Analogue Productions (Decca)
Mastered by Willem Makkee
Holst - The Planets/ LAP /Mehta
Earth was not created in a day. And the same applies to Gustav Holst's interplanetary symphony which took him about three years to write. The composer employs a massive orchestra and rich orchestral coloring to portray each planet in his musical psychogram. Mars, the Bringer of War, rages with mechanical brutality, while Venus brings peace and an acceptance of life. Mercury, the Winged Messenger, darts here and there with quicksilver speed, while powerful and sovereign Jupiter brings jollity and reassurance. Saturn plods by with heavy tread, while Uranus with its contrasting changes in tempo remains enigmatic and extrovert. And because Pluto, the most distant planet had not yet been discovered, it is Neptune, the great unknown, which is lost in time and space in an endless ostinato of female voices. Zubin Mehta and the Los Angeles Philharmonic present this astronomical journey with precision and exhilaration, leaving neither time nor space for astrological speculation. As always, the excellent Decca recording quality guarantees an unimpeded view of this musical galaxy.
Recording: Royce Hall, Los Angeles, April 1971 (tracks 1-7), December 1977 (tracks 8-13)
Producers: John Mordler (tracks 1-7), Ray Minshull (tracks 8-13)
Balance engineers: James Lock and Colin Moorfoot (tracks 1-7), Simon Eadon and James Lock (tracks 8-13)