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  Dacapo Records -
  6.200001 (7 discs)
  Langgaard: The Symphonies - Dausgaard
  Rued Langgaard: Symphony No. 1 “Mountain Pastorals”, Symphony No. 2 "Awakening of Spring", Symphony No. 3 "The Flush of Youth – La melodia", Symphony No. 4 "Fall", Symphony No. 5 (Versions I & II) "Steppe Landscape/Summer Legend Drama", Symphony No. 6 "The Heaven-Rending", Symphony No. 7 (Version 1926), Symphony No. 8 "Memories at Amalienborg", Symphony No. 9 "From Queen Dagmar’s City", Symphony No. 10 "Yon Hall of Thunder", Symphony No. 11 “Ixion”, Symphony No. 12 "Hélsingeborg", Symphony No. 13 "Belief in Wonders", Symphony No. 14 "The Morning", Drapa (On the Death of Edvard Grieg), Sphinx, Hvidbjerg-Drapa, Danmarks Radio, Res absùrda!?, Symphony No. 15 "The Sea Storm", Symphony No. 16 “Sun Deluge”

Danish National Symphony Orchestra
Danish National Vocal Ensemble
Danish National Choir
Thomas Dausgaard (conductor)
Track listing:
Recording type:
Recording info:
  Recording location: Danish Radio Concert Hall
Recording dates: August 1998 – June 2008
Recording producers: Preben Iwan, Michael Petersen, Chris Hazell
Sound engineers: Jan Oldrup, Jørn Jacobsen

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Related titles: 4

Reviews: 2

Review by georgeflanagin February 22, 2010 (10 of 12 found this review helpful)
Performance:   Sonics:  
ADHD Summary:

Langgaard's music is mauve and white striped wallpaper for the ears, and the recordings will not show off your hi-fi. Nothing extraordinary here; neither in the music nor the recording.

The music:

These discs contain a score plus one of symphonic scores by Langgaard, and are of varying levels of interest, amendments to the orchestration, and length. I have had a handful of Langgaard discs over the years. Most have matriculated to other collections; the last remaining of which is the Jarvi/DNRSO/Chandos RBCD of Symphonies 4, 5 (second version), and 6.

The purchase of this set was something of a second chance for my "going Rued," as well as giving Danacord's recording engineers listen. I listened to each piece at least twice. The music has been discussed elsewhere in this forum, as has the packaging. The liner notes are not terribly informative, especially considering that Langgaard is an back-bench composer, and inquiring minds often want to know.

Rather than engage in hyperbole, I will try to describe some aspects of Langgaard's orchestral music which might interest prospective purchasers:

- Attractive melodies that are not always great choices for the extended development found in sonata form treatments.
- Relative absence of twentieth century features such as: non-functional harmony, melodic leaps, stressful dissonances, unusual playing.
- Orchestration that tends to build up in the middle of the frequency range, and is ``thick.''
- Few solos; mainly ensemble playing.
- A level of organization on par with Dvorak's first four or five symphonies.

I did not find a Langgaard voice in the music, and the liner notes by Bendt Viinholt Nielsen bear this out: "No clear development from [sym] No. 1 to No. 16 is evident, …"

The recording:

I think the disagreements about the recording qualities stem from two factors:

[1] The music itself doesn't have a lot of dynamic range. If you are expecting to find truth in a statement like "Langgaard is the new Mahler," it is not there to be found. Langgaard might be the new Schumann when it comes to orchestral sound, and we know how Mahler felt about Schumann's orchestration.

[2] The recordings are compressed, by which I simply mean that the entire span of the performance is comfortably visible in a 1/3 octave spectrum analyzer with the scale set to -15 to -75 dB. The SACD stereo and RBCD layers are not obviously different from each other.

The recordings are quiet, with no real background noise, although this may have been noise-gated away in the post-production. The sounds of the instruments are realistic; the feeling of being there is absent.

Bottom Line:

This is all the Langgaard I will ever need. I will keep it, but there will be more times when my mind wanders from his music than wanders to it. The recording is entirely adequate.

© 2010 George Flanagin and

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Review by gonzostick June 19, 2009 (8 of 11 found this review helpful)
Performance:   Sonics:
First class musical adventure!!!

Ever come to a new piece of music and find yourself saying, "Oh My GOD, where has this music been all my life?" Yes, this is glorious neo-romanticism or post-romanticism. It sounds like everything one has ever heard and then suddenly turns corners that are unexpected; in which clichés are suddenly reorganized and made very interesting. This music has great spirit and sweep and is captivating. That is the source of all the fun in listening to this complete set.

Conductor, soloists and orchestra perform this music with a depth and dedication that is admirable. All of them sound completely inspired by the composer's work and sound like they know they are using and giving all their emotions to record repertoire that deserves their best.

If you like any of the post-romantic composers, this set is for you. The packaging is a little strange, but the music is really lovely. The surround and stereo mixes are excellent.

Buying this complete set of discs in the box is way less expensive than as single discs. Every one of them makes for a lovely listening experience.

No, I will not do a detailed review of each disc, but I do encourage all readers of this note to take the time to hear these works. I have been a professional conductor for 42 years and it is very seldom that music as beautiful and inspired as this turns my head. This is well worth your time.

Search at the secondary sellers on Amazon for an even lower price.

DO NOT MISS THIS, if you are tired of endless Mahler symphonies in the hands of conductors who want to say, "Me, too!!!"

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Works: 21  

Rued Langgaard - Danmarks Radio
Rued Langgaard - Drapa (On the Death of Edvard Grieg)
Rued Langgaard - Hvidbjerg-Drapa
Rued Langgaard - Res absùrda!?
Rued Langgaard - Sphinx
Rued Langgaard - Symphony No. 1 “Mountain Pastorals”
Rued Langgaard - Symphony No. 10 "Yon Hall of Thunder"
Rued Langgaard - Symphony No. 11 “Ixion”
Rued Langgaard - Symphony No. 12 "Hélsingeborg"
Rued Langgaard - Symphony No. 13 "Belief in Wonders"
Rued Langgaard - Symphony No. 14 "The Morning"
Rued Langgaard - Symphony No. 15 "The Sea Storm"
Rued Langgaard - Symphony No. 16 “Sun Deluge”
Rued Langgaard - Symphony No. 2 "Awakening of Spring"
Rued Langgaard - Symphony No. 3 "The Flush of Youth – La melodia"
Rued Langgaard - Symphony No. 4 "Fall"
Rued Langgaard - Symphony No. 5 "Steppe Landscape/Summer Legend Drama"
Rued Langgaard - Symphony No. 6 "The Heaven-Rending"
Rued Langgaard - Symphony No. 7
Rued Langgaard - Symphony No. 8 "Memories at Amalienborg"
Rued Langgaard - Symphony No. 9 "From Queen Dagmar’s City"