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NIELSEN, C.: Symphonies Nos. 1 and 4, "Inextinguishable" (New York Philharmonic, Gilbert)


Dacapo 6.220624

   Audio Video Club of Atlanta, April 2015
   Enjoy the Music, April 2015
   Fanfare, January 2015
   Culture Catch, December 2014
   National Public Radio, December 2014
   Audiophilia, December 2014
   PS Audio, December 2014
   MusicWeb International, December 2014
   Gramophone, December 2014
   BBC Music Magazine, December 2014
   Classical CD Choice, November 2014
   The New York Times, November 2014
   SA-CD.net, November 2014
   Classical Music Sentinel, November 2014
   Audiophile Audition, October 2014
   National Public Radio, October 2014
   AllMusic.com, October 2014
   Sinfini Music, October 2014
   Infodad.com, October 2014
   ClassicsToday.com, September 2014
   Cinemusical, September 2014
   Gapplegate Classical-Modern Music Review, September 2014

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Phil Muse
Audio Video Club of Atlanta, April 2015

…the New York Philharmonic under music director Alan Gilbert gives a powerful, scintillating account of two symphonies by Danish composer Carl Nielsen…the NYPO are in their very best form, reminding us once again what a world-class orchestra this is. © 2015 Audio Video Club of Atlanta Read complete review




Max Westler
Enjoy the Music, April 2015

NIELSEN, C.: Symphonies Nos. 1 and 4, "Inextinguishable" (New York Philharmonic, Gilbert) 6.220624
NIELSEN, C.: Symphonies Nos. 5 and 6 (New York Philharmonic, Gilbert) 6.220625

Nielsen’s symphonies require a great orchestra, superb engineering, and a deeply sympathetic conductor who both understands and loves the music. Here we have all three. The New York Philharmonic is a virtuoso ensemble that can handle the composer’s sometime impossible demands with grace and power. Dacapo’s recording team has given us the most spacious, detailed, and transparent sound these works have ever received. And clearly Gilbert’s interpretations spring from deep conviction and an abiding commitment to the composer. Those who know this music will be startled by how much expressive detail they hear, especially at the big climaxes, where even the best recordings often come up short. © 2015 Enjoy the Music Read complete review



James H. North
Fanfare, January 2015

The Philharmonic is a terrific Nielsen orchestra—the best. Its vibrant woodwinds and potent, aggressive strings are just what this composer needs.

The playing is beautiful and the sound tremendous. For all of these reasons, this SACD must be on your Nielsen shelf.

…I think that Gilbert, with his resplendent, resurgent Philharmonic, is the ideal Nielsen conductor. © 2015 Fanfare Read complete review



Steve Holtje
Culture Catch, December 2014

Best New Classical Albums of 2014

The NY Phil. is a perfect match for Nielsen’s music, since both are craggy, muscular, mercurial, and exuding nerve-wracking tension. That’s not to say Maestro Gilbert doesn’t deserve credit for channeling those traits in a finely proportioned way; the keenly honed precision of the rhythms here is key. His ongoing project of recording them is one of the most valuable cycles currently in progress. With No. 4 “Inextinguishable”—perhaps the best known of them—on the 2014 installment, and the NYP’s brass at their best in its powerful first movement, if you haven’t checked out this cycle yet, this is a great place to start. © 2014 Culture Catch



Tom Huizenga
National Public Radio, December 2014

Best Classical Albums Of 2014

As a kid, Carl Nielsen made music by pounding on logs in the family woodpile. He’d grow up to become one of the most important, if still undervalued, symphony composers of the 20th century. Conductor Alan Gilbert and the New York Philharmonic have been making a case for Nielsen, recording live performances of all six of the great Danish composer’s symphonies. Pairing the First and Fourth shows both how bracing and fresh the works sound and how Nielsen’s symphonic language developed. The first, even with its whiffs of Dvořák, reveals the characteristic Nielsen rhythmic life force and harmonic personality. The Fourth, from 1916, subtitled “The Inextinguishable,” unfolds in one continuous flow, with episodes of rambunctious glee (lots of fun for two timpanists), potent introspection and, ultimately, triumph. © 2014 National Public Radio



James Norris
Audiophilia, December 2014

The New York Philharmonic show that they are an orchestra very well suited to these works and Gilbert draws fine performances from the wind[s] and brass. The lower strings demonstrate a richness that you would expect from a major US orchestra…

This is an SACD recording and the overall sound is good if not outstanding…the readings are very vivid and detailed in places and the NYPO are definitely on the up again with playing of power and conviction. Worth a listen. © 2014 Audiophilia Read complete review



Lawrence Schenbeck
PS Audio, December 2014

One of the most attractive features of [the Fourth Symphony] is its alternation of big orchestral effects with delicate chamber-like scoring. Star producer/engineer Preben Iwan was on hand to pull off the needed tricks. Thanks to him, a solo cello line from Carter Brey comes as well-imaged, as nicely wrapped in its acoustic space, as the big brass tutti that may thunder in a moment later. © 2014 PS Audio Read complete review



John Quinn
MusicWeb International, December 2014

Right from the start [of the Fourth Symphony] the sound of the orchestra is very powerful. The sound has enormous impact and presence…I admired the spirited performance.

There’s a good deal to admire in these performances… © 2014 MusicWeb International Read complete review



David Fanning
Gramophone, December 2014

…Gilbert is on something of a crusade. He seems enthralled by Nielsen’s invigorating energy and equally so by his lyrical charm.

[The First Symphony] is engagingly direct from the weighty yet lithe opening to the blazing conclusion and which is also sensitive to the moments of wonder along the way. © 2014 Gramophone Read complete review on Gramophone




Anthony Burton
BBC Music Magazine, December 2014

The New York Philharmonic players respond collectively and as individuals. Handovers between string sections are at daringly quiet dynamic levels and are almost imperceptible. The woodwind combine to produce a fresh, well-blended sonority. © 2014 BBC Music Magazine



Graham Williams
Classical CD Choice, November 2014

The playing of the New York Philharmonic Orchestra again shows that they are still one of the world’s great orchestras. Strings possess a glowing richness and warmth, woodwinds are characterful with every solo beautifully phrased, while the burnished lower brass and fabulous horn section thrill with every entry. Gilbert’s use of antiphonally divided violins also adds immensely to the appreciation of Nielsen’s string writing in both symphonies and, whether playing softly or very loudly, timpani are captured with amazing fidelity… I was surprised to find that Gilbert’s tempi for each of the four movements of the 1st Symphony match, within a few seconds, those adopted by Colin Davis in his 2012 recording. The propulsive approach adopted by both conductors is admirably suited to this work though Gilbert has the advantage of incomparably better sound. …this latest release can be confidently recommended. © 2014 Classical CD Choice Read complete review



Anthony Tommasini
The New York Times, November 2014

The symphonies combine seemingly disparate qualities of late Romantic fervor, rustic colors, folksy elements, advanced chromatic harmonic writing, mystical strangeness and spurts of wildness, all conveyed in Mr. Gilbert’s vivid readings. Yet he manages to make these score seem structured and inevitable. © 2014 The New York Times Read complete review




Graham Williams
SA-CD.net, November 2014

The sound quality throughout is very fine…and engineer Preben Iwan is to be congratulated for managing to achieve such a clear and spacious result…

The playing of the New York Philharmonic Orchestra…shows that they are still one of the world’s great orchestras. Strings possess a glowing richness and warmth, woodwinds are characterful with every solo beautifully phrased, while the burnished lower brass and fabulous horn section thrill with every entry. © 2014 SA-CD.net Read complete review



Jean-Yves Duperron
Classical Music Sentinel, November 2014

As in their previous release…conductor Alan Gilbert and the New York Philharmonic musicians once again deliver a walloping “live” account of these scores, with an even balance of power, detail, clarity, and above all a musical pulse and narrative that pulls you in from start to finish, all well captured by the Dacapo recording engineers. © 2014 Classical Music Sentinel Read complete review




Daniel Coombs
Audiophile Audition, October 2014

The DaCapo sound and engineering here is at its usual high mark. This recording sounds great and I am already a fan of these works. © 2014 Audiophile Audition Read complete review



Tom Huizenga
National Public Radio, October 2014

[Carl Nielsen’s symphonies]…offer a bracing alternative to the afterglow of Romanticism, and with off-kilter rhythms and compact, often spiky melodies, they still sound extraordinarily fresh. Especially so in new recordings by conductor Alan Gilbert and the New York Philharmonic… © 2014 National Public Radio Read complete review




Blair Sanderson
AllMusic.com, October 2014

With this 2014 release on DaCapo, Alan Gilbert continues his exceptional SACD series of the symphonies of Carl Nielsen, performed with high energy and technical brilliance by the New York Philharmonic. The orchestra demonstrates its best playing throughout, with clear separation of colors and a wide dynamic range, so the super audio showcase is fully warranted. © 2014 Allmusic.com Read complete review




David Nice
Sinfini Music, October 2014

…the New York Philharmonic’s playing is mostly magnificent, its horns especially impressive in third movements and its first clarinettist as subtle as can be very early on in both symphonies. © 2014 Sinfini Music Read complete review



Infodad.com, October 2014

…[this] SACD boasts splendid sound and far better playing by the New York Philharmonic than it has offered since the days of Leonard Bernstein… © 2014 Infodad.com




David Hurwitz
ClassicsToday.com, September 2014

These are strong, exciting performances of symphonies that demand the sort of bold muscularity in their execution that these artists offer. In Alan Gilbert’s hands the First Symphony sounds extremely confident and wholly mature. The playing of the New York Philharmonic throughout is fresh and unaffected, full of spirit and drive.

This is a very impressive release. © 2014 ClassicsToday.com Read complete review




Steven A. Kennedy
Cinemusical, September 2014

…the ensemble has managed to gain a real understanding of the style and aesthetic of this music under Gilbert’s leadership. This is easily recommendable for those looking for a more recent survey of the first four Nielsen symphonies and we can hope the remainder are not far behind. © 2014 Cinemusical Read complete review



Grego Applegate Edwards
Gapplegate Classical-Modern Music Review, September 2014

The New York Philharmonic had a great Nielsen interpreter in Leonard Bernstein last century. Now it has Alan Gilbert.

Alan Gilbert’s Fourth is a triumph. There is strongly defined part writing that Gilbert realizes vividly, and a dramatic push on the edge of the ecstatic that this version captures beautifully.

It is a one-four coupling of great strength and ruggedly craggy beauty. There is no better Fourth out there to my mind…Gilbert and the New York Philharmonic give us Nielsen in all his glory. The First is given all its due; the Fourth shines like a beacon.

Very recommended. © 2014 Gapplegate Classical-Modern Music Review Read complete review





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