Dvorák: The Symphonies

cover of Dvorák: The Symphoniesasin: B0000041WV
binding: Audio CD
list price: $47.98 USD
amazon price: $28.97 USD

For decades, there were only three complete collections of Dvorák’s symphonies: this one; Rowicki’s with the same orchestra; and Kubelik’s with the Berlin Philharmonic. Kertész offers the most rustic, gutsy interpretations of all. Famous for his dislike of rehearsals, he allows the London Symphony to make a much rougher sound than his colleagues tolerate, and though not the last word in polish, the results have a spontaneous charm that’s pretty hard to resist. More to the point, Dvorák’s early symphonies (Nos. 1 to 5) remain sadly neglected, and each one of them is full of gorgeous tunes cloaked in mellifluous orchestration. At budget price, this set now costs less than it did on LP in the 1960s. How can you do better than that? —David Hurwitz