WAGNER Ring / Karajan 4797354

. . . Karajan's recording of the cycle -- as much as Solti's more famous one -- can be appreciated for using the studio to explore this towering masterpiece from a unique and fascinating perspective. Half a century later, this is a recording that can still offer up surprises.

. . . [prior to this release, the 1998 Originals CD of Karajan's "Ring"] was a vast improvement on the first CD mastering; opening out the sound, deepening the perspectives and enriching the tonal palette. This time around the change is more subtle but deeply satisfying to my ears. Gone is the metallic sheen on the strings, the congested glare at climaxes. The brass gleams rather than sizzles while the bottom end has more weight and presence. Voices and instruments are firmly focused within the acoustic space and their specific timbre is rounded and solid . . . [it is a pleasure to hear this great] recording at its very best . . . Listen to Gundula Janowitz and Jon Vickers in Act 1 of "Die Walküre" and be seduced.

Pour son cycle monumental du Ring, Karajan regroupe autour de lui, une distribution prestigieuse de chanteurs solistes capables de transmettre sa vision artistique -- celle d'un chambrisme inédit, révélant le profil intérieur et les intentions souterraines de chaque protagoniste; son approche plus spirituelle de l'oeuvre, volontiers hédoniste, privilégiant beauté sonore, lyrisme expressif, clarté architecturale. Ainsi le Ring psychologique et dramatiquement introspectif de Karajan allait naître pas ŕ pas . . .