Loss, death, and redemption: Anton Bruckner went through a whirlwind of emotions during the two years in which he wrote the Seventh Symphony. The worst theater fire in history left hundreds dead practically next door to his Vienna apartment; Bruckner would have been one of the victims, had he not decided at the last minute to stay at home instead of going to the opera. He still feared that the flames might engulf his apartment and his manuscripts. As he wrote shortly thereafter to a friend: "The inexpressible misery of so many souls makes the blood run cold!" In the Seventh Symphony, Bruckner incorporated all those unsettling impressions, as well as the mourning over the death of Richard Wagner, his admired "ideal." The work, however, is by no means somber; it's four movements trace an unswerving path toward redemption. The symphony's premiere in 1884 in Leipzig was a resounding success and catapulted Bruckner for many years to the forefront of the European music scene. Leading up to the 200th anniversary of Bruckner's birth in 2024, Franois-Xavier Roth and the Grzenich Orchestra will release the Austrian composer's complete symphonies in new recordings: the cycle is inaugurated on this recording with the Seventh Symphony. Franois-Xavier Roth's approach to Bruckner is lean and light-footed; the sonority remains transparent at all times. He calls Bruckner "a trailblazer of Modernism." Roth creates an unforgettable musical experience with the Grzenich Orchestra, which has been closely associated with Bruckner's symphonic output for well over a century. These recordings of acclaimed live concerts from the Cologne Philharmonie are all processed in audiophile high-resolution DXD technique.