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Bandstand in the Park
, Lionel MONCKTON (1861-1924)
Soldiers in the Park
BBC Wireless Military Band/Lieutenant Bertram Walton O’Donnell, MVO, ARAM later FRAM (1932)
El Relicario [2:14]
National Band of New Zealand/K.G.L. Smith (1953)
Emil WALDTEUFEL (1837-1915) Acclamations Waltz [4:08]
The Band of the Grenadier Guards/Lt.-Col. George Miller (1932)
André de BASQUE, alias of Albert William KETÈLBEY (1875-1959)
A Japanese Carnival [3:06]
Callender’s Senior Band (1938)
Coronation Bells
The Band of the Grenadier Guards/Major F. J. Harris, MBE (1952)
Leroy ANDERSON (1908-1975) arr. LANG
The Syncopated Clock [2:40]
The Capitol Symphonic Band/Louis Castellucci (1950)
RIMSKY-KORSAKOV (1844-1908) arr. O’DONNELL Dance Of the Tumblers – from "The Snow Maiden" [3:27]
BBC Wireless Military Band/Lieutenant Bertram Walton O’Donnell, MVO, ARAM later FRAM (1929)
Henry WALFORD DAVIES (1869-1941)
Royal Air Force March Past [2:34]
Central Band of the Royal Air Force/Wing Commander A. E. Sims, MBE (1951)
Frog King’s Parade
National Band of New Zealand/K.G.L. Smith (1953) [2:25]
Claude DEBUSSY (1862-1918)
Golliwog’s Cakewalk – from "Children’s Corner" Suite [2:35]
BBC Wireless Military Band/Lieutenant Bertram Walton O’Donnell, MVO, ARAM later FRAM (1929)
Parade of the Puppets
Band of the Coldstream Guards/Major James Causeley Windram (1932)
Eric COATES (1886 - 1957) London Bridge March [2:56]
Band of HM Grenadier Guards/Captain George Miller (1934)
Moritz MOSZOWSKI (1854 - 1925) arr. LAKE
– from "Boabdil" [3:41]
BBC Wireless Military Band/Lieutenant Bertram Walton O’Donnell, MVO, ARAM later FRAM (1935)
The Little Clock on the Mantle – Characteristic Piece [2:45]
Eastbourne Municipal Band/H.G. Amers (1929)
Carl Michael ZIEHRER (1843 - 1922) Auersperg March [2:54]
Deutschmeister Kapelle/Julius Herrmann (1952)
Fiesta Paso Doble [2:51]
Band of the Welsh Guards/Captain F. L. Statham (1949)
Clare GRUNDMAN (1913-1996)
An American Folk Rhapsody [5:18]
Band of the Irish Guards (1948)
Jack BEAVER (1900-1963)
The Gay Cavalier [3:19]
The "All Star" Concert Brass Band/Harry Mortimer, OBE (1954)
Kenneth Anthony WRIGHT, arr. Arthur J. WOOD
Dainty Lady [2:58]
Callender’s Senior Band (1938)
Mariquita [2:31]
Royal Military School of Music (Kneller Hall)/Major M. Roberts (1944)
Edrich SIEBERT alias of Stanley Smith MASTER (1903-1984)
Three Jolly Sailormen
The "All Star" Concert Brass Band/Harry Mortimer, OBE (1952)
Archibald JOYCE (1873-1963) Victorious – Military Waltz [2:42]
Royal Military School of Music (Kneller Hall)/Major M. Roberts (1944)
The Merry Musicians [2:43]
Band of the Queen’s Royal Regiment/Roger Barsotti (1943)
Ronald BINGE (1910-1979)
Cornet Carillon
The "All Star" Concert Brass Band/Harry Mortimer, OBE (1954)
Karl KOMZAK (1850-1905)
Andreas Hofer March [3:28]
Deutschmeister Kapelle/Julius Herrmann (1952)
Dates of composers given where known
Recordings re-mastered from a variety of recorded sources
GUILD GLCD 5117 [76:52]

Guild turns military in this latest entrant in their Light Music series. The bands represent the home countries and they take in the Empire as well courtesy of the 1953 National Band of New Zealand. Around the fringes we have an American interloper via Capitol’s Symphonic Band and a brace of Teutonic efforts from the Deutschmeister Kapelle, an award-winning aggregation directed by Julius Herrmann.

The various British organisations are represented by such as the BBC Wireless Military Band whose rousing Soldiers in the Park was their theme song. A Japanese Carnival by the obscure composer de Basque turns out to be a nom de plume of the not-so-obscure Albert Ketèlbey. This is a very robust piece of Japanoiserie. The Grenadier Guards show exemplary sang-froid in their Coronation Bells but there are even bigger compositional guns here; inevitably Walford Davies’s Royal Air Force March Past and Eric Coates’s London Bridge March. The former receives an apposite dusting down courtesy of the RAF band and the latter is in the indomitable hands of the Grenadiers under Captain George Miller.

There are a number of transcriptions or arrangements of classical pieces amidst the marching and the glory – Moszkowski, Debussy’s Golliwog, Rimsky’s Tumblers – and a generic clock piece as well (where would we be without them). But for the most part we have strong upper lip. That said it’s a mite weird to find the Band of the Welsh Guards essaying, in their only contribution, a Paso Doble and the Irish Guards, in their only appearance, dredging up some anodyne Americana.

Still, complaints about repertoire must be few. Harry Mortimer’s virtuosos show up, splendidly fiery though brittly recorded by Paxton and we can welcome the wartime Kneller Hall band. One of the most enjoyable of all these tracks was Ronald Binge’s Cornet Carillon, a sort of cascading cornets and reminiscent of the sort of thing he did for strings.

The transfers get the now standard smooth Guild treatment but here, for once, I rather dislike some of them. The 1929 Columbias for instance have much more openness and treble air than are allowed here; I think Guild is trying to achieve a conformity of sound between the 1929 and 1950s tracks but that’s not a desirable accomplishment in my book. If I have a plea it’s to respect the integrity of the earlier 78s and not to squeeze the air out of them. But maybe this is a specialist quibble. I’m sure the notes and production will appeal to a large audience.

Jonathan Woolf

see also Review by John France



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