Rachmahinov: Symphony No. 3; Vocalise

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COMPOSERS: Rachmahinov
WORKS: Symphony No. 3; Vocalise
PERFORMER: National PO/Leopold Stokowski
CATALOGUE NO: CDM 5 66759 2 ADD Reissue (1975)
A beefy, hothouse Vocalise is hardly going to lull the listener into enjoying this shambles of a Third Symphony. One of the last recordings of Stokowski’s long life, made in the Seventies with London’s fitfully brilliant conglomerate-orchestra, it should never have been issued. All Stokowski’s usual liberties with tempi and dynamics are here — he seems to leave the orchestration alone — but none of his technical wizardry. The finale’s last four bars come as a great surprise – but only because they bring with them the orchestral togetherness in short supply throughout. David Nice