KURT ATTERBERG (1897-1974): Orchestral Works, Vol. 5 - Symphony No. 7, Op. 45 “Sinfonia romantica”, Symphony No. 9 for Mezzo-Soprano, Baritone, Chorus and Orchestra, Op. 54 “Sinfonia visionaria”.
Catalogue Number: 09S010
Reference: CHSA 5166
Format: SACD hybrid
Description: Under the influence of the rise of the Iron Curtain, the beginning of the cold war, the threat of nuclear catastrophe and the recent Korean War, Atterberg began his ninth symphony at the beginning of January 1955. The Ninth deals, quite simply, with the end of the Earth. Using a Swedish translation of the Old Norse apocalyptic poem Voluspå, which tells a tale similar in its basic aspects to the Ring, Atterberg composed what appears more like a cantata than a symphony. The music is still richly colorful and lushly orchestrated but there are unexpected touches (Atterberg introduces a twelve-tone row when the text speaks of Evil coming into the world) which add a hair-raising, chilly quality to this frightening tale. Listeners who grew up with nuclear war hanging over their heads can easily put themselves back in that time while listening to this and feel its effects better. After listening to the world hurtle to destruction for 40 minutes, the Seventh from 1942, expansive, expressive and imbued with folk-music, is balm for the soul. Swedish-English texts. Anna Larsson (mezzo), Olle Persson (baritone), Gothenburg Symphony Chorus and Orchestra; Neeme Järvi.