Aureole etc.




Nimbus on-line




If it’s the Czech works you’re after, do not hesitate

  Founder: Len Mullenger
Classical Editor: Rob Barnett


CD REVIEW

Some items
to consider

 


Enjoy the Gothenburg Symphony Orchestra wherever you are. App available for iOS and Android

Lyrita 4CDs £16 incl.postage

Lyrita 4CDs £16 incl.postage


Decca Phase 4 - 40CDs


Judith Bailey, George Lloyd


BAX Orchestral pieces


CASKEN Violin Concerto

Schumann Symphonies Rattle


Complete Brahms
Bargain price

 

AVAILABILITY

www.Buywell.com

 

 

 

Sir Edward ELGAR (1857-1934)
Violin Sonata in E minor [23:44]
Frederick DELIUS (1862-1934)
Violin Sonata No. 3 [15:38]
John IRELAND (1879-1962)
Violin Sonata No. 2 [24:31]
Buckhard Hofmann (violin); Alan Newcombe (piano)
rec. Friedrich-Ebert-Halle, Hamburg-Harburg, Germany, April 2003 (Elgar), September 2003 (Delius), December 2004 (Ireland). DDD
DECCA ELOQUENCE 476 6884 [63:53]
Experience Classicsonline


 

I must confess myself rather disappointed by this disc, and particularly by the weak performance of the opening work, Elgar’s violin sonata. The problem here is that Hofmann appears to have little affinity with Elgar’s music. The lack of understanding of the sonata is such that it comes across as if he were merely sight-reading the score fairly well – he certainly doesn’t seem to have thought about it, comprehended it, or glimpsed any of the underlying emotions or ideas. This is particularly apparent in the slow movement - a movement that should be utterly heartrending, yet here comes across as prosaic and pedestrian, lacking in feeling and understanding, and without any sympathy. Moments that should be overwhelmingly haunting and desperately beautiful seem to be just tossed aside. No poetry, no beauty – I’m afraid that Hofmann just does not appear to “get” this work. Although in places his playing is quite dramatic, it is as if he were supplanting Elgar’s emotions with his own histrionics, presumably because he is unable to comprehend what Elgar is doing. To make this sorry state even worse, Hofmann’s tone is too harsh and brash for this gorgeous music. His intonation is occasionally wobbly, and even his tuning is a bit suspect at times, creating a rather fumbling effect. The piano-violin balance also doesn’t seem quite right, and in any case Newcombe takes too much of a secondary role – he is too restrained for this passionate music.

The next work on the disc, Delius’s violin sonata no. 3, is quite an improvement on the Elgar. The playing here is very distant and detached, but this is not inappropriate for Delius – the remote air rather suits this music, and the performance comes across as wistful and restrained. However, there is not enough freedom and flexibility - particularly in the opening movement – it is too plodding, and doesn’t lilt enough! The performers also come across as rather stretched in the third movement.

The final work on the disc – the John Ireland Second Sonata - is, thankfully, the best of all. Newcombe takes more of a pro-active role. Hofmann seems to get into the piece much better. The overall work is fairly good.

There are many exquisite versions of all of these works out there and, although the Delius isn’t too bad and the Ireland is quite good, I deeply regret to say that I wouldn’t want anyone getting the wrong impression of the Elgar by listening to this disc.

Em Marshall
 


 


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.