Messiaen: Turangalila Symphonie
LET'S jump the gun on this one: the official release date is July 30, but this is an important event. I have possessed almost all recordings of Messiaen's unique, 10-movement orchestral monster, the Turangalila Symphonie. All are brilliant, but not one of them approaches the sheer exhilaration, ebullience and exuberance of Hyperion's new recording of the piece, featuring the pianistic genius of Steven Osborne endlessly energising the music; the unique interpretative skill of ondes martenot player Cynthia Millar (simply the best in the world), who makes the wavy, electronic gizmo speak with clarity and expression; and the coherently structured, articulate playing of the Bergen Philharmonic under principal guest conductor Juanjo Mena. This is a glorious performance of a work that's rare in the concert hall, but a masterpiece packed with atmosphere, reverence, irreverence and a sense of fun in movements 5 and 10 that I have never heard before. Messiaen? Fun? Listen and believe. A clear record of the year, as early as July.