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Isaac ALBENIZ Iberia Tomas MARCO Arbol de Arcangeles Xavier MONTSALVATGE Cinco Canciones Negras Maurice RAVEL Bolero Manuel de FALLA La Vida Breve (Interlude and Dance No. 1); El Amor Brujo (Ritual Fire Dance). Carole Farley (sop) Sudwestrundfunk Sinfonieorkester/Jose Serebrier PHOENIX PHCD 147 [67.33] [RB]

Worth tracking down for Serebrier's Bolero and Farley's confidently idiosyncratic Montsalvatge cycle.

Georges AURIC (1899-1983) Film Music Vol IV La Symphonie Pastorale; Macao, l'enfer du jeu; Du rififi chez les hommes (Rififi); Le salaire de la peur (The Wages of Fear). Slovak Radio Symphony Orchestra/Adriano MARCO POLO 8.225136 [59:33] [IL]

Another jewel in Marco Polo's enterprising series of French film music by Georges Auric.

BACH. Attributions. Eight Little Preludes and Fugues BWV 553-560 Fifteen Chorale Preludes, Fugue in G minor BWV 581 Partita Allein Gott in der Hoh sei Ehr BWV 771 Christopher Herrick on the organ of Pfarrkirche St Michael. Kaisten, Switzerland. Hyperion CDA 67263 (DDD) [76.45] [DW]

Performances: good; presentation: infuriating

Samuel BARBER (1910-81) Knoxville - Summer of 1915; Hermit Songs Aaron COPLAND (1900-90) Old American Songs (sets 1 and 2) Virgil THOMSON (1896-1989) Stabat Mater; Capital, Capitals Eleanor Steber (sop)/Dumbarton Oaks Orchestra/William Strickland. Rec 7 Nov 1950 (Knoxville) Leontyne Price (sop)/composer (piano) (Hermit) rec 19 Nov 1954 William Warfield (bar)/composer (Old American Songs) rec 16 Aug 1951, 18 Aug 1953 Jennie Tourel (mezzo)/New Music String 4tet (Stabat) rec 17 Apr 1951 Joseph Crawford (ten); Clyde S Turner (ten); Joseph James (bar); William C Smith (bass); composer (piano) (Capital, Capitals) rec 11 May 1951 ADD mono SONY CLASSICAL MHK 60899 [79.31] [RB]

Sony should take a bow for making so many prestigious and wise judgements in the production of this disc although as we shall see it is not all plain sailing.

Agustín Barrios  Guitar Music Vol. 1   Guitar - Antigoni Goni Naxos 8.554558 [AD]

Antigoni Goni's knowledge of the various ingredients of musical traditions, styles and forms that Barrios used to such good effect is well established in her playing, the juxtaposition of voicing within the harmony that is so important in conveying the unique flavour of Barrios's music is assured, as is her use of tonal colouring and dynamics.

Jennifer BATE  Reflections Organ music of Jennifer Bate Jennifer Bate (organ) GUILD GMCD 7209 [HC]

Bate's music should appeal to organists willing to investigate new, accessible repertoire and will appeal to anyone simply enjoying well-crafted, colourful and tuneful music. A beautiful recording

Colin BAYLISS (b. 1948) Piano Sonata No. 1 Benedictio Mariae (1982) Piano Sonata No. 2 (1996) Six Bagatelles (1981) Three Impressionist Sketches (1981) Encore - A Tentative Tango (1996) David Martin (piano) rec ASC studios, Macclesfield, 1998 NEW CENTURY CLASSICS NCC 2001 [RB]

Evidence of a skilled and melodically gifted composer.

Colin BAYLISS (1948-) The complete organ music Prelude (1990) Organ Sonata (1992) Postlude (1992) Funeral Music (1996) Wedding Music (1971) Ronald Frost (organ) St Ann's Church, Manchester, rec 1990s New Century Classics NCC 2002 [50.03] [RB]

Organists would do well to look closely at these fine works. They add lustre to the repertoire.
A short article by Philip Sowcroft on Colin Bayliss is also presented.

BEETHOVEN: Symphony No 3 in E Flat major, Op. 55 'Eroica' Staatskapelle Dresden/Franz Konwitschny Recorded in 1954 BERLIN CLASSICS 0090412BC [52.08] [MB]

This is an extremely fine Eroica and one that can sit in only the most distinguished company.

DVD REVIEW: BEETHOVEN The Complete Violin Sonatas Anne-Sophie Mutter (vln) & Lambert Orkis (pf) DG 073 014-9, 2 discs (176'18 & 159'37), Full Price + documentary by Reiner Moritz [MB]

Many will probably not watch all of the recordings in one sitting - although I did not find it so arduous an undertaking as I had expected. They play in chronological order (which adds to the enjoyment of hearing them as Beethoven might have heard them in his own mind). But these are important recordings of an artist at her prime. And hear them you must.

BEETHOVEN Piano Sonata No 31 in A Flat, Op. 110; Piano Sonata No 29 in B Flat, Op.106, 'Hammerklavier'. GINASTERA Danzas Argentinas Op. 2 Blanca Uribe (piano) MUSICIANS SHOWCASE RECORDINGS MS1034 [70.48] [JQ]

A most enjoyable Beethoven disc with the Ginastera dances proving a surprising but welcome bonus.

Luciano BERIO Linea Dieter MACK Rafting & Beyond George CRUMB Makrokosmos IIIPiano & Percussion (Susan Wenckus, Markus Stange, Lutz Bidlingmaier, Markus Hauke, Michael Kiedaisch)SDR Audite 97.455 [66 mins] [PGW]

A delectable CD of demonstration quality by a group which impressed S&H at Munich. Linea (1973) is one of Berio's happier creations of the early '70s & Crumb's Music for a Summer Evening is easily accessible.

Hector BERLIOZ Requiem op 5 Alexander Samoilov (tenor) Choir and Orchestra of the Saratov Academic Theatre of Opera and Ballet/Yuri Kochnev Recorded in Saratov in May 1999 BOHEME CDBMR 909101 [72.09] [AAS]

A worthy and often exciting enterprise, worth sampling though hardly supplanting the historic Telarc recording.

Lord BERNERS (1883-1950) Piano Music, Songs, Orchestral music. Recordings from the 1970s and 1940s Lord Berners, piano SYMPOSIUM 1278 [79:40]  [RB]

Berners recordings from the 1940s and 1970s. This plugs so many gaps but could also easily stand as your only Berners choice if you must limit yourself to a single Berners disc.

LORD BERNERS (1883-1950) Le Carrosse du Saint-Sacrement (1923) Fanfare (1931) Caprice Péruvien (1938) Viceroy: Ian Caddy (bar) Martinez: Alexander Oliver (ten) Balthasar: John Winfield (ten) La Périchole: Cynthia Buchan (sop) Thomas d'Esquivel: Thomas Lawlor (bass) Bishop of Lima: Anthony Smith (bass) BBC Scottish SO/Nicholas Cleobury (Carrosse) rec Glasgow 16 Aug 1983 Royal Ballet Sinfonia/Gavin Sutherland (Fanfare) rec London 15 Sept 1999 RTE Sinfonietta/David Lloyd-Jones (Caprice) rec Dublin 10 Jan 1995 MARCO POLO 8.225155 [79.17] [HC]

The opera is much better than might be expected from a composer sometimes referred to as the 'English Satie'. Berners' music is often much finer than Satie's.

Bodin De BOISMORTIER (1689-1755) Suites 1-4 for solo harpsichord (pièces de clavecin); Suites 4, 5 and 6 (for flute traversière avec la basse) Anne Savignat, Flute; Beatrice Martin, Harpsichord; Christine Plubeau, Viola da gamba Recorded at the church of Saint-Hippolyte, August 1998 NAXOS 8.554457 [GH]

The players show a sure and technically sound skill but also a perfect balance of mind and heart, which is a prerequisite of an ideal performance of this often elusive, elegant and refined music.

BRAHMS: Symphony No 1 in C minor, Op. 68 Variations on the St Anthony Chorale Rundfunk-Sinfonie-Orchester Leipzig/Hermann Abendroth recorded 1949 BERLIN CLASSICS 0092432BC Mono [63.49] Symphony No 3 in F minor Op. 90 Symphony No 4 in E minor Op.98  Rundfunk-Sinfonie-Orchester Leipzig/Hermann Abendroth recorded 1952 (Op.90), 1954 (Op.98) BERLIN CLASSICS 0094332BC Mono [71.38] [MB]

Brahms interpretation of the highest stature. The sound requires some tolerance but these are unforgettable performances. Fascinating historical documents of one of the greatest, yet most undervalued, conductors.

BRAHMS - orchestral works conducted by SZELL The Four Symphonies, Academic Festival Overture, Tragic Overture, St Anthony Variations, Hungarian Dances 17-21 (Philadelphia/Ormandy) Cleveland Orchestra/George Szell (these discs are also available separately) SONY CLASSICAL - Essential Classics SB3K48398 [RB]

One is deliciously aware, all the time, of Szell sculpting nice balances in dynamics and tempi. Pleasure in abundance, allowance being made for distressed sound quality - at its worst in the First Symphony.

BRAHMS (1833-1897) Violin Concerto, Double Concerto Isaac Stern (violin) Leonard Rose (cello) Philadelphia Orchestra/Eugene Ormandy ADD rec 1973/74 SONY SBK 46335 [74.03] [RB]

A towering bargain. Fortunate the new listener who learns her/his Brahms through these works. Snap it up.

BRAHMS Variations on a theme by Paganini Op.35, Variations and Fugue on a theme by Handel Op.24, Rhapsodies - Opp.79 & Op.119/4 Egon Petri (piano) NAXOS 8.110634 [59.18] [CA]

Surfaces virtually silent. The variations are marvellous. Petri's musicianship is to be prized

Frank BRIDGE Piano Trio No. 1 Phantasie Trio (1907), Piano Trio No. 2 (1929), Phantasy Piano Quartet (1911) Dartington Piano Trio rec Haberdashers' Aske's School, Elstree, 10-11 July 1987 HYPERION CDH55063 [64.55] [RB]

As a balanced collection of Bridge's chamber music an impossible act to follow and the Phantasie Piano Trio is given an airing of great sensitivity.

Alan BUSH (1900-1995) The Complete Works for Organ  Three English Song Preludes (1952) Two Occasional Pieces (1960) Prelude and Concert Piece (1988) Suite (1988) Sonata (1989) Robert Crowley (organ) St Mary's Church, Hitchin rec Sept 2000, recorded and produced by Stephen Lewis Jones. PIPEWORK SCS655 [66.20] [RB]

There is no surface glamour about this music, no sheen, only a forthright honesty accessible to the persistent.

[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, John France, Julian Hellaby, Christopher Howell, Simon Jenner, Stephen Lloyd,   Kirk McElhearn, Gwyn Parry-Jones, John Phillips, John Quinn, Ailís Ní Ríain, Humphrey Smith, Philip Scowcroft, Adrian Smith, Colin Scott-Sutherland, Andrew Seivewright, Christopher Thomas, Richard Whitehouse, Jonathan Woolf, 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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