Brahms: Song of Destiny – Works for choir and orchestra

Reviewed on Mon 21 May, 2018

Jaime Martín leads eloquent, dynamic and dramatically contrasted accounts, the Eric Ericson Choir confirming its famed reputation and the Gävle SO just as impressive.

Being purely personal, if I ever had to choose one work from Brahms’s canon, it would be A German Requiem. That would leave me without Song of Destiny and, even more calamitously, Nänie. Both have the immediate consequence of transporting the listener to wonderful realms and are musically sublime, sometimes unbearably so on the emotions – but it’s good to experience such depths. Jaime Martín leads eloquent, dynamic and dramatically contrasted accounts, the Eric Ericson Choir confirming its famed reputation and the Gävle SO just as impressive; there’s a real connection between conductor and performers. Song of the Fates deals more with mortality; thus the Funeral Ode is the natural (sad) corollary to this, music with plainchant origins, melancholy, dark-textured writing that also rails and consoles. But life can be a party, as the selections from the Liebeslieder-Walzer that Brahms orchestrated demonstrate – lilting and lyrical. The booklet includes texts and translations.
–Colin Anderson