Vaughan Williams: Symphonies Nos. 6 & 8, Nocturne

Vaughan Williams: Symphonies Nos. 6 & 8, Nocturne

by Richard HickoxRichard Hickox

SACD(Super Audio CD - SACD Hybrid)

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Don't start up with all that "there've been no good Vaughan Williams recordings since Sir Adrian and Sir John died" stuff. Or course, Boult's and Barbirolli's recordings of Vaughan Williams' symphonies are authoritative since they gave so many of the works their premieres. But authoritative does not mean definitive, it does not preclude other possibilities, and it surely does not preclude later conductors from giving equally convincing interpretations. As Richard Hickox has demonstrated again and again in his series of recordings of Vaughan Williams' symphonies with the London Symphony Orchestra, his interpretations are just as convincing as Boult's and Barbirolli's. Sometimes, as with this pairing of the "Sixth" and the "Eighth," Hickox and the LSO are even more compelling than Boult or Barbirolli. Boult's 1949 premiere recording of the "Sixth" with the LSO has the same uncompromising ferocity as Hickox, but the playing of the LSO is at an even higher level now that it has had more than a quarter of a century to get used to it the "Sixth." And Barbirolli's 1956 premiere recording of the "Eighth" with the Hallé Orchestra has the same incandescent luminosity as Hickox and although the LSO cannot match the affection the Hallé had for Barbirolli, it plays with just as much passion, more power, and much more precision. And while the inclusion of the premiere recording of Vaughan Williams' "Nocturne for baritone and orchestra" setting Whitman's "Whispers of Heavenly Death" from 1908 does not add another great work to the standard repertoire, it does restore an exquisitely lovely and radiantly beautiful lesser work by the young Vaughan Williams to the repertoire. And you know that can't be bad. Chandos' sound is as get as recorded sound gets.

Product Details

Release Date: 09/23/2003
Label: Chandos
UPC: 0095115501627
catalogNumber: 5016
Rank: 11537


  1. Symphony No. 6 in E minor
  2. Nocturne (Whispers of Heavenly Death), for baritone & orchestra
  3. Symphony No. 8 in D minor

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