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Berlioz: Symphonie Fantastique; Rameau: Suite de Hippolyte et Aricie / Swedish Radio SO, Daniel Harding

Notes & Reviews:

A world might seem to divide the unbridled Romanticism of Berlioz from the highly controlled Late Baroque art of Rameau. However, separated by less than a century, the same passion links these two works that prove more similar than their stylistic divergence might suggest. There is the same audacity in orchestration, combined with an innate sense of drama that springs repeated rhythmic and harmonic surprises. The Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra shows its versatility under Daniel Harding, who posses a matchless gift for establishing a dialogue between these two pioneering geniuses.

The Guardian, 1st September 2016
Harding's own Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra are stylish in both. There's some brazen playing to enjoy - the low brass in March to the Scaffold sound like a foghorn - but the impression of a lack of refinement is deceptive: the balance and pace are always tautly in check.

The Scotsman, 3rd September 2016
Daniel Harding's gilt-edged Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra... [find] exceptional detail and expressiveness in these searing readings of Berlioz's Symphonie Fantastique and Rameau's Hippolyte et Aricie suite. The Rameau is crisp and precise with venomous fire in its belly... the Berlioz is ripe, explosive and furiously exciting.

CD Review, 27th August 2016
I like the combination; the way it emphasises Rameau's sense of colour and dramatic daring ... an audacious coupling, I enjoyed it a lot, not just the idea but also the execution.

The Times, 16th September 2016
The performance is a cracker. The Swedes play with a passion, swagger and relish for the grotesque that makes a nonsense of national stereotypes, and Harding's attention to detail is exemplary without impeding the music's drama.



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