Were it not for the missing repeat in the first movement, this would be one of the finest sixths out there. The Atlanta Symphony has the perfect sound for a piece of this kind. The sheer size of the orchestra demands crystal clarity, and you don't get much clearer than the ASO under Levi's baton. I agree that the fast march tempo in the first movement works well here. This symphony is kind of a transition from light to dark, from life to death (the opposite of the fifth and seventh symphonies) and the fast march tempo gives the beginning of the symphony the life it requires. There is some fine playing and soulful reading taking place here; Levi and his fellow musicians fully understand what is needed to make each phrase effective. The second movement feels much as the first only more serious and weighty. Again it is well-played and every detail is made clear. The third movement brings with it sublime beauty (which Levi and the ASO bring out with true passion) but also a sense of farewell. One does not want to leave this place of comfort, but the wash of moving harmonies and lyrical melodies carries us away into the battle that is the fourth movement. Atlanta shows off its vituosity in this struggle between the hero and fate. Every detail is rendered precisely and brilliantly. Telarc has captured the hammer blows remarkably. The final blow of fate at the end is terrifying beyond words. I still give this CD four stars, however. Upon reaching the end I realized that the entire symphony felt off balance with itself, simply because the repeat in the first movement was omitted. A small but important criticism is that the liner notes could have been more comprehensive. Overall, a remarkable job done by all involved, but the first movement repeat is needed.