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Every day we post 10 new Classical CD and DVD reviews. A free weekly summary is available by e-mail. MusicWeb is not a subscription site. To keep it free please purchase discs through our links.

  Classical Editor Rob Barnett    


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]

 

DAILY CD REVIEWS



Hoffnung At Large
New
double CD lasting 2 hours of Gerard Hoffnung from the BBC.
Full details here

£14 postage included world-wide

Hoffnung Music Festivals 1956,58,61
2CDs:£17 postage included World-Wide [mono/stereo]
This is a must for all Hoffnung enthusiasts.
Purchase here    see review








Available for the FIRST TIME
- a DVD of 7 animated Hoffnung cartoons as shown on the BBC in the 1960s in FULL COLOUR plus animated Gilbert and Sullivan Ruddigore. £14.99 Details
NOTE: Region 0 but PAL only

Hoffnung - A Last Encore
On 2 CDs lasting 1 hour 45min, this contains all the recordings of Hoffnung preserved in the BBC archives. They include the famous and hilariously funny Bricklayer story from the Oxford Union. [mono]
£14 postage included world-wide Purchase

See a new Hoffnung Cartoon every day


 

Click for MUSICWEB RECORDINGS OF THE YEAR


RECORDINGS OF THE MONTH January 2007

 

RECORDING OF THE MONTH Johann Sebastian BACH (1685-1750) The Bach Cantata Pilgrimage: Volume 7 Cantatas for The Fourteenth Sunday after Trinity Es ist nichts Gesundes an meinem Liebe, BWV 25 [17:42] Jesu, der du meine Seele, BWV 78 [23:05] Wer Dank opfert, der preiset mich, BWV 17 [16:24]  Malin Hartelius (soprano); Robin Tyson (alto); James Gilchrist (tenor); Peter Harvey (bass) The Monteverdi Choir English Baroque Soloists/Sir John Eliot Gardiner rec. Abbaye d’Ambronay, France, 24 September 2000 Cantatas for the Feast of St. Michael and All Angels Nun ist das Heil, und die Kraft, BWV 50 [3:15] (Occasion unspecified) Herr Gott, dich loben alle wir, BWV 130 [15:30] Es erhub sich ein Streit, BWV 19 [20:24] Man singet mit Freuden vom Sieg, BWV 149 [18:21] Malin Hartelius (soprano); Richard Wyn Roberts (alto); James Gilchrist (tenor); Peter Harvey (bass) The Monteverdi Choir English Baroque Soloists/Sir John Eliot Gardiner rec. Unser Lieben Frauen, Bremen, 29 September 2000 SOLI DEO GLORIA SDG 124 [57:27 + 57:44][JQ]

In every respect this set lives up to the very high standards of previous issues in the series. It’s essential listening for all lovers of Bach’s cantatas. ... see Full Review

RECORDING OF THE MONTH Ludwig van BEETHOVEN (1770-1827) Piano Sonatas 8-18, 21-27 David Allen Wehr rec. 2003/4 CONNOISSEUR SOCIETY CD4262 (Vol. 2) [78.15 + 79.40]; CD4263 (Vol. 3) [79.05 + 79.10] [PSh]

Exquisite Beethoven by one of the finest pianists currently before us, recorded in laboratory quality sound. ... see Full Review

RECORDING OF THE MONTH Max BRUCH (1838-1920) Violin Concerto No.1 in G minor, Op. 26 (1864-68) [23:40] Romance for viola and orchestra in F major, Op. 85 (c. 1911) [8:23]  Felix MENDELSSOHN (1809-1847) Violin Concerto in E Minor, Op. 64 (1844) [26:56] Janine Jansen (violin, viola) Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchestra/Riccardo Chailly rec. live, 5-9 September 2006, Gewandhaus, Leipzig, Germany (live performances). DDD DECCA 4758133 [59:05] [MC]

Janine Jansen fully deserves her exalted reputation and doesn’t put a foot wrong with this excellent Decca release of two staples of the violin concerto repertoire. ... see Full Review

RECORDING OF THE MONTH Enrique GRANADOS (1867-1916) Goyescas (Los majos enamorados) (1909-11) [55:57] El Pelele (The Straw Man) [5:49] (arranged for guitars by Christophe Dejour) Trio Campanella: (Christophe Dejour; Frank Massa; Thomas Winthereik, (guitars)) rec. Torpen Chapel, Denmark, December 2006, April 2006. NAXOS 8.557709 [61:47][KS]

To put it simply, this is the finest recording of music for guitars that I have ever heard ... see Full Review

RECORDING OF THE MONTH George Frideric HANDEL (1685-1759) Messiah (Dublin version, 1742) [140:05] Susan Hamilton (soprano) Annie Gill, Claire Wilkinson (contraltos) Nicholas Mulroy (tenor) Matthew Brook (bass) Dunedin Consort and Players/John Butt rec. Greyfriars Kirk, Edinburgh, 1-4 May 2006. DDD LINN RECORDS CKD 285 [76:37 + 63:28][MG]

With a scholarly yet accessible approach and attractive consistency of character, this is a performance which convincingly conveys spirituality in a fresh and immediate recording.  … see Full Review

RECORDING OF THE MONTH Jerome KERN (1885-1945) Show Boat (1927) Book and lyrics by Oscar Hammerstein II Magnolia Hawks – Frederica von Stade (sop); Gaylord Ravenal – Jerry Hadley (tenor); Julie Laverne – Teresa Stratas (sop) ; Joe – Bruce Hubbard (bass); Queenie – Karla Burns (mezzo); Frank Schultz – David Garrison (tenor); Ellie May Chipley – Paige O’Hara (sop); Captain Andy Hawks – Robert Nichols (baritone); Parthy Ann Hawks – Nancy Kulp ; Lady on levee – Lillian Gish Ambrosian Chorus London Sinfonietta/John McGlinn rec. Abbey Road Studio 1, London, June-September 1987. EMI CLASSICS GREAT RECORDINGS OF THE CENTURY 3615432 [3 CDs: 70:26 + 74:55 + 76:10] [TH]

A heart-warming experience and another GROC to savour ... see Full Review

RECORDING OF THE MONTH Franz LISZT (1811-1886) A Faust Symphony (1857) (i) Faust [30:16]; (ii) Gretchen [23:19]; (iii) Mephistopheles [25:58] Kenneth Riegel (tenor) Tanglewood Festival Chorus Boston Symphony Orchestra/Leonard Bernstein rec. Symphony Hall, Boston, 26 July 1976. ADD Directed by Humphrey Burton Picture format NTSC 4:3; Sound Formats PCM Stereo, DD 5.1, DTS 5.1; Region Code 0; Disc Format DVD 9; subtitles in English, French, German and Spanish EUROARTS 2072078 [83:00] [PCW]

A stupendous one-off occasion … you may struggle to find something better than this in any format … see Full Review

RECORDING OF THE MONTH Wolfgang Amadeus MOZART (1756-1791) The Piano Sonatas Joyce Hatto (piano) rec. Concert Artist Studios, Cambridge, 1995 - 2005 CONCERT ARTISTS IPO01052 [re-edited and re-mastered] (5CDs packaged together in slim-line case with a booklet - German booklet available on request. 5discs for the price of 3) [CH]

A cycle consistently illuminated by an inner spirituality. ... see Full Review

RECORDING OF THE MONTH Giacomo PUCCINI (1858-1924) La Bohème (1896) Rodolfo, Aquiles Machado (ten); Mimi, Inva Mula (sop); Marcello, Fabio Maria Capitanucci (bar); Musetta, Laura Giordano (sop); Schaunard, David Menendez (bar); Colline, Felipe Bou (bass); Alcindoro, Alfredo Mariotti (ten); Benoit, Juan Tomás Martinez (bass); Parpignol, Gonzalo Fernández de Terán Chorus and Orchestra of the Teatro Real, Madrid (Madrid Symphony Orchestra and Chorus)/Jesus Lopez-Cobos rec. live, Teatro Real, Madrid, March 2006 Stage director, Giancarlo del Monaco. Set and Costume Designer, Michael Scott Television Director, Robin Lough Plus bonus of interviews and cast gallery Picture format: 16/9 Anamorphic. Recorded in High Definition Sound formats: LPCM Stereo. DTS 5.1 Sung in Italian with subtitles in English, German, French, Italian, Spanish OPUS ARTE OA0961D [2 DVDs: 149:00] [RJF]

The realistic sets provide an ideal framework for Inva Mula’s detailed and poignant portrayal of Mimi’s brief life and also for the realisation of the director’s cinematographic aspirations for the work. ... see Full Review

RECORDING OF THE MONTH Sergei PROKOFIEV (1891-1953) Peter and the Wolf Op. 67 (1936) Philharmonia Orchestra/Mark Stephenson Suzie Templeton (director) Special features: The Musical Themes; The Story - Picture Gallery; The Making of Peter & The Wolf; A Day on the Film Set; Director’s Commentary Language versions: English, German, French, Spanish, Portuguese, Dutch, Italian (Bonus Material) Subtitle Languages GB for the Bonus Material Sound format: PCM Stereo, Dolby Digital 2.0, Dolby Digital 5.1, DTS 5.1 Region Code: 2.5 Breakthru Films 2006 ARTHAUS-MUSIK 101 804-GB [movie: 35:00; bonus: 75:00][DC]

A wonderful production, richly deserving of any and all awards which must surely come its way. ... see Full Review

RECORDING OF THE MONTH Maurice RAVEL (1875-1937) The Complete Piano Works Volume 1 Jeux d'eau (1901) [5:46] Sonatine (1905) [11:04] Miroirs (1905) [27:46] Gaspard de la nuit (1908) [22:23] Volume 2 Sérénade grotesque (1893) [3:27] Menuet antique [5:44] Pavane pour une infante défunte (1899) [6:02] Menuet sur le nom de Haydn (1909) [1:42] A la maničre de Borodine (1913) [1:31] A la maničre de Chabrier (1913) [1:41] Prélude (1913) [1:25] Valses nobles et sentimentales (1911) [14:13] Le Tombeau de Couperin (1917) [35:36] La Valse (1920) [11:30] Joyce Hatto (piano) rec. 17-18 May 2005, Concert Artist Studios CONCERT ARTIST CACD20042 (9138/9139) [67:09 + 71:35] [DC]

With a lifetime of living with these works, Joyce Hatto records them with the advantage of knowing their every wrinkle and secret like few others. ... see Full Review

RECORDING OF THE MONTH Sir Donald TOVEY (1875–1940) Cello Concerto, Op. 40 (1935) [54:16] * Air for strings** (arr. Peter Shore) [2:15] Elegiac Variations, op. 25, for cello and piano (1909) [10:11] Alice Neary (cello) Ulster Orchestra/George Vass, Gretel Dowdeswell (piano) rec. Ulster Hall, Belfast, 29-30 May 2006. *First modern recording; **First recording TOCCATA TOCC0038 [67:04] [RB]

Fresh, keenly imagined and emotionally engaging. The performance, recording, documentation and presentation adroitly complement this major work. ... see Full Review

RECORDING OF THE MONTH Carl VINE (b.1954) The Piano Music: 1990-2006 Piano Sonata No.1 (1990) [15:31] Piano Sonata No.2 (1998) [20:41] Five Bagatelles (1995) [8:50] Red Blues (1999) [4:46] The Anne Landa Preludes (2006) [24:00] Michael Kieran-Harvey (piano) rec. 20 May 2004, Studio 200, ABC (Sonata No.1); 10 February 1999, Newcastle Conservatorium (Sonata No.2); 10-11 May 2006, City Recital Hall, Angel Place, Sydney TALL POPPIES TP190 [74:15] [DC]

Wow! ... see Full Review

RECORDING OF THE MONTH Libre comme un oiseau Aurelian-Octav POPA (b.1937) Perpetuum mobile [10.05] Henry PURCELL (1659-1695) Prélude from The Fairy Queen [1.33] Martian NEGREA (1893-1973) Le mois de Mars [2.40] Henry PURCELL Prélude from The Fairy Queen [1.46] Igor STRAVINSKY (1882-1971) Three Pieces for solo clarinet [5.13] Henry PURCELL Hornpipe from The Fairy Queen [0.56] Tiberiu OLAH (1928-2002) Sonata for solo clarinet [6.40] Johann Sebastian BACH (1685-1750) Partita [2.37] Olivier MESSIAEN (1908-1992) Abîme des Oiseaux [6.31] François COUPERIN (1668-1733) Les petits moulins ŕ vent [1.21] John CAGE (1912-1992) Sonata [4.36] Hans-Ulrich LEHMANN (1937-) Mosaďk [7.05] Carl Philippe Emanuel BACH (1714-1788) Solfegietto [1.32] Aaron COPLAND (1900-1990) Cadenza [3.35] Corneliu CEZAR (1937-1998) Théâtrale [1.28] Olivier MESSIAEN Subtilité des Corps Glorieux [3.34] Mihnea BRUMARIU (b.1958) Musique pour Aurelian [5.10] Olivier MESSIAEN Hymne des passereaux au lever du jour [1.13] Aurelian-Octav Popa (clarinet) rec. IRCAM, Espace de Projection, December 2004. DDD. CALLIOPE CAL 9354 [69.30][ED]

A most engaging recital. Let your imagination take flight! ... see Full Review

RECORDING OF THE MONTH Songs – Rodion Pogossov Edward GRIEG (1843–1907) With a water lily, Op. 25 No. 4 [2:16]; Dereinst, Gedanke mein, Op. 48 No. 2 [2:52]; Die verschwiegene Nachtigall, Op. 48 No. 4 [3:15]; Zur Rosenzeit, Op. 48 No. 5 [2:47]; Ein Traum, Op. 48 No. 6 [2:19]; Antonio Pietro CESTI (1623–1669) Alessandro (1651): Si mantiene il mio amor (realisation by John Glenn Paton) [2:27]; Sergei RACHMANINOV (1873–1943) Oh no, I beg you, do not leave, Op. 4 No. 1 [1:52]; In the mysterious silence of the night, Op. 4 No. 3 [2:42]; I was with her, Op. 14 No. 4 [1:25]; All things pass away, Op. 26 No. 15 [1:43]; Christoph Willibald GLUCK (1714–1787) Paride ed Elena: O del mio dolce ardor [3:17];Gustav MAHLER (1860–1911)Lieder eines fahrenden Gesellen (1883): Wenn mein Schatz Hochzeit macht [3:41]; Ging heut’ Morgen übers Feld [4:18]; Ich hab’ ein glühend Messer [3:07]; Die zwei blauen Augen [5:15]; Antonio CALDARA (1670–1736) La constanza in amor vince l’inganno, cantata: Come raggio di sol [2:32]; Pyotr Ilyich TCHAIKOVSKY (1840–1893) The fearful minute, Op. 28 No. 6 [3:36]; Again, as before, alone, Op. 73 No. 6 [2:08]; Don Juan’s Serenade, Op. 38 No. 1 [2:40]; On the golden cornfields, Op. 57 No. 2 [3:10]; Maury YESTON (b. 1945) Nine, musical: Unusual Way [2:57] Rodion Pogossov (baritone); Malcolm Martineau (piano) rec. 16–21 February 2006, Potton Hall, Suffolk EMI CLASSICS DEBUT 3596352 [60:26] [GF]

Always thrilling to hear a young singer on his way up. I wouldn’t in the least be surprised if Rodion Pogossov becomes one of the most sought after baritones ... see Full Review

 

 


BARGAINS OF THE MONTH


BARGAIN OF THE MONTH Arthur BLISS (1891-1975) Orchestral works see review for details rec. 1970-79 EMI CLASSICS BRITISH COMPOSERS 5865892 [79:23 + 74:43] [RB]

An unmissable and generous set ... vitally essential Bliss. ... see Full Review

BARGAIN OF THE MONTH Gustav MAHLER (1860-1911) The Symphonies CD1 Symphony No. 1 (1884-96) [54:32]* Symphony No. 2 “Resurrection” (1888-94): I [21:35] CD2 Symphony No. 2 “Resurrection” (1888-94): II-V [60:57] + CD3 Symphony No. 3 (1895-6): I-IV [65:22] CD4 Symphony No. 3 (1895-6): V-VI [30:04] ^ Symphony No. 4 (1899-1901): I-III [48:43] CD5 Symphony No. 4 (1899-1901): IV [9:09] # Symphony No. 5 (1901-2) [67:49] CD6 Symphony No. 7 (1908) [78:48] CD7 Symphony No. 6 (1903-05): I-III [53:53] CD8 Symphony No. 6 (1903-05): IV [29:22] Symphony No. 9 (1909) I-II [44:12]* CD9 Symphony No. 9 (1909) III-IV [42:28]* Symphony No.10: Adagio (1910) [26:04] CD10 Symphony No.8 (1909) [78:50]* $ CD 11 Das Lied von der Erde (1909) [61:55]* Kristina Laki (soprano)+, Lucia Popp (soprano)#, Julia Varady (soprano)$, Marianne Haggander (soprano)$, Maria Venuti (soprano)$, Florence Quivar (mezzo)+$, Ann Howells (mezzo-soprano)$, Maria Lipovšek (mezzo-soprano)%, Gwendolyn Killebrew (contralto)^, Paul Frey (tenor)$, Ben Heppner (tenor)%, Alan Titus (baritone)$, Siegfried Vogel (bass)$; Kölner Rundfunkchor +$, Südfunk-Chor Stuttgart +$, Knabenchor des Collegium Josephinium, Bonn ^, Frauenchor des Bayerischen Rundfunks und des Westdeutschen Rundfunks ^, The Little Singers of Tokyo $, Prager Philharmonischer Chor $; Kölner Rundfunk-Sinfonieorchester/Gary Bertini rec. 21, 23 November 1991, Suntory Hall Tokyo (Symphony No.1); 29 April – 4 May 1991, Philharmonie, Köln (Symphony No.2); 25-27 March 1985, Studio Stollberger-Strasse, Köln (Symphony No.3); 30 November and 4 December 1987, Philharmonie, Köln (Symphony No.4); 29 January – 3 February 1990, Philharmonie, Köln (Symphony No.5); 21 September 1984, WDR Studios, Köln (Symphony No.6); 9-15 February 1990, Philharmonie, Köln (Symphony No.7); 12-14 November 1991, Suntory Hall Tokyo (Symphony No.8); 20 February 1991, Suntory Hall Tokyo (Symphony No.9); 1-3 July 1991, Philharmonie, Köln (Symphony No.10: Adagio); 16-17 November 1991, Suntory Hall Tokyo (Das Lied von der Erde); Live recordings *. DDD EMI CLASSICS 0946 3 40238 2 5 [11 CDs: 76:07 + 60:57 + 65:22 + 78:47 + 77:32 + 78:48 + 53:53 + 73:34 + 68:32 + 78:50 + 61:55][TP]

This cycle is an essential purchase for all Mahlerians and the best possible set for beginners …... see Full Review

BARGAIN OF THE MONTH Jean SIBELIUS (1865-1957) The Essential SIBELIUS Symphonies 1-7, En Saga, Pohjola, Valse Triste, Finlandia, Tapiola, Violin Concerto, 2 Serious Melodies, 2 Serenades, 6 Humoresques, Kullervo, Wood-Nymph, Lemmikainen Suite, Karelia, Scenes Historiques, Song of the Athenians, The Origin of Fire, The Captive Queen, Rakastava, Andante Festivo, King Christian Suite, Pelleas and Melisande, The Tempest, Snöfrid, The Bard, Oceanides, Luonnotar, The Broken Voice, The Boat Journey, Song of my Heart and other songs, 2 String Quartets, Piano Trio, Piano Quintet, Water Drops, Andante Cantabile, Violin Sonata, Malincolia, 4 Violin Pieces, Violin Sonatina, 2 Danses Champêtres, Florestan, Impromptu, Piano Sonata, Romance, Kyllikki, 3 Sonatinas, The Solitary Fir Tree, The Spruce, Scène Romantique, The Village Church Helena Juntunen, (soprano), MariAnne Häggander, (soprano), Lilli Paasikivi, (mezzo), Monica Groop, (mezzo), Anne Sofie von Otter mezzo), Jorma Hynninen, (baritone), Raimo Laukka, (baritone), Tommi Hakala, (baritone), Sauli Tiilikainen, (baritone), Stina Ekblad, (narrator), Lasse Pöysti, (narrator), Leonidas Kavakos, (violin), Laura Vikman, (violin), Nils-Erik Sparf, (violin), Jaakko Kuusisto, (violin), Anna Kreetta Gribajcevic, (viola), Marko Ylönen, (cello), Taneli Turunen, (cello), Torleif Thedéen, (cello), Joel Laakso, (cello), Erik T. Tawaststjerna, (piano), Bengt Forsberg, (piano), Folke Gräsbeck, (piano), Love Derwinger, (piano), Harri Viitanen, (harmonium), Tempera Quartet, (string quartet) Helsinki University Chorus, (choir), Lahti Boys' Choir, (choir), Dominante Choir, (choir), Jubilate Choir, (choir), Orphei Drängar, (choir), Leonidas Kavakos (violin); Dong-Suk Kang (violin); Tempera Quartet Lahti Symphony Orchestra/Osmo Vänskä Gothenburg Symphony Orchestra/Neeme Järvi rec. 1979-2006, Finland, ADD (only trs 9-22 of CD15)/DDD 15 CDs for the price of 4 Full track-listing at end of review BIS CD-1697-1700 [15 CDs: 75:32 + 76:10 + 77:20 + 68:16 + 78:19 + 80:46 + 71:36 + 76:27 + 80:11 + 77:02 + 79:39 + 75:48 + 79:13 + 77:42 + 78:01] [RB]

With one strange omission this set justifies its claim to offer The Essential Sibelius. It will provide hours of pleasure, discovery and rediscovery for not very much money. If this were your only Sibelius you would have a very fine cross-section of the best of this great composer. ... see Full Review

BARGAIN OF THE MONTH New England Legacy Quincy PORTER (1897-1966) Violin Sonata No.2 (1929) [16:10] Four Pieces for violin and piano (1947) [12:51] Walter PISTON (1894-1976) Violin Sonata (1939) [17:22] Amy BEACH (1867-1944) Three Compositions Op.40 (1898): La Captiva [3:25]; Berceuse [3:02]; Mazurka [3:06] Joel Pitchon (violin) Jonathan Bass (piano) rec. Sweeney Concert Hall, Sage Hall, Smith College, Northampton MA, undated GASPARO GSCD 367 [56:18] [JW]

An enjoyable recital. Greater tonal variety and tensile strength would have brought greater results ... 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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