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A superb new recording of Britten's Cello Symphony coupled with an intelligent version of the Elgar

Truls Mork's earlier BIS account of the Britten Cello Symphony with Neeme Jarvi and the Bergen PO was impressive enough, but his eloquent new performance surpasses it in every way. The sensitive Norwegian cellist now brings to Britten's troubled masterpiece a greater authority as well as a far more intrepid range of expression than previously, distilling a compassion and humanity to rival even Rostropovich, the work's dedicatee (both of whose versions remain essential documents). With Sir Simon Rattle and the CBSO at their meticulous, supportive best, it's a real team effort, Britten's abundant thematic and textural cross-fertilizations realized with consummate understanding and lucidity. Indeed, it's precisely that unity of vision that makes me strongly prefer this newcomer to the otherwise admirable Hugh/Yuasa Naxos version, not to mention the extra realism and transparency of Mike Hatch's beautifully balanced sound-picture (Birmingham's Symphony Hall was the venue).
The Elgar, too, brings plenty to admire. Once again, Mork consistently beguiles the ear with his noble, golden tone-production and consummate technical address. Moreover, Rattle and his band offer outstandingly alert support.

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  • Seller location: Lower Hutt City, Wellington, NZ

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