> The London Trumpet Sound, Vol. 1 [CH]: Classical CD Reviews- Aug 2002 MusicWeb(UK)

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Louis PRIMA (1910-1978), arr. Paul Sarcich

Sing, Sing, Sing (1)
Errol GARNER (1921-1977), arr. Alan Gout

Misty (2)
TRAD, arr. Andrew Crowley

Jarabe Tapatio (Mexican Hat Dance)
John LENNON (1940-1980)/ Paul McCARTNEY (b. 1942), arr. Roger Harvey

Penny Lane (3)
Jeremiah CLARKE (c.1674-1707), arr. Simon Wright

The Prince of Denmarkís March (4)
Wolfgang Amadeus MOZART (1756-1791), arr. John Humphries

Rondo alla Turca

Gioacchino ROSSINI (1792-1868), arr. Paul Archibald

La Gazza Ladra: Overture
Joaquin RODRIGO (1901-1999), arr. Daryl Runswick

Adagio from Concierto de Aranjuez (5)
John Philip SOUSA (1854-1932), arr. Richard Payne

The Stars and Stripes Forever

Trumpets: Tony Adie, Bryan Alen, Paul Archibald (Solo Piccolo Trumpet, 3), Guy Barker (Solo Trumpet, 2), Paul Benniston, Roy Bilham, Martin Bunce, Robert Farley (Solo Natural Trumpet, 4), Tony Fisher, Rod Franks, Murray Greig, Tim Hawes, William Houghton, Mike Lovatt (Solo Trumpet, 1), Henry Lowther, Anne McAneny, Maurice Murphy (Solo Flugelhorn, 5), Paul Newton, John Wallace, James Watson, Patrick White, Adam Wright
Bass Trumpets: Brian Raby, Simon Gunton, Tim Smart, Simon Wills
Rhythm: Roy Babbington, Mitch Dalton, Harold Fisher, John Horler, Jim Richardson, Mike Smith
Percussion: Colin Currie, Russell Jordan, Anthony Kerr, Gary Kettel, Neil Percy, Sam Walton
Conductor: Geoffrey Simon
Rec. 22-23.8.2001, BBC Maida Vale Studio 3, London and 24-25.8.2001, St. Jude-on-the-Hill, London
CALA CACD 0113 [44í 06"]

The idea that "classical music doesnít sell" gets countered from time to time by initiatives that go to prove that it will if you can sell it. Look around for a formula that attracts and you might yet find yourself with, not "classical" music or "light" music or "rock" music, but just "music". About a year ago I was going overboard about what a quartet of bassoons can do (the Caliban Quartet: Feast on BIS-NL-CD-5012; if you havenít got it donít lose any more time). Since 1994 Cala have been making quite a success of records which mass together just one type of instrument, such as "The London Cello Sound", with 40 cellos, and "The London Violin Sound", with 48 violins. Here is the first of two volumes dedicated to "The London Trumpet Sound". As well as the trumpet as everybody pictures it, they have sweeter-toned cornets and flugelhorns, while the bass trumpets, with a range similar to that of the trombone, ensure that there is a proper bass line. Some percussion has been allowed in.

Each family of instruments seems to colour the personalities of those that play it. String-players can be prima donnas, while the brass tend to be a pretty hard-boiled lot. They roll up to rehearsals at the last moment in their oldest clothes, they do what they have to do with professional nonchalance and they nip off to the pub as soon as they have done it. Unless, that is, the conductor has fired them to do more. Iím afraid this doesnít seem to have happened here. Thereís a mouth-watering array of Londonís finest trumpeters and some splendid arrangements (hear them fill the air with fanfares and roulades in the so-called Trumpet Voluntary). But a performance of the Gazza Ladra overture in its original orchestration as joyless as this would be voted as dull as ditch water, and the fact that the players are carrying off considerable technical feats doesnít change that judgement. The Rondo alla Turca is neatly done but neither this nor Stars and Stripes convinces me that the players saw it as anything but another job to be done. If you compare the Aranjuez performance with that by the Grimethorpe Colliery Band in the "Brassed Off" soundtrack album you immediately note a sense of tingling occasion that just isnít here. The "Brassed Off" version has a full band and a more extrovert arrangement but the solo player himself seems to be digging much further into the heart of the music. The light pieces at the beginning are despatched neatly enough.

I expected to be bowled over by this and Iím sorry to report that I wasnít. Even the short playing time seems part and parcel of a "donít do any more than you have to" attitude.

Christopher Howell

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