This is another mood music collection created by bringing
together movements from complete concerto recordings made in analogue.
The title and the blue pastel shaded soft focus butterfly design of
the cover say it all.
These movements were neither designed nor recorded
to be presented in this way but given that there appears to be a demand
for such collections and that BMG have the inclination let us spend
a few moments on the disc.
It was produced and annotated by R Peter Munves. The
timing is reasonably full and if this is not likely to be for most people
frequenting CMOTW I hope that the disc might be the key to someone opening
classical doors they had never thought of or had always imagined were
not for them. For this reason it is a pity to disdain such collections
despite their oleaginous and exploitative motivation.
Rubinstein is predictably generous-hearted being at
his estimable best in the Grieg, Chopin (three tracks), Schumann, Beethoven
and the Tchaikovsky. Leinsdorf and the Bostonians are outstanding in
the latter. Ormandy's Philadelphia flutes sound celestially calm at
8.13 in the Rachmaninov concerto. The strings tend to shrillness in
the Mozart and the Rachmaninov/Paganini. The other tracks sound much
better. Rubinstein is an adept in these works and especially in this
sentimental light. Quite what he would have made of his recordings being
excerpted in this way I do not know.
Intriguing to note the young Skrowaczewski (since having
triumphed with his Ravel Vox collection in Minnesota and his Bruckner
symphonies on Arte Nova) now conducting the New SO of London for the
Chopin First Concerto.
Too much of a good thing for most of us but as a soporific
mood maker/enhancer or as a soft-edged introduction to the piano concerto
it more than passes muster.