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Albrecht: The Ring Without Words (Wagner's Ring Transcribed for 2 Organs)

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Customer Reviews

The most interesting Wagner interpretation I have heard

I adore Wagner's music, and recently I've begun to explore the instrumental interpretations and arrangements of his work. This is, without a doubt, the most interesting that I've come across. A pipe organ is capable of grandiose sounds and drama on the scale of a full orchestra, and I suppose that it's only natural that Wagner's Ring would find its way to an organist--or two, in this case.

Thre is no continuity here; it is NOT like "The Ring Without Words" done by Lorin Maazel or "The Ring: An Orchestral Adventure" done by Neeme Jarvi. Those were orchestrations to turn Wagner's great work into something of a symphonic poem. (And both are well worth owning and listenint to.) Albrecht give us a "greatest hits" run through the Ring. The prelude for Das Rheingold is nothing short of sublime. The entrance of the gods into Valhalla caries the appropriate sense of foreboding, but I must say that after only one listen I'm unsure what to make of it. (This is probably my favorite passage of music in Der Ring, so my affection for the piece may play into this.) I may update this review later on.

Of course, no Ring is complete without The Ride of the Valkyrie. The music is ubiquitous, unavoidable...and this one is quite entertaining. (Although my personal prejudice would be for one of the excerpt recordings of Der Ring to NOT have The Ride of the Valkyrie, as the thing has been recorded and performed ad nauseum.)

Siegfried has the misfortune of being sandwiched between Die Valkyrie and Gotterdamerung, and is mostly known for the Forest Murmers, which make this recording. It's not my favorite music from the opera, but again, it is nothing short of sublime. I would have preffered to hear an interpretation of Siegfried forging Notung, or waking Brunhilde.

From Gotterdamerung, we have Siegfried's funeral march and Brunhilde's immolation scene. Goodness, you could make one of these recordings (of at least an hour) just for the great music of Gotterdamerung alone. The two excerpts here are alone worth the price of the download. My only complaint, and the only reason I'm giving four stars instead of five, is that I wish there was more. Albrecht has given us six excellent tracks, a unique and interesting interpretation of Wagner's work. It never sounds jumbled, nor an incomprehensible mess. My advice is to buy it, then immediately create an Apple Lossless Version for your listening pleasure.


Genre: Classical

Hansjörg Albrecht is a German organist, harpsichordist, and conductor. He started his musical career by singing in the Holy Cross Choir in Dresden, and later pursued studies in organ and conducting in Hamburg, Lyon, and Cologne. He served as organist at St. Michael's Church in Hamburg and went on to work as an accompanist for Peter Schreier before becoming the artistic director of the Munich Bach Choir and the Munich Bach Orchestra. He has conducted many orchestras, including the Orchestra Sinfonica...
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Albrecht: The Ring Without Words (Wagner's Ring Transcribed for 2 Organs), Hansjörg Albrecht
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  • $9.99
  • Genres: Classical, Music
  • Released: Jan 01, 2006

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