BRAHMS 4 Symphonies / Karajan 0734386

[477 7156]: The burnished brilliance of the playing, the finely-spun lines and perfectly sculpted dramatic climaxes -- and Michael Schwalbe's violin solos -- altogether shows one of the greatest Straussian teams at its peak.
[477 7157]: The "Eroica" and No. 4 are potent reminders of the power and pace, the plush string sound and stunning brass . . .
[477 7161]: Bartók's Concerto for Orchestra . . . profits from the super-sophisticated sheen which by the mid-'60s also sustains Karajan's Debussy and Ravel . . . the colours of "La Mer" and "Daphnis" are very seductive.
[477 7163]: Karajan's collection of "Opera Intermezzi" is a real pleasure: fine-spun strings, verismo drama, and space to appreciate the delicate beauty of these gems, from Verdi to Mascagni.
[477 7164]: . . . genuinely moving . . .
[477 7165]: Youthful poise meets urbane sophistication, to the benefit of both, and also of Beethoven.
[073 4386]: You can watch the long line at work in the seamless cello melody of the Third's Poco allegretto -- no 'breaths' between phrases -- while the hard-hitting First and Fourth . . . always rhythmically well define, move naturally to their craggy peak.

Herbert von Karajan's Brahms was always solid, well paced, polished, and smart.

Son Brahms des années 1970 est porté par une inextinguible tension dramatique; mais avec un orchestre clair, ductile, qui n'est pas sans évoquer la sonorité idéale que Hans Schmidt-Isserstedt tirait des ses musiciens hambourgeois: les deux chefs fondaient leur poétique en s'appuyant sur les cordes, sculptées à loisir . . . A ce titre, ces films, encore marqués par le souvenir de la caméra d'Henri-Georges Clouzot, restent indispensables.