EDUARD TUBIN (1905-1982)
Symphony No 2 Legendary (1937) 30.57
Symphony No 5 (1946)
Estonian National SO/Arvo
recTallinn Jan/Oct 1998
ALBA ABCD 141
These two symphonies are divided by eight years and by Tubin's flight to
Sweden in 1944 when the Soviets invaded Estonia. No. 5 was written by the
newly-exiled Tubin in Stockholm, No. 2 in Toila in Estonia.
Scriabin and Mussorgsky are reasonable approximations of Tubin's way with
the Legendary. The writing tends to atmospheric pictorialism rather
than strong lyrical release with the tone pictures of his teacher Heino Eller
not far distant. The solo piano and solo violin are quite prominent. This
work is certain to please admirers of Ravel's Daphnis, Bax's Spring
Fire and of Janis Ivanovs' Atlantis Symphony. The finale is warlike
amid hammerhead stormclouds but Tubin surprises with a slow bardic caprice
for solo violin before the silvery censers of the violin section close the
work ppp as it began.
A dimly perceived voice in the finale of No.2, there is yet more of Shostakovich
in No. 5, especially in the rhythmic element (e.g. 6.20 first movement and
the aggression of the finale). This is agreeably spiked by a Sibelian tune
(Symphony no.3). After the foggy dawn of the andante, the allegro is forwardly
accented, tightly and buoyantly positive if not exactly optimistic. The violins
shimmer in an icy recollection of the Legendary at 7.20.
The notes are full though the English version is not very fluent - clear
This disc (the first of a complete cycle) has to contend with Neeme Järvi's
historic pioneering cycle (mostly 1980s) from BIS (differently coupled).
Volmer is on a par with Järvi (who also recorded No.6 on a very early
Melodiya LP - now THAT I would like to hear!) interpretatively speaking.
The recording is all you could ask. No need to hesitate. Further instalments
are impending and will be worth the short wait.
The second Tubin vol. (Symphony 3 & 6) will come from the factory late
Summer 2000. Vol 3 (Numbers 4&7) is recorded but release time is not
decided yet. The Tubin project team is the same for all CDs (ERSO/Volmer).
In case of difficulty ALBA will supply direct: +358 3 345 1387 or fax
+358 3 345 1384. firstname.lastname@example.org