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Brahms is often associated with the idea of abstract music, free of literary models or autobiography, but with the third the composer wrote in many ways his most personal symphony.

Composed at a mountain retreat in 1884, about a year after
completing the third, Brahms’ architectural musical skill is nowhere more evident than in his fourth and final symphony, employing Baroque contrapuntal techniques and chromatic labyrinths and described by Hans von Bülow as having the feeling of ‘being given a beating by two incredibly intelligent people.’

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