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Anton Bruckner

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Ansfelden, Austria (1824 – 1896)

Anton Bruckner (4 September 1824 – 11 October 1896) was an Austrian composer known for his symphonies, masses, and motets. The former are considered emblematic of the final stage of Austro-German Romanticism because of their rich harmonic language, complex polyphony, and considerable length. Bruckner’s compositions helped to define contemporary musical radicalism, owing to their dissonances, unprepared modulations, and roving harmonies.

Unlike other radicals, such as Richard Wagner or Hugo Wolf who fit the enfant terrible mould, Bruckner showed extreme humility before other musicians, Wagner in particular. This apparent dichotomy between Bruckner the man and Bruckner the composer hampers efforts to describe his life in a way that gives a straightforward context for his music.

His works, the symphonies in particular, had detractors, most notably the influential Austrian critic Eduard Hanslick, and other supporters of Johannes Brahms, who pointed to their large size, use of repetition, and Bruckner’s propensity to revise many of his works, often with the assistance of colleagues, and his apparent indecision about which versions he preferred. On the other hand, Bruckner was greatly admired by subsequent composers, including his friend Gustav Mahler, who described him as “half simpleton, half God”.

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  • BatooqSupersoul

    He's not so bad as he thought he was

    16 Aug 2:53pm Reply
  • OG-Gurda

    he is incredible

    7 May 10:32pm Reply
  • HaHaHaYoureDead

    потрясающе, вершина немецкой музыки, не зря фюрер его так любил

    9 Mar 10:23am Reply
  • I0000days

    Overrated, once you decode his style the music loses all its meaning.

    9 Feb 7:13pm Reply
  • shangoyal

    when you don't get his music, it's too long. and then suddenly one day, it is exactly the right length.

    24 Nov 2013 Reply
  • CosmicPi

    Beautiful, beautiful symphonies.

    2 Nov 2013 Reply
  • MsChestertonx

    <33333333

    24 Aug 2013 Reply
  • NightXsenator

    Wand NDR cycle is perfect. His recordings of 4th and 8th with BPO are also fantastic. 8th in Lubeck also.

    9 Jul 2013 Reply
  • mahleria

    The Quintet in F Major is fantastic.

    22 Mar 2013 Reply
  • MonarchKingdom

    I checked out on Amazon, the 17CD Bruckner set costs well over €1000... Spendy indeed.

    6 Mar 2013 Reply
  • mahleria

    I agree. It's not my personal nickname for him, but rather one that's been given to him. Dig around online and you'll find that he is very well regarded. He met Furtwängler as a young man and it made a huge impression on him. I haven't heard the Nagano; DS-O but will put it on my radar. I love his Messiaen discs and saw him conduct Stravinsky a few years ago.

    4 Mar 2013 Reply
  • MonarchKingdom

    (Labelling someone the Japanese - or any other - Furtwängler will create very high expectations, though, which might prove difficult to live up to...)

    2 Mar 2013 Reply
  • MonarchKingdom

    @mahleria: Thanks for the recommendation, I already planned to listen to a Japanese version. On a FB discussion group someone recommended the Eighth by the Deutsches Symphonie-Orchester in Berlin, 2005, under Kent Nagano, who is Japanese American. Have you by any chance heard Nagano as well?

    2 Mar 2013 Reply
  • mahleria

    Great cycle worth checking out is the "Japanese Fürtwangler": Takashi Asahina w/ Osaka Phil. Damn spendy though.

    1 Mar 2013 Reply
  • GlennGulda

    Symphony 8 (Wand) & 9 (Giulini)) = GOAT symphonies.

    29 Jan 2013 Reply
  • GlennGulda

    Bruckner = the GOAT symphonist.

    29 Jan 2013 Reply
  • Cranigen

    *longer

    28 Jan 2013 Reply
  • Cranigen

    mahler's symphonies are generally larger

    12 Jan 2013 Reply
  • Wooshmeister

    " The main problem with Bruckner symphonies is that they're just too short." A problem also seen in Mahler's symphonies.

    11 Oct 2012 Reply
  • MonarchKingdom

    Just finished the First, with Wand and the Kölner, and it was just sublime. Really all his symphonies were superb.

    1 Oct 2012 Reply
  • All 133 shouts

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