Moyzes: Symphonies Nos. 7 & 8 (CD)

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Slovak Radio Symphony Orchestra, Ladislav Slovák

Alexander Moyzes’ symphonic cycle is the best-known by a Slovak composer. His synthesis of Slovak influences and contemporary trends in European music informs every strand of his compositions. The Symphony No. 7, Op. 50 is his largest and most powerful orchestral statement, which he dedicated to the memory of his young daughter. Peasant scenes, folk dances and exceptional lyric beauty form the bedrock of a passionate and dramatic work. Written as a response to the Soviet invasion of Czechoslovakia in August 1968, Symphony No. 8, ‘21.08.1968’, Op. 64 is a brooding lament that shares affinities with Shostakovich’s symphonic writing.

This album is volume 3 in a series of reissues from the Marco Polo label. These releases remain as the only easily accessible reference, and with recordings and performances that still sound fresh and invigorating, we felt it was time for a revival. Of the original release, International Record Review wrote: “the Seventh Symphony… opens, in a beautiful albeggiante pastorale- quite the loveliest thing I’ve heard from Moyzes- which leads into a jolly, even rumbustious, folk dance. Ladislav Slovak, who died in 1999, does Moyzes as proud in these two releases as in the previous recordings in the cycle: reliable playing, good sound.”

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Symphony No. 7, Op. 50
1. I. Pastorale
2. II. Scherzo
3. III. Largo
4. IV. Finale: Allegro tempestoso

Symphony No. 8, Op. 64, "21.08.1968"
5. I. Tranquillo
6. II. Allegro molto
7. III. Lento un poco tenuto - Allegro ma non troppo