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Alphabetical Listing


[Click here for the most recent reviews (last five days)]
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[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]


Gary CARPENTER (b. 1951) Ein Musikalisches Snookerspiel, Da Capo, Distanza, Van Assendelft’s Vermeer, After Braque, Die Flimmerkiste Pamela Nash (clavichord); Ensemble 10/10/Gary Carpenter, Clark Rundell rec. 2006/7 NMC D111 [HC]

Accessible, attractive works, superbly played - engaging from first to last … see Full Review

Elliott CARTER (b.1908) String Quartets Nos. 1 & 5 Pacifica Quartet rec. 2007 NAXOS 8.559362 [60:32][MC]

Carter’s quartets are superbly served … the Pacifica play with assurance and enviable unison ... see Full Review

Brian CHAPPLE (b. 1945) 1. Burlesque for two pianos, four hands (2000, adapted 2005) [11:35]; 2. Piano Sonata (1986) [17:01]; 3. Bagatelles diverses, for piano solo (2005) [23:08]; 4. Requies, for piano solo (2005) [11:38]; 5. Four pieces from "A Bit of a Blow", for piano duet (2005) [7:18] Anthony Goldstone (piano) (1, 2, 4, 5); Caroline Clemmow (piano) (1, 3, 5) rec. St John the Baptist Church, Alkborough, North Lincs, 2007 DIVINE ART DDA25056 [70:21] [JS]

A composer who has something to say with economy of means, careful craftsmanship and precision of effect. ... see Full Review

Erik CHISHOLM (1904-1965) Music for Piano - Volume 3 Piobaireachd [14:17] Sonatina No.1 [7:20] Sonatina No.2 [7:03] Two Piobaireachd Laments [13:44] Cornish Dance Sonata (1926) [33:58] Murray McLachlan (piano) rec.2006 DUNELM RECORDS DRD 0224 [76:37] [JW]

A progressive absorption of diverse influences: Gaelic folk music and Bartók prominent among them ... see Full Review

Fryderyk CHOPIN (1810-1849) Piano Concerto 2, Polonaise “Heroic” Johannes BRAHMS (1833-1897) Piano Concerto 2 (w/rehearsal excerpts) Artur Rubinstein (piano) Warsaw PO/Witold Rowicki rec. live 1960 ALTARA ARCHIVE ALT1021 [2 CDs] [JW]

General listeners will probably prefer the easier aural ride generated by commercial recordings ... see Full Review

Frédéric CHOPIN (1810-1849) The 1981 Baldwin Recordings Earl Wild rec. 1981 IVORY CLASSICS 77002
Frédéric CHOPIN
The Complete Etudes Earl Wild rec. 1992 IVORY CLASSICS 76003
Frédéric CHOPIN
Scherzos and Ballades Earl Wild rec. 1990 IVORY CLASSICS 75001 [68:40] [MC]

Not my first choice recommendations but splendidly performed. I’m sure that I will return to them often ... see Full Review

Frydéryk CHOPIN (1810-1849) Nocturne Cello Sonata, Introduction et Polonaise brillante & transcriptions Truls Mřrk (cello) Kathryn Stott (piano) rec. 2006 VIRGIN CLASSICS 3857842 [JW]

Naturalness is all in this refined and splendidly elegant recital ... see Full Review

Muzio CLEMENTI (1752-1832) Symphonies 1-4 Philharmonia O/Claudio Scimone rec. 1978 WARNER APEX 2564 627622 [SV]

Who'd have thought that Clementi would, in the symphonic arena, have been a full-fledged innovator ... see Full Review

Jérôme COMBIER (b. 1971) Vies silencieuses Ensemble Cairn/Guillaume Bourgogne rec. 2007 AEON AECD0754 [HC]

Aspects of Nature and the ‘mineral’ sound-world all imaginatively evoked ... see Full Review

Carson COOMAN (b. 1982) Symphonies 2 & 3, Partita for baroque flute, Piano Concerto, Vision; Songlines, Sun Dreaming; Sonata for Violin and Organ Bohuslav Martinu PO, Slovak RSO/Kirk Trevor rec. 2005/6 NAXOS 8.559329 [JFL]

Music that is unashamedly pleasant and presumably without pretensions to greatness ... see Full Review

John CORIGLIANO (b. 1938) The Red Violin Concerto, Sonata for Violin and Piano Joshua Bell (violin) Jeremy Denk (piano) Baltimore SO/Marin Alsop rec. live 2006/7 SONY 82876 880602 [JFL]

I’m very glad to have Corigliano’s work now for repeat listening - and well balanced too ... see Full Review

Claude DEBUSSY (1862-1918) Piano Music – Volume 1 Images,
Images (Oubliées), Estampes, Masques, L’isle joyeuse Noriko Ogawa (piano)
rec. August 2000, BIS-CD-1105 [73 :28] [CH]

This first instalment of an ongoing cycle should be collected by all Debussy enthusiasts who have so far missed out on it. ... see Full Review

Claude DEBUSSY (1862-1918) Piano Music - Volume 3 Includes Préludes – Book 2, La Boîte ŕ joujoux Noriko Ogawa rec. 2004/5 BIS CD-1355 [CH]

You cannot afford to miss this “Boîte ŕ joujoux”. However many versions of “Préludes” you may have you’ll not regret adding this one ... see Full Review

Les Enregistrements Erato Claude DEBUSSY (1862-1918) Works for Piano Maurice RAVEL (1875-1937) Works for Piano Monique Haas (piano) rec. 1968-72 ERATO 2564 69967-2 [6 CDs] [CH]

Some supreme performances here by a fine exponent of the classical French school. ... see Full Review

Leo DELIBES (1836–1891) Lakmé - Highlights Paris Opéra-Comique Chorus and Orchestra/Alain Lombard rec. 1970 CLASSICS FOR PLEASURE 3933682 [68:48][DL]

For readers who are satisfied with the plums this well filled highlights disc at budget price will be exactly what they need ... see Full Review

Paul DESSAU (1894–1979) House of Frankenstein see SALTER

Felix Otto DESSOFF (1835-1892) String Quartet Op.7 see BRAHMS

Antal DORÁTI (1906-1988) Notturno and Capriccio for oboe quintet see REICHA

John DOWLAND (1563-1626) Lute Music Volume 3: Pavans, Galliards and Almains Nigel North (nine-course lute) rec. 2005 NAXOS 8.570449 [66:22] [BW]

Another excellent recording in this thoroughly recommendable series … see Full Review

John DOWLAND (1563-1626) Lute Music -Volume 3: Pavans, Galliards and Almains Nigel North rec. 2006 NAXOS 8.570449 [JW]

The high standards set in this series have been outstandingly maintained here ... see Full Review

RECORDING OF THE MONTH John DOWLAND (1563-1626) Lute Songs Benjamin BRITTEN (1913-1976) Nocturnal after John Dowland Mark Padmore (tenor), Elizabeth Kenny (lute), Craig Ogden (guitar) rec. 2007 HYPERION CDA67648 [MG]

A terrific disc which demonstrates how flexibly Dowland’s line can be treated in expressing the nuances of the texts … see Full Review

Paul DUKAS (1865-1935) Ariane et Barbe-Bleue BBC Singers, BBC Symphony Orchestra/Leon Botstein rec. 2007 TELARC CD80680 [68:48 + 45:32][JFL]

The best opera recording of the year: rarity and beauty ... see Full Review

Vernon DUKE (Vladimir Dukelsky) (1903-1969) Piano Concerto, Cello Concerto, Homage to Boston Scott Dunn (piano), Sam Magill (cello) Russian PO/Dimitry Yablonsky rec. 2006/7 NAXOS 8.559286 [BBr]

One of the very best, and, for me, most interesting, releases in Naxos’s American Classics series ... see Full Review

Antonín DVOŘÁK (1841-1904)  The Dvořák Cycle - Volume 1: Symphony 7,  Slavonic Dances Op 72, Romance for violin and orchestra Ivan Zenaty (violin) Prague SO/Jiří Bĕlohlávek rec. live 1993 ARTHAUS MUSIK 102135  [JS]

Three of Dvořák’s best works played idiomatically and very enjoyably ... see Full Review

Antonín DVOŘÁK (1841-1904) Violin Concerto, Piano Concerto, Waldesruhe Christian Tetzlaff (violin) Czech PO/Libor Pešek, Claire Désert (piano) Strasbourg PO/Theodore Guschlbauer, Timothy Walden (cello) Royal Liverpool PO/Libor Pešek rec. 1994-96 VIRGIN CLASSICS 3913462 [JW]

The violin concerto scores highly amongst contemporary performances but the piano companion won’t really do ... see Full Review

Antonín DVOŘÁK (1841-1904) Violin Concerto, Piano Quintet 2 Sarah Chang, London SO/Colin Davis Leif Ove Andsnes (piano); Sarah Chang (violin); Alexander Kerr (violin); Wolfram Christ (viola); Georg Faust (cello) rec. 2001/2 EMI CLASSICS 5034152 [JW]

A fastidious and technically admirable player but no real affinity with the life-blood of the music ... see Full Review

Antonín DVOŘÁK (1841–1904) Serenade see TCHAIKOVSKY

Edward ELGAR (1857-1934) Symphony 1 (transc. for solo piano by Sigfrid Karg-Elert) Alan BUSH (1900-1995) Piano Sonata Mark Bebbington rec. 2006 SOMM SOMMCD069 [CSS]

I am not sure how, or to what purpose, we are offered this Elgar disc ... see Full Review

Edward ELGAR (1857-1934) Cello Concerto, Arrangements for cello & orchestra Natalie Clein, Royal Liverpool PO/Vernon Handley rec. 2007 EMI CLASSICS 5014092 [JW]

A warm, highly expressive, though very closely recorded performance ... see Full Review

Edward ELGAR (1857-1934) String Quartet see BAX

Edward ELGAR (1857–1934) Serenade see TCHAIKOVSKY

Johann Friedrich FASCH (1688-1758) Passio Jesu Christi Capella Savaria Baroque Orchestra/Mary Térey-Smith rec. 2006 NAXOS 8.570326 [71:24][JV]

Fasch's Brockes-Passion, recorded here for the first time, needs a more idiomatic performance than this ... see Full Review

Gerald FINZI (1901-1956) A Young Man’s Exhortation, Till Earth Outwears, Oh Fair to See John Mark Ainsley (tenor); Iain Burnside (piano) rec. 2006 NAXOS 8.570414 [DW]

For lovers of English song, this is an indispensable disc, especially with this thoughtfully compiled programme ... see Full Review

Johann Caspar Ferdinand FISCHER (1656-1746) Le Journal du Printemps L'Orfeo Barockorchester/Michi Gaigg rec. 2005 CPO 7771502 [JV]

An excellent interpretation of these Fischer suites, written in the French style ... see Full Review

Wilhelm FITZENHAGEN (1848-1890) Cello Concerto No.2 in A minor Op.4 [19:50] Elegie Op.21 [4:40] Capriccio Op.40 [5:05] Serenade Op.35 [4:39] Gavotte Op.42 [4:24] Impromptu Op.43 [4:09] Ave Maria Op.41 [3:49] Ave Maria Op.41 – for cello and harmonium [4:27] Dämonenfantasie Op.34 – after motifs from the opera Damon by Anton Rubinstein [15:41] Jens Peter Maintz (cello) Munich Radio Orchestra/Peter Rundel Paul Rivinius (piano and harmonium) rec.2003/2005 OEHMS CLASSICS OC 702 [67:18] [JW]

A worthy and worthwhile salute to the memory of Fitzenhagen ... see Full Review

George FLYNN (b. 1937) Trinity Frederik Ullén (piano) rec. 2004 BIS CD1593/94 [DC]

A powerful contribution to global culture ... see Full Review

RECORDING OF THE MONTH John Herbert FOULDS (1880-1939) A World Requiem BBC SC & O/Leon Botstein rec. 2007 CHANDOS CHSA5058 [45:08 + 44:50] [PCW]

Ventures like this give one hope for the future of recorded music … see Full Review

BARGAIN OF THE MONTH Kenneth FUCHS (b. 1956) United Artists; Quiet in the Land; Fire, Ice, and Summer Bronze; Autumn Rhythm; Canticle to the Sun Timothy Jones (French horn); London Symphony Orchestra/JoAnn Falletta rec. 2006 NAXOS AMERICAN CLASSICS 8.559335 [64:00][DM]

Fuchs’s distinctive voice, flair for orchestral colours and sheer lyricism shine through ... see Full Review

Janos FUSZ (Johann Evangelist FUSS) (1777–1819) Songs Maria Zadori (soprano) Timothy Bentch (tenor) Aniko Horvath (fortepiano) rec. 2005 HUNGAROTON HCD32404 [RH]

By no means masterpieces but charming and the best are fascinating A glimpse into the world of the Kleinmeister ... see Full Review

Louis Moreau GOTTSCHALK (1829–1869) Complete Works for Orchestra Hot Spring Festival Symphony Orchestra/Richard Rosenberg rec. 1999-2006 NAXOS 8.559320 [GF]

As close as possible to what Louis Moreau Gottschalk had in mind when he wrote the music. ... see Full Review

Clémence de GRANDVAL (1828–1907) Works for oboe Includes Oboe concerto Lajos Lencses (oboe, cor anglais) rec. 2005/6 HÄNSSLER CLASSICS CD98.295 [RH]

Charming pieces and anyway well worth searching out if you are interested in the musical life in 19th century Paris ... see Full Review

Edvard GRIEG (1843-1907) Ballad for Edvard Grieg (documentary film); Ballade in G minor; Piano concerto in A minor Lyric Pieces Leif Ove Andsnes (piano) Bergen Philharmonic Orchestra/Ole Kristian Ruud EMI CLASSICS 5121289 [140:00][RMa]

Andsnes’s many admirers will love this; will certainly pass a few hours in his company most informatively and enjoyably ... see Full Review

Edvard GRIEG (1843-1907) Choir Music Det Norske Solistkor/Grete Pederson rec. 2006 BIS SACD-1661 [JFL]

I have been particularly enchanted by this disc ... see Full Review

Edvard GRIEG (1843–1907) Slĺtter; Norwegian Peasant Dances (Slĺtter) in the tradition after Knut Dahle Ingfrid Breie Nyhus (the Steinway Grand Piano at Troldhaugen); Ĺshild Breie Nyhus (Hardanger fiddle) rec. 2007 SIMAX PSC1287 [GF]

Of interest to a wide audience: lovers of Grieg, of piano music, of folk music – especially fiddle music ... see Full Review

Edvard GRIEG (1843-1907) Piano Concerto, Ballade, Lyric Pieces Leif Ove Andsnes, Berlin PO/Mariss Jansons rec. 2001-7 EMI CLASSICS 3943992 [CH]

If you like the idea of the popular Piano Concerto with further exploration of Grieg’s relationship with the piano, you couldn’t find a better disc ... see Full Review

George Friederic HANDEL (1685-1759) Opera Arias Dame Emma Kirkby, Catherine Bott, Brandenburg Consort/Roy Goodman rec. 1995-99 HYPERION CDS44271/3 [3 CDs] [KM]

This collection highlights Emma Kirkby’s wonderful voice in beautiful arias by Handel … see Full Review

George Frederic HANDEL (1685-1759) Amadigi di Gaula Maria Riccarda Wesseling, Elena de la Merced, Al Ayre Espańol/Eduardo López Banzo rec. 2006 NAĎVE AMBROISIE AM133 [2 CDs] [ST]

The performance is very strong but if you don’t like Handel opera then this isn’t going to change your mind ... see Full Review

George Frederick HANDEL (1685-1759) Solomon Winchester Cathedral Choir; Göttingen Festival Orchestra/Nicholas McGegan rec. 2007 CARUS 83.242 [3 CDs: 60:20 + 49:15 + 47:04][JW]

Doesn’t really alter the balance of power in the discography stakes ... see Full Review

George Frideric HANDEL (1685–1759) Arias Danielle de Niese (soprano) Les Arts Florissants/William Christie DECCA 475 8746 [GF]

In spite of some reservations this is an endearing disc, with wonderful music and not a dull moment ... see Full Review

Josef HAYDN (1732-1809) String Quartets Op. 9 London Haydn Quartet rec. 2007 HYPERION CDA67611 [2 CDs] [GH]

Slightly mixed feelings but I will play it again as the music is of such enchantment ... see Full Review

Johann Nepomuk HUMMEL (1778-1837) Le retour de Londres – Grand Rondeau brilliant, Variations and Finale, Oberons Zauberhorn, Variations Christopher Hinterhuber (piano) Gävle SO/Uwe Grodd rec. 2006 NAXOS 8.557845 [TP]

Hummel’s virtuosic music calls for finesse rather than barnstorming, and these cultivated artists know just how to play it ... see Full Review

Johann Nepomuk HUMMEL (1778-1837) Selected Masterpieces Various artists rec. 1994-2000 DYNAMIC CDS 554/1-6 [71:39 + 68:35 + 57:08 + 64:33 + 57:32 + 76:06][MS]

A selection of some of Hummel’s most enticing and satisfying music … real value for money though the level of inspiration may be bettered elsewhere ... see Full Review

Engelbert HUMPERDINCK (1854–1921) Hänsel und Gretel (1893) Theo Adam (bass) – Peter, a broom-maker; Gisela Schröter (mezzo) – Gertrud, his wife; Ingeborg Springer (contralto) – Hänsel, their son; Renate Hoff (soprano) – Gretel, their daughter; Peter Schreier (tenor) – Witch; Renate Krahmer (soprano) – Sandman/Dew Fairy; Members of Dresdner Kreuzchor; Staatskapelle Dresden/Otmar Suitner rec. Lukaskirche, Dresden, 1969 German libretto enclosed BERLIN CLASSICS 0184182BC [54:23 + 40:37] [GF]

Several other sets are more recommendable but Suitner’s big-boned reading shouldn’t be overlooked – and Peter Schreier’s witch cries out to be heard ... see Full Review

Jacques IBERT (1890-1962) Divertissement for Small Orchestra see OFFENBACH

Sigurd ISLANDSMOEN (1881-1964) Requiem Hilde Haraldsen Sveen (soprano); Marianne Beate Kielland (alto); Ulf Řien (tenor); Trond Halstein Moe (bass) Det Norske Solistkoor, Kristiansand SO/Terje Boye Hansen rec. 2006 2L 36 [DC]

A revival which I hope will set a trend for neglected masterpieces elsewhere ... see Full Review

Friedrich KIEL (1821-1885) Piano Quartets Nos. 1-3 Ulrike-Anima Mathé (violin); Hariolf Schlichtig (viola); Xenia Jankovic (cello); Oliver Triendl (piano) rec. 2005 CPO 7770762 [77:46][MC]

Lovers of Romantic chamber music should not hesitate ... see Full Review

Hans KÖßLER (KOESSLER) (1853-1926) String Quintet, String Sextet Frankfurter Streichsextett rec. 2003/4 CPO 777269-2 [GH]

Wonderful performances and very fine music excellently documented ... see Full Review

Joseph Martin KRAUS (1756-1792) Violin Concerto, Olympie - incidental music, Azire - ballet music Takako Nishizaki (violin) New Zealand SO/Uwe Grodd rec. 2006 NAXOS 8.570334 [JW]

Restores some worthwhile and valuable music to public audition ... see Full Review

Uwe KREMP (b. 1964) ‘…tief im blauen Traum…’ see SCHUMANN

György KURTÁG (b. 1926) … concertante …, Zwiegespräch, Hipartita, Játékok, Transcriptions Hiromi Kikuchi, Hungarian Ntl PO/Zoltán Kocsis, Keller Quartet, Márta and György Kurtág rec. 2006 BMC CD129 [2 CDs] [PB-W]

Outstanding performances of some of the most riveting music composed in the last thirty-forty years ... see Full Review

Klaus LANG (b. 1971) Missa Beati Pauperes Spiritu Peter Gerwig Romirer (cantor) Natalia Pschenitschnikova (voice) Roland Dahinden (trombone) Gunter Meinhardt (percussion) Thomas Musil and IEM Graz (live electronics) Trio RGB rec. live 2005 COL LEGNO WWE1CD 20271 [DB]

An interesting and extremely understated piece recommended for fans of Feldman and Eno … see Full Review

HISTORICAL RECORDING OF THE MONTH Ruggiero LEONCAVALLO (1858-1919) Chatterton Chorus and orchestra of Teatro alla Scala/Ruggiero Leoncavallo rec. 1908 Pagliacci Giuseppe Rosci Chorus and orchestra of Teatro alla Scala/Ruggiero Leoncavallo (as stated on labels; possibly Carlo Sabajno) rec. 1907 MARSTON 52016-2 [79.04 + 78:14][JW]

An amazing rarity transferred with care, presented with authority, and made universally available ... see Full Review

Franz LISZT (1811-1886) BACH-LISZT TRANSCRIPTIONS Karl-Andreas Kolly (piano) PAN CLASSICS 510 [2 CDs] [CH]

By likening these works to Bach-on-the-piano as we know it today, Kolly may win friends for them among listeners who enjoy Bach but do not particularly relish either the harpsichord or the organ. ... see Full Review

Franz LISZT Mephisto Waltz no. 1 etc Janina Fialkowska (piano) rec. Canada, pub. 1990 CBC RECORDS MVCD 2-1035 [65:25] [CH]

A particularly interesting "Mephisto Waltz". I have become Fialkowska-conscious and would like to hear some of her more recent work. ... see Full Review

Franz LISZT (1811-1886) recital Michel Dalberto (piano) rec. 1990 (CD 1), 1992 (Années), 1993 (La notte) DENON CO 77289/CO 75500 [CH]

This pair of Liszt discs is a very fine achievement. ... see Full Review

Franz LISZT (1811-1886) Donizetti - Operatic Reminiscences and Transcriptions William Wolfram (piano) rec. 2006 NAXOS 8.570137  [65:57][DM]

There’s nothing modest about the pianistic talents of William Wolfram ... see Full Review

Franz LISZT (1811-1886) St. Elisabeth (The Legend of Saint Elisabeth), Melanie Diener, Dagmar Pecková, Mario Hoff, Hungarian Radio Ch, Staatskapelle Weimar/Carl St. Clair rec. 2007 CPO 777339-2 [2 CDs] [MC]

Splendidly performed and recorded. Deserves to be part of any Liszt collection ... see Full Review

Jan LUNDGREN (b. 1966) Magnum Mysterium Jan Lundgren (grand piano, keyboards); Gustaf Sjökvist Chamber Choir/Gustaf Sjökvist rec. 2007 ACT 9457-2 [53.34][RH]

A little too constrained for jazz enthusiasts and too free with source material for classical folk ... see Full Review


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[Recommended recordings]



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