Bruckner: Symphony No. 7

Bruckner: Symphony No. 7

Simon Rattle first recorded Bruckner’s Seventh Symphony in 1997, but shifts up a gear in this 2022 live performance with the London Symphony Orchestra. It’s a significantly quicker performance, flowingly lyrical rather than ponderous in the opening movement. The great slow movement is similarly fresh and purposeful, although the London Symphony unleashes deep stockpiles of sonority for the main climax, with eloquent brass playing in the coda. Even the athletic “Scherzo” third movement has a lighter tread than usual, and Rattle’s upbeat, bright-humored account of the “Finale” is more truly cathartic than in many rival versions. Those who favor wall-to-wall profundity in Bruckner will possibly find Rattle wanting. Others will warm to his optimistic take on Bruckner’s most popular symphony, and to the textural beauty of the London Symphony’s playing.

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