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Guillaume de MACHAUT (c.1300-1377) Mercy Ou Mort Chansons et motets d’amour Kathleen Dineen, Lima Morin, Eric Mantel, Stephen Grant, Karl Heinz Shackles, Randall Cook and Crawford Young Ferrara Ensemble directed by Crawford Young Recorded at the Church of St.Germanus Seewen (Soleure), March 1998 ARCANA A305 [76.10] [GH]

Although not my favourite Machaut disc this is a good and well performed disc which is highly professional in all areas and one to which I shall regularly return. … see Full Review

Gustav MAHLER (1860-1911) Symphony No 1 in D major (1889) [54.24] - Richard STRAUSS (1864-1949) Don Juan: Symphonic Poem, Op 20 (1889) [15.49] London Philharmonic Orchestra, cond. Gaetano Delogu (Mahler) London Philharmonic Orchestra, cond. Karl Anton Rickenbacher (Strauss) - recorded 1-3 February 1976 at Fairfield Hall, Croydon, England: ADD (Mahler) - recorded 2-3 April 1985 at Walthamstow Assembly Hall, England: DDD (Strauss) CLASSICS FOR PLEASURE 7243 5 75141 2 5 [70.03] [PJL]

An interesting coupling, but – though the Strauss is a winner – I can’t honestly give the Mahler reading an unqualified thumbs-up in such a competitive market … see Full Review

Gustav MAHLER (1860-1911) Symphony No.2 in C Minor "Resurrection" (1888-1894) Helen Donath (Soprano), Birgit Finnilä (Mezzo Soprano), Südfunk-Chor, Chor der Staatlichen Hochschule für Musik und Darsstellende Kunst, Stuttgart and Radio-Sinfonieorchester, Stuttgart/Sir John Barbirolli (Recorded "live" in the Konzerthaus Liederhalle, Stuttgart on April 5th 1970) Richard WAGNER (1813-1883) Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg: Prelude to Act I (1862-1868) London Symphony Orchestra/Sir John Barbirolli (Recorded in Abbey Road Studios, London on 27th September 1969) Edward ELGAR (1857-1934) Enigma Variations (1899) Hallé Orchestra/Sir John Barbirolli (Recorded in the Free Trade Hall, Manchester on June 21st and 23rd 1956) Maurice RAVEL (1875-1937) Ma Mère l’oye Hallé Orchestra/Sir John Barbirolli (Recorded in the Free Trade Hall, Manchester on 21st and 22nd May 1957) Giacomo PUCCINI (1858-1924) Madama Butterfly: Love Duet from Act 1 (1904) Conducted by Sir John Barbirolli Renata Scotto (Soprano), Carlo Bergonzi (Tenor) Orchestra del Teatro dell’Opera di Roma/Sir John Barbirolli
(Recorded in Teatro dell’Opera, Rome in August 1966) Tape remastering by Paul Baily (Re:Sound) EMI Great Conductors of the Twentieth Century 5 75100 2 2 CDs [149.37] [TD]

A great memorial to a much-loved conductor that contains a memorable Mahler Second rescued from the archives and that makes it indispensable. I also believe that, in spite of all that, this is a performance touched with genius.… see Full Review

Gustav MAHLER (1860-1911) Symphony No.5 in C sharp minor (1901-2) Concertgebouw Orchestra of Amsterdam/Rafael Kubelik (Recorded at a concert in the Concertgebouw, Amsterdam on 21 June 1951) Remastering by Charles Eddi at Sofreson TAHRA TAH 419 [64.58] [TD]

As a performance I think this is the best of Kubelik’s three available recordings. In this 1951 performance there is much of the vitality of Mahler not to mention the grand tradition of the Concertgebouw orchestra oozing from every bar. … see Full Review

Gustav MAHLER (1860 – 1911) Symphony no. 7 in b minor SWR Symphony Orchestra, Baden-Baden and Freiburg/Michael Gielen Recorded 19th – 23rd April 1993, Hans Rosbaud studio, Baden-Baden HÄNSSLER CLASSIC 93.030 [79:25] [GPJ]

I found this a superb reading of the work as a whole. … see Full Review

Benedetto MARCELLO (1686-1739) Psalms of David - XVIII-21 Musique des Lumieres: Cyrille Gerstenhaber, soprano, Hebrew Intonations - Christophe Laporte, alto - Herve Lamy, tenor - Laurent Grauer, bass - Freddy Eichelberger and Jean-Christophe Frisch, organ and harpsichord - Hager Hanana, cello - Claire Antononi, theorbo - Marc Wolff, theorbo and baroque guitar - Michel Renard and Charlotte Klingenberg, violas Jean-Christophe Frisch, director - Recorded in the Church of Saint-Quirin, May 1999 K617099 [73.18] [JW]

These are more than merely antiquarian performances. They contain things that are speculative but also much that is thought-provoking and unusual … see Full Review

Bohuslav MARTINU (1890-1959) - Duo Concertant for Two Violins and Orchestra (1937) - Violin Concerto No. 2 (1943) - Concerto for Two Violins and Orchestra (1950) - Jan Pospichal (violin) - Florian Zwiauer (violin) Vienna SO/Marcello Viotti - rec July 1999, Festspielhaus, Bregenz ARTE NOVA 74321 77635 2 [69.24] [RB]

Do not miss this disc if you care at all for the lyrical-impressionist strain in twentieth century music. Bargain price but premium music and performances. ... see Full Review

Bohuslav MARTINU (1890-1959) Symphonies 3 and 5 National Symphony Orchestra of Ukraine Arthur Fagen Recorded March 1995 Grand Concert Studio of the National Radio Company of Ukraine, Kiev NAXOS 8.553350 [60.31] [JW]

Fagen is a sensitive and sensible guide – these are certainly not shattering accounts but they are more than merely worthwhile. … see Full Review

Bohuslav MARTINU (1890-1959) Frescoes of Piero della Francesca (1956) [17.07] Parables (1958) [21.28] Symphony No. 4 (1945) [33.57] Orchestre de la Suisse Romande/Ernest Ansermet rec Victoria Hall, Genève, 22 Feb 1961 (Frescoes); 15 March 1967 (Sym); 28 Feb 1962. MONO. ADD From the radio archives of Radio Suisse Romande, Espace 2. CASCAVELLE VEL 2007 [73.39] [RB]

Provided stereo perfection is not a priority Martinů enthusasts will have a major lacuna in their shelves if they do not have this. Wonderful Martinů playing. ... see Full Review.

Joseph MARX (1882-1964) Violin Sonata (No. 1) in A major (1913) Tobias Ringborg (violin) Daniel Blumenthal (piano) Rec 1993, Brussels DDD PAVANE ADW7378 [58:36] [RB]

Pavane, as one of the enterprising ‘minors’, shows the larger companies how to do it. I am convinced that we will see the internationals further taking up Marx’s chamber music within the next 5 years. … see Full Review

David MAVES (born 1937) The Piano Sonatas Max Lifschitz (piano) Recorded : Recital Hall of SUNY Stony Brook, January 1983 (Sonatas 1 and 2) and Recital Hall of the University at Albany, May 1995 (Sonatas 3 and 4) NORTH/SOUTH RECORDINGS R 1008 [75:59] [HC]

Maves’ sonatas are fine, beautifully written and very contrasted works - a composer’s view on 20th Century piano writing in all its diversity while avoiding the more ‘trendy’ gimmicks. … see Full Review

Benoît MERNIER (born 1964) Clarinet Quintet (1998/9)a Les Niais de Sologne (1999)b Les Idées Heureuses (1996/7)c Intonazione (1995)d Jean-Michel Charlier (clarinet)a; Quatuor Danela; Ensemble Musiques Nouvellesb; Fabian Panisello (conductor)b; Ictus Ensemblec; Georges-Elie Octors (conductor)c; Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio Franced; Michaël Schønwandtd Recorded: Corroy-le-Château, September 1999 (Quintet); Studio Dada, Brussels, March 2001 (Les Niais), May and June 2001 (Les Idées Heureuses); Salle Olivier Messiaen, Paris, November 1997 (Intonazione) CYPRES CYP 4613 [66:37] [HC]

Benoît Mernier is one of the most interesting young Belgian composers of his generation, and this well-planned selection offers a comprehensive survey of his output so far … see Full Review

Olivier MESSIAEN (1908-1992) Vingt Regards sur L’Enfant Jesus No 15 Le baiser Sergey RACHMANINOV (1873-1943) Prelude Op 23 No 4 Prelude Op 32 No 5 Ludwig Van BEETHOVEN (1770-1827) Sonata Op 31 No2 Tempest Alexander SCRIABIN (1872-1915) Sonata Op 23 in F sharp minor Katerina Assimis, piano Recorded 2001 unspecified location PROMOTIONAL RECORD No catalogue number [67.34]

The kind of recital the titans of the Moscow School would have performed in the 1920s and 30s. … see Full Review ...see Full Review

Karl MILLÖCKER (1842-1899) The Dubarry (1879, revsd. 1931) - highlights Anny Ahlers (sop), Gitta Alpar (sop), Heddle Nash (ten), Herbert Ernst Groh (ten) His Majesty's Theatre orchestra/Ernest Irving Parlophone orchestra/Frieder Weissmann - Odeon orchestra/Theo Mackeben Leo FALL (1873-1925) Madame Pompadour (1922), highlights
Evelyn Laye (sop), Derek Oldham (ten), Elsie Randolph (sop), Huntley Wright (bar) Daly's Theatre orchestra/Arthur Wood - rec. 1924 (Pompadour) and 1931-2 (Dubarry) PEARL GEMM CD 9068 [72.44] [RW]

This highlights disc is a compilation of 78s Of particular interest to collectors. … see Full Review

Claudio MONTEVERDI (1567-1643) Banquet of the Senses The Consort of Musicke: Anthony Rooey, director and lute Emma Kirby, soprano Evelyn Tubb. soprano Mary Nicols, alto Andrew King, tenor Joseph Cornwell, tenor Simon Grant, bass Gabrielle Micheli, organ Filmed at: The Plazzo Te, Mantua, Italy BRILLIANT CLASSICS 99784 [48.09] [KM]

This is a fine, entertaining recording, that both provides excellent music and a unique presentation of an essential form of vocal music, the madrigal. ...see Full review

Wolfgang Amadeus MOZART (1756-1791) Six Sonatas, K301-306, & Variations, K359-360 CD1 [69.31] Sonata IV in E minor, K304 (1778) [15.04] Sonata I in G major, K301 (1778) [16.42] Sonata III in C major, K303 (1778) [11.36] Sonata II in E flat major, K302 (1778) [14.49] Six Variations on "Hélas j’ai perdu mon amant", K360 (1781) [11.02] - CD2 [62.41] Sonata V in A major, K305 (1778) [17.00] Sonata VI in D major, K306 (1778) [29.36] Variations sopra l’aria la Bergére Célimene, K359 (1781) [15.50] Laura Alvini (fortepiano) & Enrico Gatti (violin) - recorded 29 October - 3 November 1997 in the Villa Medici Giulini, Brioso, Italy - DDD ARCANA A406 [132.12] [PJL]

Gatti and Alvini play as if entranced by this music: everything is beautifully polished and fresh. … see Full Review

Wolfgang Amadeus MOZART (1756 - 1791) The Impresario (Der Schauspieldirektor) K.486 - Cyndia Sieden -- soprano, Sharon Baker -- soprano, John Aler -- tenor, Kevin Deas -- bass-baritone - The Beneficent Dervish (Der Wohltatige Derwisch) [composed by a member of Mozart’s circle] - Sharon Baker -- soprano, Deanne Meek -- mezzo-soprano, John Aler -- tenor, Kevin Deas -- bass-baritone Boston Baroque, Martin Pearlman
Rec: 1989 TELARC CD-80573 [66.16] [KME]

Impresario: Performance fine, soloists all very good, though the orchestra overwhelms the voices at times. Beneficent Dervish: attractive and entertaining. … see Full Review

Wolfgang Amadeus MOZART (1756 - 1791) Violin Sonatas - Mozart Edition vol. 9 - CD1 VIOLIN SONATA in C major KV 6 VIOLIN SONATA in D major KV 7 VIOLIN SONATA in B flat major KV 8 VIOLIN SONATA in G minor KV 9 Total time: 53'29 Recording: 14/15 May 2001, Remonstrantse Doopsgezinde Gemeente, Deventer Pieter-Jan Belder, harpsichord Rémy Baudet, baroque violin CD2 VIOLIN SONATA in E flat major KV 26 VIOLIN SONATA in G major KV 27 VIOLIN SONATA in C major KV 28 VIOLIN SONATA in D major KV 29 3'20 VIOLIN SONATA in F major KV 30 VIOLIN SONATA in B flat major KV 31 Twelve Variations in G major for violin 7 piano- forte on the French song "La Bergère Célimène" KV 359 (374a) Six Variations in G minor for violin & pianoforte on the French song "Hélas, j'ai perdu mon amant", KV 360 (374b) Total time: 69'47 Recording: Remonstrantse Gemeente Deventer, summer 2001
Rémy Baudet, baroque violin Pieter-Jan Belder, harpsichord CD3 VIOLIN SONATA in F major KV 376 VIOLIN SONATA in F major KV 377 VIOLIN SONATA in B flat major KV 372 SONATA MOVEMENT in A major KV 402 (fragment) SONATA MOVEMENT in C major KV 404 (fragment)
Total time: 61'09 Recording: 1989 Salvatore Accardo, violin Bruno Canino, piano CD4 VIOLIN SONATA in G major KV 379 VIOLIN SONATA in E flat major KV 380 VIOLIN SONATA in F major KV 547 Total time: 69'22 Recording: 1989 Salvatore Accardo, violin Bruno Canino, piano CD5
VIOLIN SONATA in A major KV 526 VIOLIN SONATA in C major KV 296 VIOLIN SONATA in A major KV 305 Total time: 63'49 Recording: 1989 Salvatore Accardo, violin Bruno Canino, piano
CD6 VIOLIN SONATA in E flat major KV 481 VIOLIN SONATA in C major KV 303 VIOLIN SONATA in G major KV 301 Total time: 54'01 Recording: 1989 Salvatore Accardo, violin Bruno Canino, piano CD7 VIOLIN SONATA in B flat major KV 378 VIOLIN SONATA in E flat major KV 302 VIOLIN SONATA in E minor KV 304 VIOLIN SONATA in C major KV 403 Total time: 65'08
Recording: 1989 Salvatore Accardo, violin Bruno Canino, piano CD8 VIOLIN SONATA in B flat major KV 454 VIOLIN SONATA in D major KV 306 Total time: 53'39 Recording: 1989 Salvatore Accardo, violin Bruno Canino, piano  BRILLIANT CLASSICS 99721 [approx. 8 hours 10 min.] [KM]

Overall, this set has its highs and lows. Given the bargain price this could be a choice for someone seeking completeness at a low cost. … see Full Review

Wolfgang Amadeus MOZART (1756-1791) Posthorn Serenade, K320 Ludwig van BEETHOVEN (1770-1827) Symphony No. 4 in B flat major, Opus 60 North German Radio Symphony Orchestra/Günter Wand Rec 8-10 May 2001, Musikhalle, Hamburg RCA RED SEAL 74321 89717 2 [74.57] [TB]

Recorded in Hamburg they have a vitality and tonal lustre which marks them as interpretations of the highest order … see Full Review

Wolfgang Amadeus MOZART (1756-1791) L’OEUVRE POUR CLARINETTE DE BASSET (WORKS FOR BASSET-CLARINET) Clarinet Quintet in A K581 Clarinet Concerto in A K622 Jean-Claude Veilhan, basset-clarinet, Stadler Quartet, La Grande Ecurie et le Chambre du Roy/Jean-Claude Malgoire Recorded Paris 1989 (concerto) and 1992 (quintet) K617 Records K617030 [58:02] [GPJ]

These are performances worth hearing, if only for the unusual experience of the instrument for which this music was originally intended. … see Full Review

Wolfgang Amadeus MOZART (1756-1791) Flute Quartet No. 1 in D major, K285 Oboe Quartet in F major, K370 Clarinet Quintet in A major, K581 Brindisi Quartet Jaime Martin (flute), Jonathan Kelly (oboe), Nicholas Carpenter (clarinet) Rec January - March 1996, No. 1 Studio, Abbey Road, London EMI DEBUT CDZ5697022[63.34] [TB]

All three performances offer distinguished playing with well judged phrasing and tempi, the clear headed textures sensitively captured … see Full Review

Wolfgang Amadeus MOZART (1756 - 1791) Missa Solemnis in C major [73.09]
Missa Solemnis in C major, KV Anhang C1.20 attrib. Mozart (World Premiere Recording)
Inessa Galante, soprano Signe Asmussen, mezzo-soprano Pavol Brslik, tenor Mads Thiemann, bass-baritone Antonio Piricone, organ Exsultate, jubilate KV165 Ergo interest KV 143 Inessa Galante, soprano Czech Chamber Philharmonic & Chorus, conductor Douglas Bostock Rec: September 7th & 8th 2001, St. Wenceslas church, Lanskroun, East Bohemia. CLASSICO CLASSCD 396 [73.09] [KM]

This is vintage Mozart, with no surprises, but this "new" mass is something that lovers of Mozart’s sacred music will want to have. The excellent sound, choir and soprano make this a truly wonderful disc. … see Full Review

Wolfgang Amadeus MOZART (1756 - 1791) Sacred Works Mozart Edition vol. 8 Nordic Chamber Choir Süddeutsches Kammerorchester Pforzheim/Kammerorchester Mannheim Nicol Matt, conductor  Rec: July 2001, Alte Kirche, Fautenbach, Germany. BRILLIANT CLASSICS 99737 [approx. 6 hours] 10CDs [KM]

A very good collection. The Nordic Chamber Choir is excellent throughout. At the bargain price of this set, a wealth of discoveries await you. … see Full Review

Conlon NANCARROW (b. 1912) Studies for Player Piano: Numbers 1-50 CD1 - vol.1 - Studies 3, 20, 41, 44 [54.54] CD2 - vol.2 - Studies 4-6, 14, 22, 26, 31-32, 35, 37, 40, tango? [54.43] CD3 - vol.3 - Studies 1, 2, 7, 8, 10 15 21 23 24 25 33 43 50 [57.40] CD4 - vol.4 - Studies 9, 11-13, 16-19, 27-29, 34, 36, 46-47 [57.36] CD5 - vol.5 - Studies 42, 45, 48-49 [51.08] Recorded on the composer's custom-altered 1927 Ampico reproducing piano at the studio of the composer, Mexico City, 10/12 Jan 1988. 5 CDs plus 140pp booklet WERGO WER 6907 2 [278.01] [RB]

An astonishing and still too little known aspect of the music of the last sixty years. ... see Full Review

Vitezslav NOVAK (1870-1949) In the Tatras (1907) About the Eternal Longing (1904) Melancholy Songs of Love (1910?) South Bohemian Motifs (1947) Daniela Strakova (sop) Carlsbad SO/Douglas Bostock rec Lazne III, Carlsbad, Jan 1998 CLASSICO CLASSCD 256 [73.13] [RB]

Not to be missed by aficionados of the late romantic orchestral song cycle and of a great and vernal voice. … see Full Review

Gösta NYSTROEM (1890-1966) Songs Charlotte Hellekant (mezzo-sop) Ander Kilström (piano) rec Berwaldhallen, 2-3 May, 3 Sept, and Swedish Radio studio 2, 3 Oct, 2001 DAPHNE 1017 [70.54] [GH][RB]

It has been a real joy hearing these heartfelt songs performed by such a sensitive pair of musicians. … see Full Review [GH]
A compelling and cherishable choice for collectors of Scandinavian song and for the growing band of Hellekant and Nystroem admirers. … see Full Review [RB]

Gösta NYSTROEM (1890-1966) Songs and Piano Music Det Enda [Ebba Lindkvist] (1950) Ur Ångest - Åtta dikter [Pär Lagerkvist] (8 songs) (1923-8) Ur Musiken till Stormen [Shakespeare] (3 songs) (1940s) Sånger vid havet [Ebba Lindkvist] (5 songs) (1943) Prelude Pastoral and Valse Marine for solo piano Gunvor Nilsson (mezzo-soprano) Erik Risberg (piano)
rec Goteborgs Konserthus, Aug/Sept 1990 INTIM MUSIK IMCD 007 [63.45] [RB]

For those enthralled by Nordic song and by Nystroem's regretful, nostalgic, silvery voice. ...see Full Review

Jacques OFFENBACH (1819-1880) La Belle Hélène Daniele Millet (Hélène), Bernadette Antoine (Oreste), Sylvia Paule (Bacchis), Charles Burles (Pâris), Jean-Christophe Benoit (Ménélas), Michel Dens (Agamemnon), Bernard Siclair (Achille) René Duclos choir, Lamoureux Concert Orchestra/Jean-Pierre Marty EMI 574 085-2 ADD [CD1 59.34, CD2 63.18] [RW]

It is a sumptuous recording for pre-digital days where an excellent frequency response picks out every nuance of singing and open, wide acoustics well suit the Offenbach genre. … see Full Review

Claus OGERMANN (b.1930) Piano Concerto (1993) [19.03] Concerto For Orchestra (1991) [44.59] Clauss Ogermann (piano)National Philharmonic Orchestra/Claus Ogermann Rec - details not given DECCA 013949-2 [64.03] [AT]

Contemporary classical music has been in retreat in the US for decades. With the exception of the iconoclast Elliot Carter, there seems to be very little of any complexity emerging from contemporary American composers. … see Full Review

Charles D OSBORNE Souls on Fire Catherine Thorpe (soprano), Fredda Rakusin Mendelson (mezzo), Roger Ohlson (tenor), Wesley Garrison (bass) with the Bulgarian National Symphony and Chorus conducted by Joshua R Jacobson Leonard Nimoy (storyteller), Barbara Grossman and Charles D Osborne (narrators) Music recorded at the Salle Bulgaria, Sofia (February 1999); narrative recorded at National Sound, New York (March 1999) ZC MUSIC GROUP (no reference number) [75:12] [AAS]

Obviously a labour of love on the part of all those involved, their blazing commitment evident throughout … see Full Review

Ignacy Jan PADEREWSKI (1860-1941) Violin Sonata in A minor (1880) [25.43] Karol SZYMANOWSKI (1882-1937) Violin Sonata in A minor (1904) [21.49] Witold LUTOSLAWSKI (b.1913) Partita for violin and piano (1984) [17.11] Robert Szreder (violin) Boguslaw Jan Strobel (piano) rec Aug 1992, Polish Radio Studio 2, Warsaw, DDD PAVANE ADW 7283 [65.26] [RB]

Szreder and Strobel are extremely accomplished virtuosic players whose skills are well demonstrated by three vertiginously demanding works. Lovers of the grand romantic gesture must hear both the Paderewski and the Szymanowski ... see Full Review

Niccolo PAGANINI (1782-1840) 24 Caprices Op 1 arr Cawdrey Julian Cawdrey, flute Recorded St Andrews Church, Toddington, Gloucestershire May 1997 PAVANE ADW 7403 [77.34] [JW]

Its good that flautists are increasingly looking to this kind of repertoire; if you're going to do it at all you might as well do it as well as Cawdrey. ...see Full Review

Giovanni Battista PERGOLESI (1710-1736) Stabat Mater Angharad Gruffydd Jones, soprano Lawrence Zazzo, counter-tenor Julia Bishop, Joanna Parker, violin Peter Whiskin, viola Joanna Levine, cello Mark Levy, Violone Timothy Brown, organ / director Filmed at: All Saints, Aldwincle, England BRILLIANT CLASSICS 99783 [37'49] [KM]

The music on this DVD is excellent; the fact that the musicians are merely singing and playing along with a CD is detestable. Buy the CD; it is marvellously sung and performed by all. Don’t bother with the DVD. … see Full Review

Jacopo PERI (1561-1633) Euridice - Sylva Pozzer, soprano (Euridice) - Luca Dordolo, tenor (Orfeo) - Mirko Guadagnini, tenor - Alessandro Gargiulo, tenor - Maria Antonietta Piavan, soprano - Alessandro Carmignani, tenor - Bianca Simone, mezzo-soprano - Luca Ferracin, bass - Matteo Zenatti, tenor - Loredana Putzolu, mezzo-soprano - Marisa Pugina, soprano - Chiara Drago, soprano - Antonio Domenighini, baritone - La Compagnia dei Febi Armonici - Ensemble Albalonga Directed and conducted by Anibal E Cetrangolo - Recorded Chiesa di Santa Maria dei Servi 1995 PAVANE ADW 7372/73 [2 CDs 116.47] [JW]

Acoustic somewhat problematical but Pavane is to be commended for giving us the fons et origo of all operas … see Full Review

Hans PFITZNER (1869-1949) Von Deutscher Seele - Eichendorff-Kantate (1921) Gabriele Fontana (sop) - Barbara Hölzl (mezzo) - Glenn Winslade (ten) - Robert Holl (bass) - Anton Holzapfel (organ) - Wiener Singverein/JohannesPrinz Wiener Symphoniker/Martin Sieghart - rec 27-28 Nov 1999, Großer Saal, des Wiener Musiksverein, Wien DDD ARTE NOVA 74321 79422 2 [CD1: 48.45; CD2: 50.31] [RB]

Sieghart's version lays bare the German lyric soul and does so with great feeling and tenderness. Some blemishes associated with a live performance leave the way open for improvement. … see Full Review

Giacomo PUCCINI (1858-1924) Tosca Gigliola Frazzoni (Tosca), Ferruccio Tagliavini (Cavaradossi), Gian Giacomo Guelfi (Scarpia), Antonio Zerbini (Angelotti), Alfredo Mariotti (Sacrestan), Turin RAI Chorus and Orchestra/Arturo Basile Recorded 12.10.1956, Turin WARNER FONIT 857387479-2 [2 CDs, 45.03, 69.39] [CH]

The "Tosca-problem" is the existence of the Callas/De Sabata version. This one is as good a performance as any before or since; there are plenty of reasons for having it as well. … see Full Review

Giacomo PUCCINI (1858-1924) Messa di Gloria; Preludio Sinfonico; Crisantemi Hungarian Opera Orchestra and Radio Choir/Giorgio Morandi; Anotello Palombe (tenor); Gunnar Lundberg (baritone) Recorded at the Phoenix Studio, July 2000. NAXOS 8.555304 [59.40] [RDB]

The Messa di Gloria has all the suavely melodic vocal writing and evocative colouring of Puccini’s stage works, and receives a committed performance from all concerned … see Full Review

Henry PURCELL (1659-1695)
The Fairy Queen Lorraine Hunt soprano Catherine Pierard soprano Susan Bickley mezzo-soprano Howard Crook tenor Mark Padmore tenor David Wilson-Johnson bass Richard Wistreich bass The Schütz Choir of London London Classical Players, Roger Norrington direction Rec. November 1993, Lyndhurst Hall, Air Studios, London. VIRGIN VERITAS 5619552 [122.04] [KM]

Such wonderful orchestral execution and brilliant singers are hard to find; the two of them together are a treat. … see Full Review

Sergei RACHMANINOV (1873-1943) Vespers Op. 37 ‘All -Night Vigil’ for soloists and mixed choir a cappella (1915) - Klaudia Zeiner (alto), Mikhail Agafonov (tenor), Lew Maidatschewski (lector) - MDR Rundfunkchor Leipzig Howard Arman - Recorded in the Paul-Gerhardt-Kirche, May, 2000 BERLIN CLASSICS 0017422BC DDD [74.36] [TH]

Whatever the competition, this new Leipzig disc is a real winner. The size of the choir gives it a weight and resonance that is lacking elsewhere. … see Full Review

Sergei RACHMANINOV (1873-1943) Piano Concerto No. 1 [23.35] Piano Concerto No. 2 [32.51] Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini [21.47] Benno Moiseiwitsch (piano) Philharmonia/Sargent (No. 1); Liverpool PO (2; Rhapsody); Walter Goehr (2); Basil Cameron (Rhapsody) rec Studio 1 Abbey Road, 23 Dec 1948 (No. 1); 24 Nov 1937, 13 Dec 1937 (No. 2); 5 Dec 1938 (Rhapsody) Mono ADD NAXOS HISTORICAL 8.110676 [78.12] [RB]

A disc made utterly recommendable by the Moiseiwitsch/Sargent recording of the First Concerto. ... see Full Review

Sergei RACHMANINOV (1873 – 1943) Piano Concerto No. 1 in F sharp minor, Op.1* Piano Concerto No. 2 in C minor, Op.18** Piano Concerto No. 3 in D minor, Op.30*** Piano Concerto No. 4 in G minor, Op.40*** Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini, Op.43** * John Lill (piano), BBC National Orchestra of Wales, Tadaaki Otaka (conductor) ** Jose Luis Prats (piano), Mexico City Philharmonic Orchestra, Enrique Batiz (conductor) *** Nikolai Lugansky (piano), State Academy Symphony Orchestra of Russia, Ivan Shpiller (conductor) BRILLIANT CLASSICS 6214 [2 discs; 75:03; 78:34; super-budget , DDD] [TH]

I can recommend this set with slight reservations. Well worth considering if cost is a key factor. Lugansky's piano playing is truly outstanding and red-blooded. … see Full Review

Sergei RACHMANINOV (1873-1943) The Essential Rachmaninov DECCA 470 457-2 [2CD: 79.10+79.35] [RB]

Not for the serious Rachmaninov enthusiast. A generous introduction for the non-purist. Kocsis excels in the Paganini and the Ashkenazy conducted items go especially well. ... see Full Review

Bernard RANDS (born 1934) Ceremonial (1992) John HARBISON (born 1938)
Olympian Dances (1997) William KRAFT (born 1923) Concerto for Four Solo Percussion and Wind Ensemble (1964, arr. 1995)a Karel HUSA (born 1921) Les Couleurs Fauves (1995) Matthew Manturuk, Eric Millstein, John Tanzer, Scott Vincent (percussion)a; New England Conservatory Wind Ensemble; Frank L. Battisti Recorded: Jordan Hall, Boston, February 1998 (Rands, Harbison); February 1997 (Kraft, Husa) ALBANY TROY 340 [65:41] [HC]

I really enjoyed this release. All worthwhile additions to a repertoire once confined to sometimes dubious transcriptions. A repertoire considerably enlarged and enriched by imaginative and sympathetic composers … see Full Review

Maurice RAVEL (1875-1937) Piano Concerto in G major Piano Concerto for the Left Hand Alborada del Gracioso Joaquín Achucarro, piano Euskadi Symphony Orchestra (Basque National Orchestra) Gilbert Varga, conductor Recorded San Sebastian, Miramon September 2000, June 2001 CLAVES CD 50-2101 [49.23] [JW]

The jazz element essentially true to Ravel’s wish for the light-hearted and the brilliant. The music never congeals to mere gorgeousness. … see Full Review

JOSEPH-GUY ROPARTZ (1864-1955) Piano Trio (1918) 38.00Prélude, Marine et Chansons (1928) 12.00 String Quartet No. 4 (1934) 19.00 Jean-Louis Haguenauer (piano), Alexis Galpérine (violin), Cecilia Tsan (cello) (trio) Ensemble Stanislas (second two items) world premiere recordings rec Salle Poirel 23 Oct 1995 22-23 June 1996 TIMPANI 1C1047 [70.05] [RB]

A handsomely produced disc and one I commend very highly. Doubting Thomases should sample any part of the 'triptych' work and the finale or quasi lento of the quartet. ...see Full Review

Gioachino ROSSINI (1792 – 1868) Sonatas for Wind Quartet Michael Thompson Wind Quartet Michael Thompson [horn], Jonathan Snowden [flute], Robert Hill [clarinet], John Price [bassoon] Recorded in St. Paul’s Church, Rusthall, Kent, April,1996.
NAXOS 8.554098 [68:43] [TH]

Enjoyable disc, well recorded and informatively annotated, and certainly a must for all Rossinians. … see Full Review

Max Rostal (1905-1991) - In Memoriam - Bela BARTÓK (1881-1945) Violin Concerto No 2 + Alban BERG (1885-1935) Violin Concerto * Bernard STEVENS (1916-1983) Violin Concerto # Dmitri SHOSTAKOVICH (1906-1975) Violin Concerto No 1 ^
Max Rostal violin with BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra conducted by Norman del Mar 23 December 1962+ BBC Symphony Orchestra conducted by Hermann Scherchen 22 December 1953* BBC Northern Orchestra conducted by Charles Groves 9 January 1948 # BBC Symphony Orchestra conducted by Sir Malcolm Sargent 22 August 1956 ^ SYMPOSIUM 1142/43 [2 CD 141.29] [JW]

A document of real historical interest. A valuable legacy of preserved concerto performances by a musician of stature. … see Full Review

Miklós RÓZSA (1907 – 1996) String Quartet No. 1 Op. 22 (1950) String Quartet No. 2 Op. 38 (1981) Sonata for two Violins Op.15a (1933, rev. 1973)a The Flesch Quartet (Philippa Ibbotson, Mark Denman, violins; Robert Gibbs, viola and violina; David Newby, cello) Recorded: St Silas Church, Kentish Town, January 2000 (string quartets) and Parish Church of the Holy Trinity, Weston, Hertfordshire, August 2000 ASV CD DCA 1105 [64:13] [HC]

A real winner and warmly recommended with the secret hope that ASV will next turn to the String Trio and Piano Quintet … see Full Review

Edmund RUBBRA (1901-1986) Piano Concerto (1956) Benjamin BRITTEN (1913-1976) Piano Concerto (1938) Prelude and Fugue for 18-part string orchestra (1943) Rubbra: Denis Matthews (piano)/BBCSO/Sargent rec Kingsway Hall, London, 30 Aug 1956 Britten Concerto: Jacques Abram (piano)/Philharmonia/Herbert Menges. rec Abbey Rd, 25 Jan 1956 Britten: RPO/Norman Del Mar, rec Studio 1, Abbey Rd, 9 July 1964 EMI CLASSICS CDZ 5 74781 2 [68.03] [RB]

A significant collection which will appeal strongly to Rubbra and Britten specialists. … see Full Review

[Part 1 New]  [Part 2 A-B] [Part 3 C-L]
[Part 4 M-R]  [Part 5 S-Y] [Part 6 Misc]     

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