Reviews  |  

Sibelius album review – The Times

“Right from the start with the lonely clarinet’s solo in Symphony No 1, you feel the music’s vivid emotions and colouring, soon complemented by singing strings and a body of brass powerful enough to be blasting out Wagner or Bruckner. By the end of this proudly nationalistic symphony, as with Makela’s readings of the Second, the more modernist Fourth, and the one-movement triumph of the Seventh, I sat back pretty much exhausted with joy. Nor did I twiddle my thumbs elsewhere.”

“… Although the Fourth is far from comfortable listening, this performance is devastatingly successful, holding us in the work’s grip through all its doleful twists and turns. Dark forest growlings also enthral in the late tone poem Tapiola, offered as a welcome extra alongside three necessarily enigmatic fragments from the abandoned Eighth Symphony. Make no mistake: Makela is on his way.”

The Times, Geoff Brown, 24 March 2022 ****