Magazine article Gramophone

Wiren: Symphony No 3

Magazine article Gramophone

Wiren: Symphony No 3

Article excerpt


Symphony No 3, Op 20. Divertimento, Op 29.

Serenade, Op 11. Sinfonietta, Op 7 a

Iceland Symphony Orchestra / Rumon Gamba

Chandos (F) [SACD] CHSA5194 (70' * DDD/DSD)

Completed towards the end of the Second World War, Dag Wiren's Third Symphony acknowledges the starker 'militaristic' modalities of the time while remaining rooted in the more neoclassical sort of Sibelius; woodwind pair off perkily, often in thirds. Its undeniably eclectic quality may momentarily put you in mind of Vaughan Williams during lyrical passages or of Nielsen during climaxes some are quite dark--but there's certainly enough of a distinctive voice to quell the doubts. Better at hustle and bustle than profundity, Wiren's vaguely Gallic civility holds up until his inflated denouement, pastiche Sibelius in triumphalist mode. In the outer movements Rumon Gamba's interpretation dispenses with some of Thomas Dausgaard's impatient drive and the lovely slow movement is given more space to bloom on Chandos's ample sound stage.

This is a work Gamba has given in London as well as Reykjavik and there's no mistaking his affection for the idiom: his 70-minute anthology would seem intent on seducing the general collector. …

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