As the third of BIS’s Dvořák releases from the Malaysian PO and Claus Peter Flor this will be one for collectors of the series, and I can guarantee it doesn’t disappoint on any level. I’m coming to these for the first time with this ‘New World’ symphony and am tempted to acquire the other discs retrospectively, so that’s an instant recommendation to start with. I love the orchestra’s clean sound and rich resonance, the strings are silky smooth, winds musical and tastefully stylish in terms of vibrato, the brass superbly tuned and powerful where power is demanded.
So this is the 37 billionth recording of the “New World” Symphony, but excellence is its own justification, and this recording is excellent. Claus Peter Flor attacks with music with passion and spontaneity. He eases into the first movement’s second subject with a flexibility of pulse that captures the change of mood perfectly without bringing the music to a standstill. It has seldom been better done. The celebrated Largo is beautifully songful, with a fine English horn soloist; the scherzo is peppy and exciting, while the finale is positively scorching in its urgency and passion. The big climax before the coda is surely one of the best on disc.