Date of purchase: October 2017.
First listen: 9-11-2017.
Recording dates: April 2011.
Venue: Konserthuset, Helsingborg, Sweden.
Sound engineer: Lennart Dehn or Torbjörn Samuelsson.
Works on this CD:
Symphony No. 2, opus 17 in E minor. (1937)
Variations for Orchestra opus 50. (1962)
Barococo, Suite for Orchestra opus 64. (1973)
Helsingborg SO, Andrew Manze.
I was quite impressed about the first volume in this complete series, so a logical step was to take volume 2 also. Larsson as a Swede is very much his own man. As a composer he shares some musical roots with Sibelius, which you can hear in the Symphony, and Nielsen in his later works. But those musical remnants are hazy and hard to define. Larsson has created a new idiom in his musical language which is very appealing to me. When you cross the road from the late romantic symphony to his more modern works it does put you off, but organically takes you by the hand, for he mixes the old with the new in such a way that it becomes perfectly understandable. And fascinating! The melodies come easily to him, and his expression is one of ease, but vigorous in its demeanor . The colouring and detail he evokes is mesmerizing to a point of exaltation, but in a pastoral form. This orchestra has access to a tonal range which runs the gamut from orchestral brilliance to a rich mellow sonority. No doubt because of the influence of Andrew Manze. They give him a community of strings gathering around in comforting support. He is so lucky in that. As a recording this represents perfection, and as a record of an extraordinary performance.
The sound is top notch. Recommended.
Friday, November 10, 2017
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