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ALLEGRO BARBARO Bela BARTÓK (1881 - 1945) Allegro Barbaro (1911) Leos JANACEK (1854 - 1928) In the Mists (1912): Sonata for Piano (1905) Klement SLAVICKY (1910 - 1999) Three Piano Pieces (1947): Piano Sonata (1958) Lubos FISER (1935 - 1999) Sonata for Piano No. VIII (1998?) Martin Kasik ARCODIVA UP 0030 2 131 [63.41] [JF] [SJ]

All these pieces both move and inspire. Martin Kasik is a great pianist. I hope to hear much more from him in the future. PLUS A second opinion from Simon Jenner

Beauty and Terror new directions in creative music Unknown Public UP11 [72'50"] [PGW]

- - some readers of MusicWeb might be nervous of Unknown Public's brown cardboard box packaging - - they are essential to keep a finger on the pulse of where music is going now - - similarity is to be found between music of ages past, the fashionable spiritual minimalism of today, and the more political explorations of powerful ideas and needs to be found here - -

HANDEL (1685-1759) (arr. BEECHAM) Suite de Ballet (The Origin of Design), The Gods Go A' Begging * (excerpts), Piano Concerto in A major Lady Betty Humby Beecham (piano) Sir Thomas Beecham conducting the London Philharmonic Orchestra and the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra * SOMM-BEECHAM 7 [74:52] [IL]

A delicious confection for all Beecham and Handel lovers.


I am now convinced that Brendel is to be numbered among the greats, and a lot of the evidence is gathered together in this set.

Great Cellists - CASALS BRAHMS Double Concerto [30.57] DVORAK Cello Concerto [36.12] Pablo Casals (cello) Jacques Thibaud (violin) (Brahms) Pablo Casals Orchestra of Barcelona/Alfred Cortot (Brahms) Czech PO/George Szell (Dvorak) rec 10-11 May 1929, Barcelona (Brahms); 28 April 1937, Prague (Dvorak) NAXOS HISTORICAL 8.110930 [67.09] [RB]

A bargain easy winner for alternative versions in anyone's collection. Humanity and character shine out from these recordings.

FM1: HOMAGE TO THE 50'S Music for Guitar and Violin composed 1952 - 1956 DUO 46 - Matthew Gould, Spanish Guitar & Beth Ilana Schneider, Violin Guitar Plus Records GPR 100198 [50:50] [SF]

A curiously contradictory disc, yet clearly of serious intent.

GUITAR RECITAL  JOAQUIN RODRIGO En Los Trigales JOAQUIN CLERCH Guitarresca DARIUS MILHAUD Segoviana LEO BROUWER Sonata, Hika TORU TAKEMITSU Folios, Equinox FLORES CHAVIANO Sonata, Evocacion, Boceto FRANCISCO TÁRREGA Preludio No.2, Preludio No.5 Ricardo Gallén - Guitar   Naxos 8.554832 [AD]

I returned to this disc not in the capacity of a reviewer but to listen and enjoy it for its own sake; it is a current favourite.

Jascha Heifetz (1901-87) Alexander GLAZUNOV (1865-1936)  Violin Concerto in A Minor Op 82 (1903) with John Barbirolli, LPO (rec. 28/3/34, EMI Abbey Road Studio No. 1) Max BRUCH (1838-1920)  Scottish Fantasy, Op 46 (1879-80) with William Steinberg, RCA SO (rec. 12/9/47, RCA Victor Studios, Hollywood) Johannes BRAHMS (1833-1897)  Double Concerto in A Minor Op 102 with Emmanuel Feuermann, Eugene Ormandy, Philadelphia (rec. 21/12/39, Academy of Music, Philadelphia)  Naxos 8.110940 [74.58] [SJ]

At Naxos price do not hesitate

THE HOUNDS OF SPRING: English Dances and Preludes (1905-35)  Paul CORDER (1879-1942) Nine Preludes (1904) William HURLSTONE (1876-1906) Capriccio in B minor Ernest FARRAR (1885-1918) Valse Caprice; Shadow Dance J B McEWEN (1868-1948) Three Preludes Frederick DELIUS  (1862-1934) Dance for Harpsichord; Three Preludes Armstrong GIBBS (1889-1960) Four Preludes Herbert HOWELLS (1892-1983) Phantasy (1917) Alan Cuckston (piano)rec Leeds, April 1990 SWINSTY FEW 118CDr [65.53] [RB]

Alan Cuckston's sensitive performances are given without glossy virtuosity. The rarest British repertoire spanning the genres of risen impressionism and romantic afflatus.

Great Operatic Arias Volume 7 - DELLA JONES CHANDOS Opera in English CHAN3049 [DDD] [80.00].

Della Jones' career has been notably wide-ranging and this disc demonstrates many of Jones' strengths: her smooth legato, her evenness of tone over her wide range and (not least) her facility

THE ART OF FRANZ KONWITSCHNY BEETHOVEN The Nine Symphonies and overtures SCHUMANN The Four Symphonies and overtures. Works for violin and orchestra by BEETHOVEN, BACH, VIVALDI, MOZART, WIENIAWSKI Konwitschny conducting Gewandhausorchester, Leipzig, Rundfunkchor Leipzig (Schumann and Beethoven symphonies etc), Staatskapelle Berlin (Bach etc); Staatskapelle Dresden (Mozart etc) ADD recorded 1958-1962 - stereo EDEL CLASSICS 0002172CCC [RB]

A remarkable 11CD box. Allure heightened by the bargain price. The Leipzig orchestra are dark and firm of tone. Unmissable Beethoven and Schumann cycles with the Beethoven being outstanding

Pierre Monteux conducts: BRAHMS  Symphony No. 3 SCHUMANN Symphony No. 4 ROSSINI
Overture: L'Italiana in Algeri
  Pierre Monteux conducts the BBC Symphony Orchestra  Recorded in Manchester Town Hall, 21st November 1962 (Rossini and Brahms) and in the Royal Festival Hall on 18th October 1961 (Schumann). BBC BBCL 4058-2 [74:25] [IL]

A compelling and thrilling concert experience.

MESSE DE MARIAGE  Henri IV et Marie de Médicis Ensemble Doulce Mémoire Direction : Denis RAISIN-DADRE Astrée Naïve E 8808 [62.40] [PGW]

The wedding of Henri IV and Marie de Médicis was celebrated twice. In Florence in October 1600 by proxy (Henry was away at war against the Duke of Savoy) and in Lyons on 17th December. Four hundred years later Doulce Mémoire brings this event vividly to life.

Jessye Norman sings Strauss and Wagner Four Last Songs/Wesendonck Lieder Norman/Concertgebouw/Masur/LSO/Davis Recorded 1975/1983 50 Great Recordings PHILIPS 464 742-2 [47.41] [CF]

Jessye Norman's singing of Strauss's Four Last Songs is a must for anyone's collection.

Points in a Changing Circle - Music of New Zealand Composers Douglas LILBURN Brass Quartet (1992) John ELMSLY Triptych for trumpet and electronic sounds (1993) John RIMMER Sonata 5 John RIMMER Seaswell for trumpet and electronic sounds (1993) Ross HARRIS Echo for trumpet with tape loop John ELMSLY Gestauqua for brass quintet and electronic tape Concord Brass ATOLL A9806 [63.10]      

Contemporary Brass from New Zealand

The Rubinstein Collection Vol.15
RACHMANINOV Piano Concerto No.2  NBC/Golschmann TCHAIKOVSKY Piano Concerto No.1
MSO/Mitropoulos Recorded 1946 RCA Red Seal 09026 63015-2 [62'] [CF]
The Rubinstein Collection Vol.20
SCHUMANN Carnaval/Fantasiestücke etc Recorded 1949/53 RCA Red Seal 09026 63020-2 [77'] [CF]

Rubinstein combines virtuosity with subtlety. Those introductory solo piano chords grow to such a dynamic extent that his playing seems as if it will burst through the speakers before the orchestra joins in.

SWEDISH ORCHESTRAL FAVOURITES -VOLUME 2 Lars-Erik LARSSON (1908-1986) Lyric Fantasy Op. 54 (1966); Little Serenade for String Orchestra Op. 12 (1934) Adagio for string orchestra Op. 48 (1960) Gunnar DE FRUMERIE (1908-1987) Pastoral Suite for flute, string orchestra & harp Op. 13B (1933) Karl-Birger BLOMDAHL (1916-1968) Adagio from 'The Wakeful Night' (1945) Kurt ATTERBERG (1887-1974) Suite No.3 for violin, viola and string orchestra Op.19 No.1 (c1921) Ture RANGSTRÖM (1884-1947) Divertimento elegiaco for string orchestra (1918) Sara Troback (Violin); Johanna Persson (Viola); Sarah Lindloff (Flute). Swedish Chamber Orchestra/Petter Sundkvist Rec 9th-11th November 1995 NAXOS 8.553715 [71.42][JF]

Music composed mainly in a lighter vein although there are profound moments. Swedish Chamber Orchestra's playing is sensitive and very beautiful. The production is superb.

TOP BRASS: A limited edition containing the following two albums: BRASSED OFF: Music from the original soundtrack Grimethorpe Colliery Band/John Anderson except *Orchestra/Trevor Jones CLASSIC BRASS Grimethorpe Colliery RJB Band/Garry Cutt, with *Lesley Garrett (soprano) BMG Classics 75605 51368 2 [2 CDs 49' 55", 68' 50"] [CT]

The two discs are attractively packaged…it is Brassed Off however that stands out.

WHO IS AFRAID OF 20th CENTURY MUSIC? Volume 2  Hamburg Staatsorchester Philharmonic Ingo Metzmacher DDD - recorded live Musikhalle, Hamburg, 31/12/00.    EMI CDC5 57129-2 [78.35] [JP]

Live performances of a range of 20th Century short pieces for your enjoyment and obviously for the audience also on New Year's Eve 2000.

The World of English Ayres & Madrigals Dowland,  Gibbons,  Wilbye, Morley The Consort of Musicke/Anthony Rooley Decca 467 786-2 [70 mins] [PGW]

- - - a generous, inexpensive collection of the best of English vocal music from the Golden Age of c.1600, superbly sung by a group which knows the field inside out. If you do not have a CD of madrigals in your collection, buy this one and be encouraged to go into the field further with some of the CDs which are more fully documented - - -


Anne Bond A Guide to the Harpsichord Amadeus Press paper ISBN 1 57467 063 8 £12.99 [AB]

FIONA RICHARDS THE MUSIC OF JOHN IRELAND Ashgate Publishing Limited; ISBN: 0754601110: 308pp: £45.00 [CSS]

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

Classical Editor: Rob Barnett,  Reviewers: Rob Barnett, Ian Lace, Len Mullenger, and:  Richard Adams, Colin Anderson, Arthur Baker, Grace Barber, Terry Barfoot,  Peter Bates, Marc Bridle, Arthur Butterworth, Colin Clarke, Paul Conway, Gary Dalkin, Andy Daly, Tony Duggan, Harry Downey,  Christopher Fifield, Lewis Foreman, Simon Foster, Christopher Howell, Simon Jenner, Stephen Lloyd, John Phillips, Ailís Ní Ríain, Humphrey Smith, Philip Scowcroft, Colin Scott-Sutherland, Andrew Seivewright, Christopher Thomas, Richard Whitehouse, Peter Grahame Woolf, David Wright. A complete list of contributors can be seen here


Any opinions expressed in reviews or articles on this site are those of the author and  do not necessarily represent the views of the site owner, Len Mullenger or the Editors.  Reviewers and authors retain copyright in their work unless it has been paid for or commissioned by the site owner.

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