Bang, bang, bang go the opening bass notes Mahler’s Symphony No 6, an insistent thud that readies the nerves for turbulence forward. Turbulence is what we anticipate from this, the primary Mahler recording from conductor and his Russian orchestra MusicAeterna. On all their earlier discs – , Tchaikovsky, Stravinsky, – their interpretations have had a component shock, and but, just isn’t fairly the iconoclast he’s generally made out to be – it’s extra that he seems capable of shoulder the burden collected performing custom after which, decisively, shrug it f. What can be actually attention-grabbing is to listen to him and his orchestra sort out a giant work that doesn’t drag that weight historical past with it – to invigorate a bit that basically does want their attentions. For now, although, Currentzis is concentrating on acknowledged masterpieces, and when you can think about a Mahler 6 wherein the urgency and uncooked edge Roger Norrington rubs up towards the red-blooded glitz Leonard Bernstein, that is it.
Currentzis shapes the music in forensic element, luxuriating in an orchestra full wind soloists who by no means appear to want to breathe. From these crisp opening thuds onwards, this doesn’t look like a efficiency that’s conceived on any sort long-form scale, and but the catharsis on the finish, as defeat is snatched from the jaws victory, is actually there. The spacious and barely bathroomy recording acoustic makes for some distant, sweetly nostalgic horn solos. Currentzis places the sluggish motion third – following Mahler’s earliest ideas relatively than his later convictions – and opts for 2 hammer blows destiny within the finale relatively than three. Everything is very colored; the kaleidoscope turns to fer fleeting glimpses Wagner, Tchaikovsky, Elgar, even Mozart. It’s a consistently participating efficiency that appears to embody the entire musical world. The most idiosyncratic passages, although, are when Mahler brings on the cowbells – they one way or the other sound extra Himalayan than Alpine, and the celesta is so dominant as so as to add a touch sci-fi. Does it sound like quintessential Mahler? Not actually.
This week’s different picks
If quintessential Mahler is what you need from a recording, then additionally out this week is Daniel Harding’s disc with the Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra. Harding doesn’t have many surprises up his sleeve right here, however his orchestra play their socks f for him and the result’s solidly convincing.