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CD Review

Robert Schumann

The Four Symphonies

  • Symphony #1 in B Flat Major "Spring", Op. 38
  • Symphony #2 in C Major, Op. 61
  • Symphony #3 in E Flat Major "Rhenish", Op. 97
  • Symphony #4 in D minor, Op. 120
Orchestre de la Suisse Romande/Armin Jordan
Warner Apex 2564-68642-3 132m DDD
Find it at AmazonFind it at Amazon UKFind it at Amazon GermanyFind it at Amazon CanadaFind it at Amazon FranceFind it at Amazon Japan
Reissue of Erato 45496-2:
Amazon - UK - Germany - Canada - France - Japan

This Swiss orchestra has a knack for performing the classics with the least fuss but most effective way possible undoubtedly due to their long association with the great Ernest Ansermet. Armin Jordan is a similarly undemonstrative conductor and his readings of the Schumann symphonies are classically inspired with some excellent brass playing especially in the opening of the First Symphony.

My selected comparison in these works is always Sawallish with the Dresden orchestra and Jordan holds his head up high especially in the enigmatic Second Symphony which is always extremely difficult to bring off.

The Third also comes across quite beautifully with the middle movements very sensuous and dreamy whilst the Fourth is excellently taut and brilliantly held together. The only qualm with these Apex issues is the lack of notes but otherwise the recordings are top-quality Erato digital and the music does some fine talking anyway.

Copyright © 2010, Gerald Fenech