Sir Colin Davis's Great Dvorak 9th Symphony
John Kwok | New York, NY USA | 08/02/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This splendid LSO Live recording easily eclipses Sir Colin Davis's earlier account on Philips, also with the London Symphony Orchestra, if I'm not mistaken. This new release joins several excellent recordings from the likes of Abbado and Harnoncourt as among the finest versions of Dvorak's "New World" symphony. Davis gets a lush, lyrical performance from the London Symphony Orchestra, yielding an understated, refined interpretation of Dvorak's score. The opening movement is among the finest I have heard with splendid playing from the winds, strings and brass. The same can be said for the final movement, and the middle two are almost as fine too. The haunting theme played by the cor anglais in the Largo is among the most brooding versions I've come across. Without question, Davis shows he is still among our finest interpreters of Dvorak's symphonic musice. The sound quality is exemplary, using the latest in digital sound recording. But is it truly the definitive version of the Dvorak 9th symphony, as implied by the liner notes in the recording? There are still other, equally compelling versions, from the likes of Giulini and Masur, among others. But this is by the far the least inexpensive splendid recording of Dvorak's 9th that I've heard lately."