July 15, 2014
Twenty classic Karajan albums remastered and released digitally
Taking Karajan's unparalleled recorded legacy into the 21st century, Warner Classics pays tribute to the maestro on the 25th anniversary of his death July 16, with 20 of his most beloved albums remastered in high-definition quality for exclusive digital release.
At least half of the prolific conductor's discography was recorded for EMI. His partnership with the label spanned his entire career - from 1946 and the first collaborations with legendary producer Walter Legge, to 1984 just five years before Karajan's death. The albums feature his beloved Berliner Philharmoniker, which named him 'conductor for life', and the London-based Philharmonia founded by Legge, with whom the conductor produced some of his finest recordings.
Karajan's output for EMI was wide-ranging and forward-looking. Among the 20 remastered releases now available online are a sumptuous Respighi Pines of Rome and richly detailed Mussorgsky Pictures at an Exhibition; modern masterpieces like Bartok's Music for Strings, Percussion and Celesta and Stravinsky's Jeu de Cartes show another side to Karajan than his classic Finlandia ('Massive, craggy performances which testify to Karajan's exceptional rapport with Sibelius. -BBC Music Magazine), From the New World symphony and his powerful Bruckner 7th.
This treasure trove has been painstakingly remastered at London's Abbey Road Studios in 24-bit/96kHz from the original tapes, available for the first time as digital, high-definition releases via iTunes. Unlike many remastered classics, however, the Karajan collection has preserved the original vintage album artwork.