Mahler: Symphony No 1; Lieder Eines Fahrenden Gesellen, Maltman/ Philharmonia/ Zander
Andrew Clements, The Guardian, January 27, 2006
Buy Mahler: Symphony No 1; Lieder Eines Fahrenden Gesellen now
Benjamin Zander is now well past halfway in his Mahler cycle with the Philharmonia, and those who have admired the releases so far will not need any encouragement to get hold of this account of the First Symphony.
Zander, British-born but an American resident for the past 40 years, has a steadily growing fanbase on both sides of the Atlantic and this impressive account, superbly played and recorded, shows exactly why. His approach is direct and wonderfully unfussy, conveying a sense of the musical architecture that never leaves a shred of doubt about where the performance is going. There is an equally intelligent account of the Lieder Eines Fahrenden Gesellen with baritone Christopher Maltman as a generous extra.
The performances come with a second disc on which Zander talks about both works, with the same combination of loving enthusiasm and penetrating insight that characterises his conducting.