Having heard the Russian National Orchestra perform at Carnegie Hall last night, I know I can easily discount again yet another dismal review from Mr. Hurwitz. This young orchestra, founded by Mikhail Pletnev, is truly one of the world's greatest orchestras I thought they sounded better and played with more enthusiasm and precision than the Berlin Philharmonic under the baton of its new music director, Sir Simon Rattle, when the Berliners visited New York City's Carnegie Hall last November.). I have not heard Mariss Jansons's electrifying account of the Manfred Symphony, but Pletnev's account has earned a glowing three-star review in the Penguin Guide.
Both performances on this recording are replete with ample brilliance and warmth. The only problems are technical, which is why this fine CD is earning four stars. To my amazement, the recording sounds not well balanced, and at times, distant. I am truly surprised that Deutsche Grammophon would make such a serious error. Yet despite this major error, Pletnev's interpretations are still worth acquiring.