Bax: Symphony No. 4, etc.

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Bax: Symphony No. 4, etc.



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64 minutes


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Symphony No. 4

Overture to a Picaresque Comedy




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Arnold Bax: Overture to a Picaresque Comedy

Overture to a Picaresque Comedy

Arnold Bax: Nympholept


Arnold Bax: Symphony No. 4

I. Allegro moderato

II. Lento moderato

III. Allegro

Gramophone Classical Music Guide


“David Lloyd-Jones and the RSNO continue their stimulating championship of Bax with this extremely persuasive account of the Fourth Symphony. It's at once the most exuberantly inventive and most colourful of the cycle (the instrumentation includes six horns and organ).
Lloyd-Jones steers a tauter, more athletic course through the eventful first movement than his Gramophone Award-winning rival (Bryden Thomson on Chandos), yet there's no want of playful affection, and the orchestral playing satisfyingly combines polish and eagerness.
In the gorgeous central Lento moderato Lloyd-Jones perceptively evokes a bracing, northerly chill wafting across Bax's dappled seascape. The unashamedly affirmative finale is a great success, its festive pomp and twinkling sense of fun conveyed with personable panache and swagger. If the symphony's jubilant closing pages reverberate in Thomson's version with just that crucial bit of extra weight and splendour in Belfast's Ulster Hall, Tim Handley's expert sound and balance do ample justice to Bax's distinctive scoring and his writing for low woodwind in particular.The Overture to a PicaresqueComedy makes an apt and boisterous curtain-raiser, Lloyd-Jones's rip-roaring rendering knocking Thomson's limp LPO version into a cocked hat. Nympholept could hardly form a greater contrast: a ravishing naturepoem in Bax's most enchanted Celtic vein.
Again, this sensitive account is far preferable to Thomson's curiously laboured conception.
Altogether a superb release.”

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