Mahler Symphony No 5
Barbirolli’s oft-acclaimed Fifth has its glories: the tragic eruptions of the first movement are put across with greater force than in today’s immaculately controlled readings, and the Adagietto is heartfelt. The sound is good too. Nevertheless, some of Barbirolli’s tempos will strike younger listeners as ponderous, the playing at times oddly tentative. Worse, the Scherzo has again lost the horn obbligato from 12'14'' (bars 541-4) – successfully stitched into EMI’s previous digital remastering (11/88), overlooked here.'