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Merlin Patterson
Fanfare, November 2013

RACHMANINOFF Symphony No. 3. Symphonic Dances, op. 45 • Slatkin / Detroit SO • NAXOS 8.573051

DVOŘÁK Symphony No. 8, op. 88. The Golden Spinning Wheel, op. 109. Scherzo Capriccioso, op. 66 • Flor / Malaysian PO • BIS 1976 (SACD)

ELGAR Enigma Variations. VAUGHAN WILLIAMS The Wasps: Suite. Fantasia on Greensleeves • Stern / Kansas City SO • REFERENCE 129

Leonard Slatkin and his marvelous Detroit Symphony really hit a home run with their splendid Naxos release of Rachmaninoff’s Third Symphony and Symphonic Dances. The same could be said for the Claus Peter Flor/Malaysian Philharmonic Dvořák program on BIS 1976, boasting a stunning Symphony No. 8, and Michael Stern’s Elgar and Vaughan Williams disc with the Kansas City Symphony on Reference RR-129. The performances on these three discs can take their rightful place in the upper echelon with the very best recordings these works have ever received. © 2013 Fanfare

Merlin Patterson
Fanfare, March 2013

I have always found Claus Peter Flor to be a very interesting, insightful, and exciting conductor, and he does not disappoint here. This is a very attractive and generous program of some of Dvořák’s greatest music. This is a great interpretation, one to stand alongside the standard-setting recorded performances of Kertész, Szell, Dohnányi, Neumann, and Mackerras.

And as good as the symphony is, The Golden Spinning Wheel is even better. Once again, Flor displays his knack for fusing together the seemingling unrelated sections of a work into a seamless, unified symphonic statement. This is the finest recorded performance of this great work I know. The disc is topped off with an exuberant, exhilarating performance of the wonderful Scherzo Capriccioso. Through it all, Flor’s own Malaysian Philharmonic plays magnificently, imbuing the music with both beauty of tone and rhythmic vitality. Flor manages to elicit a marvelously idiomatic sound from his ensemble that is reminiscent of the best Czech orchestras. If you love this music—and if you don’t, shame on you—you will not want to miss this disc. © 2013 Fanfare Read complete review

David Hurwitz, September 2012

Claus Peter Flor recorded this symphony for RCA, and rather well, but this remake is finer still. The Eighth benefits from as fresh and lively an interpretation as a conductor knows how to give it, and Flor for the most part obliges.

Flor’s take on The Golden Spinning Wheel is just fabulous…Flor invests the music with so much color and conviction at every point that boredom never sets in. Indeed, the performance is more satisfying than that of the symphony, which is saying a lot.

Throughout the disc the playing of the Malaysian Philharnonic leaves little to be desired…For the tone poem alone…this disc is a keeper. © 2012 Read complete review

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