Elgar: Symphony No. 1; Symphony No. 2; Cockaigne Overture; In the South (Alassio)

Our rating 
3.0 out of 5 star rating 3.0

COMPOSERS: Elgar
LABELS: Decca
WORKS: Symphony No. 1; Symphony No. 2; Cockaigne Overture; In the South (Alassio)
PERFORMER: LPO/Georg Solti
CATALOGUE NO: 443 856-2 ADD (1972-80)
Solti’s speeds in the two Elgar symphonies are for the most part nearly as fast as those on the composer’s own recordings, which is to say they are much faster than most other modern interpreters. This is something of a mixed blessing: there is plenty of excitement, even danger in the outer movements, but too little space for the music to breathe. And, as with Elgar’s recordings, the playing is less than perfect, especially when rushed along. I enjoyed In the South, where a degree of brashness is not out of place; Cockaigne is less successful, and the Seventies sound is not particularly flattering. Stephen Maddock

Advertisement