Holst/Walton

Our rating 
3.0 out of 5 star rating 3.0

COMPOSERS: Holst/Walton
LABELS: Sony
WORKS: The Planets; Façade
PERFORMER: Vera Zorina (reciter); New YorK PO/Leonard Bernstein, Philadelphia Orchestra/Eugene Ormandy
CATALOGUE NO: SBK 62400 ADD 1971
These reissues are clearly of historical interest, but it is hard to recommend them more warmly. Bernstein’s Planets are characterised by an oddly artificial acoustic, clear but lacking spacious resonance, and this idiosyncratic conductor doesn’t always measure up to Holst’s vision: ‘Saturn’ and ‘Jupiter’ impress, but his clipped way with ‘Mars’ sounds petulant. Façade fares better and is played in lively style under Ormandy, but Zorina’s declamation is a little unnatural. Anthony Payne

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