Brahms: 21 Hungarian Dances

Brahms: 21 Hungarian Dances

Claudio Abbado’s album of Brahms’ 21 Hungarian Dances was originally released in 1983, to mark the 150th anniversary of the composer’s birth. Its Spatial Audio remastering gives extra amplitude to what was already a fine recording and emphasizes the enveloping warmth of the Vienna Philharmonic’s playing. In Hungarian Dance No. 1, Abbado sharpens the rhythms just enough to add buoyancy to the performance without micromanaging the orchestra’s naturally idiomatic phrasing. Dance No. 3 has all the piquant charm it needs, while in No. 14 the Vienna violins surge irresistibly. Among the faster dances, No. 18 provides a winning mix of precision and exuberance, while No. 21 brings the cycle to a scintillating conclusion.

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