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Parry’s fourth symphony is heard here in its 1889 five-movement version, in which a short Intermezzo that hints of Elgarian nobilmente is inserted between the first and second movements. Parry’s links to Brahms are evident in the warm textural generosity. The performance is magnificent, BBCNOW’s strings full- bodied in the Lento espressivo. This is an impeccably directed performance by Gamba, caught in demonstration sound – at times the orchestra is positively aglow.

The ‘short ballet’ Proserpine, inspired by Shelley, is scored with a light touch. Gamba’s performance brings a sense of joy to the score. Easy on the ear, the Suite moderne is given a finely crafted reading, though its first movement has been omitted. The whole disc is a valuable addition; all pieces are premiere recordings.

COLIN CLARKE Read the full review on Agora Classica


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