- Symphony No. 15 in G major, K. 124
- Symphony No. 16 in C major, K. 128
- Symphony No. 17 in G major, K. 129
- Symphony No. 18 in F major, K. 130
"Listeners prone to high blood pressure should consult their doctors first...." So says conductor Adam Fischer in the liner notes for Volume 5 of the Danish Radio Sinfonietta's cycle of the Mozart symphonies. An exaggeration? Perhaps. One of the cheesiest accolades ever given to someone's own work? Absolutely. Despite any risks to their cardiovascular systems, listeners are indeed treated to a lively and vivacious performance of these four early symphonies, written in 1772. The Danish Radio Sinfonietta, which plays on modern instruments, clearly favors brisk tempos. For the most part, this extra energy is very successful, especially in these earlier compositions that may lack some of the depth and profundity of the later symphonies. There are a few moments, however, when Fischer gets a little carried away, most notably in the Presto of K. 124, which is so aggressive and brusque that it's downright noisy. The rest of the album is more successful in finding an appropriate balance between dignity and excitement. The liner notes (apart from Fischer's own assessments of his own work) are of particular interest. Not only do they put the year 1772 in musical context, but they also go into enjoyable detail as to what was occurring in the rest of the world at the same time. If you think your heart can handle it, this album is certainly worth a look.