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PART 2
A-B

Detailed listing (last five 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]
[Recommended recordings]

 

Adolphe ADAM (1803-1865) Giselle (complete ballet) (1841) Orchestre National de l’Opéra de Monte-Carlo/Richard Bonynge rec. Salle Alcazar, Monte-Carlo, October 1967. ADD. Booklet with track details and notes in English. DECCA ELOQUENCE 442 9028 [61:08 + 61:40][BW]

This may not be the greatest ballet music ever, but it is tuneful and enjoyable and the performance and recording more than adequate, especially at such a reasonable price … see Full Review

Hugo ALFVÉN (1872-1960) Synnøve Solbaken (Synnøve of Solbakken) (Film Suite) Op. 50 (1934) [27:48] En Bygdesaga (A Country Tale/Mans Kvinna) (Film Suite) Op. 53 (1944) [33:09] Elégie (vid Emil Sjögrens bar) (at Emil Sjogren’s Bier) Op. 38 (1918) [12:15] Norköpping Symphony Orchestra/Niklas Willén rec. De Geer Hall, Norköpping, Sweden, 17-18 June 2004, 23-27 May 2005. DDD NAXOS 8.557828 [73:12][WK]

An exciting recording dealing with a lesser-known aspect of Alfvén’s career. Wonderful playing by Willén and Norköpping. ... see Full Review

Attilio ARIOSTI (1666-1729) The Stockholm Sonatas II Sonata No.8 in D Minor [9:42] Sonata No.9 in G Minor [8:08] Sonata No.10 in F Major [8:16] Sonata No.11 in A Minor [7:16] Sonata No.12 in E Minor [7:44] Sonata No.13 in C Major [6:58] Sonata No.14 in E flat Major [6:56] Thomas Georgi (viola d’amore) Lucas Harris (archlute; baroque guitar) Mime Yamahiro Brinkmann (cello) rec. January 2006, Länna Church, Sweden. BIS-CD-1555 [56:33][DC]

Highly attractive. ... see Full Review

Sir Malcolm ARNOLD (1921-2006) Complete Symphonies CD1 Symphony No.1 Op.22 (1949) [29:27] Symphony No.2 Op.40 (1953) [26:13] CD2 Symphony No.3 Op.63 (1954-57) [31:13] Symphony No.4 Op.71 (1960) [37:47] CD3 Symphony No.5 Op.74 (1961) [32:36] Symphony No.6 Op.95 (1968) [24:41] CD4 Symphony No.7 Op.113 (1973) [38:04] Symphony No.8 Op.124 (1978) [25:51] CD5 Symphony No.9 Op.128 (1986) [46:58] Sir Malcolm Arnold in conversation with Andrew Penny [10:35] National Symphony Orchestra of Ireland/Andrew Penny rec. 10-11 April 1995 (1 & 2); 10, 12 September 1995 (9); 13-14 June 1996 (3 & 4); 24-25 January 2000 (5 & 6); 21-22 February 2000 (7 & 8), National Concert Hall, Dublin. DDD. 5 CDs in slipcase; also available separately on 8.553406 (CD1), 8.553739 (CD2), 8.552000 (CD3); 8.552001 (CD4); 8.553540 (CD5) NAXOS 8.505221 [55:41 + 69:07 + 57:17 + 63:55 + 57:34] [BW]

Very good performances, well recorded: strongly recommended to those wishing to explore a major twentieth-century symphonic achievement at a very reasonable price. Even the lesser-known symphonies are worth getting to know … see Full Review

Nils Henrik ASHEIM (b.1960) BROKEN LINEX1 (2005) [2:25] 1
Navigo, for violin and cello (1999) [6:26] 2 X2 (2005) [1:43] 1 Broken Line, for string quartet (2003) [13:36] 1 X3 (2005) [1:08] 1 Nicht, for voice and ensemble (2002) [14:35] 3 X4 (2005) [1:23] 1 Chase, for double string trio (2001) [14:47] 4 X5 (2005) [1:17] 1 1 Vertavo String Quartet: Berit Cardas (violin), Øyvor Volle (violin), Henninge Landaas (viola), Bjørg Værnas Lewis (cello); 2 Berit Cardas (violin), Bjørg Værnas Lewis (cello); 3 Isa Gericke (soprano), Tom Ottar Andreassen (flute), Hans Christian Bræin (clarinet), Sveinung Bjelland (piano), Eirik Raude (percussion); 4 Berit Cardas (violin), Øyvor Volle (violin), Henninge Landaas (viola), Aida-Carmen Soanea (viola), Bjørg Værnas Lewis (cello), Louise Hopkins (cello) rec. 16 June 2005, 16-18 November 2005, 7 June 2006, Sofienerg Church, Oslo AURORA ACD 5044 [57:26] [GP]

Rather mixed, as regards both style and quality, but the best work shows how interesting and inventive a composer Asheim is … see Full Review

Grażyna BACEWICZ (1909-1969) Sonata no. 4 (1949) [17:54] Kolysanka (Lullaby) (1952) [2:19] Melodia (Melody) (1946) [2:48] Partita (1955) [14:30] Concertino (1945) [4:47] Kaprys (Caprice) (1946) [1:46] Oberek (1951) [1:46] Sonata da camera (1945) [12:32] Taniec mazowiecki (Mazovian Dance) (1951) [3:04] Bartlomiej Nizioł (violin); Paweł Mazurkiewicz (piano) rec. June 2004, Bydgosocz Concert Hall, Poland. DUX 0486 [61:27] [GPu]

Good performances of some representative pieces from a single decade of Bacewicz’s career … see Full Review

Johann Sebastian BACH (1685-1750) Organ Works: Volume 8 Fantasia in G minor BWV542/1 [5:52] Chorale Prelude Allein Gott in der Höh sei Ehr BWV662 [8:11] Chorale Prelude Allein Gott in der Höh sei Ehr BWV663 [7:31] Trio super Allein Gott in der Höh sei Ehr BWV664 [6:04] Prelude and Fugue in A major BWV536 [2:13 + 5:50] Concerto in A minor (after Vivaldi Op.3/8) BWV593 [4:47+3:55+5:03] Toccata and Fugue in F major BWV540 [10:02+6:36] Jacques van Oortmerssen (Christian Müller organ, 1738) rec. church of St Bavo, Haarlem, 25-26 May 2006. DDD. Challenge Classics CC72153 [66:10] [BW]

A varied recital of organ works: those who like big-sounding Bach will enjoy it more than those who expect a lighter touch ... see Full Review

Wilhelm Friedemann BACH (1710–1784) Sonatas and Trios Sonata for transverse flute and bc in e minor (F deest) [12:49] Sonata for 2 transverse flutes and bc in D (F 48) [11:21] Sonata for 2 violins and bc in B flat (F 50) [15:08] Sonata for transverse flute and bc in F (F deest) [12:56] Sonata for 2 transverse flutes and bc in a minor (F 49) (fragment) [04:08] Sonata for 2 transverse flutes and bc in D (F 47) [08:28] Camerata Köln (Karl Kaiser, Michael Schneider (transverse flute); Sabine Lier, Ingeborg Scheerer (violin); Rainer Zipperling (cello); Yasunori Imamura (lute); Sabine Bauer (harpsichord, organ)) rec. October 2003, Studio of Deutschlandfunk, Cologne, Germany. DDD CPO 777 086-2 [65:20][JV]

This disc contains two recently discovered flute sonatas by Wilhelm Friedemann Bach - Camerata Köln gives splendid performances of these enthralling compositions ... see Full Review

Christopher BALL (b. 1936) Concerto for Clarinet and Strings (2006)a [24:20] Four Dances for Wind Trio (c.1991)b [10:35] Concerto for Flute and Orchestra (2006)c [23:54] Irish Suite (2006) [11:38] Leslie Craven (clarinet)ab; Adam Walker (flute)bc; Paul Arden-Taylor (oboe)b; Emerald Concert Orchestra/Christopher Ball rec. All Saints’ Church, Weston-upon-Mare, July 2006 QUANTUM QM 7040 [70:25] [HC]

Happy, unpretentious music-making … you will end-up whistling all the tunes. ... see Full Review

Sir Granville BANTOCK (1868-1946) Overture to a Greek Tragedy: Oedipus at Colonus (1911) [15:40] Josef HOLBROOKE (1878-1958) The Birds of Rhiannon Op. 87 (1923) [15:50] Cyril ROOTHAM (1875-1938) Symphony No. 1 in C minor (1932) [30:57] Philharmonia Orchestra/Nicholas Braithwaite (Bantock); London Philharmonic Orchestra/Vernon Handley (Rootham; Holbrooke) rec. January 1979, Kingsway Hall (Holbrooke); September 1976, Henry Wood Hall (Rootham; Bantock). ADD LYRITA SRCD.269 [62.30] [JF]

As usual with Lyrita the sound quality is superb, the playing totally inspiring, the programme notes are helpful and the repertoire is totally challenging – and perhaps even essential. ... see Full Review

Pierre BARTHOLOMÉE (b. 1937) Quatuor à cordes (2004)a [24:26] Fragments des Belles Heures (2002/3)b [39:31] 13 Bagatelles (2003)c [39:02] Le Rêve de Diotime (1999)d [21:57] Quatuor Danela; Dominique Mols (soprano), Ensemble "Les Belles Heures"b; Philippe Terseleer (piano)c; Valentina Valente (soprano), Ensemble Musiques Nouvelles, Pierre Bartholoméed rec. Studio The Right Place, Brussels, June 2006 (String Quartet); Tibor Varga Foundation Studio, Sion, Switzerland, March-April 2005 (Fragments); Salle Philharmonique, Liège, July 2006 (Bagatelles) and (live) Studio 4, Brussels, December 2002 (Le Rêve de Diotime) CYPRES CYP 4625 [64:04 + 61:00] [HC]

This generously filled released is the best possible birthday tribute to a most distinguished composer, whose music definitely deserves wider exposure.... see Full Review

RECORDING OF THE MONTH Sir Arnold BAX (1883-1953) Symphony No. 6 (1934) [39:32] Irish Landscape (1913) [7:28] Rogue’s Comedy Overture (1936) [10:54] Overture to Adventure (1937) [9:28] Overture: Work in Progress (1943) [8:18] New Philharmonia Orchestra/Norman Del Mar Royal Philharmonic Orchestra/Vernon Handley rec. Kingsway Hall, London, 18-20 July 1966 (6); Kingsway Hall, London, 29 April 1976 (Irish Landscape); 18 January 1994, Watford Town Hall (overtures). ADD/DDD (overtures) LYRITA SRCD.296 [75:43] [RB]

The Del Mar/Lyrita Bax 6 is violent and phantasmal - essential Bax in performance and recording terms. ... see Full Review

RECORDING OF THE MONTH Ludwig van BEETHOVEN (1770-1827) Symphony No. 3 in E flat major, Op. 55 Eroica (1803) [49:54] Deutsches Symphonie-Orchester Berlin/Kent Nagano Video Directors: Oliver Becker (documentary), Ellen Fellmann (concert) Writers: Reiner Schild and Rolf Rische rec. Philharmonic Hall, Berlin, DDD. Sound formats PCM Stereo, DD 5.1, DTS 5.1. Picture format NTSC 16:9. Disc format DVD 9. Region code 0 (all regions). Subtitles French, Italian, Japanese, Spanish. ARTHAUS MUSIK 101 429  [105:22][MG]

This fresh and electric performance allows you to see the Eroica in a new light.  … see Full Review

Ludwig van BEETHOVEN (1770-1827) Overture: The Creatures of Promtheus: Overture Op.43 (1801)[5:12) Symphony No.4 in B-flat major Op.60 (1806) [34:21]Wolfgang Amadeus MOZART (1756-1791) Flute Concerto No.1 K.313 (cadenzas by Nikolai Platonov)(1778)[23:46] Eduard Scherbachev (flute) Moscow Philharmonic Symphony Orchestra/Kirill Kondrashin rec. 1964 (Mozart), 1965 (Prometheus), 1967 (Symphony). ADD MELODIYA MEL CD 10-01007 [62:23] [DW]

This performance of one of Beethoven’s most unjustly underplayed works is a joy from beginning to end … see Full Review

Ludwig van BEETHOVEN (1770-1827) Piano Sonata No. 7 in D, Op. 10/3 (1797/98) [22:33]; Piano Sonata No. 16 in G, Op. 31/3 (1802) [20:18] Robert SCHUMANN (1810-1856) Carnaval (1834) [25:24] Annie Fischer (piano) rec. BBC Studios, London, 19 May 1963 (Schumann); 11 November, 1987 (Beethoven). ADD BBC LEGENDS BBCL 4199-2 [70:45] [CC]

Buy this for the Beethoven and enjoy the Schumann for what it is – a live performance in which Fischer let go of inhibitions, no matter what the consequences ... see Full Review

RECORDING OF THE MONTH Ludwig van BEETHOVEN (1770-1827) Complete Works for Solo Piano: Vol. 5 Sonata No.16 in G major, Op.31 No.1 (1802) [23:14] Sonata No.17 in D minor, Op.31 No.2 ‘Der Sturm’ (1802) [22:18] Sonata No.18 in E flat major, Op.31 No.3 (1802) [21:13] Ronald Brautigam (McNulty fortepiano after Anton Walther) rec. Österåker Church, Sweden, August 2005 BIS BIS-SACD-1572 [67:49] [TH]

I love this disc and it’s hardly been out of the player since it arrived ... see Full Review

Franz BENDA (1709-1786) Violin Sonatas Sonata in C [11:44] Sonata in a minor [09:40] Sonata in F [11:09] Sonata in E [10:19] Sonata in C [11:06] Sonata in E flat [14:48] Anton Steck (violin), Christian Rieger (harpsichord) rec. March 2005, Studio of Deutschlandfunk, Cologne, Germany. DDD CPO 777 214-2 [69:13] [JV]

The first recording ever entirely devoted to the technically demanding and musically enthralling violin sonatas by Franz Benda … brilliantly played … an exemplary production ... see Full Review

Alban BERG (1885-1935) String Quartet, Op. 3 (1910) [21:45] Lyric Suite (1925/26) [28:31] Hugo WOLF (1860-1903) Italian Serenade (1887) [6:56] New Zealand String Quartet (Helene Pohl, Douglas Beilman, violins; Gilliam Snsell, viola; Rolf Grelsten, cello) rec. Adam Concert Room, Victoria University of Wellington, New Zealand, 22-24 November 2004. DDD NAXOS 8.557374 [57:28] [CC]

These are urgent interpretations … interpretative stature and technical prowess ... see Full Review

Richard BLACKFORD (b. 1954) Voices of Exile (2001, orch. 2005) Catherine Wyn-Rogers (mezzo); Gregory Kunde (tenor); Gerald Finley (baritone) The Bach Choir; New London Children’s Choir Philharmonia Orchestra/David Hill rec. Abbey Road Studios, London, April 2005 QUARTZ QTZ2018 [60:44] [HC]

Voices of Exile is a vibrant, sincere and generous plea for more humanity in our troubled world ... see Full Review

Giovanni BOTTESINI (1821-1889) The Virtuoso Double Bass: Elegy; Tarantella; Romanza Patetica (Mélodie); Gavotta; Reverie; Meditazione (Aria di Bach); Fantasie Sonnambula; Romanza Drammatica (Elégie); Adagio par Ernst; Capriccio di Bravura. Leon Bosch (double bass); Sung-Suk Kang (piano) rec. no details given. MERIDIAN CDE 84544 [64:55][RB]

Not just for double bass fanciers ... also  for those who fancy instrumental bel canto and salon repertoire. Considerable pleasure in this sincere and highly accomplished  playing.  ... see Full Review

York BOWEN (1884-1961) Piano Concerto No. 2 in D minor Concertstück, Op. 17 (1905) [21.33] Piano Concerto No. 3 in G minor Fantasia, Op. 23 (1907) [19.40] Symphonic Fantasia – a tone poem, Op. 16 (1905) [33:16] Michael Dussek (piano) BBC Concert Orchestra/Vernon Handley rec. 20-21 February 2007, The Colosseum, Town Hall, Watford, England. DDD DUTTON EPOCH CDLX7187 [74.56] [RB]

A most enjoyable helping of Bowen’s late-romanticism which does nothing to dampen the demand for more of the concertos ... see Full Review

Johannes BRAHMS (1833-1897) Ein Deutches Requiem Op. 45 (1854-1868) Siri Karoline Thornhill (soprano); Klaus Mertens (baritone); Choir of St. Peter's Cathedral, Bremen German Chamber Philharmonic/Werner Helbich rec. 9-13 April 2001, St. Peter's Cathedral, Bremen. DDD German texts and English translations included MUSIKPRODUKTION DABRINGHAUS UND GRIMM MDG GOLD 3341137 [63:18] [WK]

A lyrical, but not totally committed version of the Brahms perennial ... see Full Review

RECORDING OF THE MONTH Frank BRIDGE (1879-1941) Oration - Concerto elegiaco for cello and orchestra (1930) [31:07] Phantasm - Rhapsody for piano and orchestra (1931) [27:19] Julian Lloyd Webber (cello) Peter Wallfisch (piano) London Philharmonic Orchestra/Nicholas Braithwaite rec. October 1976, Southwark (Oration); November 1975, Kingsway Hall (Phantasm). ADD LYRITA SRCD.244 [58:32] [RB]

Two majestic and subtle master works of tragic and even sinister grandeur ... see Full Review

Anton BRUCKNER (1824-1896) Symphony No. 4 in E flat major Romantic (Nowak edition, 1880) Netherlands Radio Philharmonic Orchestra/Jaap van Zweden rec. 4-7 April 2006, Studio of Netherlands Radio, Hilversum Hybrid SACD EXTON OVCL 00248 [71:36][TB]

Van Zweden and his players respond to the atmospheric orchestration and the stirring horn fanfares, with their hunting allusions. The music builds to a powerful and exciting climax, which is balanced by a lyrical trio of magical calm. ... see Full Review

Anton BRUCKNER (1824-1896) Symphony No. 6 in A (1879-81) [57:01] ((i) Majestoso [15:56]; (ii) Adagio. Sehr feierlich [17:19]; (iii) Scherzo – Trio [8:36]; (iv) Finale [15:06]) Staatskapelle Dresden/Bernard Haitink rec. live, Semperoper, Dresden, Germany, 2 November 2003. DDD PROFIL PH07011 [57:01] [PCW]

Looking for mid-price Bruckner 6 in modern sound? Look no further … see Full Review

Anton BRUCKNER (1824-1896) Symphony No. 7 in E (1881-3, ed. Haas) ((i) Allegro moderato [21:04] (ii) Adagio: Sehr feierlich und sehr langsam [23:28] (iii) Scherzo: Sehr schnell – Trio: Etwas langsamer [10:06] (iv) Finale: Bewegt, doch nicht schnell [12:20]) Aarhus Symphony Orchestra/James Loughran rec. live, Aarhus Cathedral, Denmark, 28 April 2005. DDD DANACORD DACOCD655 [67:28] [PCW]

A bit plain spun: not bad but not competitive either … see Full Review

Ferruccio BUSONI (1866-1924) Violin Sonata No. 1 in E minor Op. 29 (1890) [26:38] Violin Sonata No. 2 in E minor Op. 36a (1898-1900) [32:56] Four Bagatelles Op. 28 (1888) [6:53] Joseph Lin (violin) Benjamin Loeb (piano) rec. The Country Day School, King City, Ontario, 1-4 August 2005. DDD NAXOS 8.557848 [66:27] [PCW]

Busoni’s cause is very well served … see Full Review

Dietrich BUXTEHUDE (1637-1707) Vocal Works Volume 2 see review for details Bettina Pahn (soprano) Johannette Zomer (soprano) Bogna Barosz (alto) Patrick van Goethem (alto) Daniel Taylor (alto) Andreas Karasiak (tenor) Jorg Durmuller (tenor) Donald Bentvelsen (bass) Klaus Mertens (bass) Amsterdam Baroque Choir Amsterdam Baroque Orchestra/Ton Koopman rec. March 2006, December 2006, January 2007, Waalse Kerk, Amsterdam CHALLENGE CLASSICS CC72244 [74.40 + 76.32] [RH]

All it remains to say is that everyone should have a copy of this lively and inspiring disc on their library shelves. ... see Full Review

Dietrich BUXTEHUDE (c.1637–1707) Praeludium in G minor, BuxWV 149 [8:35] Wie schö leuchtet der Morgenstern, BuxWV 223 [8:36] Vater unser in Himmelreich, BuxWV 219 [2:51] Nun lob, mein Seel’ den Herren, BuxWV 212 [3:55] Ciacona in C minor, BuxWV 159 [6:46] In dulci jubilo, BuxWV 197 [1:53] Magnificat primi toni, BuxWV 203 [9:08] Ich ruf zu dir, Herr Jesu Christ, BuxWV 196 [3:37] Praeludium in F sharp minor, BuxWV 146 [8:10] Ach Herr, mich armen Sünder, BuxWV 178 [3:49] Fuga in C major, BuxWV 174 [3:07] Nun komm der Heiden Heiland, BuxWV 211 [1:53] Praeludium in C major, BuxWV 137 [5:36] David Hamilton (organ) rec. King’s College Chapel, The University of Aberdeen, January 2007. DDD DIVINE ART DDA25041 [69:25] [MK]

A well-chosen and varied collection of some of Buxtehude’s finest organ works … see Full Review


Detailed listing (last five 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]
[Recommended recordings]


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