This disc aurally portrays one facet of Sousa's talent. He was active in
the field of musicals. Three of them are quarried here for orchestral tid-bits.
The Bride Elect (1897) is evocative of Rheinland ebb and flow with a dash
or two of Alt Wien Neujahres charm thrown in for good measure. There
is an absurd tarantella followed by a series of alcoholic musical 'swigs'.
The Champagne movement features popped corks (an obviously Straussian
touch). Rhine Wine is a Delibes-like delight. The harp arpeggiated
White Rock and Psyche is followed by men's stuff in Whiskies.
Cordials resounds with confident silliness and all ends with (what else
but) a jolly march.
El Capitan (1895) is again a Straussian effort. Its movements include a
yearningly eloquent O Warrior Grim with its trumpet solo for trumpet
and a fluttering confection in waltz-time. The whole is rounded out with
the famous march with its whooping French horns. Our Flirtations (1880)
has an overture with flashy and sentimental solos for flute and trumpet finishing
with a quick-time march - all white epaulettes, sabre-taches and chromium
You will know if you like this. It seems (rather like the Sousa at the Symphony
disc) to be very well done and most agreeably documented and recorded.