Aureole etc.

Golden Age singers

Nimbus on-line

Faure songs
Charlotte de Rothschild (soprano);

  Founder: Len Mullenger
Classical Editor: Rob Barnett


Some items
to consider


paid for

Acte Prealable Polish recordings

Forgotten Recordings
Forgotten Recordings
All Forgotten Records Reviews

Troubadisc Weinberg- TROCD01450

100th birthday of Mieczyslaw Weinberg on December 8, 2019.
Renate Eggbrecht has recorded all 3 violin Sonatas
All Troubadisc reviews

FOGHORN Classics

Brahms String Quartets

All Foghorn Reviews

All HDTT reviews

Clarissa Bevilacqua plays
Augusta Read Thomas

all Nimbus reviews

Brahms Dvorak
Brahms 2 Dvorak 7
all tudor reviews



Follow us on Twitter

Subscribe to our free weekly review listing

Sample: See what you will get

Editorial Board
MusicWeb International
Founding Editor
Rob Barnett
Editor in Chief
John Quinn
Contributing Editor
Ralph Moore
   David Barker
Jonathan Woolf
MusicWeb Founder
   Len Mullenger


Discs for review may be sent to:
Jonathan Woolf
76 Lushes Road
Essex IG10 3QB
United Kingdom


alternatively Crotchet   AmazonUK   AmazonUS

Gerald FINZI (1901-1956)
A Young Man’s Exhortation Op.14 (1926-29) [29:16]
Till Earth Outwears Op.19a (1927-56) [17:29]
Oh Fair to See Op.13b (1925-56) [17:18]
John Mark Ainsley (tenor); Iain Burnside (piano)
rec. Potton Hall, Suffolk, UK, 27-28 November 2006. DDD
Programme notes in English and German. Texts in English
NAXOS 8.570414 [64:03]

This is a very thoughtful recital of Finzi songs. A Young Man’s Exhortation is that rare thing in Finzi’s output – a series of songs actually conceived from the outset as a cycle. What makes this collection so attractive in programme terms is the inclusion of two other collections which include songs possibly originally intended for A Young Man’s Exhortation. This cycle has fared well on CD. Both Martyn Hill and James Gilchrist have recorded the complete set quite beautifully. This music is very much ‘English tenor’ territory and John Mark Ainsley is among the very finest of the breed. His voice is lucid, diction always beautifully clear and the musicality and phrasing is faultless. This makes a wonderful companion to the two Finzi discs recorded by baritone Roderick Williams – both also with Iain Burnside – which represent volumes 12 and 15 of Naxos’s excellent English Song Series.
Finzi was a huge admirer of Thomas Hardy and set his words more than those of any other writer, beginning in 1921 with By Footpath and Stile and also including Before and After Summer, I Said to Love, Earth and Air and Rain and Till Earth Outwears – the last included here. A Young Man’s Exhortation is a relatively early collection. Its ten songs are all beautifully crafted, with great care being taken over the setting of the words for which Finzi felt such an affinity. The music is still early enough in Finzi’s output to show the influence of Holst and Vaughan Williams but there are some remarkable touches which are pure Finzi, such as the lush musical language of Her Temple and the spare textures and eerie harmonies in The Comet at Yell’ham.
Finzi was a notoriously slow composer and many works occupied him for a considerable number of years. The songs that formed his sets as he called them were collated over many years, slowly being grouped into suitable combinations. At the time of his death more than twenty songs remained unallocated to any groupings. Finzi's widow, son Christopher and composer Howard Ferguson divided these into four groups. Till Earth Outwears brings together seven Thomas Hardy tenor settings. One of the earliest of these is At a Lunar Eclipse, which was probably one of those originally intended for inclusion in A Young Man’s Exhortation. Two of the songs are very late pieces. Life laughs onwards dates from March 1955 and is tinged with regret, doubtless due to Finzi’s knowledge of his terminal illness. It never looks like summer here is from February 1956 and so ranks among Finzi’s very last works.
The seven songs of Oh Fair to See bring together settings of words by a variety of poets, including one more by Hardy. Again, they represent many years from Finzi’s composing career, including another possible contender for inclusion in A Young Man’s ExhortationI say ‘I’ll seek her side’.
The recording was made in the Finzi anniversary year 2006 exactly fifty years and three months after Finzi’s death. I found the balance of Ainsley’s voice and Burnside’s piano quite perfect, with enough bloom around the sound to present these lovely songs at their very best. The excellent and informative booklet notes are by possibly the Finzi expert of our times, Andrew Burn and a full set of texts for the songs is provided. For any lovers of English song, this is an indispensable disc, especially with this thoughtfully compiled programme.
Derek Warby


Advertising on

Donate and keep us afloat


New Releases

Naxos Classical
All Naxos reviews

Chandos recordings
All Chandos reviews

Hyperion recordings
All Hyperion reviews

Foghorn recordings
All Foghorn reviews

Troubadisc recordings
All Troubadisc reviews

all cpo reviews

Divine Art recordings
Click to see New Releases
Get 10% off using code musicweb10
All Divine Art reviews

All APR reviews

Lyrita recordings
All Lyrita Reviews


Wyastone New Releases
Obtain 10% discount

Recordings of the Month

November 2022
Bach Orchestral Suites

del Cinque
Del Cinque Cello sonatas

Fujita Mozart
Mao Fujita Mozart

Stanczyk Acousmatic Music


October 2022

Berg Violin Concerto
Violin Concerto Elmes

DEbussy Jeux
Debussy Jeux

Romantic pioano masters
Romantic Piano Masters

The future is female - Vol 2
Volume 2 - The Dance

impromptu harp music
Complete Harp Impromptus




Making a Donation to MusicWeb

Writing CD reviews for MWI

About MWI
Who we are, where we have come from and how we do it.

Site Map

How to find a review

How to find articles on MusicWeb
Listed in date order

Review Indexes
   By Label
      Select a label and all reviews are listed in Catalogue order
   By Masterwork
            Links from composer names (eg Sibelius) are to resource pages with links to the review indexes for the individual works as well as other resources.

Themed Review pages

Jazz reviews


      Composer surveys
      Unique to MusicWeb -
a comprehensive listing of all LP and CD recordings of given works
Prepared by Michael Herman

The Collector’s Guide to Gramophone Company Record Labels 1898 - 1925
Howard Friedman

Book Reviews

Complete Books
We have a number of out of print complete books on-line

With Composers, Conductors, Singers, Instumentalists and others
Includes those on the Seen and Heard site


Nostalgia CD reviews

Records Of The Year
Each reviewer is given the opportunity to select the best of the releases

Monthly Best Buys
Recordings of the Month and Bargains of the Month

Arthur Butterworth Writes

An occasional column

Phil Scowcroft's Garlands
British Light Music articles

Classical blogs
A listing of Classical Music Blogs external to MusicWeb International

Reviewers Logs
What they have been listening to for pleasure



Bulletin Board

Give your opinions or seek answers

Pat and present

Helpers invited!

How Did I Miss That?

Currently suspended but there are a lot there with sound clips

Composer Resources

British Composers

British Light Music Composers

Other composers

Film Music (Archive)
Film Music on the Web (Closed in December 2006)

Programme Notes
For concert organizers

External sites
British Music Society
The BBC Proms
Orchestra Sites
Recording Companies & Retailers
Online Music
Agents & Marketing
Other links
Web News sites etc

A pot-pourri of articles

MW Listening Room
MW Office

Advice to Windows Vista users  
Site History  
What they say about us
What we say about us!
Where to get help on the Internet
CD orders By Special Request
Graphics archive
Currency Converter
Web Ring
Translation Service

Rules for potential reviewers :-)
Do Not Go Here!
April Fools

Return to Review Index

Untitled Document

Reviews from previous months
Join the mailing list and receive a hyperlinked weekly update on the discs reviewed. details
We welcome feedback on our reviews. Please use the Bulletin Board
Please paste in the first line of your comments the URL of the review to which you refer.