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ClassicsOnline Home » SIBELIUS, J.: Sibelius Edition, Vol. 1 - Tone Poems
This set of Sibelius' tone poems has to be recognized as one of the very best ever released. It has everything: all the tone poems Sibelius ever wrote, given truly spectacular performances by the Lahti Symphony Orchestra under Osmo Vanska (for most of the tracks), as well as the earlier versions of several of them as well.
As for the merits of the performances themselves: the sense of pacing has never been bettered. Pohjola's Daughter in this box is given a chilling reading that easily tops Leonard Bernstein's still great interpretation, nor has Tapiola been so terrifying. There is very much clarity in everything--it never seems to be too much, however, and the lightness of the sound has to be heard to be believed; this is not the heaviness of Herbert von Karajan and the Berlin Philharmonic.
This Sibelius Edition by BIS records proves to be one of the great projects to kick off the 21st century. Those who don't already have the individual releases of the recordings in this box owe it to themselves to purchase the box as soon as possible. I cannot readily think of a better set of the music of Sibelius than this one.more....
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