This is the reissue of a CD originally published on the Marco Polo label in 1987, which is how I have it. I've published a detailed review under that disc's entry, and I refer you to it for those details: BRUCH: Symphony No. 3 / Suite on Russian Themes.
In capsule: in the first movement and the scherzo, Honeck entirely disregards Bruch's metronome marks. He is much slower in the first and much faster in the scherzo. Now, it is not a matter of obeying the composer's indications just for the sake of it. When it comes to tempo, interpreters have always been extremely free, as long as what they did had musical value; and usually, it does. With Honeck, it doesn't, and comparison with Masur, who is bang on the (metronome) mark in these two movements, will tell you why (Bruch: The 3 Symphonies, Swedish Dances (Schwedische Tanze)). Honeck doesn't have the forward dash and dynamism of Masur in the first movement "Allegro molto vivace", and when comes the movement's lyrical second theme, he brutally slams the breaks rather than imperceptibly relaxing the tempo as Bruch prescribes and Masur observes, thus robbing the music of its passion, in favor of an unwelcome trudging sentimentality. The Scherzo on the other hand he takes so fast that he makes it sound as a finale, and deprives it of the unique character of energetic bonhomie that Masur, at Bruch's tempo, conveys. So Bruch seems to have known what he was doing with these metronome marks, and Honeck, no.
His slow movement is OK, but Masur's slightly more flowing tempo brings out more of the movement's Brahmsian passion. Now the finale is another matter, because here, once past the "Allegro ma non troppo" introduction (which Honeck again takes slightly slower than the metronome), Honeck is exactly at Bruch's metronome of half-note 96 when comes the "animato" section. The problem with that is that is turns the music into something very pedestrian, and terribly boring. Masur, in the intro and here, for once disregards Bruch's metronome and plays everything much faster: and it turns the finale into an exhilarating moment of joy. So here, obviously, Bruch erred in his metronome indications - and Honeck errs just as well in observing them...
So it's not just a matter of doing what the composer prescribes: it is a matter of doing it when it has a musical value, and being ready NOT to do it when there is more value in doing so. On all accounts, Honeck is heads over heels.
Bruch's 3rd Symphony is a magnificent work, certainly not "modern", and even very backward-looking for when it was composed (1882, with a revision completed in 1886) - but these matters don't really count from today's viewpoint. If not reaching the towering achievement of Brahms' symphonies, it is as beautiful as anything written by Schubert, Mendelssohn and Schumann. But you won't hear it in Honeck's reading, and that's a crime.
Now that Masur's complete cycle has been reissued on a budget series (Bruch: The Complete Symphonies), Honeck, at whatever the price, is simply a non runner in the Symphony. But then there aren't many other recordings of the Suite on Russian Themes. My two stars are for them.