Classical Editor: Rob Barnett

Music Webmaster
Len Mullenger:

Works by: Glinka, Tchaikovsky, Arensky, Tanayev, Medtner, Rachmaninov and Mosolov.
Vassily Savenko: bass-baritone, Alexander Blok: Piano.
Hyperion CDA67205 71m DDD.

Hyperion follow up on their first survey of Russian songs with a second disc that is indeed self-recommending. The layout is chronological beginning with Glinka and ending with Mosolov. Glinka's 'Travel Song' is very characterful as is Tchaikovsky's, 'frenzied Nights', given an inspiring performance by Vassily Saveno. Arensky is perhaps more remembered for his symphonic works but 'A Dream' and 'I have seen death' are perefect examples of his excellent songwriting. We move on to the versatile Sergei Tanayev whose 'Winter Journey' and 'Dense Forests' bring out the mysterious side of Savenko that is endearing to observe. Medtner is enjoying something of a revival recently and the two short songs that are presented here are delightful gems. Rachmaninov's repertoire is also well represented with a delightful rendering of 'The Muse'. Finally there are three songs by the nationalistic Alexander Mosolov which although not memorable, are important as a survey nonetheless. Recording and presentation are as always with Hyperion, impeccable. Lovers of this genre should not need any further prompting from me.

Gerald Fenech




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