A. Honegger, Symphonies 2 and 3 (inter alia), Stuttgart Radio Symphony Orchestra, S. Denève
(released on October 9, 2015)
SWR Klassik CD93.343 | 70'19"
Honegger's music is heard with shameful infrequency in these parts. This single disc, in Denève's capable hands, offers a summary of why this is unfortunate. The third symphony, known as "Symphonie Liturgique," is a smoldering commemoration of the horrors of World War II. The slow movement ("De profundis clamavi") is especially beautiful, representing a more tonal strand of 20th-century music that now seems more relevant than ever. The second symphony, for intensely scored string orchestra, grows in its anguished statement until a trumpet rises heroically out of the strife, played here by Thomas Hannes. As lagniappe, Denève offers two more familiar single movements: the agitated Rugby (Mouvement Symphonique No. 2), with the Stuttgart RSO's blazing brass, and the famous Pacific 231.