The ominous depth of the lower strings at the Symphony’s beginning promises much, and for the most part is fulfilled; indeed the opening Moderato – treated as Adagio by Tugan Sokhiev – is wholly gripping: darkly announced with subtle dynamics and achingly expressed as well as with contrasted characterisation, charted inexorably to a searing climax, unerringly judged, and with some magnificent playing across a gamut of detailed conductor-requirements (Ukraine-related, what a shame Sokhiev has recently stepped down from Toulouse, if only then to be contacted by the musicians requesting that he should rescind his resignation … we shall see).

This live-recorded Shostakovich Ten (September 8-10 last year, Halle aux grains) enjoys excellent sound – whether penetrating trebles (piccolo, high horns and trumpets) or unrestricted strength (heavy brass, and more than the regular eight basses, I reckon), strings blossoming, impactful percussion, airy woodwind solos – they all come together in a propulsive, incisive and vehement Scherzo, maybe a portrait of Stalin: irascible – and a non-lingered third movement, Sokhiev keeping it on the move, persuasively, with messaging woodwind and horn solos, and with a chilling introduction of the loneliness that then emerges, a deserted landscape, with fibrous pizzicatos and warning gong-strokes; Sokhiev’s flexibility leads to a quicker-than-usual flare-up. With the Finale, the Andante introduction broods (eloquent oboe and, recognisably French in timbre, bassoon solos), then the Allegro sprints, set off by a perky clarinet if only to hit a wall, subside and build again to an exhilarating conclusion … but – here’s the caveat I indicated – the closing timpani salvo is all but lost, the instruments suddenly recessed and muddy. So disappointing, especially at the very end of an absorbing, long listen (fifty-five minutes) and in the context of a very impressive performance. Recommended nonetheless. Warner Classics 0190296377716 is released on May 20.

Tugan Sokhiev, who has “never supported and will always be against any conflicts in any shape and form”, resigns as music director of the Bolshoi Theatre and the Orchestre national du Capitole de Toulouse.