Beethoven’s Symphony no. 5 is a work which puts a conductor to the test and many maestros and orchestras have demonstrated their competence with its interpretation in the past. Thankfully, Rajski does not attempt to outdo the crystalline coldness and severity which is currently fashionable and found in other recordings. Rather, he gives weight to the grim fate motif in the first movement by means of a swift tempo and gentle timbre. With chamber-music-like airiness and doting wonderfully on the interwoven parts, he enables the listener to get to the heart of the two middle movements and highlights subtleties which are hidden even from Beethoven specialists. In the final movement the orchestra finds the ideal medium between silky symphonic brilliance and analytic precision and confidently leads the sweeping C major final section to a magnificent close.
Now halfspeed mastered and the B-side is playing backwards!
2. Andante con moto