at what they try to do". I think we're evaluating them based on which is our favorite. F1 and F4 are both, we can all agree, spectacularly successful at doing what they try to do. These conductors and players get exactly what they want. But how many people are going to be unable to choose between them because of that?
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: mc ukrneal on October 29, 2014, 07:52:49 AM
amw hadn't heard any recordings of the symphony before this competition, so I'm not sure (s)he had a predisposition in the way you describe. As for the bigger philosophical issue, I think that touches on the "Ebert Principle": movies should be judged based on whether they achieve their goals (and satisfy their target audience) or not.

But these four recordings are far less apples/oranges than comparing zombie movies vs. Fellini movies. And I don't think we're being asked to evaluate them based on "whether or not they are successful at what they try to do". I think we're evaluating them based on which is our favorite. F1 and F4 are both, we can all agree, spectacularly successful at doing what they try to do. These conductors and players get exactly what they want. But how many people are going to be unable to choose between them because of that?
Well it could be quite the opposite: some versions might not have a chance because the listener is looking for a certain way to play it. And as this is a 'favorites' sort of thing, that is ok. But if it is the case, I want to know upfront and not have it wrapped in a 'this group is bad, they performed it badly, the conductor screwed up, etc.' when in reality the problem (if you want to call it that) is that the listener is leaving out an important piece information.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Cato on October 29, 2014, 09:20:48 AM
F 1

No rankings yet, but I will make some comments: I am using the headphones.

A live performance, so expect some audience noise.  This was a little bothersome in the Adagio's quieter sections.

The opening has some problems: a mistake in the horns, out of balance brass, and I did not like the way the cellos faded away in the opening bars.  The overall tempo is a little slow for my taste, but things become better as the movement progresses, although there are problems here and there, e.g. things drag around the 9 minute mark.  The final bars are well done!

The Adagio opens well, although the oboe is swallowed up a little by the deeper instruments.  Things are taken closer to Largo at times, than Adagio e.g. at the 5:00 ff.  The funeral march is nicely done, and the slower speed does not hurt it at all, but the next sections e.g. at c. 10:20 I find much too slow.  A wobble in the brass occurs at 15:50 or so, and things are again a little too slow.  The ending is played nicely, but seems to lack something.

The Scherzo opens with perfect playing!  Again, a little slow, but everything is top-notch!  The kaleidoscopic Trio, enigmatic as always, is played fairly well, although the brass/French horns are twice a little ragged.  The repeat is as good as the opening.

And now the Finale: the tempo no longer seems too slow.  Excellent opening, and clarity in the lines abounds in the next sections.  Great energy for the climax at 4:30 or so!  And the little dialogue at 6:00 or so is handled well, although again things were slowed down a little too much for my taste, and this slackening caused the big climax at c 9:00-10:00 to lose some of its impact.  The final minutes are played well mit Begeisterung!

Question not connected to the above necessarily:

Bruckner once commented: "Die Sechste ist die keckste!"  "Keck" meaning "sassy" or "cheeky."

Should we want a "sassy" performance?  ???
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: amw on October 29, 2014, 11:56:13 AM
Does this mean that you are going to be predisposed to some renditions because of how you think the piece should be played?
Basically.

I feel like certain interpretive decisions are more successful than others. My top choice for instance is not the way I think it 'should' be played, just the one that made the piece most successfully 'make sense' to me. My last place choice didn't work for me in part because its level of success at what it tries to do, pace Brian, is arguable—a lot is glossed over in order to achieve that effect.

Things are taken closer to Largo at times, than Adagio e.g. at the 5:00 ff.
There is a Largo marking there, incidentally >.> At least in the manuscript. Haas & Nowak put it in brackets and it doesn't seem to be observed often

Quote
Bruckner once commented: "Die Sechste ist die keckste!"  "Keck" meaning "sassy" or "cheeky."
He may have been making a joke or play on words, as composers occasionally are known to do.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Brian on October 29, 2014, 12:11:39 PM
Also, given the nature of Bruckner's other symphonies, saying that this one is the cheekiest does not mean it is cheeky. Sort of like "the happiest piece by Schnittke" or "the loudest piece by Mompou".  ;D
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: amw on October 29, 2014, 12:27:38 PM
The kaleidoscopic Trio, enigmatic as always, is played fairly well, although the brass/French horns are twice a little ragged.
Those are difficult horn parts—high, chromatic and exposed. I think one of the others (F2?) had an obvious edit right before the dangerous high Eb, which actually turned me off more than a bit of raggedness in a live performance might have done. Breaks immersion a bit.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Ken B on October 29, 2014, 01:27:41 PM
Also, given the nature of Bruckner's other symphonies, saying that this one is the cheekiest does not mean it is cheeky. Sort of like "the happiest piece by Schnittke" or "the loudest piece by Mompou".  ;D
"Best of Webern."
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on October 29, 2014, 01:31:39 PM
"Best of Webern."

I love Webern, but ---> :laugh:
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Cato on October 29, 2014, 02:10:47 PM
There is a Largo marking there, incidentally >.> At least in the manuscript. Haas & Nowak put it in brackets and it doesn't seem to be observed often.

At bar 45 of the Nowak score: yes, it is in parentheses as possibly invalid.  This was not the only section that seemed to be slouching toward Largo.  ;)


Time for F 2

I. Overall, an excellent performance of the opening!  Tempos are usually just right, good clarity in the polyphony, and climaxes are powerful.  A few quibbles about the soft sections not being all that soft: a "ppp" was not followed particularly well.  An accelerando and a molto ritardando were also sort of kind of like not followed.

II. Now the dynamic contrasts are excellent!  And the crescendos are also exquisite!  Special mention given to the crescendos in bars 113-125 (Nowak).  Again, excellent clarity in the polyphony, and the final page brings across the otherworldly aspects of the score.

III. A crisp, brisk, no-nonsense Scherzo, with again excellent attention to dynamics: special mention to bars 64-67 (Nowak).  The Trio sounded perfect, as did the return of the opening!

And then...

IV.   ??? ??? ??? ???  What happened?!  Suddenly the energy, the crispness, the clarity, the sharpness, the incisive entries (and not just of the brass) which were earlier just fine are now absent!  The tempo was slowed down a little too much, until the last third of the movement, where things began to sound better again.

Things just became more difficult!  ;)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Cato on October 30, 2014, 08:26:13 AM
Today we have F 3!

I. A slower opening than one might expect, which gives the movement a chugging nature at times, especially in the brass, which sound a little raw in general.  The performance picks up in quality, however, as the movement progresses.  Clarity in the polyphony is often sacrificed for power or thematic dominance. 

II. The Adagio starts off well, with fine execution throughout and better attention to the details.  The tempo is a little faster than I would like.  This little extra haste robs certain sections of their impact e.g. c. 12:00 with the descending line in the strings, and especially in the last page.

III.  And now the Scherzo is a good deal slower than expected: does the idea work?  No, for a lackadaisical feeling came through to me in the opening bars, although the first climax was perhaps emphasized by the earlier semi-somnolence.  The Trio was played competently enough, but nothing special came through.

IV. Things are good: tempo, phrasing, balance, attention to detail, and then c. 11:00 or so they become GREAT!   8)   Where was this orchestra and this conductor in the first three movements?  Energy, passion, expression, everything in the last minutes worked! 

Now go back and fix the previous 55 minutes!   ??? :laugh:

    0:)   Sancte   0:)    Eugeni    0:): ubi es?     ;)

Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Cato on October 30, 2014, 03:40:28 PM
And now, the end of the road, and it was worth waiting for!!!

F 4

I. Great cathedral-like sound, perfect for Bruckner!  The performance is practically perfect: finally, the perfect tempo, practically perfect execution, clarity in the lines: DRAMA, EXCITEMENT, MYSTERY!  In contrast with the others, there is a Jochumesque  ??? ??? ??? grasp of how to get the job done correctly!  Any quibbles might be not slowing down enough at the end, and bars 269-275 could have been a wee slower, otherwise, "practically perfect."

II.  Again, that BIG SOUND is present, along with gorgeous string playing, tempo perfect, the phrasing at bars 41-44 exquisite, the transition to the funeral march and the march itself, both perfect.  The dialogues are wonderfully expressive, and in bars 93 ff. the triplets in the bass - who pays attention to that? - you can feel the tension and drama! it's there!  The final pages are again exemplary.

III. The first proclamation of the brass is an explosion: and again, the clarity of the voices, the BIG sound, the energy, all impressive.  The Trio hangs together quite well, with its attention to the little details, and the high Eb in the horn at bar 44 is no problem.

IV.  The opening is a grand slam home run!  Again, an excellent degree of separation in the voices, the cathedral sound, the tempo, the dialogues, the handling of crescendos and diminuendos, all top rank!  Note the somewhat blithe, slightly mocking tone in the section at bars 186 ff.  and the drive in the orchestra at bars 245 ff.  LISTEN to that brass section in the final 2 pages!!!  All outstanding!

You get the point!   8)    Saint   0:)  Eugen would be pleased!



Final rankings:

1. F 4

and then off in the dusty distance...

2. F 2

3. F 3

4. F 1
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Ken B on October 30, 2014, 03:52:28 PM
Quote
Jochumesque

I was going to cavil about this, perhaps with allusions to a grammar grumble, but then I thought, no Ken, Cato might be right. This recording might finish in last place and be ejected. What indeed could more aptly fit being spurned by GMG than this very word?

So I counted the votes. Jochumesque it is!

 >:D >:D :laugh: :laugh: 8) ;)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: amw on October 30, 2014, 04:03:01 PM
Hey, it could in fact be Jochum himself. We've already eliminated his Dresden and Berlin recordings, but his Concertgebouw one's still unaccounted for. ;)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on October 30, 2014, 04:22:11 PM
F1 - 18
F2 - 17.5
F3 - 18.5
F4 - 16


Wow! This race is too close! I don't want to close it. I would like to give Ray a chance, although I don't know when he'll be back.
Anybody else out there that hasn't voted? Only 7 scores so far, I know I sent out more links than that. 8)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: kishnevi on October 30, 2014, 04:26:05 PM
To know that Cato thinks the way I do about a Bruckner recording is a most blessed thing.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Ken B on October 30, 2014, 04:29:57 PM
Hey, it could in fact be Jochum himself. We've already eliminated his Dresden and Berlin recordings, but his Concertgebouw one's still unaccounted for. ;)
Oooooooooo. Jochum triple death! What an exciting thought!  :laugh:
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Cato on October 30, 2014, 06:26:05 PM
To know that Cato thinks the way I do about a Bruckner recording is a most blessed thing.

Well, thank you!   :D
F1 - 18
F2 - 17.5
F3 - 18.5
F4 - 16


Wow! This race is too close! I don't want to close it. I would like to give Ray a chance, although I don't know when he'll be back.
Anybody else out there that hasn't voted? Only 7 scores so far, I know I sent out more links than that. 8)

How about if I sign in under a different name and listen again?  Aristoxenus perhaps?  Or Boethius?    ;)

The scores might be different...you never know!  8)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Brian on October 30, 2014, 07:52:44 PM
Not going to lie: I am thinking about listening to all four a second time and re-tallying my own vote.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: mc ukrneal on October 30, 2014, 10:16:33 PM
Not going to lie: I am thinking about listening to all four a second time and re-tallying my own vote.
Not gonna lie - I already did. And it comes out more or less the same for me, though this time I listened in a different order. I think, for the most part, we are hearing a lot of the same things but weighting their importance differently. Though, there are some things people claim to hear that I don't really think are present and there are other things I feel important but others have not even commented on.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on October 31, 2014, 02:51:09 AM
Alright, the set deadline is Saturday night. That gives this round almost 2 more days for new votes. And I'll accept a change in score, Brian, I havd no problem with that.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Sergeant Rock on October 31, 2014, 02:53:31 AM
Not going to lie: I am thinking about listening to all four a second time and re-tallying my own vote.

 ???  Are you being influenced unduly by the Jochumites? For shame  ;D

Sarge
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Cato on October 31, 2014, 03:14:43 AM
??? Are you being influenced unduly by the Jochumites? For shame  ;D

Sarge

It is absolutely, scientifically, and apodictically impossible and impocerous   ???   for anybody to be too influenced by Jochumites!  0:)

How about if I sign in under a different name and listen again?  Aristoxenus perhaps?  Or Boethius?    ;)

Another possibility for a name came to mind: PINK HARP
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Sergeant Rock on October 31, 2014, 03:39:36 AM
I'd be interested in your comments whenever they are posted. Especially curious why you're not fond of ____. I assume because of the speed and the relentless focus on surface drama?

That's one reason I placed F4 last in this round...but I don't dislike it. In fact, in the three earlier rounds I gave it, in its groups, second place (round 1), first place (round 2) and second place (round 3). But in the final round it came up against two of my favorite Bruckner Sixths and even with this fresh listen, and reevaluation, it could not dislodge them.

Sarge
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Brian on October 31, 2014, 04:29:05 AM
???  Are you being influenced unduly by the Jochumites? For shame  ;D

Sarge
Actually I've kind of wanted to listen twice since I posted my scores the first time! Even since I compared them to Neal's. It doesn't hurt that they are so good. :)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: ChamberNut on October 31, 2014, 04:36:11 AM
F1 - 18
F2 - 17.5
F3 - 18.5
F4 - 16


Wow! This race is too close! I don't want to close it. I would like to give Ray a chance, although I don't know when he'll be back.
Anybody else out there that hasn't voted? Only 7 scores so far, I know I sent out more links than that. 8)

Hi Greg,

Because it is such a close race, I will try and get my listening and vote in for the final.  Just give me to end of weekend perhaps?  I don't want to promise anything, but will honestly try.  :)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on October 31, 2014, 04:37:23 AM
Hi Greg,

Because it is such a close race, I will try and get my listening and vote in for the final.  Just give me to end of weekend perhaps?  I don't want to promise anything, but will honestly try.  :)

Hi, Ray. Hope you're doing well. I'll give you whatever time you need, you've been here since the beginning and would love to have you participate!
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Ken B on October 31, 2014, 04:49:05 AM
Hi Greg,

Because it is such a close race, I will try and get my listening and vote in for the final.  Just give me to end of weekend perhaps?  I don't want to promise anything, but will honestly try.  :)

Even I, impatient by-stander, say let Ray have the time!
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: mc ukrneal on October 31, 2014, 04:52:41 AM
Even I, impatient by-stander, say let Ray have the time!
Maybe you should be more than a by-stander and jump right in...
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on October 31, 2014, 06:29:54 AM
Maybe you should be more than a by-stander and jump right in...

+1
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Moonfish on October 31, 2014, 10:13:11 AM
I also need to get my act together and get my vote in!  :-[    I have been swamped with things lately ranging from work, kids and taking care of my wife (that just had major surgery). Still, I have become fascinated with Bruckner through this long-term listening exercise. I HAVE to finish the finals after having been through the previous rounds. It is a true Bruckner marathon.   :P
Gotta....reach.....the... finish....line....  arrrrggggghhhhh......

(http://i.ytimg.com/vi/3ItnxJLAOeY/maxresdefault.jpg)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Ken B on October 31, 2014, 10:15:07 AM
I also need to get my act together and get my vote in!  :-[    I have been swamped with things lately ranging from work, kids and taking care of my wife (that just had major surgery). Still, I have become fascinated with Bruckner through this long-term listening exercise. I HAVE to finish the finals after having been through the previous rounds. It is a true Bruckner marathon.   :P
Gotta....reach.....the... finish....line....  arrrrggggghhhhh......

(http://i.ytimg.com/vi/3ItnxJLAOeY/maxresdefault.jpg)
Hope your wife is OK.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Moonfish on October 31, 2014, 10:21:08 AM
Hope your wife is OK.

Yes, she is doing much better. :) She (we) just had a rough 18 months, but it is reaching a positive resolution. She went through hip replacement surgery earlier this month and is scheduled for another one in January (and she is only 44). It has been quite a journey.
Thanks for asking!   0:)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Ken B on October 31, 2014, 10:23:02 AM
Yes, she is doing much better. :) She (we) just had a rough 18 months, but it is reaching a positive resolution. She went through hip replacement surgery earlier this month and is scheduled for another one in January (and she is only 44). It has been quite a journey.
Thanks for asking!   0:)
That is young for that. I have had a couple friends in their early 50s had it done, and it turned out well for both.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: North Star on October 31, 2014, 10:50:20 AM
I, too, hope the surgery and recovery go well. Mom's cousin (who happens to be a surgeon :D) had a knee replacement a couple of years ago, he managed to wear it off cycling with a faulty technique, and he was around 40 at the time. No trouble with the surgery.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: mc ukrneal on October 31, 2014, 12:51:21 PM
Oh my! Some things are more important than listening to some music. I hope she has an ideal recovery.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Moonfish on October 31, 2014, 01:04:55 PM
Oh my! Some things are more important than listening to some music. I hope she has an ideal recovery.

Yes, I guess I had to choose my spouse over Bruckner this month!  ;)    She is doing really well, but it was pretty awful during the first week earlier this month. Now she asks me to put on Mozart, Telemann or Baroque music which has to be a good sign of recovery!
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Ken B on October 31, 2014, 02:12:14 PM
Yes, I guess I had to choose my spouse over Bruckner this month!  ;)    She is doing really well, but it was pretty awful during the first week earlier this month. Now she asks me to put on Mozart, Telemann or Baroque music which has to be a good sign of recovery!
Fear the request for Webern.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Cato on October 31, 2014, 04:34:36 PM
Yes, I guess I had to choose my spouse over Bruckner this month!  ;)   

Difficult choice, but I see that next month will be different!  $:)   And the headline for you will be:

"Bruckner Beats Wife!"   :o :o :o

Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Moonfish on October 31, 2014, 09:12:03 PM
Difficult choice, but I see that next month will be different!  $:)   And the headline for you will be:

"Bruckner Beats Wife!"   :o :o :o

 ???   :laugh:
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on November 04, 2014, 06:57:48 AM
Soooooo, Ken and Moon, you guys want to push Mehta to the victory line participate?
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Moonfish on November 04, 2014, 07:31:30 AM
Soooooo, Ken and Moon, you guys want to push Mehta to the victory line participate?

(http://i.ytimg.com/vi/3ItnxJLAOeY/maxresdefault.jpg)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Ken B on November 04, 2014, 11:25:44 AM
Soooooo, Ken and Moon, you guys want to push Mehta to the victory line participate?

No, thanks. Having dodged two chances to embarass myself by dissing Jochum I think I should play it safe.  8)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on November 05, 2014, 03:18:55 AM
Well thank you all for being patient. I would like to still let Ray have a crack at the final round when he returns. One more score could shake the order up a bit.

Interesting fact for the final round: There is an almost 50 year span between the oldest recording to the newest recorudng that made it to the final.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: aukhawk on November 05, 2014, 02:35:09 PM
Interesting fact for the final round: There is an almost 50 year span between the oldest recording to the newest recorudng that made it to the final 1st and last rounds in this blind.

 ;)

(looking forward to more lurking)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Sergeant Rock on November 06, 2014, 02:48:04 AM
Quote
There is an almost 50 year span between the 1st and last rounds in this blind

Seems like it  ;D

Sarge
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on November 06, 2014, 04:52:56 AM
I know this. Still waiting for Ray, hopefully by this weekend he will be back. Otherwise I will possibly reveal the winner of the Golden Bruckner Boot. Or if anyone else has a better trophy idea.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Brian on November 06, 2014, 05:35:53 AM
I know this. Still waiting for Ray, hopefully by this weekend he will be back. Otherwise I will possibly reveal the winner of the Golden Bruckner Boot. Or if anyone else has a better trophy idea.
I'm thinking a frosted mug of beer.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Cato on November 06, 2014, 05:37:29 AM
I'm thinking a frosted mug of beer.

Oder:Die Braune Brucknersche Bratwurst!
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: ChamberNut on November 06, 2014, 08:38:34 AM
I know this. Still waiting for Ray, hopefully by this weekend he will be back. Otherwise I will possibly reveal the winner of the Golden Bruckner Boot. Or if anyone else has a better trophy idea.

I'm so sorry Greg, and to the others highly anticipating the final results.  I'm afraid I just won't have the time, Greg.  Too many things going on right now.  :)

Look forward to seeing the final survivors!  :)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on November 06, 2014, 01:40:03 PM
I'm so sorry Greg, and to the others highly anticipating the final results.  I'm afraid I just won't have the time, Greg.  Too many things going on right now.  :)

Look forward to seeing the final survivors!  :)

I hope you're doing well Ray.  :)


Final results will be revealed tonight. Get the beer and the bratwurst ready.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Ken B on November 06, 2014, 02:08:32 PM
I hope you're doing well Ray.  :)


Final results will be revealed tonight. Get the beer and the bratwurst ready.

What do we call the winner? The 2012 2013 2014 Last Bruckner Standing?
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Brian on November 06, 2014, 03:28:21 PM
Dramatic Last-Minute Second Listen and Vote Change!! Because Greg Doesn't Hate Me Yet, and I Feel Like He Totally Should

F3. Huh. The first movement is less impressive on this listen-through, for several reasons: 1. cheap, crappy work headphones; 2. that super slow opening really IS a nuisance; and 3. that jerk Neal ;) alerted me to the prolific technical issues in the orchestral playing, and he's totally right. To some extent I am willing to overlook those flaws given the often remarkable touches and unique highlights (like the trombones at 12:33 in the first movement, or the Wagnerian heroism of the French horn soloist in the coda).

Slow movement feels a little fast at times, but not too much. Parts flow gorgeously. The funeral march, with the plunk-plunk bass, gets kinda repetitive. Terrific scherzo. And now I even kind of agree with Cato about the finale: at 8:40 the whole thing moves into a higher gear.

Huh. My second impression is not like the first. I still like the performance a lot, and it helps to end on a high note. Oh, and I hope it's okay that I'm listening to it on Naxos Music Library instead of the blind files.  ;D

F1. When I listened to the first 30 seconds of each of these, at the very beginning of the finals, I thought F3 was You-Know-Who. Of course, this one is You-Know-Who. The beginning is faster, but the movement as a whole is slower because it's more consistent. It's not an extraordinary performance, and there are places where a bit more energy could have been useful, but it's also free of major issues. Wish the final chord was not so long. The adagio is still perfect; I'm okay with what someone (amw?) called "sacrificing" the funeral march in order to achieve the divine perfection of the last 5 minutes.

Although the finale still is a little less energized than it should be, I think on this listen the piece hangs together more successfully than before. That is, the balance is better. I didn't get the initial sense that the adagio was outshining everything else. Maybe a slower, weightier finale helps with distribution of power.

Again, listening on NML.

F2. One thing that sticks out a little sorely, in the otherwise excellent first few minutes, is some recording congestion at the big climaxes. Maybe it's these headphones. The brass players seem slightly more reticent than their colleagues in F1, and a LOT more reticent than the guys in F3 (not to mention the pedal/metal bombast of F4). What's amazing to me is that, while the loud bits are loud and fast and fun, the quiet bits do not seem noticeably faster than F1 because of F1's inherent fascination. There's something much lighter about this reading. In the final coda, know what I'm bothered by? That moment right before the final outburst, when the horn's by myself. It seems calculated - I like the final outburst to come by surprise, not to be prepared for.

The adagio is perfect. I said that about F1, but this one is too. It might, overall, be the best in the competition. Gorgeous oboe playing. Wow, I didn't remember the scherzo being so fast! I do remember the crackling trombones at 2:28ish. I didn't remember the finale STARTING slowly, just middling out slowly. But it does begin slowly. Already at 1:35 it's starting to get hard to take. Where was the excellence of the two middle movements? At 4:10, which is unbearably tense from me wanting it to be faster, I paused and went back to F1. F2 is slower. And not just a little slower. A shitload slower.

This SHOULD be on NML but they haven't uploaded it yet.

F4. I always start off skeptical, then slowly grow accustomed. Didn't Bruckner say the symphony was supposed to be saucy? This is saucy alright, and naughty. The brass section feels like a heady indulgence, like dumping foie gras on top of your baked beans. Oh so wrong, but oh so right.

Um. Not that I have tried dumping foie gras on baked beans. Not recommended. But if you do, let us know.

Y'all know it's all about contrast for me, right? I am a contrast junkie. Fast fast stuff, slow slow stuff. If I were conducting B6, my tempos would probably something like this:
16'
19'
8:30
14'
You may also be interested in my hypothetical mental Schumann Fantasie, which is approx. 12', 7', 14'.
All of which is to say that by the time 10:15 comes up on the adagio, this is too darn fast. At least the ending still works OK.

And then it's off to the James Bond Derby with the second half. So I think I'm changing F1 to first place. But who will take second?

F1
+ GREAT adagio
+ weighty outer movements
+ excellent phrasing all around
- really could have done a bit more energy
- scherzo lacking character vs. F4

F2
+ GREAT adagio
+ other momentary bits of goodness
+ superfast scherzo
- superfast scherzo (not sure how I feel)
- boring finale spoils the broth
- shy brass compared to F3, F4

F3
+ overall excellent structural take after the first five minutes
+ totally thrilling finish
+ orchestra strong in spirit...
- ...though not always execution
- that slow opening

F4
+ thrill ride, saucy, exciting
+ relentless rhythmic control
- the adagio
- what about the score?

Updated, not too terribly dramatic vote change
F1
F3
F4
F2
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on November 06, 2014, 05:08:28 PM
WOAH!!  :o AND DOWN GOES FRAZIER!

New scores on their way, along with pretty pictures and a trophy.  ;D

This is the new tally, putting F1 in the lead...

F1 - 19
F2 - 17.5
F3 - 17.5
F4 - 16
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Ken B on November 06, 2014, 05:52:25 PM
From Cleveland
(http://www.theperfectlyhappyman.com/uploads/great-lakes-edmund-fitzgerald.jpg)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Brian on November 06, 2014, 05:54:38 PM
Holy crap! I thought the final order was confirmed and that I was merely agreeing with it. Didn't realize I'd move rankings around! Zoinks!

It's like they say about Congress - in a close race, EVERY vote is the deciding vote!!!!!

From Cleveland
(http://www.theperfectlyhappyman.com/uploads/great-lakes-edmund-fitzgerald.jpg)

Yeah but you know none of these is the Cleveland Orchestra...in fact none is even North American.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Ken B on November 06, 2014, 05:56:33 PM
From Cleveland
(http://www.theperfectlyhappyman.com/uploads/great-lakes-edmund-fitzgerald.jpg)
Also from Cleveland
(http://cdn.video.abc.com/abcvideo/video_fep/cms_auto/abc/CHW/michael-symons-cleveland-bratwurst_recipe_1000x400_1407849413299.jpg)

I figure with Sarge voting this is the only way we'll see Cleveland ...  >:D

Eddie Fitz is one of the best beers in the world. The Great Lakes Brewing guys in Cleveland are beer gods.

Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Brian on November 06, 2014, 06:20:00 PM
Now I'm hungry. And thirsty. Luckily enchiladas are in the oven.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on November 06, 2014, 06:29:59 PM
F4
Third Place

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51AfhekAvDL.jpg)

Günter Wand
Cologne Radio Orchestra
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on November 06, 2014, 06:33:27 PM
F2 & F3
Tie for Second Place

F2 - The surprise contender of the comparison.

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/91ewZrzg95L._SX522_.jpg)

Van Zweden
Netherlands Radio Philharmonic 

Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on November 06, 2014, 06:35:39 PM
F2 & F3
Tie for Second Place

F3

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51av2fo2ffL.jpg)

Otto Klemperer
New Philharmonia Orchestra   

Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on November 06, 2014, 06:38:39 PM
And the winner is...

F1
First Place

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/61lW6aYeVsL.jpg)

Sergiu Celibidache
Munich Philharmonic Orchestra
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Daverz on November 06, 2014, 06:42:45 PM
(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/91ewZrzg95L._SX522_.jpg)

Van Zweden
Netherlands Radio Philharmonic 


Here's the Fanfare review:
Quote
This is one of the sorriest excuses for a Bruckner symphony recording I’ve heard in a long time. I’m not familiar with either of Zweden’s previous Bruckner recordings (Nos. 3 and 8 )I, but on the basis of what we have here in No. 6, I have not the least desire to pursue them. There is no feeling of grandeur. Leading lines are often submerged in the contrapuntally dense textures. New episodes arrive without a sense of articulation. Contrasts of dynamics, sonorities, textures, and range are underplayed. Melodic lines don’t sing. At times in the slow movement Zweden sounds lost, cautiously picking his way from measure to measure. The Scherzo churns on aimlessly. Brass and woodwinds are good, but violins are noticeably thin and scraggly, with an almost metallic sound—certainly not what you want in Bruckner. Adding insult to injury is a photo of Zweden on the booklet cover that can only be described as ghoulish. Well, enough.

Robert Markow


Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on November 06, 2014, 06:43:06 PM
A BIG thank you to everyone that took time out to listen to Bruckner's 6th over, and over, and over, and participated.
And even those that stopped by, thank you!

Cheers! This beer is for you! And I'm seriously going to drink a beer now.

 
(http://montaraventures.com/blog/wp-content/2009/09/beer.jpg)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on November 06, 2014, 06:43:55 PM
Here's the Fanfare review:

Well it's a good thing for Zweden that Robert Markow didn't participate in this comparison. 
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Ken B on November 06, 2014, 06:45:47 PM
Cool beans. I own #1 and #4.

A big thanks to the Monkey Man for a lot of work.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Daverz on November 06, 2014, 06:51:17 PM
Well it's a good thing for Zweden that Robert Markow didn't participate in this comparison.

It is a rather pissy review.  I thought the performance had some admirable qualities in the first 2 movements, but fell apart after that.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: kishnevi on November 06, 2014, 06:53:22 PM
Cool beans. I own #1 and #4.

A big thanks to the Monkey Man for a lot of work.

Same here for both statements.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Ken B on November 06, 2014, 07:01:22 PM
You guys put the Hurwitzer's two reference recordings in the top 4.
I can see his new logo now

David Hurwitz, GMG Approved Music Critic


 >:D :laugh:
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Brian on November 06, 2014, 07:36:10 PM
Well it's a good thing for Zweden that Robert Markow didn't participate in this comparison.
Markow would not have known it was van Zweden. The review is not in line with what we heard. He gets lost in the adagio, wandering from note to note? What about Celibidache? And the "aimless" scherzo is hard-driving - the fastest I think I heard the whole competition long - and doesn't deviate from its goal.

Thank you ever so much Greg!!!

And, of course, justice has prevailed.  8)  Three truly great recordings, and one that falls apart in the finale (for me). But what a fun game, what a fun experience, how delightful to get in such close quarters with this symphony.....and I think now I have the whole piece memorized.  ;D
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Ken B on November 06, 2014, 07:41:02 PM
So, number 7 starting tomorrow?
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on November 06, 2014, 08:03:44 PM
So, number 7 starting tomorrow?

Funny, I was seriously thinking the other day of having a BC of just the Adagio from the 7th after this ends.  ;D
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Brian on November 06, 2014, 08:05:48 PM
Funny, I was seriously thinking the other day of having a BC of just the Adagio from the 7th after this ends.  ;D

After amw's Schubert game ends, I intend on doing a "mini" game for Beethoven's Op 59 No 3 (just 8 recordings and 2 rounds).

The afterglow on this one will be around for a while. I still want to listen to a couple of especially promising recordings that missed the finals.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: kishnevi on November 06, 2014, 08:08:41 PM
I have the Masur set ready to play starting tomorrow.
I suspect one reason I rated Wand so highly is that it was the first recording of 6 I heard and liked.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: amw on November 06, 2014, 08:35:19 PM
(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51AfhekAvDL.jpg)
Hmm. I always thought of Wand as being way more perfectionist than that. And the KRSO as sounding better than a high school orchestra. ;)

Thanks for organising this! Was fun, in spite of misgivings.

based on what I heard here's my shortlist of Recordings To Check Out Later
- Norrington (already have, but will listen again)
- Davies
- Nagano
- Stein
- Celibidache (again, to see whether it holds up)
- Nezet-Seguin aka Sir Not-Appearing-In-This-Comparison
- anything Cato didn't like
I'm more likely to move on to the 8th now though. You can only have so much 6 in a month
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Ken B on November 06, 2014, 09:31:46 PM
Hmm. I always thought of Wand as being way more perfectionist than that. And the KRSO as sounding better than a high school orchestra. ;)

Thanks for organising this! Was fun, in spite of misgivings.

based on what I heard here's my shortlist of Recordings To Check Out Later
- Norrington (already have, but will listen again)
- Davies
- Nagano
- Stein
- Celibidache (again, to see whether it holds up)
- Nezet-Seguin aka Sir Not-Appearing-In-This-Comparison
- anything Cato didn't like
I'm more likely to move on to the 8th now though. You can only have so much 6 in a month

Yeah. I remain unimpressed by that Wand. The whole box really is underwhelming, with some pretty poor playing in places too.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Sergeant Rock on November 07, 2014, 04:00:06 AM
Eddie Fitz is one of the best beers in the world. The Great Lakes Brewing guys in Cleveland are beer gods.

Indeed. I favor the Dortmunder Gold and Burning River  8)

(http://photos.imageevent.com/sgtrock/june12/DortmunderBottle-great-lakes.jpg) (http://photos.imageevent.com/sgtrock/june12/BurningRiver_BottleGlass.jpg)


Sarge
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Sergeant Rock on November 07, 2014, 04:07:02 AM
Tie for Second Place

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51av2fo2ffL.jpg)

And the winner is...


(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/61lW6aYeVsL.jpg)


Despite Dohnányi/Cleveland missing the finals, it is a satisfying result. My two favorites taking Gold and Silver  8)

And thank you, Greg, for including Davies. That was a major discovery for me.

Sarge
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Cato on November 07, 2014, 04:43:23 AM
Ja, trotz allem gewinnt Der Heilige Eugen Jochum.   :laugh:

I suspected the arthritic Celi and Otto might have been in the mix!

But the wand of Wand was magic for me out of this group!   $:)

Many thanks to Greg and everyone for their comments!  It is amazing how ears differ, but, as the Romans claimed:

De gustibus non est disputandum!
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on November 07, 2014, 04:50:18 AM

Despite Dohnányi/Cleveland missing the finals, it is a satisfying result. My two favorites taking Gold and Silver  8)

And thank you, Greg, for including Davies. That was a major discovery for me.

Sarge

The Davies is very interesting, I like to group his Bruckner with Norrington. Not because of similar styles, they are quite opposite in fact, but because they have a singular vision of the music that is consistent from beginning to end. I can understand why some listeners are easily turned off by their interpretations, but I find it important to have these two in the collection of Bruckner performers, it helps to explore the possibilities of this glorious music.

You should really get Davies' 5th symphony recording, it's great.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: mc ukrneal on November 07, 2014, 05:54:58 AM
For me, some dencent to pretty good versions, but none of these were (my opinion of course) particularly ideal and I won't be adding any of them to my collection. Bruckner's symphonies have a unique sound signature, and the biggest problem the winners had was that they did not maintain that throughout the entire symphony (and I think all four had that problem to varying degrees). The biggest issue I had with those I disliked throughout was the execution of dynamics. I must say that the variation in tempi did not bother me very much - I may have a preference, but I feel we need to accept the tempo choices and simply evaluate if those choices were executed effectively. I may differ from others in this regard.

So the search for my ideal B6 continues....
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on November 07, 2014, 06:09:58 AM
I've been listening to over 30 recordings of the 6th for the past five months, and instead of finding that one golden performance I now have favorite moments, sections and movements from various ones. I've become so critical of this piece.
If I was forced to walk away with just one it would probably be Nagano. I think it represents the best all-around, and that includes recording quality. Norrington, Blomstedt, Barenboim and Dohnanyi will remain close. But lately I've been extremely impressed with Klemperer, even becoming more impressed with all his recorded work. And Chailly, which has taken a while but I'm starting to hear his vision for the 6th more clearly and it's quite beautiful.
Add Davies to that list, even if he's out in left field, I find it works as a whole.

I will admit that I've begun to lose my admiration for Eschenbach's. I almost think his Houston SO disc of the 6th is better, perhaps I should have used that. And I was impressed with Wand's accounts at first but lately they've seemed to be lacking the emotion I find in others.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Sergeant Rock on November 07, 2014, 06:53:10 AM
Bruckner's symphonies have a unique sound signature, and the biggest problem the winners had was that they did not maintain that throughout the entire symphony (and I think all four had that problem to varying degrees).

I have absolutely no idea what you're talking about  ;D  The winners did not maintain a "sound signature"...what?


I must say that the variation in tempi did not bother me very much - I may have a preference, but I feel we need to accept the tempo choices and simply evaluate if those choices were executed effectively. I may differ from others in this regard.

Do you mean tempo variation within movements of single performances or tempo variation between different performances? If the latter, I have no trouble accepting a wide range speeds. My favorites go from the swift Norrington to the slow Davies, including Klemperer who is both swift and slow.

Davies       18:40 17:41 9:16 17:49
Celi           17:39 22:40 8:37 15:14
Klemperer  17:02 14:42 9:23 13:48
Stein         16:34 16:03 8:02 13:36
Dohnányi   15:17 16:57 8:28 14:35
Norrington 15:33 15:34 7:56 12:08
Sawallisch  14:17 17:35 8:26 14:33


So the search for my ideal B6 continues....

You're a hard man to please, Neal  ;)

Sarge
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: k a rl h e nn i ng on November 07, 2014, 06:54:17 AM
. . . and he still hasn't found what he's lookin' for . . . .
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on November 07, 2014, 07:08:27 AM
I have absolutely no idea what you're talking about  ;D  The winners did not maintain a "sound signature"...what?


Do you mean tempo variation within movements of single performances or tempo variation between different performances? If the latter, I have no trouble accepting a wide range speeds. My favorites go from the swift Norrington to the slow Davies, including Klemperer who is both swift and slow  ;D 8)

Davies       18:40 17:41 9:16 17:49
Celi           17:39 22:40 8:37 15:14
Klemperer  17:02 14:42 9:23 13:48
Stein         16:34 16:03 8:02 13:36
Dohnányi   15:17 16:57 8:28 14:35
Norrington 15:33 15:34 7:56 12:08
Sawallisch  14:17 17:35 8:26 14:33


You're a hard man to please, Neal  ;)

Sarge

Swifter tempi for Bruckner's Adagios are really starting to grow on me. Same with with his 5th symphony and 4th (which is really Andante). For the 6th I like a slower, majestic opener. Adagio around the 15-16 min mark, with a quicker finale. Although the finale features some dynamically softer passages that when slowed down plays beautifully within the quicker, louder passages. Blomstedt handles this perfectly.

Speaking of the 5th, Harnoncourt and D.R.Davies have wonderful Adagios on record.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Brian on November 07, 2014, 07:28:33 AM
I've been listening to over 30 recordings of the 6th for the past five months, and instead of finding that one golden performance I now have favorite moments, sections and movements from various ones. I've become so critical of this piece.
If I was forced to walk away with just one it would probably be Nagano. I think it represents the best all-around, and that includes recording quality. Norrington, Blomstedt, Barenboim and Dohnanyi will remain close. But lately I've been extremely impressed with Klemperer, even becoming more impressed with all his recorded work. And Chailly, which has taken a while but I'm starting to hear his vision for the 6th more clearly and it's quite beautiful.
Add Davies to that list, even if he's out in left field, I find it works as a whole.

I will admit that I've begun to lose my admiration for Eschenbach's. I almost think his Houston SO disc of the 6th is better, perhaps I should have used that. And I was impressed with Wand's accounts at first but lately they've seemed to be lacking the emotion I find in others.

Hurwitz gave a 10/10 to Eschenbach in Houston, so if that had been here, maybe it would have completed the Hurwitz Finals Sweep. I will probably re-listen to Nagano today because I think Nagano could have been in my top three. Have you compared the two different Barenboims?
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Sergeant Rock on November 07, 2014, 07:42:55 AM
Speaking of the 5th, Harnoncourt and D.R.Davies have wonderful Adagios on record.

I'll probably get Davies' Fifth; Harnoncourt's, probably not. I heard his Fifth's Finale on a sampler disc some years ago and was very unimpressed with the coda. If the coda fails to move me, the entire symphony fails.

Sarge
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: mc ukrneal on November 07, 2014, 08:23:11 AM
I have absolutely no idea what you're talking about  ;D  The winners did not maintain a "sound signature"...what?


Do you mean tempo variation within movements of single performances or tempo variation between different performances? If the latter, I have no trouble accepting a wide range speeds. My favorites go from the swift Norrington to the slow Davies, including Klemperer who is both swift and slow.

Davies       18:40 17:41 9:16 17:49
Celi           17:39 22:40 8:37 15:14
Klemperer  17:02 14:42 9:23 13:48
Stein         16:34 16:03 8:02 13:36
Dohnányi   15:17 16:57 8:28 14:35
Norrington 15:33 15:34 7:56 12:08
Sawallisch  14:17 17:35 8:26 14:33


You're a hard man to please, Neal  ;)

Sarge
I was struggling to find the right way to express it, but Bruckner has a unique sound that he creates with the orchestra that is easieist to hear when he has the whole orchertra pressing on the gas. It's lound, harmonic, brass are prominent, there is a certain pulse to the line, etc. It's not something I've ever thought to pin down in words, but one of those things you know when you hear it. I'd have to put some thought into how to better describe it, but the key is that they are unqiue to the way Bruckner writes his music.

I mean tempo differeneces between performances. Although it doesn't depend on comparing. Rather, it is simply the tempo chosen for any given movement all the way down to a phrase. For example, slow or fast isn't really damning unless there is something that is lost in the doing of it (and not made up elsewhere).

I think I am hard to please in Bruckner. I would agree with that.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Brian on November 07, 2014, 08:44:48 AM
Just relistened to Nagano. If Nagano had made it to the finals, there is a very good chance I would have chosen him first. Since his pacing in the outer movements is mostly pretty similar to Klemperer's, and his final coda just as exciting, and since he's much more nuanced than Wand, it probably would have come down to Nagano vs. Celi for me.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Pim on November 07, 2014, 09:51:29 AM
My apologies for missing out in the final. My fault entirely. No planning skills :blank: I very much enjoyed the rounds before. Happy to see Klemperer in the final four btw. Thanks TheGSMoeller!
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Sergeant Rock on November 07, 2014, 10:09:52 AM
If I was forced to walk away with just one it would probably be Nagano. I think it represents the best all-around

Just relistened to Nagano. If Nagano had made it to the finals, there is a very good chance I would have chosen him first. Since his pacing in the outer movements is mostly pretty similar to Klemperer's, and his final coda just as exciting, and since he's much more nuanced than Wand, it probably would have come down to Nagano vs. Celi for me.

Nagano is problematic for me. Of the first movement I wrote:

"From the beginning, it seems the perfect Bruckner 6. The sonics are gorgeous, the pace just right, the orchestra accomplished, the conductor knows the score. Yes, perfection...and yet, once again I felt no emotional pull and I'm not sure why..."

Nagano= cold perfection (and not just in Bruckner)? I haven't heard the the last two movements of his Sixth though. Maybe he warms up. I'm puzzled, though, why my reaction differs so much from Greg's. We're often, even usually, on the same page.

Sarge
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Ken B on November 07, 2014, 10:12:00 AM
I'm puzzled, though, why my reaction differs so much from Greg's. We're often, even usually on the same page.


Me too. That's why we formed the club!  :laugh:
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Sergeant Rock on November 07, 2014, 10:13:53 AM
Me too. That's why we formed the club!  :laugh:

 ;D :laugh: ;D

You do realize, Ken, that you're going to have to change your tune concerning Ives. If not, you might be blackballed.

Sarge
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Daverz on November 07, 2014, 11:11:58 AM
Do I understand correctly that these four recordings all survived earlier rounds?  I did not think that the Wand or Zweden recordings deserved to be in the top 4.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Ken B on November 07, 2014, 11:18:25 AM
Do I understand correctly that these four recordings all survived earlier rounds?  I did not think that the Wand or Zweden recordings deserved to be in the top 4.
They did, grinding into dust not one but two Jochums, Karajan, Stein, Chailly, and many others. I have not heard Zweden but I agree the Wand doesn't belong anywhere near the top 4.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Brian on November 07, 2014, 11:34:06 AM
Do I understand correctly that these four recordings all survived earlier rounds?  I did not think that the Wand or Zweden recordings deserved to be in the top 4.
van Zweden doesn't deserve to be in the top four (Dohnanyi or Nagano or Chailly would have been more interesting), but Wand is pretty darn successful at what he wants to do. Cato loved it. I'm just surprised it was the early Cologne Wand rather than one of the later live ones.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: mc ukrneal on November 07, 2014, 11:39:38 AM
It's funny - we all put those four there, yet no one seems happy. Why? Personally, Zweden was best of the lot. And from the votes, he wasn't even #4.

Maybe instead of a B7, we need to repeat B6 with 18-20 different recordings and have the winners go head to head.  :-* >:D
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Ken B on November 07, 2014, 11:42:23 AM
It's funny - we all put those four there, yet no one seems happy.

Typical committee decision!
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Moonfish on November 07, 2014, 11:55:46 AM
It's funny - we all put those four there, yet no one seems happy. Why?

I think the recordings moved through in a way that was a bit biased, i.e. specific movements listened to by different groups. If you mixed the blend of recordings and/or started with a different movement in the first round and/or mixed the listening groups we would have had a different outcome. Actually, I think if we redid this several times ( ???) I suspect that we would have a different result each time. It is a type of differential listening outcome. The main benefactor in all of this is of course Bruckner's 6th symphony that got a lot of exposure over the last few months and it is a fantastic piece of music. It will be in my listening repertoire for the rest of my life (or, rather, as long as I can hear).   :)

Thanks for organizing and bringing this project to full bloom Greg!!!!   You receive the Bruckner Medal!

(http://apollo.ram.ac.uk/emuweb/php5/media.php?irn=7306)

and should visit

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51Z6RrZl5%2BL.jpg)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Brian on November 07, 2014, 11:56:32 AM
It's funny - we all put those four there, yet no one seems happy.
Sarge and I and a couple other Celi/Klemp partisans are happy.  ;D ;D
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Brian on November 07, 2014, 01:27:26 PM
Listening to this:

(http://cdn.naxosmusiclibrary.com/sharedfiles/images/cds/hires/GC09241.jpg)

15:41 - 15:42 - 7:43 - 13:13

Wowzers. This is like Wand/Cologne/RCA, only better. Cambreling, a trombonist, drives the fast movements hard, but not as hard, and not as poundingly/determinedly. Also, the balances are different: there's more focus on the woodwinds, which really feel like they're at the center of the picture. (Crazy Clarinet Trill in the finale nearly matches Klemperer's.) Every movement follows Wand's template, but less exaggerated and less far removed from the mainstream. The scherzo is as fast as van Zweden's, but more precise and more oomphy. (The trombones crackle like Jaap's do.)

It's a live recording, and the orchestra is definitely not flawless. (The final coda has the unintended Thrill Ride aspect of, are the trumpets and horns going to completely fall apart??! No, but it's a close thing. The trumpets do throw some amazing counterpoint in versus the trombones, so you can hear it all come together, Nagano-style.) Bits of the finale are a little too fast and light. The slow movement is a big weak spot: merely average, not the kind of excellence we heard from Celi, van Zweden, or Haitink/Dresden. Still, Wand's slow movement is weak too. And overall, given the incredible woodwind detail, improved sonics, and less relentless beat, I'd choose Cambreling over the Cologne Wand. This is a recording I need to hear two or three more times, and soon, because it could become a favorite. Someone sign on to NML and double-check me, okay?

If you subbed in van Zweden's slow movement, I think you'd have a Frankenstein contender for #1.

Gavin Dixon's MusicWeb review also expresses reservations about the adagio, but nevertheless begins with the sentence, "This is a great Bruckner 6."
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Sergeant Rock on November 07, 2014, 02:08:55 PM
It's funny - we all put those four there, yet no one seems happy. Why? Personally, Zweden was best of the lot. And from the votes, he wasn't even #4.

I can't say I am unhappy with Zweden's second place finish. I like surprises  ;)  And I helped put him there, giving him second place in round 2 (beating out Nagano and Jochum) and first place above Wand, Stein and Haitink in round 3. He was the mystery candidate that intrigued me.

Sarge
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: springrite on November 07, 2014, 02:19:57 PM
Typical committee decision!
Typical democracy!  :P

Do we have a complete ranking top to bottom?
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Daverz on November 07, 2014, 02:33:48 PM
I think the recordings moved through in a way that was a bit biased, i.e. specific movements listened to by different groups.

Well, having to listen to that many complete recordings may have taxed patience.  I didn't mean to come off as unappreciative of all the sitzfleisch put in for this comparison.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Cato on November 07, 2014, 02:46:28 PM
Typical democracy! :P

Democracies have been known to go horribly, horribly wrong!   ;)

I will spare you the examples, except for the Athenians voting in favor of genocide at Melos.   :o


Do we have a complete ranking top to bottom?

That would be nice: Eugen Jochum  0:)  remains my all-around fave, but certainly some others (e.g. Wand) were very fine.

Die kecke Sechste: no longer the poor cousin to the other symphonies!  ;) 

Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: amw on November 07, 2014, 02:57:37 PM
Do I understand correctly that these four recordings all survived earlier rounds?  I did not think that the Wand or Zweden recordings deserved to be in the top 4.
I suppose the format must also be taken into account—e.g. Zweden and Celibidache are very successful in the adagio movement (even if the latter is somewhat eccentric), and therefore took first place in their respective groups over recordings that might be less adagio-y but hang together better as a whole. But that's always the problem with blind listening tests where you can't listen to the whole work at once, I guess.

I'm not completely satisfied with any of these recordings, but then all of my favourites in rounds 1 and 2 were eliminated (except Celi), so I have a feeling I'll be happier with some of the eliminated recordings than the survivors.

(I have Davies queued up on Spotify, Nagano & Chailly on Qobuz... oddly, Stein, Dohnanyi & Blomstedt are MIA from any streaming service I can find, despite all being from Decca)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Cato on November 07, 2014, 03:27:28 PM
I may have asked about this before: was this conductor included in the comparison?



Roberto Paternostro?

The Amazon site has 16 reviews: 14 5-star reviews    ??? ??? ???  , and 2 4-star ones!

I am skeptical, but...
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: aukhawk on November 07, 2014, 03:29:51 PM
I suppose the format must also be taken into account—e.g. Zweden and Celibidache are very successful in the adagio movement (even if the latter is somewhat eccentric), and therefore took first place in their respective groups over recordings that might be less adagio-y but hang together better as a whole. But that's always the problem with blind listening tests where you can't listen to the whole work at once, I guess.

Well that's a choice when the format is set out - I mean you don't have to conceal the round 1 indentities when you come to round 2 - OK it's less 'blind' but it might be more informed.  Come to the final round and you have a more complete picture.  I have no idea which approach might give the better results - just saying there is that choice.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: amw on November 07, 2014, 03:43:44 PM
Well that's a choice when the format is set out - I mean you don't have to conceal the round 1 indentities when you come to round 2 - OK it's less 'blind' but it might be more informed.  Come to the final round and you have a more complete picture.  I have no idea which approach might give the better results - just saying there is that choice.

I'm not sure. I opted to scramble the groups each round in my comparison, though for whatever reason that never stopped the first group (A, E, & now H) from getting significantly more positive votes than the rest, but then I also decided to score everyone cumulatively. Greg may have decided to scramble the groups not out of an attempt to make it more 'blind' but more because certain people (*cough*) spoilered a lot of the recordings in round 1.

BTW Greg, have you got the liner notes to van Zweden handy, and if so can you tell us more about the new version of the score Zweden conducts from? I didn't notice too many differences in the actual musical text, but am wondering about tempi and dynamics in particular.

After amw's Schubert game ends, I intend on doing a "mini" game for Beethoven's Op 59 No 3 (just 8 recordings and 2 rounds).
I've got 4-5 recordings of this; let me know if you want any.

(are you planning to vote on group J in the Schubert, btw, or should I close it?)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Ken B on November 07, 2014, 04:19:41 PM
I may have asked about this before: was this conductor included in the comparison?



Roberto Paternostro?

The Amazon site has 16 reviews: 14 5-star reviews    ??? ??? ???  , and 2 4-star ones!

I am skeptical, but...

I have that set and am going through it a bit at a time.
My reaction is positive but mixed. The best way I can explain it is, think Abravanel. There is some great stuff here, really committed, and some problems with intonation too. A regional orchestra giving its best. I like the feel of it enough to forgive the rough patches (which are not rare). Some terrific sound, and some over reverberance.
I wouldn't want it to be my first or only Bruckner. I prefer it to Wand  :blank:

Paternostro studied with HvK I think. His is a big Bruckner approach.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: André on November 07, 2014, 05:10:03 PM
Thanks for the hint. I had not imagined this was so cheap. Your recommendation sealed the deal !  ;D
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Cato on November 07, 2014, 05:26:59 PM
I have that set and am going through it a bit at a time.

Paternostro studied with HvK I think. His is a big Bruckner approach.

Nothing wrong with that!   :D :D

Thanks for the comments: I wondered about all those rave reviews, given the Hinterwäldler nature of the thing!
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Ken B on November 07, 2014, 07:13:27 PM
;D :laugh: ;D

You do realize, Ken, that you're going to have to change your tune concerning Ives. If not, you might be blackballed.

Sarge
Nothin' wrong with Ives, nothin' at all.

(http://www.skipprichard.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/05/Fingers-Crossed.jpg)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Brian on November 07, 2014, 09:16:10 PM
(are you planning to vote on group J in the Schubert, btw, or should I close it?)
I'll vote on that tomorrow morning (in about 11 hours from this post) :)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on November 10, 2014, 05:59:09 AM
Again, a big thank you to everyone. This was a lot of fun, makes me interested in doing another BC soon. Perhaps not as big or long, I would really like to do just an Adagio comparison of the 7th. 
I listened to the 6th a ton during this BC, and my admiration for the work grew even more. I still have some of my old favorites like Nagano, Norrington, Chailly and Blomstedt to name a few, but have really become quite fond of new ones like Davies and Klemperer. Also, amw mentioned Rozhdestvensky in another thread, listen to his version of the finale's coda, it's thrilling.

Hopefully discussions will continue on this thread. And I have some 6th recordings I would be willing to give away or even trade if anyone is interested. I'll list some of them later on.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Cosi bel do on November 10, 2014, 07:17:32 AM
I wasn't here when this comparison started and didn't have time to join it. Also, Bruckner's 6th has never been one of my favourites. Still, it is very interesting and a great read and I'm sure I would have had great fun if I could take part in it.

I love when results are like this, half predictable, half big surprise.
I'll certainly check the Van Zweden version.

TheGSMoeller, could you maybe edit your first post with a summary of the result and/or a link to them ? I still have difficulties seeing what versions were included/omitted and I know such summaries can be useful for the future.

If I make no mistake, the selection was really good but lacked (in my opinion) the following versions :
- Blomstedt with Gewandhaus Leipzig (better than with SFS)
- Rögner with RSO Berlin
- Andreae with Wiener Symphoniker
- Keilberth with Berliner Philharmoniker
- Wand with NDR on RCA (his best version I'd say)
- Sawallisch with Bayerisches Staatsorchester (less sure about this one though)

I thinl almost all these versions would have been strong contenders. But then the organizer always has to make choices and I respect that ;)

Also, if there are tied versions at the second place, Wand should be fourth ;)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: amw on November 10, 2014, 09:57:38 AM
Also, amw mentioned Rozhdestvensky in another thread, listen to his version of the finale's coda, it's thrilling.

Rozhdestvensky might actually be my #1 choice if the sound and orchestra were better, interpretive choices are close to ideal for me. I do recommend people investigate.

Have you got the liner notes to the van Zweden cd handy? Apparently, it uses a new revision of the score. I heard only a few differences in the actual notes played, but am curious as to what that version says about tempi and dynamics in particular, or what the differences are otherwise supposed to be.

edit: unbeknownst to me, Rozhdestvensky has in fact recorded lots of Bruckner, including two versions of the 1st symphony and three each of the 3rd and 4th. Bruckner overload, man. I'll come back to him later
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Moonfish on November 10, 2014, 12:01:42 PM
In regards to Symphony No 6 I will remain in Jochum's Bruckner temple no matter what!!     >:D 

(http://babydickey.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/04/tantrum.gif)


Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on November 10, 2014, 05:38:50 PM
I wasn't here when this comparison started and didn't have time to join it. Also, Bruckner's 6th has never been one of my favourites. Still, it is very interesting and a great read and I'm sure I would have had great fun if I could take part in it.

I love when results are like this, half predictable, half big surprise.
I'll certainly check the Van Zweden version.

TheGSMoeller, could you maybe edit your first post with a summary of the result and/or a link to them ? I still have difficulties seeing what versions were included/omitted and I know such summaries can be useful for the future.

If I make no mistake, the selection was really good but lacked (in my opinion) the following versions :
- Blomstedt with Gewandhaus Leipzig (better than with SFS)
- Rögner with RSO Berlin
- Andreae with Wiener Symphoniker
- Keilberth with Berliner Philharmoniker
- Wand with NDR on RCA (his best version I'd say)
- Sawallisch with Bayerisches Staatsorchester (less sure about this one though)

I thinl almost all these versions would have been strong contenders. But then the organizer always has to make choices and I respect that ;)

Also, if there are tied versions at the second place, Wand should be fourth ;)

Hi, Cosi, thank you for your interest. I'll compile a list of all recordings used along with the recording year and the version.

And there will always be good versions left out of the comparisons. It's happened with all of them. These are not definitive contests to crown the true best recording of a work, but just a fun comparison. Similar with the Berlioz fantastique comparison I like to throw in a few discs that either aren't as popular or not heavily acclaimed to see how far they can make it. Also availability and accessibility of a recording is important as I didn't want to spend too much money for this.


Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on November 10, 2014, 06:00:09 PM
Rozhdestvensky might actually be my #1 choice if the sound and orchestra were better, interpretive choices are close to ideal for me. I do recommend people investigate.

Have you got the liner notes to the van Zweden cd handy? Apparently, it uses a new revision of the score. I heard only a few differences in the actual notes played, but am curious as to what that version says about tempi and dynamics in particular, or what the differences are otherwise supposed to be.

edit: unbeknownst to me, Rozhdestvensky has in fact recorded lots of Bruckner, including two versions of the 1st symphony and three each of the 3rd and 4th. Bruckner overload, man. I'll come back to him later

It says Nowak, 1952. Some interesting notes inside about the various editions, I'll try to snap pics of it and post it.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: amw on November 10, 2014, 06:59:36 PM
Hmm, really? I was following along with that score and noticed one place where Zweden was significantly different (the horns near the start of the trio section) (though I suppose that's not really a 'significant' difference by Brucknerian standards of revision).
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Moonfish on May 23, 2018, 12:10:01 AM
This was so much fun. This was the summer I fell in love with Bruckner's 6th.  Yay!
Good memories!

Anyways, I came across a comparative article on MusicWeb that Bruckner 6 maniacs may take interest in.

http://www.musicweb-international.com/classrev/2018/Jan/Bruckner_sy6_article_CH.pdf


Bruckner 6 ad below....  >:D


(https://img.discogs.com/nqWGRb0neQQKli1HmuLc_RC-bqg=/fit-in/300x300/filters:strip_icc():format(jpeg):mode_rgb():quality(40)/discogs-images/R-3577641-1335979750.jpeg.jpg)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Cato on May 23, 2018, 01:25:55 AM
This was so much fun. This was the summer I fell in love with Bruckner's 6th.  Yay!
Good memories!

Anyways, I came across a comparative article on MusicWeb that Bruckner 6 maniacs may take interest in.

http://www.musicweb-international.com/classrev/2018/Jan/Bruckner_sy6_article_CH.pdf


Bruckner 6 ad below....  >:D


(https://img.discogs.com/nqWGRb0neQQKli1HmuLc_RC-bqg=/fit-in/300x300/filters:strip_icc():format(jpeg):mode_rgb():quality(40)/discogs-images/R-3577641-1335979750.jpeg.jpg)

Many thanks!  Has it been four years since the epic BRUCKNER SIXTH SYMPHONY  8) BLIND  8) COMPARISON?!

And yes to that recording, the first one of the work I had ever heard, by (unofficial)  0:)  Saint Eugen Jochum!   0:)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: TheGSMoeller on May 23, 2018, 02:47:32 AM
Wow! Seeing this pop up on my Unread list made me do a double take. Yes this was a ton of fun, and I still have around 20 Bruckner 6th recordings lying around to constantly remind me it.  ;D


This was so much fun. This was the summer I fell in love with Bruckner's 6th.  Yay!
Good memories!

Anyways, I came across a comparative article on MusicWeb that Bruckner 6 maniacs may take interest in.

http://www.musicweb-international.com/classrev/2018/Jan/Bruckner_sy6_article_CH.pdf


Bruckner 6 ad below....  >:D


(https://img.discogs.com/nqWGRb0neQQKli1HmuLc_RC-bqg=/fit-in/300x300/filters:strip_icc():format(jpeg):mode_rgb():quality(40)/discogs-images/R-3577641-1335979750.jpeg.jpg)

Thanks for posting the article! Contained recordings I've never heard, and more importantly not in the Blind Comparison, perhaps we need to revisit it with new contenders?  ;)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Moonfish on May 23, 2018, 09:42:31 AM
Wow! Seeing this pop up on my Unread list made me do a double take. Yes this was a ton of fun, and I still have around 20 Bruckner 6th recordings lying around to constantly remind me it.  ;D


Thanks for posting the article! Contained recordings I've never heard, and more importantly not in the Blind Comparison, perhaps we need to revisit it with new contenders?  ;)

 ???


 :P

And thanks for organizing it and making it happen back then, Greg. It was a very cool experience!
I was going camping with my kids that summer. While driving we had Bruckner 6 blasting in the car. Ha ha ha! People probably wondered which planet we came from?
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Moonfish on May 23, 2018, 11:26:10 AM
Just listening to a Bruckner 6 (Wand/Kölner Rundfunk [Wand's 1st cycle]) and it is a mesmerizing symphony....    0:)

*engrained upon the soul after summer 2014*

(https://img.discogs.com/Xcl6I-HFe9RQ6t9_Xim78eRLYiA=/fit-in/600x600/filters:strip_icc():format(jpeg):mode_rgb():quality(90)/discogs-images/R-10737299-1521309222-3238.jpeg.jpg)(https://img.discogs.com/Vl-i0boRukeslY2c8HvOb_e7sHM=/fit-in/600x600/filters:strip_icc():format(jpeg):mode_rgb():quality(90)/discogs-images/R-10737299-1521309222-8729.jpeg.jpg)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Moonfish on May 23, 2018, 11:35:52 AM
Many thanks!  Has it been four years since the epic BRUCKNER SIXTH SYMPHONY  8) BLIND  8) COMPARISON?!

And yes to that recording, the first one of the work I had ever heard, by (unofficial)  0:)  Saint Eugen Jochum!   0:)

 :D

Hail Saint Eugen Jochum!


(https://i.ytimg.com/vi/Dyf-KajH2s8/hqdefault.jpg)
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Pat B on May 24, 2018, 10:27:46 AM
(Wand/Kölner Rundfunk [Wand's 1st cycle])

Well, that is his only cycle, though he did record the 8th approximately 973 times.
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Moonfish on May 24, 2018, 10:41:20 AM
Well, that is his only cycle, though he did record the 8th approximately 973 times.

True - his only complete cycle - I guess he avoided 1-3 quite a bit!  :'(   I still view his latter recordings as a type/variation of "cycles" (although incomplete) . My bad!  Plenty of Wand's Bruckner recordings out there!!!   ???
Title: Re: Bruckner's 6th Symphony - Blind Comparison
Post by: Cato on May 27, 2018, 10:23:56 AM
:D

Hail Saint Eugen Jochum!


(https://i.ytimg.com/vi/Dyf-KajH2s8/hqdefault.jpg)

That's a BIG AMEN, good buddy !!!  0:)

Quote
Just listening to a Bruckner 6 (Wand/Kölner Rundfunk [Wand's 1st cycle]) and it is a mesmerizing symphony....    0:)


It is interesting that, as I have aged, the work has evolved into something very special, and I used it in one of my (still unpublished) novels.

The set-up is that the organist - an 8th Grader and fan of Bruckner - has been tapped to play a funeral for a child struck and killed in a car accident.  (The regular organist is out-of-town.)

Quote
...And finally a melody from Tom’s musical memory began playing, as he read the obituary, which mentioned Augie’s pride in being an altar boy at St. Mary’s and his joy in playing baseball.  The melody was a somber funeral march, complete with muffled drumbeats.  The important thing, however, was that the second part of the march rose somewhat, and seemed to aspire toward hope, or at least to counterbalance the tragedy of the opening notes.  It was from the Sixth Symphony of Anton Bruckner, from the Adagio, the second movement.  But Tom also remembered that Bruckner brings this theme back toward the end of the movement, in a shortened form, and the little tragic funeral march becomes involved in a short brass chorale that softens the lament, which then leads to a dialogue in the strings, an up-and-down debate, with the upwardness of the music winning gently at the end, the two flutes and a single clarinet slowly, benignly, smilingly voicing their opinion that all is well, that the turmoil and sadness heard earlier have been dissolved into nothingness.... © 2018 L. Schulte

"Tom" decides to adapt the march for the organ in time for the funeral. And then, after Holy Communion..

Quote
...So then Tom began to play the Bruckner excerpt.  The first two bars seemed more tragic than in practice, and he had to ignore an impulse to cut the repetition of the opening four-bar theme which he had interpolated into the piece.  The next two bars rose and evoked more of a cry of anguish than any hope!  What was happening?  Those two bars were supposed to argue with the first ones, not commiserate!  When the repetition came, Tom quickly changed the stops and made the music softer.  That was better.  Now a short dialogue in the upper register ensued, followed by a chorale that gave a distant angelicity to the opening.  Then an upward struggle with sixteenth notes, ending in a huge, slow, climactic descent in eighth notes.  But this was no descent into hopelessness, rather it was an affirmation of a foundation and of a connection between heaven and earth, a Jacob’s Ladder being extended downward to all those who had the faith to take the first step.  And then the farewell most serene, the flute-and-clarinet melody slowly hovering on high, waving good-bye, as it faded away into the blissful otherworld....  © 2018 L. Schulte