Nielsen: Symphonies 1 & 4
05 November 2014
The New York Times
Anthony TommasiniSometimes a musician just “gets” a composer’s music
, for example, the conductor Alan Gilbert and the Danish composer Carl Nielsen (1865-1931). When Mr. Gilbert began the Nielsen Project at the New York Philharmonic in 2011, a multiyear venture to perform and record the composer’s six symphonies and three concertos, it was immediately clear that he had a special affinity for Nielsen’s visionary music. The symphonies combine seemingly disparate qualities of late Romantic fervor
, rustic colors, folksy elements, advanced chromatic harmonic writing, mystical strangeness and spurts of wildness, all conveyed in Mr. Gilbert’s vivid readings. Yet he manages to make these score seem structured and inevitable. This exciting new recording pairs the First Symphony with the Fourth, “The Inextinguishable,” recorded live at Avery Fisher Hall last March.