Naxos' ongoing series of Grieg orchestral music has been offering performances basically as fine as any in the catalog. These performances of the two canonical Peer Gynt Suites are gorgeous, perfectly paced, and thrillingly recorded. I particularly enjoyed Engeset's ability to keep the melody clearly audible at the big climax of In the Hall of the Mountain King, without any loss of frenzy. Peer Gynt's Homecoming benefits from the recording's wide dynamic range, while the gentler numbers such as Ase's Death and Solveig's Song are as heartfelt as anyone could ask.
The remainder of the program consists of Grieg's songs with orchestra, including the vocal versions of Solveig's two numbers from Peer Gynt. Soprano Inger Dam-JensenRead more sings beautifully, with a warm tone and excellent diction. This is repertoire that she handles effortlessly. Baritone Palle Knudson has a touch of unsteadiness to his voice that sometimes becomes distracting, particularly as he has the longest vocal number here (The Mountain Thrall). Still, there's no questioning his command of the language or his ability to inflect a phrase, and with such fine accompaniments this program overall earns a firm recommendation.
Orchestral/Vocal Nicely BalancedNovember 21, 2013By bess holloway (Boulder, CO)See All My Reviews"This recording is beautifully produced and offers two listening experiences in near equal proportion. It's an excellent value."Report Abuse
Excellent recording for a very affordable priceMay 29, 2012By F. Stevens (São Paulo, São Paulo)See All My Reviews"I enjoyed very much this NAXOS record,which I purchased because when I was a teenager(in the early fifties) I used to listen to a recording of the Peer Gynt Suites in a 78rpm record that beloged to my grandfather;it was an ejoyable experience to have such a good recording in CD. Note: Congratulations to ARKIV MUSIC for your very fast delivery:I ordered the CD on april 29th/12 and received it on may 15th/12 !