54. Rico Saccani, Budapest Philharmonic Orchestra, 2003

Holst - The Planets (Saccani, Budapest Philharmonic Orchestra, 2005)

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Howdy, Rico. Glad to make your acquaintance. Let’s have a listen to these Planets, shall we? We shall.

Wow, “Mars” is fast and alert. This is bunny-running-away-from-a-hunter alert. 2:55-3:29: Very nice low strings. (They growl.) When everything fires up and the march gets going at 3:53, the orchestra makes a great racket. This is a wonderfully noisy “Mars”. And I love those extra-loud organ notes at 5:32, 5:45, and 5:50. I think I’m going to enjoy the rest of Ricky’s Planets.

This is a fabulous “Venus” – except for the noticeably sharp violin note at 2:36, and occasionally dodgy intonation from the strings in general.

“Mercury” is good.

“Jupiter” is mighty good (I’ll pretend I didn’t hear that badly out-of-tune violin at 5:39).

This isn’t the most polished Planets out there. There are slight lapses of intonation and ensemble work scattered amongst the movements, but the whole thing has a sense of “We may not be a great orchestra, but we’re super enthusiastic about this music and putting our hearts into it,” which I like a lot. This is the Have A Go Planets.

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