I admire Vänskä’s Minnesota recordings of Mahler’s Symphonies Nos 5 and 6 (especially the Fifth), and his new Seventh continues his detailed but long-view approach. Vänskä sets out to create a narrative in Mahler, and this is apparent from the start.

The opening trombone lament is humanised by a more-than-usual amount of vibrato (wonderfully played too), then when the allegro arrives Vänskä inserts a “once upon a time” ritardando into it. The heraldic, Siegfried-like journey barrels along, but the conductor lingers to enjoy the view in the magical harp glissando episode.

Mahler’s Seventh is sometimes called “Song of the Night” because of the nocturnal character of the three central movements: a stealthy march, a ‘valse macabre’, and a moonlight serenade complete...

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