Jonathan Nott continues his rather excellent Mahler cycle with this issue of the Seventh which is perhaps one of the most difficult of the symphonies. It is certainly much more advanced and far removed from such blockbusters as the Fifth and the Second but Nott is definitely a dab hand at creating the right kind of atmosphere throughout especially in the opening First Movement which may seem to be a little long winded if not well handled. Nott reminds one of Klemperer who was similarly expansive in this music and whose 1969 New Philharmonia recording is vastly underrated.
Nott also brings colour and variety to the "Nachtmusik" pieces which are important parts of the structure of the symphony which develops accordingly without much room for manoeuvre. His BSO players have improved greatly from their recent outings in years gone by and the sound of the strings is truly one to die for. The Finale also moves ahead with great confidence and alacrity on all counts, certainly one of the best that we have on record for this particular work. As usual with Tudor, the notes are detailed and full of intriguing observations. Hugely recommended.
Copyright © 2012 by Gerald Fenech.