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Vaughan Williams: Symphony No. 5; Toward the Unknown Region; Serenade to Music; The Wasps Overture

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Vaughan Williams: Symphony No. 5; Toward the Unknown Region; Serenade to Music; The Wasps Overture (2008)

by Duncan Robertson (tenor), Elsie Morison (soprano), Marjorie Thomas (contralto), Trevor Anthony (bass)

About this title: Back again, it's John Barbirolli's classic 1962 recording of Vaughan Williams' Fifth Symphony. This time, however, it's not alone as it was on LPs in the sixties and seventies or coupled with Barbirolli's equally ecstatic 1965 recording of Arnold Bax's Tintagel as it was on its initial CD release in the eighties and nineties, but rather joined by a goodly portion of the English modernist master's shorter orchestral works recorded by Malcolm Sargent in 1957.Since the mastering is exactly the same as the previous digital reissue, the sound and performance are exactly the same, too, meaning that the sound is glowing and the performance is rapturous. Barbirolli's love for the music is obvious, his understanding of the score is complete, and his ability to draw glorious playing from the Philharmonia is nonpareil. For him, the London strings are sweeter, the woodwinds warmer, the brass mellower, and their blend almost supernaturally radiant. With flowing tempos and luminous textures, Barbirolli creates an...

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