Just two years after her dazzling debut recording of Wagner and Strauss arias, Norwegian soprano Lise Davidsen follows it up with yet another whopper. Teaming up with Sir Mark Elder and the London Philharmonic Orchestra, Davidsen more than consolidates her reputation as her generation’s leading dramatic soprano. 

Lise Davidsen

She comes bursting out of the gate with Leonore’s Abscheulicher! from Beethoven’s Fidelio , a role in which she was being lauded for at Covent Garden just before COVID brought everything to a grinding halt. A passionate, vehement Leonore, the opening exclamations are near-explosive, Davidsen negotiating the registers and difficult phrases with aplomb. Her complex sound is evenly and effortlessly produced, an exceptional Elder and the LPO seeming to breathe with her.

Although her cooler tone and facility with the language finds her more at home in German repertoire, the disc’s Italian numbers benefit from her polish and fierceness of attack. Her rendition of Beethoven’s concert aria Ah! Perfido is just as gripping as the...