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Huntley Dent
Fanfare, January 2020

I cannot do better than to quote Kruger’s conclusion. “[The performance] jumps off the page with remarkable beauty and power. The winds are idiomatic and characterful, the strings carry real depth, and the brass are flawless. So, astonishingly for Bruckner, every sound the orchestra makes comes across as gorgeous.” As satisfying as Abbado’s final Bruckner Ninth is, the First is the performance that feels uniquely personal and touching. Anyone who hasn’t acquired these two memorable performances now has the chance at mid-price. © 2020 Fanfare Read complete review

Michael Wilkinson
MusicWeb International, November 2019

This performance has the suggestion of a deeply personal, inward meditation. Perhaps it appears in places more Mahler than Bruckner, notably in the opening, and again the poetic is more striking than the dissonance that is part of Bruckner’s troubled vision. Abbado’s view has a certain serenity and confidence that has its own integrity. © 2019 MusicWeb International Read complete review

Blair Sanderson, November 2019

…Claudio Abbado recorded several, though not all, of Anton Bruckner’s symphonies, leading first-rate performances with the Vienna Philharmonic on Deutsche Grammophon. However, his later live recordings with the Lucerne Festival Orchestra on Accentus are equally superb. … He had few rivals in his musicality, attention to details, and complete understanding of Bruckner’s development of symphonic form, and listeners who might feel lost in these long, capacious symphonies will find Abbado’s interpretations lucid, cogent, and ultimately inspiring. © 2019 Read complete review

Jens F. Laurson, October 2019

The edition of the First, in this case, is the revised 1891 “Vienna” version, whereas Abbado’s rather fine Vienna recording of the symphony was of the revised 1877 Linz version. … Critics at that last concert gushed: “Abbado uncovered the radical nature of [this symphony]”. …He and the Lucerne Festival Orchestra give the work the loving and grand treatment that helps propel this easily overlooked gem to our deserved attention.

It contains the best of Abbado’s Bruckner in one well-made set replete with a large booklet full of gorgeous pictures and a trilingually gushing essay. © 2019 Read complete review, October 2019

This Bruckner First by Abbado makes a strong argument for Bruckner as a composer who, in addition to seeking grand sounds from a large orchestra, wanted to highlight more-delicate elements of instrumentation… Abbado’s memory is well-served by both his Bruckner First and his Bruckner Ninth. © 2019 Read complete review

Félix de Azúa
Scherzo, October 2019

This is a solid Bruckner, sober, far from Celibidache. A serene, elegant version, careful with the details so that nothing spoils its gleam. A great album and a great document. © 2019 Scherzo

Colin Anderson, September 2019

…Outstanding performances led by Claudio Abbado, recorded with a excellent tonmeister’s fine ear for perspective, tonal fidelity and good balance.

Abbado gives us Bruckner’s Bruckner IX (the three movements that he left; others have completed the Finale). Abbado’s is the art that conceals art, tempos and transitions perfectly judged across the whole, dynamics scrupulous, blend judicious, the players dedicated to their conductor and he to the music—everything belongs and is inevitable… © 2019 Read complete review

Alain Steffe
Pizzicato, September 2019

Abbado’s First Bruckner Symphony, for sure one of the best in the catalogue, is refreshingly smooth and bright, with wind instruments, colourful strings and warm wood instruments. Transparency and clear lines give evidence of a rare analytic insight. © 2019 Pizzicato

Remy Franck
Pizzicato, September 2019

This Ninth Symphony by Anton Bruckner comes from the very last concert Claudio Abbado conducted at the Lucerne Festival in August 2013. Every element necessary to a truly great performance is operating here: transparency, dynamics, articulation, balance, breathing, emotion bring a very natural and organic sound to the music. Knowing how weak Abbado felt at that period, one is overwhelmed by his supremacy over the score. © 2019 Pizzicato

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