. . . a sonically spectacular "Sacre du Printemps" . . . Essential listening for anyone wishing to understand Stravinsky's revolutionary and influential music.
. . . Riccardo Chailly leads a vivid and powerful account . . . details abound and tempos are well-chosen across the whole. This impressive 70-minute release enjoys exemplary playing and sound.
Chailly and the Lucerne Festival Orchestra bring brilliance, detail and precision to works that include the rediscovered "Chant Funèbre" . . . [the sequence of early works is] brilliantly coloured and played with immaculate precision by the LFO . . . It is followed by an equally brilliant account of "The Rite of Spring" . . . It's more detailed, and more measured, than the version Chailly recorded in 1985 with the Cleveland Orchestra, but equally convincing in its own way.
. . . ["Chant funèbre"] is a magnificent piece, and it's thrilling to hear it finally . . . inspired . . . "Fireworks", Op. 4 and Scherzo fantastique, Op. 3, are given virtuosic performances, with dazzling woodwind highly impressive in their interlocking semiquavers . . . Chailly makes sure you can hear every entry . . . [Stravinsky / "Le faune et la bergére"]: [Sophie Koch's] voice is ideally suited to these depictions of budding young emotions: sweet and innocent in places, but full of sensuous tone when required . . . [Stravinsky / "Le sacre du printemps"]: Again, the level of detail is quite extraordinary . . . the myriad woodwind lines that often get buried in the mix can be effortlessly heard, not least the quietly frenetic contributions from alto flute. Similarly, I can't recall many other recordings where I could so clearly hear the inexorable, heaving tread of the bass clarinets moving in parallel fifths . . . Chailly lets rip with great fury in the "Glorification de l'élue" (Glorification of the Chosen One), and especially in the final "Danse sacrale" (Sacrifical Dance), the frenzy of which is made all the more satisfying by the earlier steadiness . . . this is Chailly's first disc with the orchestra since becoming their music director in 2016, and it's eminently clear just what fantastically capable hands they are in: with a richness from the strings, and unparalleled expertise from woodwind and brass, this must be one of the most remarkable discs of Stravinsky's music to have appeared for some time.
["Le sacre du printemps"]: This immaculate performance by Riccardo Chailly and the Lucerne Festival Orchestra eschews the usual brutality. This "Rite" is more religious ritual, less mass rape, a spiritual convocation with some crazy dancing. Chailly's approach is a refreshing contrast to Russian roughness, an alternative reading of a modernist masterpiece. The instrumental soliloquies are elegant and serene. The bassoonist (unnamed) deserves a Nobel Prize.
. . . [Chailly gives Stravinsky's early works] loving, exemplary recordings . . . Chailly has always been someone to make Stravinsky sound beautiful rather than radical -- and that's a sense that purveys not just the lush early works but also his colorful, perfumed, even soft "Rite" . . . for these works, Chailly is the obvious go-to recording . . . This disc is an auspicious sign of excellent and interesting things to come.
. . . first-rate performances . . . Chailly gives us "The Rite of Spring" in a clear-headed, chiselled performance . . .
. . . striking and individual . . . [a] handsomely performed anthology . . . ["La Faune et la Bergère" is] sweetly sung by mezzo Sophie Koch. Riccardo Chailly's Lucerne Festival Orchestral provide a suitably well-upholstered backdrop . . . [in Stravinsky's "Le Sacre"] there's a superb "Danse de la terre" before the glacial introduction to Part II. Chailly turns the screws imperceptibly but surely, and his swift "Danse sacrale" is a knockout.
. . . [Stravinsky / "Chant funèbre"]: undeniably powerful . . . fascinating . . . ["Le faune et la bergére" and "Scherzo fantastique"] are performed here with hair-raising brilliance . . . ["Le sacre du printemps"] is played with amazing clarity and precision . . . a total listening experience . . . this CD offers something very special.
Chailly draws out the colours vividly with his Lucerne orchestra, silky strings and rounded woodwind voices to the fore. The "Funeral Song" is more than a curiosity . . . [Chailly's "The Rite of Spring"] is a very good performance . . . Chailly elicits a rhythmic grip on "The Augurs of Spring" and keeps the "Spring Rounds" flowing nicely, driving the finale to its exhausted collapse.
[Stravinsky / "Chant funèbre"]: The reverberant bass-heavy sound of the Lucerne Festival Orchestra and the recording itself complements the work's dense and voluptuous textures . . . Sophie Koch's idiomatic rendering (in French) of the three Pushkin settings hits home in its languorous and conversational tone . . . Chailly's interpretation of "The Rite" never fails to play down the orgiastic element in favour of clarifying the rhythmic scansion of the music. In focussing on the latter, he certainly reveals new (to me) aspects in this fathomless score . . .
. . . [the producers/engineers] did their work most effectively. The audio picture is rich and detailed with strong, powerful bass. Although these are live performances, there is no applause and not a trace of audience sounds. Of particular interest here is inclusion of a newly discovered early work by Stravinsky, "Funeral Song" . . . This is the world premiere recording, and admirers of Stravinsky surely will wish to have it. It is coupled with several other early works, and the mighty "Sacre". An intriguing disk indeed!
["Le faune et la bergére"]: Thanks in part to an attractive performance by mezzo-soprano Sophie Koch, Chailly's version has more color and character than Stravinsky's own. Chailly¿s performance of "Fireworks" has enough sparkle and animation to it, while his "Scherzo fantastique" is controlled and subtle . . . ["Le sacre du printemps"]: the "Glorification of the Chosen One" wakes everyone up at last, and the rest pounds home with adequate power and fury . . . the "raison d¿etre" for this disc is "Funeral Song", which, whatever its shortcomings, should be an object of fascination for anyone who wants to get to know Stravinsky's origins better.
Après 106 ans d'un oubli impardonnable, la partition du "Chant Funèbre" est enfin ressuscitée, au concert et ici par le disque, dans ce premier enregistrement mondial, jalon désormais essentiel pour comprendre la "comète" Stravinksy, jeune génie issu du Conservatoire de Saint-Pétersbourg, et doué d'une frénésie stylistique époustouflante.
Avouons notre plein enthousiasme pour l'élément moteur de cet album: "Le Chant Funèbre" . . . L'application qu'y développe Chailly est passionnante . . . Disque d'une rare cohésion, révélateur sur l'évolution de Stravinsky au début du XXè. Programme plus qu'intéressant . . .
. . . une disque séduisant . . . ["Chant funèbre"] déploie un tissu symphonique chatoyant, richement expressif . . . [pour "Le Sacre du Printemps",] qui s'illustre ici par des bois chaleureux et des cordes ardentes, Riccardo Chailly en propose une version hédoniste, moins crue et tranchante . . . Pas moins belle, mais comme pacifiée.