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GUSTAV MAHLER - SYMPHONY NO. 9 - HERBERT VON KARAJAN (conductor) - BERLIN PHILHARMONIC - 028943902427 - Deutsche Grammophon 4390242

** 1984 Gramophone Record of the Year and Orchestral Awards **

This live performance from 1982 is one of those special and rare moments when all the cogs and tumblers of the universe have clicked into place. For a conductor having recorded very little of Mahler's repertoire, this performance is amazing on all accounts. The focus and intensity never lose their grip, and the profound emotions within the music are omnipresent and brought to the fore like no other interpretation before or since. The orchestra shines at every moment, from the cataclysmic climaxes in the first movement to the last barely audible sighs of resignation at the end of the last movement, every note is bang on. It's as if one raised eyebrow or one lift of a finger from the conductor was all that was needed for all the musicians to know exactly what was expected of them to bring out the wonders in that magnificent work.

This recording will remain a torch in the darkness for a long time to come!

Jean-Yves Duperron