Brahms: Symphony No. 3
London Philharmonic Orchestra
Marin Alsop’s reading is certainly fine: dark of hue, lyrical and long drawn, though never, even for a moment, comatose. Rhythm is good, articulation keen, phrasing exquisite, the reading’s crepuscular colours glowingly realised by the LPO. The reading has a quality of melancholy, a wistfulness crossed with a sense of incipient tragedy, which is almost Elgarian (Elgar’s fascination with the piece is well attested).
Alsop’s Brahms cycle with the London Philharmonic has given her a chance to document her ideas about the standard symphonic repertoire that still counts heavily in the evaluation of any conductor… The Philharmonic’s polished efforts carry over into the Haydn Variations, sensitively molded by Alsop. The result is glowing music-making, rich in character and atmosphere.