Masterworks both, and in performances that are detail-conscious, full of character, superbly played and audiophile-quality recorded. In Music for Strings, Percussion and Celesta, Susanna Mälkki ensures clarity across the four movements, without denuding the mystery of the first and third – the former growing indivisibly to a fervent climax – and, in the fast second and fourth, the ensemble is precise, the tempos spot-on to allow a fine mix of activity and poise (note the quiet, and rhythmically vital, timpani from 4:25 in ii, and the folksy pointing in iv from 1:37), all part of a reading that is musically punctilious and which also releases many emotions, not least at the very end, which can be a glib throwaway, whereas Mälkki ensures something impassioned. It’s a similar story in Concerto for Orchestra – from Bluebeard-like shadows to blazing affirmation – the five movements exuding exemplary study and preparation (Helsinki and Mälkki made for each other) for a perfectly judged account of acute musical observation and what lies behind the notes: much. Great listening on BIS-2378 [SACD].
Susanna Mälkki & Helsinki Philharmonic record Bartók – MSPC & Concerto for Orchestra – for BIS.
Apr 5, 2022 | Outstanding [category w.e.f. January 2021], Recording Reviews | 0 comments