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Mardi Brass: Something Old ... The Evolution of the Brass Quintet Renaissance Suite (arr. Adam WOOLF): HENRY VIII (1491-1547) I. The Base of Spayne [2:16] Anthony HOLBORNE (c.1545-1602) II. Pavan: The Image of Melancholy [3:26] Tarquinio MERULA (c.1594-1665) III. Chaconne [3:24] Henry PURCELL (1659-1695) (arr. Edward MAXWELL) Chaconne from the Duke of Gloucester’s Birthday Ode  [3:31] George Frederick HANDEL (1685-1759) Concerto in F (from HWV335a): Overture: Allegro (arr. Edward MAXWELL) Eternal Source of Light Divine (from Queen Anne’s Birthday Ode) (arr. Richard HAMMOND) [3:11] Hornpipe (arr. Edward MAXWELL) [3:35] Johann VIERDANCK (1605-1646) Sonata: Als ich einmal Lust bekam (arr. Adam WOOLF) [4:27] Jean-Philippe RAMEAU (1683-1764) Gavaotte and Variations (arr. Edward MAXWELL) [4:33] Hector BERLIOZ (1803-1869) Two Scenes from The Damnation of Faust (arr. Jeff MILLER): Mephistopheles’s Air [2:55] Dance of the Sylphes [2:24] Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (1756-1791) Three Church Sonatas (arr. Jonathan HASSAN) K329 [4:30] K67 [2:41] K263 [2:38] Viktor EWALD (1860-1935): Quintet No.2, Op.6 [19:32] Richard Hammond, Edward Maxwell (trumpets), Jonathan Hassan (horn), Adam Woolf (trombone), Jeff Miller (tuba, bass trombone) rec. 8-10 September 2004, St. Paul’s Church, New Southgate, London. DDD LONDON INDEPENDENT RECORDS LIR010 [67:34] [GPu]

There is plenty to enjoy here in the playing of an obviously accomplished group – so long as one doesn’t take the implied history lesson too seriously … see Full Review

Zubin Mehta: A 70th Birthday Tribute CD 1 [71:52] Leonard BERNSTEIN (1918-1990) Candide: Overture [4:14]§1 Gioachino ROSSINI (1792-1868) Guglielmo Tell: Overture [11:56]*§15 La scala di seta: Overture [6:12]*§16 Carl Maria von WEBER (1786-1826) Oberon: Overture [8:26]*§16 Der Freischütz: Overture [9:15]§2 Giuseppe VERDI (1813-1901) La forza del destino: Overture [7:31]§3 La traviata: Act I - Prelude [3:22]*§16 La traviata: Act III - Prelude [3:22]*§16 Franz von SUPPÉ (1819-1895) Dichter und Bauer: Overture [9:07]§3 Johann STRAUSS II (1825-1899) Die Fledermaus: Overture [8:11]§2 CD 2 [78:58] Maurice RAVEL (1875-1937) Boléro [13:52]§3 La valse [11:57]§4 Daphnis et Chloé: Suite No 2 [16:19]††§4 Igor STRAVINSKY (1882-1971) Circus Polka [3:36]§5 Le sacre de printemps [31:56]§6 CD 3 [80:44] Aaron COPLAND (1900-1990) Fanfare for the Common Man [2:43]7 John WILLIAMS (b 1932) Star Wars: Suite [29:48]8 Close Encounters of the Third Kind: Suite [13:36]8 William KRAFT (b 1923) Concerto for Four Percussion Soloists and Orchestra [18:38]9 Charles IVES (1874-1954) Decoration Day (Holidays in a Connecticut Country Town No 2) [9:37]10 Variations on America (orch. William Schuman) [6:48]10 CD 4 [80:36] Gustav HOLST (1874-1934) The Planets, Op. 32 [49:53] ††11 Edward ELGAR (1857-1934) Enigma Variations, Op. 36 [30:45]3 CD 5 [78:52] Anton BRUCKNER (1824-1896) Symphony No 8 in C minor (Nowak edition) [78:42]§12 CD 6 [79:57] Richard WAGNER (1813-1883) Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg: Act I - Prelude [9:11]†§17 Rienzi: Overture [12:00]§13 Lohengrin: Act I – Prelude [8:58]†§17 Gottfried von EINEM (1918-1996) Philadelphia Symphony [16:31]†§17 Richard STRAUSS (1864-1949) Also sprach Zarathustra, Op. 30 [32:56]14 Los Angeles Philharmonic Orchestra; *Israel Philharmonic Orchestra; †Wiener Philharmoniker/Zubin Mehta; ††additionally Los Angeles Master Chorale/Roger Wagner rec. Royce Hall UCLA, Los Angeles, 1: April 1976; 2: March 1973; 3: May 1972; 4: March 1970; 5: April 1967; 6: August 1969; 7: August 1977; 8: December 1977; 9: April 1968; 10: May 1975; 11: April 1971; 12: April 1974; 13: April 1973; 14: May 1968; *Mann Auditorium, Tel Aviv, 15: July 1980; 16: February 1977; †Sofiensaal, Vienna, 17: May-June 1966 ADD §1st international CD release DECCA 475 7470 [71:52 + 78:58 + 80:44 + 80:36 + 78:52 + 79:57] [AOr]

Zubin Mehta rocking the galaxy, the jaw-dropping LA sessions ... see Full Review

Missa Mexicana Francisco ESCALADA (fl. 1677) Villancico Canten dos jilguerillos [2:26] Juan Gutiérrez de PADILLA (c.1590-1664) Kirie [Missa Ego flos campi] [2:09] Santiago de MURCIA (c.1682-fl. 1714) Jácaras de la costa [4:18] Juan Bautista José CABANILLES (d. 1702) Xácara Los que fueren de buen gusto [4:55] Juan Gutiérrez de PADILLA Gloria [Missa Ego flos campi] [3:23] Juan CABANILLES (1644-1712) Corrente Italiana [4:04] Juan Gutiérrez de PADILLA Xácara: A la xácara xacarilla [7:12] Juan Gutiérrez de PADILLA Credo [Missa Ego flos campi] [5:52] Santiago de MURCIA Cumbées [3:02] Juan Gutiérrez de PADILLA Negrilla A siolo flasiquiyo [3:02] Juan Gutiérrez de PADILLA Sanctus [Missa Ego flos campi] [1:32] ANONYMOUS (17th Century, Peru) Marizápalos a lo humano: Marizápalos bajó una tarde [6:37] Joan CEREROLS (1618-1676) Marizápalos a lo divino: Serafin que con dulce harmonía [4:20] Miguel Pérez de ZAVALA (fl. 1690) Diferencias sobre marizápalos [4:20] Juan Gutiérrez de PADILLA Agnus Dei [Missa Ego flos campi] [1:34] Juan García de ZÉSPEDES (1619-1678) Guaracha Convidando está la noche [4:26] The Harp Consort/Andrew Lawrence-King rec. July 2000, Abbey of Saint-Michel-en-Thiérache, France. DDD HARMONIA MUNDI HMX 2907293 [64:17][DC]

An irresistible package for early music buffs and open-minded collectors. Beautifully recorded and performed ... see Full Review

Viktoria Mullova (violin) Twentieth-Century Violin Concertos Disc 1 Igor STRAVINSKY (1882-1971) Violin Concerto in D (1931) [20:37] * Béla BARTÓK (1881-1945) Violin Concerto No.2, BB117 (1939) [35:52] ^ Disc 2 Dmitri SHOSTAKOVICH (1906-1975) Violin Concerto No.1 in A minor, op. 99 (1948) [33:53] # Sergey PROKOFIEV (1891-1953) Violin Concerto No.2 in G minor, op.63 (1935) [26:52] # Viktoria Mullova (violin) Los Angeles Philharmonic/Esa-Pekka Salonen*^, Royal Philharmonic Orchestra/André Previn #. rec. Long Beach Terrace Theatre, Long Beach, May 1997 *; Todd-AO Studios, Hollywood, May 1997 ^; London, June 1988 #. DDD PHILIPS 475-7457 [56:44 + 61:04][TP]

This reissue brings together superb recordings of the Stravinsky and Prokofiev concertos, an excellent alternative reading of the Bartók and a decent performance of the Shostakovich.  Great value from a greatly underrated artist. ... see Full Review

Music for Brass and Percussion – 2 Arvo PÄRT (b. 1935) Arbos (1977 rev. 1986) [2:20] Giovanni GABRIELI (c. 1557-1612) Canzon Duodecimi Toni à 10 (No.4) (1597 edition) [3:43] Sonata Pian'e Forte (1597 edition) [3:59] Canzon in Double Echo (attributed to Gabrieli) [3:35] Robert SIMPSON (1921-1997) The Four Temperaments (1982) [21:27] Henry PURCELL (1659-1695) Symphony from Act IV of the Fairy Queen (1692) [5:55] Modest MUSSORGSKY (1839-1881) arr. Elgar HOWARTH (b. 1935) Pictures at an Exhibition (1874) [30:14] Kensington Symphonic Brass/Russell Keable rec. live, Holy Trinity, Kensington, 31 March 1995. DDD DUNELM RECORDS DRD0254 [73:02]   Music for Brass and Percussion – 3 Michael TIPPETT (1905-1998) Fanfare for Brass No.1 (1943) [2:20] Giovanni GABRIELI (c. 1557-1612) Canzon XXVIII (1608 edition) [1:33] Canzon XIII (1615 edition) [2:30] Malcolm ARNOLD (b.1921) Symphony for Brass, Op.123 (1979) [22:39] Aaron COPLAND (1900-1990) Ceremonial Fanfare (1969) [4:02] Paul HINDEMITH (1895-1963) Morgenmusik (1932) [4:25] George Frederic HANDEL (1685-1759) arr. Elgar HOWARTH (b. 1935) Music for the Royal Fireworks (1749) [17:21] Kensington Symphonic Brass/Russell Keable rec. live, Holy Trinity, Kensington, 29 March 1996. DDD DUNELM RECORDS DRD0255 [54:50][TP]

Volume 3 does not demand to be purchased, but although none of these individual performances is essential, they are well played and make an attractive concert programme.  If you are interested in the Simpson, then volume 2 may be worth purchasing.  Otherwise, avoid. ... see Full Review

Music 4 Hands Steve REICH (b. 1936) Piano Phase (1967) [18:20] Philip GLASS (b. 1937) Six Scenes from Les Enfants Terribles (1996) [32:40]: (Overture; The Bedroom; Paul Sleepwalking; Snow Falling in the Playground; Elizabeth Chooses a Career; Death of the Twins/Finale) Maki Namekawa and Dennis Russell Davies (pianos) rec. no date given, Brucknerhaus, Linz, Studio Weinberg, Kafermarkt ORANGE MOUNTAIN RECORDS OM0022 [51:00] [KM]

A mixed bag of early and later minimalist music for two pianos ... see Full Review

A Night of Rhythm and Dance Maurice RAVEL (1875-1937) La Valse (1919-20) [13:16] Daphnis et Chloé: Suite No. 2 (1913) [16:16] George GERSHWIN (1898-1937) Songs: Fascinatin’ Rhythm [2:58]; The Man I Love [4:34]; Nice Work If You Can Get It [2:41]; Someone To Watch Over Me [4:30]; Summertime [6:55]; I Got Rhythm [5:15] sung by Susan Graham Zhao JIPING (b. 1954) Farewell My Concubine: Suite for Orchestra [17:31] Jean-Paul BEINTUS (b. 1966) He Got Rhythm (Hommage à George Gershwin) [8:16] Mari and Momo Kodama (pianos) Eitetsu HAYASHI (b. 1952) Utage Eitetsu Hayashi (wadaiko) Isao MATSUSHITA (b. 1951) Hi-Ten-Yu Eitetsu Hayashi (wadaiko) Berliner Philharmoniker/Kent Nagano rec. Live from the Waldbühner, Berlin, 25 June 2000 EUROARTS INVITATION 2050526 [112:00] [IL]

A concert dominated and highlighted by Far Eastern music that thrilled and fascinated. ... see Full Review

Birgit Nilsson at the churches of St. Jacob and Gustav Vasa Ludwig van BEETHOVEN (1779-1827) Die Ehre Gottes aus der Natur; Josef ERIKSSON (1872-1957) Stora och underbara äro dina verk; Johann Sebastian BACH (1685-1750)/Charles GOUNOD (1818-1893) Ave Maria; Edvard GRIEG (1843-1907) Den store, hvide flok; César FRANCK (1822-1890) Panis angelicus; Charles GOUNOD Parce Domine (Repentir); Albert RUNBÄCK  (1894-1974) Frid; Adolphe ADAM (1803-1856) O holy night; Stephen ADAMS (1844-1913) The holy city; John Henry HOPKINS Jr. (?) We three kings of Orient; Felix MENDELSSOHN-BARTHOLDY  (1809-1847) Hark! The herald angels sing; Lowell MASON (1792-1872) Joy to the world; George Frederic HANDEL (1685-1759) Tochter Sion, freue dich; Franz GRUBER (1787-1863) Stille Nacht, heilige Nacht; Johann Sebastian BACH/Charles GOUNOD Ave Maria; César FRANCK (1822-1897) Panis angelicus; ; Adolphe ADAM O Helga natt; Franz GRUBER Stilla natt; Prince Gustaf (1827-1852) I rosens doft Birgit Nilsson (soprano) Anders Bondeman (organ)(tracks 1-14), Åke Olofsson (cello)(tracks 5; 6), Anna Stångberg (harp)(track 5), St. Jacob’s Youth Choir/Stefan Sköld (tracks 11, 13, 14), Åke Levén (organ) (tracks 15-18), Arnold Östman (piano)(track 19) Recorded at St. Jacob’s Church, Stockholm, 14-17 February, 1977 (tracks 1-14), at Gustav Vasa Church, Stockholm, 3 August, 1963 (tracks 15-18), Swedish Radio, Studio 3, Stockholm, 29 December 1975 (track 19) SWEDISH SOCIETY DISCOFIL SCD 1137 [69:08] [GF]

All in all a disappointing issue. For the best of Birgit Nilsson one has to look elsewhere. ... see Full Review

Piano Music from Northern Ireland Philip HAMMOND (b. 1951) African Black (1993) [4:33] Ho Hum Hill NH (2001) [7:05] The island beyond the world (2001) [10:26] Alan MILLS (b. 1964) Night-music (1987) [3:13] Reproductions (2002) [9:30] Eibhlis FARRELL (b. 1953) Time drops (1988) [9:14] Deirdre MCKAY (b. 1971) Time, shining (1998) [9:56] David BYERS (b. 1947) Echoes of survival (2004) [3:59] David Quigley (piano) rec. Wathen Hall, St Paul’s School, London, September 2005 LORELT LNT 122 [58:01][HC]

A neatly balanced, pleasantly varied, expertly played and well recorded programme of pieces that are well made, often attractive and clearly deserve more than the occasional hearing. ... see Full Review

Opera - New Works for Violin and Piano Joe CUTLER (b.1968)
Re(GAIA) (2000) [5:36] Richard CAUSTON (b.1971) Seven States of Rain (2002) [11:32] Joseph PHIPPS (b.1974) Fantasia (1997) [8:15] Bryn HARRISON (b.1969) Listenings I (2001) [17:23] Jonathan POWELL Intrecciata (2003) [4:46] Morgan HAYES (b.1973) Opera (2003) [6:50] Darragh Morgan (violin) Mary Dullea (piano) rec. Gateway Studios, Kingston, December 2002 to March 2003 NMC D108 [55:00] [DC]

Congratulations for giving us another stimulating and variety-packed helping of brand new music. ... see Full Review

Das Partiturbuch: Instrumental Music at the Courts of 17th Century Germany Antonio BERTALI (1605-1669) Sonata a 4 in D minor [9:29] Ciaconna in C major for solo violin [8:45] Sonata a 3 in G major [3:18] Johann Michael NICOLAI (1629-1685) Sonata a 2 in A minor [3:36] Sonata a 2 in C major [5:40] ANONYMOUS Ciaconna a 3 in C major [2:17] Johann Heinrich SCHMELZER (c.1623-1680) Sonata variata in D minor [6:38] Adam DRESE (c.1620-1701) Sonata a 3 in A minor [4:32] Sonata a 2 in A minor [4:10] Samuel CAPRICORNUS (1628-1665) Ciaconna in D major [4:17] Nathaniel SCHNITTELBACH (1633-1667) Ciaconna in A major [9:36] Ensemble Echo du Danube: Martin Jopp (violin), Jörn Sebastian Kuhlmann (violin), Rainer Johannsen (dulcian), Christian Zincke (viola da gamba, violone), Michael Dücker (theorbo), Margit Schultheiss (Italian double harp), Alexander Weimann (harpsichord, organ), directed by Christian Zincke rec. Studios of Hessischer Rundfunk, Frankfurt; 25-28 November 2002. DDD NAXOS 8.557679 [62:28] [GPu]

An entertaining and instructive collection, which whets the appetite for more music by these composers … see Full Review

Juliette Pochin – Venezia Antonio VIVALDI (1678-1741) arr. Morgan Pochin Sposa son disprezzata [4.24] * JS BACH (1685-1750) arr. Morgan Pochin Ave Maria [3.28] ** Tomasso ALBINONI (1671-1751) arr. Morgan Pochin Mille Fiate (Adagio) [3.50] MORGAN POCHIN Lucezia [2.52] Antonio VIVALDI (1678-1741) arr. Morgan Pochin Nulla in Mundo [3.36] Benedetto MARCELLO (1686-1739) arr. Morgan Pochin Pace non trovo [3.42] *** Domenico CIMAROSA (1749-1801) arr. Morgan Pochin A Capemonte [3.20] Tomasso ALBINONI (1671-1751) arr. Morgan Pochin Salve Regina [3.55] MORGAN POCHIN Ponte dei sospiri [3.13] Antonio VIVALDI (1678-1741) arr. Morgan Pochin Four Seasons suite: La Primavera I [2.43]; La Primavera II [2.18]; L’estate [2.37]; L’autunno [2.13]; L’inferno I [3.06]; L’inferno II [2.13] Juliette Pochin (mezzo) * with Craig Ogden (guitar) ** with Julian Lloyd-Webber (cello) and Marat Bisengaliev (violin) *** with Alun Darbyshire (oboe) BTA West Kazakhstan Philharmonic Orchestra/Arcadians Choir/James Morgan. Orchestra recorded at Gateway Studios; vocals, choir and mixing at Morgan Pochin Studios, London. No recording dates given SONY 82876821222 [47.36] [ED]

An instantly forgettable disc. I hope that future releases might pay more than occasional lip service to serious music-making, but I fear this hope may be forlorn ... see Full Review

Portraits Karol SZYMANOWSKI (1882-1937) Violin Concerto No. 1 (1916) [25:35] Bohuslav MARTINŮ (1890-1959) Violin Concerto No. 2 H293 (1943) [27:25] Béla BARTÓK (1881-1945) Two Portraits (Idealistic; Distorted) op. 5 (1911) [11:54] Jennifer Koh (violin) Grant Park Orchestra/Carlos Kalmar rec. Harris Theater for Music and Dance, Millennium Park, Chicago, 1-2 July 2004 (Szymanowski); 1-2 July 2005 (Martinů, Bartók) . DDD ÇEDILLE CDR 90000 089 [65:15] [RB]

Outstanding audio versions of good performances but a shade too cool for my taste. ... see Full Review

Provence mystique: Sacred songs of the Middle Ages ANONYMOUS  Audi tellus [1:30] ANONYMOUS Clara sonent organa [3:44] Pierre Espanhol/ Gaucelm Faidit (12th century) Ar levatz sus, francha corteza gens! [5:14] ANONYMOUS (13th century) Tantost com fon al loc vengutz [1:27] Venantius FORTUNATUS (d.609?)/Gregorian Chant Vexilla regis [0:40] Peire CARDENAL (c.1180-c.1278)/Jaufré RUDEL (c.1125-c.1148) Del quatre caps que la cros [7:32] ANONYMOUS Verbum patris humanatur [2:53] Guilhem FIGUEIRA (c.1215-c.1240)/Piere VIDAL (fl.1180-1205) D’un sirventes far [6:49] Peire CARDENAL (c.1180-c.1278)/attrib. Alfonso el Sabio (1221-1284) Una ciutatz fo [10:38] ANONYMOUS (13th century) Dona, Maire del salvador [0:59] ANONYMOUS Flore vernans gratie [1:39] attrib. Alfonso EL SABIO (1221-1284) En bon ponto [8:29] ANONYMOUS Gregor pastor Tityrus [4:06] Anne Azéma (soprano); Laurence Brisset; Annelies Coene; Catherine Jousselin; Pasquale Mourey (voices); Kit Higginson (recorder; psaltery); Shira Kammen (medieval fiddle); Margriet Tindemans (medieval fiddle; harp) rec. 11-18 July 1998, Abbaye de Gellone, Saint-Guilhem-le-Déser, France WARNER CLASSICS APEX 2564 62759-2 [56:03] [GPu]

An imaginatively compiled programme, often beautiful and powerful, of the religious songs of twelfth-century Provence ... see Full Review

Quatuors Suisses pour Instruments à Anches Boris MERSSON (b. 1921) Odyssée à quatre, Op. 40 (1981) [12.55] Barbara JAZWINSKI (b.?-d.?) Blue Tango (1999) [7.45] Hans-Martin LINDE (b. 1930) Wind-Spiel (1993) [10.11] Felix HUBER (b. 1952) Holzminiaturen (1994) [11.46] Jerzy DERFEL (b. 1941) Sonata in blue (1994) [12.30] Quatuor Francis Poulenc rec. Musikschule Rheinfelden, 20-24 September 2001 MUSIQUES SUISSES MGB CD 6213 [55.32][SV]

Spankingly precise, full-toned playing ... fleet virtuosity and poignant expression ... see Full Review

HISTORICAL RECORDING OF THE MONTH Sergei RACHMANINOV (1873-1943) His Complete Recordings BMG-RCA RED SEAL 82876-67892-2 [10 CDs: 67:49 + 62:45 + 62:30 + 65:03 + 66:00 + 58:14 + 58:54 + 71:52 + 65:39] Superbudget [CH]

In spite of the booklet, the opportunity to gather the entire legacy of one of the greatest of all pianists in a single box is not one to be missed. ... see Full Review

Rapsodi - Albanian Piano Music: Volume II Çesk ZADEJA (1927-1997)
Tokkata (Toccata) [3:31] Theme and Variations in E minor [5:21] Feim IBRAHIMI (1935-1997) Vals (Waltz) [1:21] Valle për piano (Dance for piano) [2:53] Tonin HARAPI (1928-1992) Sonatina (Allegro non troppo [5:53]; II. Andante [4:08]; III. Rondo: Allegro con brio [3:28]) Këngë mbrëmje (Evening Song) [4:33] Temë me variacione (Theme and Variations) [9:14] Aleksander KOMNINO Këngë polifonike (Polyphonic Song) [2:12] Këngë (Song) [1:08] Tish DAIJA (1926-2004) Vals (Waltz) [1:28] Jani PAPADHIMITRI (b. 1948) Baresha e Vogël (The Little Shepherdess) [2:21] Alberto PAPARISTO (b. 1925) Scherzo [3:22]; Val (Dance) [1:09] Kozma LARA (b. 1931) Ballade No. 2 [5:28] Sonatë për piano nr. 2 (Sonata No. 2 for piano) [9:25] Ramadan SOKOLI (b. 1920) Rapsodi Shqiptare nr. 2 (Albanian Rhapsody No. 2) [3:52] Simon GJONI (1926-1991) Prelud në mi minor (Prelude in E minor) [2:26] Tokata (Toccata) [1:37] Kirsten Johnson (piano) rec. St George's Bristol, 14, 17 January 2005 DDD GUILD GMCD 7300 [74:58] [GH]

I can honestly say that if I had not been sent this CD to review then I would have purchased it. Immensely enjoyable, fascinating, enterprising ... see Full Review

Instruments from the Raymond Russell Collection Volume II Double-manual harpsichord (4316), Robert Falkener, London, 1773 George Frideric HANDEL (1685 -1759) Suite in D minor HWV 437 (1733) Prelude - Allemande - Courante - Sarabande (avec doubles) - Gigue Bentside spinet (4309) attrib. John Player, London, c. 1705 Henry PURCELL (1659-1695) Five pieces from Musick's Handmaid (1689) March - Minuet - A new Ground - A new Scotch Tune - A new Irish Tune Bentside spinet (4313), John Harrison, London, 1757 Three pieces from Robert Bremner's The Harpsichord or Spinnet Miscellany (1765) Fy gar rub her o'er with Straw - The Flowers of the Forrest - Maggy Lauder Enharmonic virginal (4345), attrib. Francesco Poggio, Florence, c. 1620 Michelangelo ROSSI (1601/2-1656) Toccata settima (Toccate e corenti d'intavolatura d'organo e cimbalo, 1657) Chamber organ (4327), anonymous, London?, c. 1680 Thomas TOMKINS (1572-1656) A sad Pavan for these distracted times John BLOW (1649-1708) Voluntary in C Fretted clavichord (4338), Christian Gottlob Hubert, Ansbach, 1784 Johann Christoph Friedrich BACH (1732-1795) Five pieces from Musikalische Nebenstunden (1787- 88) Marche - Menuet - Adagio - Andante - Marche Square piano (4325), Andrew Rochead, Edinburgh, c. 1815 Franz Xaver MOZART (1791-1844) Deux Polonaises mélancoliques No. 1 in C minor - No. 2 in A minor Double-manual harpsichord (4329), Jean Goermans/ Pascal Taskin, Paris, 1764/83- 84 Armand-Louis COUPERIN (1727-1789) Les Tendres Sentimens - L'Affligée - L'Enjouée Single-manual harpsichord (4314), Johann Adolph Hass, Hamburg, 1764 Christoph GRAUPNER (1683-1760) Four movements from Partita in E major 'November' (1722) Praeludium - Menuet - Gavotte - Chaconne John Kitchen (keyboards) Recorded in St Cecilia’s, Edinburgh, April 2005 DELPHIAN DCD34039 [77.22] [JW]

Well chosen music highlighting salient features of the particular instruments ... that, rather than particular profundity of expression, has been the guiding spirit. ... see Full Review

Russian Cello Sonatas Sergei RACHMANINOV (1873–1943) Sonata in G minor Op.19 (1901) [35:46] Sergei PROKOFIEV (1891–1953) Sonata in C major Op.119 (1948) [23:20] Dmitri SHOSTAKOVICH (1906–1975) Sonata in D minor Op.40 (1934) [26:59] Alfred SCHNITTKE (1934–1998) Sonata No.1 (1978) [25:06] Marc Coppey (cello); Peter Laul (piano) rec. Auditorium Saint-Pierre des cuisines, Toulouse, July 2005 AEON AECD 0636 [59:06 + 52:05] [HC]

These readings belong amongst the finest. Coppey’s beautifully varied, firm tone is a joy from first to last, and Laul supports with commitment and immaculate playing. ... see Full Review

Esa-Pekka SALONEN in Rehearsal Los Angeles Philharmonic Orchestra With contributions from Ernest Fleischmann and John Santana (KKGO) (1997) Claude DEBUSSY (1862-1918) La mer (1903-05) ARTHAUS MUSIK 100 317 [60:00] [DC]

Rock on Salonen! ... see Full Review

Hermann Scherchen – the Nixa recordings Hector BERLIOZ (1803-1869) Symphonie fantastique Op.14 (1830) [51.53] Harold in Italy Op.16 (1834) [42.18]* Pyotr Ilyich TCHAIKOVSKY (1840-1893) Romeo and Juliet – Fantasy overture (1880) [22.54] Marche slave Op.31 (1876) [10.37] Capriccio Italien Op.45 (1880) [16.39] 1812 Overture in E flat major Op.49 (1880) [15.09]+ Nikolai RIMSKY-KORSAKOV (1844-1908) Antar – symphonic suite Op.9 (1868, rev 1875, 1897) [34.33] La Grande Paque Russe Op.36 [15.24] Capriccio Espagnol Op.34 (1887) [16.01] Band of the Irish Guards+ London Symphony Orchestra, Frederick Riddle (viola)/Royal Philharmonic Orchestra* Hermann Scherchen rec. Nixa, London, 1953-54 TAHRA TAH 413-416 [4 CDs: 51.53 + 42.18 + 65.38 + 66.36] [JW]

Scherchen lovers will speedily sweep up this set – handsomely done ... see Full Review

Andrès Segovia – The 1946 New York and the 1949 London Recordings Johann Sebastian BACH (1685-1750) Violin Partita No. 2 in D minor, BWV 1004: V. Chaconne (arr. for guitar) [12:13] Lute Suite No. 2 in E minor, BWV 996 – Sarabande and Bourée (arr. for guitar) [04:53] Fugue in G minor, BWV 1000 (arr. for guitar) [04:21] Prelude in C minor, BWV 999 (arr. for guitar) [1:15] Lute Suite in No. 4 in E major, BWV 1006a: III. Gavotte (arr. for guitar) [02:52] Cello Suite No.3 BWV 1009 – Courante (arr. for guitar)  [2.45] Cello Suite No.6 BWV 1012 – Gavotte (arr. for guitar)  [3.47] Heitor VILLA-LOBOS (1887-1959) Etude No.8 in C sharp minor [2.43] Etude No.1 in E minor [1.67] Federico Moreno TORROBA (1891-1982) Suite Castellan Nos 1 and 2 [4.43] Joaquin TURINA (1882-1949) Fandanguillo [3.53] Mario CASTELNUOVO-TEDESCO (1895-1968) Tarantella in A minor, Op. 87a [3.50] Guitar Concerto No.1 in D major Op.99 [18.59]* Manuel Maria PONCE (1886-1948) Sonata meridional [8:32] Andrés Segovia (guitar) New London Orchestra/Alec Sherman* rec. New York, December 1946 (Bach Musicraft albums) and June and July 1949 in London (remainder) NAXOS HISTORICAL 8.111088 [76.47] [JW]

This makes a fine companion to Naxos’s release of Segovia’s 1944 American recordings. ... see Full Review

Six On Two Antonio LAURO (1909-1986) Valse Venezolano Nos 1, 2 and 3 [5'12] Benjamin BRITTEN (1913-1976) Nocturnal, Op. 70 (for Julian Bream) (1964) [21'05] Domenico SCARLATTI (1685-1757) Sonata [6'11] Steven SCHOENBERG (b.1952) Lullaby and Fantasy [7'53] Peter GOLUB (b.1952) Three Interludes (1989) [5'58] Fernando SOR (1778-1839) Introduction, Theme & Variations, Op. 20 [13'53] Rob Phelps (guitar) rec. Deerfield Academy, except Britten, rec. Brooks Rogers Recital Hall, Williams College, undated GASPARO Galante GG 1025 [60.44] [JW]

Phelps proves a handy guide to this repertoire, not least in the Schoenberg which was dedicated to him. A miscellaneous programme reflecting his interest in new editions, new work and core classics. ... see Full Review

Spirits of Mozart Wolfgang Amadeus MOZART (1756-1791) Overture: Die Entführung aus dem Serail [6:04] (a) Concerto for Violin and Orchestra, No.5, K.219: Rondeau [12:45] (b) Wolfgang Amadeus MOZART (1756-1791), Benjamin SCHMID (b.1968), Biréli LAGRÈNE (b.1966), George BREINSCHMID Improvisations on Mozart Themes [9:37] (c) Wolfgang Amadeus MOZART (1756-1791), Hughes DE COURSON (b.1946), TED, DALIL Concerto for Oud, Piano and Orchestra: Adagio (based on Piano Concerto No.23, K.488) [8:38] (d) Hughes DE COURSON (b.1946) Taqsim Do [6:50] (e) Wolfgang Amadeus MOZART (1756-1791), Hughes de COURSON (b.1946) Alexandria Quintet [4:04] (e) Jacques PREVERT (1900-1977), Joseph KOSMA (1905-1969), Lalo SCHIFRIN (b.1932) Les Feuilles mortes [5:49] (f) Richard RODGERS (1902-1979), Oscar HAMMERSTEIN (1895-1960) My Favourite Things [5:13] (g) Wolfgang Amadeus MOZART (1756-1791) ‘Un moto di gioia mi sento’, K.579 [2:06] (h) ‘Voi che sapete’ (Le nozze di Figaro) [3:18] (h) Wolfgang Amadeus MOZART (1756-1791), Ian ANDERSON (b.1947) Mo’z Art Medley [7:03] (i) Johann Sebastian BACH (1685-1750), Ian ANDERSON (b.1947) Bourrée [5:19] (i) Wolfgang Amadeus MOZART (1756-1791) Symphony No.34, K.338: Finale. Allegro vivace [7:39] (a) Wolfgang Amadeus MOZART (1756-1791), Michael ‘Pogo’ Kreiner e-magic flute: tamino [7:58] (j) Wolfgang Amadeus MOZART (1756-1791) German dance, K.605, No.3 [3:23] (a) Wolfgang Amadeus MOZART (1756-1791), Deyan PAVLOV Mozart Medley [7:26] (k) Wolfgang Amadeus MOZART (1756-1791), Deyan PAVLOV ‘O du eselhafter Peierl’, K.560a [3:28] (l) (a) Vienna Radio Symphony Orchestra / Andrey Boreyko; (b) Benjamin Schmid (violin), Vienna Radio Symphony Orchestra / Andrey Boreyko; (c) Benjamin Schmid (violin), Biréli Lagrène (guitar), George Breinschmid (double bass);  (d) Henri Agnel (oud), Osvaldo Caló (piano), Vienna Radio Symphony Orchestra / Andrey Boreyko; (e) Alexandria Quartet: Henri Agnel (oud), Osvaldo Caló (piano), Ibrahim Kawala (kawala), Idriss Agnel (oudou); (f) Dee Dee Bridgewater (vocal), Edsel Gomez (piano), Vienna Radio Symphony Orchestra / Andrey Boreyko; (g) Dee Dee Bridgewater (vocal), Edsel Gomez (piano); (h) Christaine Oelze (soprano), Vienna Radio Symphony Orchestra / Andrey Boreyko; (i) Ian Anderson (flute) Lucia Micarelli (violin), John O’Hara (keyboard), David Goodier (bass), Florian Ophale (guityar), James Duncan (drums); (j) Michael ‘Pogo’ Kreiner and band: Michael ‘Pogo Kreiner’ (guitar), Reinwald Kranner (vocal), Jozej Stikar (keyboard), Alexander Machat (bass), Diana Lueger (drums); (k) Dee Dee Bridgewater (vocal), Amira Selim (soprano), Vienna Radio Symphony Orchestra / Andrey Boreyko; (l) ‘All artists’. rec. Halle E, MuseumsQuartier, Vienna, 14th January, 2006. DVD, Region Code 0. Disc Format DVD 9. EUROARTS 2055178 [120:00][GPu]

Entertaining the first time round, but there isn’t much here that is likely to demand repeated listening or viewing … see Full Review

RECORDING OF THE MONTH Christianne Stotijn: Fantasies and Dream-Figures Franz SCHUBERT (1797-1828) Im Walde D.708 [06:59]; An den Mond D.193 [05:09]; Nachtstück D.672 [05:20]; Der Zweig D.771 [05:15]; Abendstern D.806 [02:17]; Auflösung D.807 [02:24]; Nacht und Träume D.827 [03:35]; Erlkönig D.328 [04:22] Alban BERG (1885-1935) 4 Lieder op.2 [08:47] Hugo WOLF (1860-1903) Mörike-Lieder: Die Geister am Mummelsee [03:48]; Gesang Weylas [02:10]; Elfenlied [02:19]; Um Mitternacht [03:38]; Auf eine Christblume I [06:25]; Lied von Winde [02:43] Christianne Stotijn (mezzo), Joseph Breinl (piano) rec. 21-23 July 2005, Potton Hall, Dunwich, Suffolk, UK ONYX 4009 [63:33] [CH]

A highly original programme sung by an up-and-coming singer who can bear comparison with even the greatest lieder-singers ... see Full Review

Josef Suk and Rudolf Firkušný at the Prague Spring International Music Festival 1992 Antonín DVOŘÁK (1841-1904) Sonatina for Violin and Piano in G major, Op. 100 (B. 183) (1893) [16.31] Leoš JANÁČEK (1854-1938) Sonata for Violin and Piano (1913-21) [12.56] Johannes BRAHMS (1833-1897) Sonata for Violin and Piano No. 3 in D minor, Op. 108 (1886-88) [18.58] Ludwig Van BEETHOVEN (1770-1827) Sonata for Violin and Piano No. 10 in G major, Op. 96 (1812) [21.30] Josef Suk (violin) Rudolf Firkušný (piano) rec. live, Prague Spring International Music Festival, Dvořák Hall, Rudolfinum, Prague, Czech Republic, 18 May 1992. DDD  SUPRAPHON SU 3857-2 [70.24][MC]

The recording is a testament to the art of two twentieth century stalwarts of chamber music. ... see Full Review

Two Clarinets and Piano: Original Music from Finland, Malta, Israel and points in between Felix MENDELSSOHN (1809-1847), arranged Pamela WESTON (b.1921) Herbstlied [2:02] * Aus dem Lob gesang [3:34] * Ernesto CAVALLINI (1807-1874) La Bacana [9:53] ** Lotti AMIT-KALEV (b.1934) Divertimento (1986) [5:40] * Bernhard CRUSELL (1775-1838) Adagio and Rondo (1822?) [5:34] ** Sarah FEIGIN (b.1928) Fantasia (1996/2002) [4:09] * Charles CAMILLERI (b.1931) Divertimento No.1, Homage a Manuel de Falla (1957) [7:23] ** Jaroslav MAŠTALÍŘ (1906-1988) Duo Concertante, Op.34 (1934) [12:19] * Franz SCHWEINSBERG (1835-1913) Fantasie Brilliante et Originale [11:21] ** Eva Wasserman-Margolis (clarinet; * first clarinet), Luigi Magistrelli (clarinet; ** first clarinet), Claudia Bracco (piano) rec. S. Stefano Ticino, Italy, August 2003. DDD LEONARDA LE 354 [62:03][GPu]

This is a CD that can be recommended both to those with a special interest in the clarinet and to those who like to explore unfamiliar musical territories. It is well performed and recorded … see Full Review

Violin Duos, Vol. 2 Erik FÖRARE (b.1955) Duo No.2 for two violins, ‘Elementi diversi/in via Mi, in modo di Miklós Maros’ (2001-2) [11:39] Håkan LARSSON (b.1959) När intet blir allt (2002) [13:32] Ingvar KARKOFF (b.1958) Largo (2004) [6:54] Kerstin JEPPSON (b.1948) Canto cromàtico per due violini (2003) [18:00] Peter SCHUBACK (b.1947) del altro al altro per due violini (2001) [14:26] Duo Gelland: Cecilia Galland (violin), Martin Gelland (violin) rec. Church of Alanäs by Strömsund, 22-25 October 2005 NOSAG CD 121 [64:33][GPu]

A finely recorded CD, which contains a lot of striking music, played with conviction, certainty of purpose and considerable subtlety. Strongly recommended to all with an interest in contemporary chamber music ... see Full Review

RECORDING OF THE MONTH Women's lives and loves Frauenliebe und –Leben - A Liederspiel devised by Graham Johnson [see review for full details] Felicity Lott (soprano) Angelika Kirchschlager (mezzo) Graham Johnson (piano) rec. All Saints Church, East Finchley, London, 2-4 August 2005. DDD. HYPERION CDA67563 [71’46] [ED]

Deeply rewarding; a disc to live with and love. ... see Full Review

This World’s Globe: Celebrating the Globe Experience CD 1: The Play’s The Thing Excerpts from Twelfth Night, Romeo and Juliet, Richard II and contemporary writings. CD 2 Groundlings to Gods Excerpts from Edward II and Measure for Measure. See review for details of music Actors of the Globe Theatre: Philip Bird, Liam Brennan, Tom Burke, Peter Forbes, John McEnery, Mark Rylance; Musicians of the Globe Theatre, William Lyons, Keith McGowan, Belinda Sykes, Musical Directors rec. Rosslyn Hill Unitarian Chapel, London; Duthy Hall, London; All Saints’ Church London; Shakespeare’s Globe Exhibition, London - dates of recording not indicated. SIGNUM CLASSICS SIGCD077 [63:49 + 78:41] [WK]

A very informative and enjoyable set for lovers of both Shakespeare and of early music and especially of the connection between the two ... see Full Review



Chopin. His Life and Music: Jeremy Nicholas Naxos Books (ISBN: 1-84379-115-3) [268 pages; illustrated in black & white and including 2CDs [75:14 + 79:41] of music spanning Chopin’s career + free access to a dedicated website with hours of extra music to listen to, and other bonus material]

Treacherous Bonds and Laughing Fire: Politics and Religion in Wagner’s Ring by Mark Berry 2006 274 pp Ashgate Publishing Limited. www.ashgate.com ISBN 0 7546 5356 0 (hardcover)

Just as coming to terms with the Ring is a commitment in time and imagination, this book will repay dividends in terms of insights into the music and the worldview it represents. ... see Full Review


Ian Venables Song-Cycle Love’s Voice (Venetian Songs op 22) for High Voice and Piano Text: John Addington Symonds (Fortunate Isles; The Passing Stranger; The Invitation to the Gondola; Love’s Voice) Thames Publishing [CSS]

Both style and colour mark these evocative songs of Venables ... see Full Review

Detailed listing (last two days)]
[Part 1 New]  
[Part 2 A-B] [Part 3 C-L]
[Part 4 M-R]  [Part 5 S-Z]
[Part 6 Misc A-L]
[Part 7 Misc M-Z]

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