- Symphony No. 1 in E flat major
- Symphony No. 7 in A flat major
For many aficionados of the English symphony, the seven symphonies of Arnold Bax are the great works of the interwar period. With their heroically striving themes and ardently lyrical melodies, their extravagant orchestral colors and chromatic harmonic language, Bax's symphonies form the obvious aesthetic link between the symphonies of Elgar and Walton. And for those listeners who love the symphonies of those composers, this 1992 disc joining Bax's "Symphony No. 1" from 1922 and his "Symphony No. 2" from 1939 is an ideal introduction. By coupling a 1971 recording of the "First" conducted by Myer Fredman and a 1975 recording of the "Seventh" conducted by Raymond Leppard, those new to Bax can hear the wildly passionate "First" and the almost serene "Seventh" in deeply dedicated interpretations. Both Fredman and Leppard ably articulate Bax's organically episodic forms and clearly express the emotional cogency that binds them together. With the more than professional playing of the London Philharmonic and the amazingly realistic sound of Lyrita's stereo recording, this disc will surely win Bax more admirers among aficionados of the English symphony.