MusicWeb International One of the most grown-up review sites around 2024
60,000 reviews
... and still writing ...

Search MusicWeb Here Acte Prealable Polish CDs

Presto Music CD retailer
Founder: Len Mullenger                                    Editor in Chief:John Quinn             

Some items
to consider

new MWI
Current reviews

old MWI
pre-2023 reviews

paid for

Acte Prealable Polish recordings

Forgotten Recordings
Forgotten Recordings
All Forgotten Records Reviews

Troubadisc Weinberg- TROCD01450

All Troubadisc reviews

FOGHORN Classics

Brahms String Quartets

All Foghorn Reviews

All HDTT reviews

Songs to Harp from
the Old and New World

all Nimbus reviews

all tudor reviews

Follow us on Twitter

Editorial Board
MusicWeb International
Founding Editor
Rob Barnett
Editor in Chief
John Quinn
Contributing Editor
Ralph Moore
   David Barker
Jonathan Woolf
MusicWeb Founder
   Len Mullenger


Advertising on

Donate and keep us afloat


New Releases

Naxos Classical
All Naxos reviews

Chandos recordings
All Chandos reviews

Hyperion recordings
All Hyperion reviews

Foghorn recordings
All Foghorn reviews

Troubadisc recordings
All Troubadisc reviews

all Bridge reviews

all cpo reviews

Divine Art recordings
Click to see New Releases
Get 10% off using code musicweb10
All Divine Art reviews

All Eloquence reviews

Lyrita recordings
All Lyrita Reviews


Wyastone New Releases
Obtain 10% discount

Subscribe to our free weekly review listing



AmazonUK AmazonUS

A Place Between
John TAVENER (b. 1944)
Ikon of Joy and Sorrow (premiere recording) Callino Quartet [2:54]
Arvo PÄRT (b. 1935)
Hymn to a Great City, for two pianos Michael McHale [3:12]
Alexander KNAIFEL (b. 1943)
O Heavenly King (first recording of version for soprano, string quartet, piano and celesta) - Patricia Rozario, Callino Quartet and Michael McHale [5:19]
Valentin SILVESTROV (b. 1937)
(premiere recording) - Callino Quartet  [4:23]; 25.X.1893. P. I. Tchaikovsky No. 2 – “Lullaby” [6:05] Michael McHale and Ioana Petcu-Colan
Arvo PÄRT (b. 1935)
Da Pacem Domine (premiere recording of string quartet version)
Callino Quartet [4:20]
Henryk GÓRECKI (b. 1933)
Good Night (In Memoriam Michael Vyner). Op.63 (1990) - Patricia Rozario, Vourneen Ryan, Michael McHale and Stephen Kelly [27:50]
John CAGE (1912-1992)
In a Landscape - Michael McHale [10:18]
Patricia Rozario (soprano); Callino Quartet; Michael McHale (piano); Ioana Petcu-Colan (violin); Vourneen Ryan (flute); Stephen Kelly (percussion).
rec. St Peters Church of Ireland, Drogheda, 28 February-2 March 2009.


Experience Classicsonline

The inaugural recording by the Louth Contemporary Music Society offers religious minimalism in a range of flavours. It’s essentially an ambient album, subdued chamber music recorded in the warm acoustic of a large church, but the choice of works and composers makes for a varied programme. 

Alexander Knaifel and Valentin Silvestrov make the most interesting contributions. Both composers include a point of aural focus in each of their musical textures, creating a sense of inner purpose and balancing the prevailing sense of ambience. Knaifel’s O Heavenly King is scored for soprano and string quartet, but with an intermittent obbligato shared between piano and celesta giving a percussive foil to the otherwise sustained textures. Silvestrov creates a similar sense of inner contrast in his textures through the clear profile of his melodies, standing apart and leading the ear. In Ikon the melody derives (or so it seems) from Orthodox chant, and in 25.X.1893. P. I. Tchaikovsky No. 2 – Lullaby the melody is borrowed from Tchaikovsky. 

John Tavener and Arvo Pärt are presented in a more strictly ambient mode. Tavener’s Ikon of Joy and Sorrow and Pärt’s Da Pacem Domine are both slow, quiet works for string quartet with homogenous religioso textures throughout. Hymn to a Great City is Arvo Pärt’s homage to New York. It is a piano duet work with a simple chordal theme underpinned by repeated A flats and decorated by the occasional arpeggio flourish at the top of the keyboard. Frustratingly monotonous but mercifully short. 

Henryk Górecki could be considered a minimalist, even a religious minimalist, but not in the sense that unites Tavener, Pärt, Silvestrov and Knaifel. His Third Symphony has associated his name with the religious and ambient tendencies in Eastern European music, but the work presented here, Good Night, is in a more uncompromising vein. There are echoes of the Third Symphony, especially from the soprano in the third movement, but in general this is music based on a sterner aesthetic philosophy. It is a long work (around half an hour) and is based on rigorously applied principles of thematic and textural development, or at least metamorphosis. The textures remain subdued throughout, yet it is an intense listening experience, and the preceding works seem somewhat trivial by comparison. 

The disc concludes with In a Landscape, a solo piano work written by John Cage in 1948. Music from a different time, then, and from a different continent. Nevertheless, it fits comfortably into this programme, and serves to demonstrate the immense significance John Cage and his music had for European music in the second half of the 20th century. 

The performances are of a consistently high standard, and a special mention should be made of the ensemble’s guest star, the soprano Patricia Rozario, although her two short appearances are all too brief. Good recorded sound too, although the church acoustic is perhaps a little overly resonant, even for that ‘ambient’ sound. The halo around the solo piano in this environment is strikingly similar to that of many of the ECM recordings of works by some of these composers. The economic success and iconic status of those recordings would be a laudable goal for this and future recording projects from the contemporary music enthusiasts of Louth. 

Gavin Dixon 

see also Review by Rob Barnett




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


      Composer surveys
      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

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


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

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



Bulletin Board

Give your opinions or seek answers

Past and present

Helpers invited!

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
Other links
Web News sites etc

A pot-pourri of articles

MW Listening Room
MW Office

Advice to Windows Vista users  
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
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.