To my knowledge there are two commercially available recordings of this work. There is the CPO recording, the one I will be discussing here, and another found on a BIS box set celebrating the 75th anniversary of the Royal Stockholm Philharmonic, containing a whole bunch of other works as well. I do not have access to the BIS recording but have listened to it maybe two times many years ago, when I could access it from the University of Wisconsin library.
I do not remember what year the BIS recording was made or who was conducting it, but I do remember it not being competitive compared to Francis on CPO. According to the BIS website, the performance time for this recording is 13:32, which is around 3 minutes longer than what Pettersson asks for. When Pettersson makes a clear indication for what he wants in terms of performance time, I wonder why someone just goes ahead and comes up with dramatically slower tempos.
Anyway, without really having much to compare to I can still feel confident that Francis and the BBC Scottish SO really do a fine job with this score. Maybe I could make a few minor quibbles about how the trumpets sound a little pinched when pushing in their upper registers, or how the horns could be a bit more powerful, but this is easily the version to have.
I wonder if Christian Lindberg will record this as part of his cycle, as Segerstam never got around to it…