LSO Tauno Hannikainen (Sibelius) Walter Goehr
EVEREST EVC 9035 [69.39]
Two classic romantic violin concertos in best-seller harness.
The Sibelius is freshly accented and moulded and I suppose the only danger
is that it might seem mannered when compared with the norm of the last decade
or so. Personally I find Spivakovsky's mercurial and brooding approach well
worth any momentary disorientation. The tone is set by the magical ppp
with which the work starts. I will happily count this in the unruly company
of Oistrakh/Rozhdestvensky (BMG-Melodiya) and Ida Haendel/Berglund (EMI)
The Tchaikovsky is also done with all required enchantment by Rozhdestvensky
and Oistrakh on Melodiya. The Spivakovsky is as good as the Sibelius being
of very similar provenance. Goehr does not display the panache and imagination
of Hannikainen (who would have made an excellent conductor for the Tchaikovsky
if only he had been available). Spivakovsky is explosively virtuosic but
here his point-making does not cast the same spell as in the Sibelius. If
you are looking for a really personal (not to say eccentric) version then
hunt out the Beulah recording of Alfredo Campoli (cuts and corrupt text and
The sound quality is realistic and certainly much better than the really
quite respectable Boult Sibelius tone poems or the Abravanel symphonies.
The recordings were made in Walthamstow Assembly Hall, London in 1959/60.
The recordings were set down on Everest's 35mm magnetic film onto three tracks
and it is typical of this process that it now yields such solidity.
Everest throw in the emotionally reserved swoon and elegance of the Tchaikovsky
Mélodie as arranged by Glazunov.
A valuable and flavour-some pair of performances eschewing anyone's orthodoxy.
Preferred for the Sibelius which no Sibelian should be without.