Notes and Editorial Reviews
Symphonies: No. 100,
Symphonic Metamorphoses on Themes by Carl Maria von Weber
Eugen Jochum, cond; London PO; London SO
BBC LEGENDS 4176 (71:58) Live: London 1/30/1973; 6/23/1977
Eugen Jochum recorded Haydn?s 12 ?London?
Symphonies with the London Philharmonic for Deutsche Grammophon in the 1970s. That set has been widely admired for its crisp playing and no-nonsense interpretations. Unfortunately, these live performances from the same era are not so fine, sounding at best like first rehearsals. String-playing is sloppy throughout, and woodwinds are harsh. Jochum adopts some unusually fast tempos: the opening Allegro of the ?Military? Symphony is taken at a vivace pace, bordering on presto; the players struggle to keep up. A murky recording smothers the bass drum in the Allegretto?s military music. The Presto finale, played up to speed, is too much for the players. Judging from the rapturous applause, the audience doesn?t seem to mind. The ?Clock? goes a bit better, although the audience is less enthusiastic this time. All repeats are played except in
The Hindemith?different orchestra, different time, same venue?is given an aggressive, vigorous performance, in keeping with its score. The LSO is on its toes, ripping through the opening Allegro even faster than Bernstein?s New York Philharmonic (SONY SMK 47566, one of the great CDs of all time). All the complex syncopations of this virtuoso orchestra music are perfectly realized. The Andantino is a bit rushed; such a busy work needs a moment of relaxation. The final March is just right, its initial caution giving way to explosions of joy outdone only by Bernstein. This is a stunning performance; only the odd acoustics of Royal Festival Hall, strangely dead and yet muddy at the same time, keep it from equaling the Sony.
FANFARE: James H. North
Works on This Recording
Be the first to review this title