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This release marks the start of a Brahms cycle from this fine orchestra and its relatively recent principal conductor, and these are vibrant, gutsy readings of the two ‘pre-symphonies’. The resonant recording emphasises that very gutsiness, sometimes at the expense of subtlety and freshness, but there is no denying the power of these readings. In fact that momentum suits the less well-known second serenade, which comes across as the more memorable.

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