Bax: Symphony No. 5; The Tale the Pine-Trees Knew
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Top Customer Reviews
This recording with the same director and orchestra makes a great continuation on the Bax series on Naxos, that I am looking forward to get complete.
Symphony 5 is more mature, and being dedicated to Sibelius, with similarities to this composer. I also heard Wagner in a symphonic way.
As a plus The tale the Pine-Trees knew is a wonderful symphonic poem.
Recording is excellent and, I am never tired of stress it, at Naxos prices a must.
The work is somewhat darker and more pugnacious than Bax's previous symphonies, and the affinities to Sibelius even more audible (it was dedicated to Sibelius) - for instance, the opening of the first movement comes straight out of the more brooding sections of the second movement of Sibelius's fifth. The outer movements are generally tumultuous and thundering displays of gritty, tempestuous, chromatic power - harmonically they are (the first movement at least is) more abrasive than most of Bax's work, although they never leave the late-romantic world of lush atmospheres and glittering colors. All of it receives taut, powerful readings from Lloyd-Jones and the Scottish players. The central movement is, however, a grand romantic statement based on stirring thematic material, and the performances are utterly convincing, shimmering and glistening and opulent.
The coupling, The Tale the Pine-Trees Knew, is also one of Bax's most Sibelian utterances, darkly dramatic and atmospheric, and again the performances are utterly winning; vividly colorful, spirited and rhythmically vibrant. The sound quality is very good as well, ensuring an unqualified recommendation for this fabulous release.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This disc, very well recorded in 1996, is a particular success in both works. The fifth symphony is generally regarded as one of the most concise symphonies by Bax whose longer... Read morePublished on September 16, 2013 by I. Giles
The Bax symphonic cycle by David Lloyd-Jones and the Royal Scottish National Orchestra is one of the finest efforts from Naxos, which has a lot to be proud of, and the Symphony No. Read morePublished on August 10, 2013 by J. R. Trtek
Bax is either first rate or third rate and beyond and this offering from Naxos encompasses both categories. Read morePublished on August 18, 2012 by Bernard Michael O'Hanlon