Aureole etc.




Golden Age singers

Nimbus on-line




Faure songs
Charlotte de Rothschild (soprano);

  Founder: Len Mullenger
Classical Editor: Rob Barnett


CD REVIEW

Some items
to consider


New App by the Gothenburg Symphony Orchestra for iOS and Android!

Schumann Symphonies Rattle


Complete Brahms
Bargain price

 

alternatively Crotchet

 

Edouard LALO (1823–1892)
Symphonie espagnole (1874) [25:06]

Johannes BRAHMS (1833–1897)
Violin Concerto in D, op.77 (1878) [37:05]

Nathan Milstein (violin)
Orchestre Nationale de Paris/André Cluytens (Lalo); NDR-Sinfonieorchester/Paul Kletzki
rec. Septembre Musical, Montreux, 11 September 1955 (Lalo); 6 September 1960 (Brahms) ADD
CLAVES 502708 [62:22] 
Experience Classicsonline


Nathan Milstein was an aristocrat of the violin. He had perfect intonation, a full, rich tone, and his powers of interpretation and insight into the music he was playing was second to none. He also had the ability, as did Beecham, to imbue a lesser work with such authority that you were convinced you were listening to a masterpiece. I am thinking of the lovely Violin Concerto in A minor, by Karl Goldmark, which Milstein plays with as much love as he gives to the two works here under discussion. The Goldmark recording, by the way, is indispensable (Testament SBT1047). Milstein never put virtuosity above musicianship, and the Goldmark recording alongside the two performances here show his superb technical and musical abilities. In the booklet there is the statement Perfectly simple, simply perfect and that just about sums up his art: technique at the service of the composer.
 

Born in Odessa, Milstein made his debut in his home town, conducted by Glazunov, in 1915 before he studied with Leopold Auer. In 1921 he met Vladimir Horowitz, went on tour with him throughout Russia in 1925 and made his American debut in 1929, with Stokowski and the Philadelphia Orchestra. He settled in New York and toured the world into his mid-80s, only retiring after suffering a broken hand. He died in London ten days before his 89th birthday. Interestingly, his 1948 recording of Beethoven’s Violin Concerto, with the New York Philharmonic, conducted by Bruno Walter, was the first item in Columbia’s (CBS, now Sony) catalogue of new long playing, twelve-inch 33 1/3 rpm, vinyl records (Columbia ML 4001).

What a lovely coupling this is. Two concertos, written four years apart, one light and frothy, one deadly serious (in the main), both allowing the soloist to display both pyrotechnics as well as lyrical playing. 

Without a shadow of a doubt, Milstein is superb. He throws himself into the southern warmth of the Symphonie espagnole, with great aplomb. He is, by turns playful (the finale is simply delicious, his tone on the g string is rich and fruity, and there’s a lovely use of portamento), winsome and delicate (the 3rd movement, Andante). Milstein plays the four movement version, believing that Lalo only intended the Intermezzo to be included for the première. What a shame he was of this opinion for the performance is so fine that one longs for more of it.

The Brahms Concerto is full of fire and passion. Milstein’s first entry is breathtaking, the octaves hair-raising, the passagework exhilarating. Then comes the lyricism, first the opening theme, played with such control and sweetness of tone, followed by the glorious second subject, which Milstein floats with tender loving care. There’s also probably the most subtle use of rubato I’ve ever heard. The oboist in the slow movement phrases the great tune well - but he’s no Leon Goossens, perhaps the finest oboist to play this theme - and complements Milstein’s playing of the melody. And what sweet delight Milstein makes of this slow movement, with a true singing tone, and gentle inflection. The finale is wild and full of ‘gypsyness’, but he is never afraid to stand back when in an accompanying role. 

All in all this is superb stuff. It is a privilege to hear such great playing, and such wonderful unaffected performances. The recorded sound is a little bit boxy but the ear adjusts quickly. Add to this that the orchestra, in both recordings, is slightly backwardly placed - the Brahms is better than the Lalo in this respect. The music-making is without doubt very enjoyable. The production is excellent. The CD is contained within a cover which opens out and the booklet is attached to the cover. There are good, if not many, notes and some lovely photographs, not all of them of Milstein playing, which is a boon. 

To hear this great violinist live in concert is an honour, especially for those of us who never had the pleasure of hearing him in the flesh. A must for all interested in performance and great fiddling.

Bob Briggs

see also Review by Jonathan Woolf


 




 


Gerard Hoffnung CDs

Advertising on
Musicweb


Donate and get a free CD

New Releases

Naxos Classical

Hyperion

Musicweb sells the following labels
Acte Préalable
Alto
Arcodiva
Atoll
CDAccord
Cameo Classics
Centaur
Hallé
Hortus
Lyrita
Nimbus
Northern Flowers
Redcliffe
Sheva
Talent
Toccata Classics


Follow us on Twitter

Subscribe to our free weekly review listing
sample
 


EXPLORE MUSICWEB INTERNATIONAL

Making a Donation to MusicWeb

Writing CD reviews for MWI

About MWI
Who we are, where we have come from and how we do it.

Site Map

How to find a review

How to find articles on MusicWeb
Listed in date order

Review Indexes
   By Label
      Select a label and all reviews are listed in Catalogue order
   By Masterwork
            Links from composer names (eg Sibelius) are to resource pages with links to the review indexes for the individual works as well as other resources.

Themed Review pages

Jazz reviews

 

Discographies
   Composer
      Composer surveys
   National
      Unique to MusicWeb -
a comprehensive listing of all LP and CD recordings of given works
.
Prepared by Michael Herman

The Collector’s Guide to Gramophone Company Record Labels 1898 - 1925
Howard Friedman

Book Reviews

Complete Books
We have a number of out of print complete books on-line

Interviews
With Composers, Conductors, Singers, Instumentalists and others
Includes those on the Seen and Heard site

Nostalgia

Nostalgia CD reviews

Records Of The Year
Each reviewer is given the opportunity to select the best of the releases

Monthly Best Buys
Recordings of the Month and Bargains of the Month

Comment
Arthur Butterworth Writes

An occasional column

Phil Scowcroft's Garlands
British Light Music articles

Classical blogs
A listing of Classical Music Blogs external to MusicWeb International

Reviewers Logs
What they have been listening to for pleasure

Announcements

 

Community
Bulletin Board

Give your opinions or seek answers

Reviewers
Pat and present

Helpers invited!

Resources
How Did I Miss That?

Currently suspended but there are a lot there with sound clips


Composer Resources

British Composers

British Light Music Composers

Other composers

Film Music (Archive)
Film Music on the Web (Closed in December 2006)

Programme Notes
For concert organizers

External sites
British Music Society
The BBC Proms
Orchestra Sites
Recording Companies & Retailers
Online Music
Agents & Marketing
Publishers
Other links
Newsgroups
Web News sites etc

PotPourri
A pot-pourri of articles

MW Listening Room
MW Office

Advice to Windows Vista users  
Questionnaire    
Site History  
What they say about us
What we say about us!
Where to get help on the Internet
CD orders By Special Request
Graphics archive
Currency Converter
Dictionary
Magazines
Newsfeed  
Web Ring
Translation Service

Rules for potential reviewers :-)
Do Not Go Here!
April Fools




Return to Review Index

Untitled Document


Reviews from previous months
Join the mailing list and receive a hyperlinked weekly update on the discs reviewed. details
We welcome feedback on our reviews. Please use the Bulletin Board
Please paste in the first line of your comments the URL of the review to which you refer.