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Every day we post 10 new Classical CD and DVD reviews. A free weekly summary is available by e-mail. MusicWeb is not a subscription site. To keep it free please purchase discs through our links.

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The Latin-American Guitar: A Timeless Collection of Latin American Guitar Classics
Eladia BLAZQUEZ (b.1927)
Kite-flying Dream (from 8.555721) [3.47]
Víctor Villadangos (guitar)
Luís BONFA (1911-2001)
Manha de Carnaval (from 8.557295) [3.25]
Graham Anthony Devine (guitar)
Leo BROUWER (b.1939)
Suite in D: Preludio (from 8.550273) [3.05]
Gerald Garcia (guitar)
Un día de noviembre (from 8.557329) [4.53]
Ricardo Cobo (guitar)
Canción de cuna (Berceuse) (from 8.555887) [4.11]
Marco Tamayo (guitar)
Jorge CARDOSO (b.1949)
Milonga (from 8.550273) [4.15]
Gerald Garcia (guitar)
Antonio LAURO (1917-1986)
Joropo (from 8.550273) [1.52]
Gerald Garcia (guitar)
Jorge MOREL (b.1931)
Danza Brasileira (from 8.550273) [2.21]
Gerald Garcia (guitar)
Carlos MOSCARDINI (b.1959)
Milonga of Confusion (from 8.555721) [2.58]
Víctor Villadangos (guitar)
João [Guimarães de] PERNAMBUCO (1883-1947)
Sons de Carilhôes (Sounds of Bells) (from 8.557295) Pó de Mico (Itching Powder) (from 8.557295) [3.00]
Graham Anthony Devine (guitar)
Marco PEREIRA (b.1956)
Num pagode em Planaltina (Gathering in Planaltina) (from 8.557295) [
Graham Anthony Devine (guitar)
Astor PIAZZOLLA (1921-1992)
Histoire du Tango (from 8.554760) (I. Bordel (1900) [3.53]; II. Cafe (1930) [6.48]; III. Nightclub (1960) [5.55]; IV. Concert d'aujourd'hui [5.12])
Irmgard Toepper (flute); Hugo German Gaido (guitar)
Libertango (from 8.555721 ) [4.22]
Midnight in Buenos Aires (from 8.555721) [4.22] Farewell Nonino (solo version, from 8.555721) [4.40]
Víctor Villadangos (guitar)
Adios Nonino (arr. Breiner, from 8.557004) [5.51] Razumovsky Orchestra/Peter Breiner
Manuel Maria PONCE (1882-1958)
Tres Canciones Populares Mexicanas (from 8.553832) (I. La Pajarera [1.08]; II. Por ti mi Corazón [2.56]; III. La Valentina [1.39])
Adam Holzman (guitar)
Máximo Diego PUJOL (b.1957)
Elegía por la muerte de un tanguero (from 8.557329) (I Confuseta [2.48]; II Melancolía [3.03]; III Epílogo [3.30])
Ricardo Cobo (guitar)
Edward SIMON (b.1969)
El manicero (The Peanut Seller) (from 8.555887) 4.38]
Marco Tamayo (guitar)
Anibal CarmeloTROILO (1914-1975)
South (from 8.555721) [3.00]
Víctor Villadangos (guitar)
Heitor VILLA-LOBOS (1887-1959)
Concerto for Guitar and Orchestra (from 8.550729) (I. Allegro preciso [5.34]; II. Andantino e Andante-Cadenza [7.34]; III. Allegretto non troppo [4.41])
Norbert Kraft (guitar); Northern Chamber Orchestra/Nicholas Ward
Suite Populaire Brésilienne (from 8.553987) (No.1 Mazurka [3.39]; No.2 Schottisch [3.35]; No.3 Valsa [4.27]; No.4 Gavota [5.21]; No.5 Chôrinho [4.34])
Norbert Kraft (guitar)
Recorded various locations 1989-2003
Notes in English
NAXOS 8.570163/64 [69.07 + 75.08] 
 

 

This is an anthology compiled from many Naxos guitar recordings of Latin-American guitar music ranging from the most serious classical works, such as the Villa Lobos Concerto to popular tunes, such as, again, the Villa Lobos Suite Populaire, and the Ponce. As a rule the editor has sensibly found music which ranges towards as well as away from the typical hot latin rhythms you expect from the genre and preferred unusual pieces, more thoughtful, more structured, some more placid in mood, some more angular and experimental. Hence this collection will balance most other recordings of Latin-American guitar music you might have and help round out your collection.

The Lauro Joropo is high energy fun. Brouwer’s November Day is a lovely, sad, thoughtful tune in an interesting arrangement. Pereira’s Gathering in Planaltina is an angular depiction of a happy crowd with abrupt changes in rhythm, texture, and dynamics. Blazquez’s Kite Flying Dream is an intriguingly modern tuneful piece built on a flying dance rhythm over a varied ostinato. Simon’s Peanut Seller is a familiar tune freshly worked out with virtuoso multiple voices into a real show-stopper. Pujol’s Elegy on the Death of a Tango Player is a three movement suite based on simple, arresting harmonies, with a beautiful second movement in “raindrop prelude” style, and a joyous finale.

The Piazzolla pieces are uniformly disappointing. They are aimed exactly at American TV music pop aesthetic where just a touch of ethnic flavor must be swept away by familiar generic ‘swing’ before anyone gets frightened by the foreignness of it all or feels displaced by the unfamiliarity. They are the only pieces on the disks which pander to vulgar taste. At the other extreme are the Villa-Lobos pieces which represent a truly original mind, so abhorrent of cliché as to border on the astringent. Perhaps I should concede that Villa-Lobos may have been moving comfortably within native Brazilian styles but to others elsewhere it seems brilliantly and uncompromisingly original, rather like Bartók’s view of authentic Hungarian music. Villa-Lobos is an acquired taste but, once acquired, becomes compulsive.

Paul Shoemaker 

 


 



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