NEW & RECENT ARTICLES
a Pianist – The Enigmatic Eva Wollmann by Göran Tegnér
Un ballo in Maschera - A survey by Ralph Moore
and Avant Garde Mixed: David Bedford’s The Garden of Love
by John France
Symphonies of Anton Bruckner Revisited by John Quinn and Patrick
Obscure Favorites by Andrew Hartman
John Addison’s Trumpet Concerto by John France
Cavalleria rusticana - A survey by Ralph Moore
Reviews & Second Thoughts: Spring 2020/3 by Brian Wilson
An appeal from The Tallis Scholars
For 25 years MusicWeb International has never operated a PayWall. We
can keep it free if you can be persuaded to make a donation. Click the
Donate button top right for more details.
Monday: Other reviews (nostalgia, books, jazz, other music); Friday:
Live performance reviews posted daily at
Seen and Heard
Shopping on-line? Help us by doing it through the
MusicWeb sales page...
Friday June 5th
Michael BELLMAN (1740-1795) Songs - Martin
Best (tenor, guitar & cyster) rec. 1982 NIMBUS NI5174
[45:01] [GH] A disc not without its merits and interests.
BRUCKNER (1824-1896) Symphony No. 8 - Gothenberg SO/Yevgeny
Svetlanov rec. 1992 WEITBLICK SSS0241-2 [75:35] [RMo]
Not the last word in refinement, and an earthbound Adagio.
Hubert PARRY (1848-1918) Songs of Farewell &
works by Stanford, Gray & Wood - Ch of Westminster Abbey/James O’Donnell
rec. 2019 HYPERION CDA68301 [64:45] [JQ] A highly
impressive recital of a cappella British choral music.
Francis POULENC (1899-1963) Chamber Music
Vol. 2 - Eva-Maria May (piano) Martin Rummel (cello) Corinna Desch (violin)
Andreas Schablas (clarinet) Ahran Kim (flute & piccolo) Damien Gastl
(baritone) rec. 2018/2019 PALADINO MUSIC PMR0068 [59:43]
[LW] An attractive programme.
THIRION (1879-1966) Symphony No. 2 Jacques THIÉRAC
(1896-1972) Symphonie normande - Radiodiffusion-TV Française
PO & RSO/Eugène Bigot rec. 1959/1962 FORGOTTEN RECORDS FR1741
[68:57] [SG] Will appeal to those with a taste for recherché
van Barentzen (piano) Her Earliest Recordings
rec. 1928-1957 APR 6031 [73:28 + 74:16] [JW]
An august entrant in the French Classics series.
Beczała (tenor) Vincerò! - O Comunitat Valenciana/Marco
Boemi rec. 2019 PENTATONE PTC5186733 SACD [52:56] [MC]
Beczała braves the challenge of the heavier verismo repertoire.
Art Thou Among Women PaTRAM Institute Singers/Peter
Jermihov rec. 2018 REFERENCE RECORDINGS FR-737 [79:11]
[MR] A heart-warming and inspirational programme of Russian orthodox
music, sublimely performed.
Heritage of Monteverdi La Fenice/Jean Tubéry rec.
1995-2000 RICERCAR RIC374 [7 CDs: 432:30] [JV] These
performances from the late 1990s can easily compete with what has come
on the market more recently.
Yi Lin (piano) Masques rec. 2014
SOLARIS RECORDS SOL14101 [72:43] [DD] An integrated collection
and well executed.
Thursday June 4th
BRAHMS (1833-1897) Symphony No.4 Ferrucio BUSONI
(1866-1924) Violin Concerto - Siegfried Borries (violin) Berlin
RSO/Artur Rother rec. 1949 FORGOTTEN RECORDS FR1727
[61:01] [JW] Fine, devoted performances.
BRUCKNER (1824-1896) Symphony No. 5 - Hiroshima SO/Tatsuo
Shimono rec. 2019 BRAIN MUSIC OSBR-36033 [80:46] [RMo]
Best of a whole batch of Bruckner recordings which recently came
my way for review.
DÍAZ-JEREZ (b. 1970) Maghek - Royal Scottish
Ntl O/Eduardo Portal rec. 2019 SIGNUM CLASSICS SIGCD612
[69:37 + 68:10] [RHa] Seven big, bracing, and thoroughly contemporary
works; riveting playing; demonstration-quality sound.
Pietro MASCAGNI (1863-1945)
Cavalleria rusticana - Alexia Voulgaridou (soprano) Angelo Villari
(tenor) O & Ch del Maggio Musicale Fiorentino/Valerio Galli rec.
2019 DYNAMIC 37843 DVD [80 mins]
[CC] Short measure, but a production and performance well worth
SCHUBERT (1797-1828) Piano Sonatas Vol. 2 - Vladimir
Feltsman (piano) rec. 2013 NIMBUS ALLIANCE NI6298 [77:22]
[DD] Uncompromising and immensely stimulating Schubert that demands
SCHUMANN (1810-1856) Arrangements for Piano Duet Vol.
5 - Eckerle Piano Duo rec. 2017/2018 NAXOS 8.572881
[60:20] [JWe] Fascinating transcriptions, thoughtfully played.
SHOSTAKOVICH (1906-1975) Symphonies 1 & 5 - London
SO/Gianandrea Noseda rec. 2016/19 LSO LIVE LSO0802 SACD
[81:56] [BW] Not a top contender in the ubiquitous Fifth Symphony,
even with the addition of a decent account of the First.
Pieterszoon SWEELINCK (1562-1621) Fantasias,
Toccatas & Variations - Richard Egarr (harpsichord) rec. 2018
LINN CKD589 [76:13] [GPu] There is vibrancy and excitement
in these committed performances.
ecos de Manzanares 17th Century Spanish Court Music
- La Boz Galana rec. 2018 BRILLIANT CLASSICS 95978
[60:34] [JV] Most enjoyable.
Parikian (violin) Concertos & Sonatas by Bach, Mozart,
Beethoven & Busoni rec. 1956-66 DOREMI DHR8095-8
[4 CDs: 314 mins] [SG] A cherishable collection, lovingly restored
and brought together under one roof.
Wednesday June 3rd
van BEETHOVEN (1770-1827) The Complete String Quartets
Vol. III - Cuarteto Casals rec. 2019 HARMONIA
MUNDI HMM902406/08 [3 CDs: 165:03] [SSi] A wonderful set
which brings the Cuarteto Casals’ excellent survey to a glorious
GOTOVAC (1895-1982) Ero the Joker - Croatian
Radio Television Ch/Munich Radio O/Ivan Repušić rec. 2019
CPO 555 080-2 [2 CDs: 111:35] [EJW] A memorable
combination of vocal lyricism and power, orchestral and choral colour
SCHOENBERG (1874-1951) Pelleas und Melisande, Erwartung
- Sara Jakubiak (soprano) Bergen PO/Edward Gardner rec. 2019 CHANDOS
CHSA5198 SACD [67:36] [SB] Fine performances of both works,
though no translation of the libretto.
SCHUBERT (1797-1828) Impromptus, Moments musicaux, Klavierstücke
- Jörg Demus (piano) rec. 1958 ELOQUENCE 4840777
[54:10 + 57:20] [DD] A very apt tribute to a piano craftsman - delightfully
performed and re-mastered.
VAUGHAN WILLIAMS (1872-1958) Horn Sonata, Quintet, Household
Music Arnold BAX (1883-1953) Horn Sonata - Peter Francomb
(horn) Victor Sangiorgio (piano) Royal Northern Sinfonia Chamber Ens
rec. 2019 DUTTON CDLX7373 SACD [72:05]
[JW] Persuasive accounts.
WAGNER (1813-1883) Tristan und Isolde
- Kirsten Flagstad (soprano) Ludwig Suthaus (tenor) Philharmonia O/Wilhelm
Furtwängler rec. 1952 PRISTINE AUDIO PACO067 [4 CDs:
256.25] [MP] A truly legendary achievement in recorded music shines
again in a masterful ambient stereo transfer.
WIENIAWSKI (1837-1912) Complete Chamber Works Vol. 2
- Nikola Frankiewicz, Iwona Kalinowska-Grohs (violin) Łukasz
Tudzierz (cello) Szczepan Kończal, Barbara Pakura (piano) rec.
2015-18 ACTE PRÉALABLE AP0469 [79:29] [PRB] Lovely
music, good performances, excellent recording – what’s not
Century Playlist Ed Lyon (tenor) Theatre of the Ayre
rec. 2019 DELPHIAN DCD34220 [61:30] [GPu]
A fine selection of seventeenth-century ‘court’ songs
delivered, in excellent sound, by some impressive musicians
Chains of Gold The English Pre-Restoration Anthem
Vol. 2 - Magdalena Consort/Peter Harvey, Fretwork, His Majestys
Sagbutts & Cornetts/William Hunt rec. 2019 SIGNUM CLASSICS
SIGCD609 [70:29] [BW] Even better than the first volume
in this series.
& Somme Songs by Gurney, Howells, Sanders, Wilson
& Venables - Roderick Williams (baritone) Susie Allan (piano) rec.
2005 SOMM RECORDINGS SOMMCD057 [75:04] [JQ] A discerningly
chosen programme of English songs in excellent performances.
Tuesday June 2nd
ADÈS (b. 1971) Works for Solo Piano - Han Chen (piano)
rec. 2019 NAXOS 8.574109 [69:43] [SB] Perhaps more
chips from the workshop than masterworks but Adès is always worth
van BEETHOVEN (1770-1827) Complete String Quartets - Quatuor
Stanislas rec. 1994-2019 FORGOTTEN RECORDS FR1701-08 [8
CDs: 512:32] [JW] Dedicated performances, played in a spirit of
engagement and honesty, and shorn of frivolous prettiness.
BRAHMS (1833- 1897) The Complete Songs Vol. 9 -
Robin Tritschler (tenor) Harriet Burns (soprano) Graham Johnson
(piano) rec. 2018 HYPERION CDJ33129 [74:13] [RWe] One
of the great lieder discs.
BRUCKNER (1824-1896) Symphonies Nos 2 & 9 - Tokyo
Metropolitan SO/James DePreist rec. 2006 TOBU TBRCD090091/2-2
[2 CDs: 108:13] [RMo] Superfluous to requirements.
CALDARA (1670-1736) Brutus: Cantatas for Bass
- Sergio Foresti (baritone) Stile Galante/Stefano Aresi rec.
2018 PAN CLASSICS PC10389 [66:22] [CRo] Those familiar
with Handel’s and Vivaldi’s cantatas will particularly find
much of interest by way of comparison.
Wolfgang KORNGOLD (1897-1957) Violin Concerto;
String Sextet - Andrew Haveron (violin) RTÉ Concert O/John
Wilson; Sinfonia of London Chamber Ens rec. 2015/19 CHANDOS
CHAN20135 [56:32] [JQ] An unexpected pairing of works by
Korngold which works extremely well.
MEALOR (b. 1964) Blessing - Voce/Mark Singleton
rec. 2018 SIGNUM CLASSICS SIGCD613 [73:34] [PCG] The
words may be blurred but the music sounds heavenly.
Lost Anna Prohaska (soprano) Julius Drake (piano)
rec. 2019 ALPHA CLASSICS 581 [64:00] [GF] A kaleidoscope
of disparate moods, styles and messages that hang together remarkably
and Light The Rumi Experience - duoJalal rec. 2016
BRIDGE 9469 [60:12] [GPu] A beautiful affirmation
of music’s power as a transnational language.
of Chivalry Martin Best Medieval Ensemble rec. c.1993
NIMBUS NI5006 [50.49] [GH] I feel close to the
original composers and singers in a way that few others have managed
Monday June 1st
Sebastian BACH (1685-1750) Sonatas and Partitas for Solo
Violin - Wolfgang Marschner (violin) rec. 1972 DOREMI DHR8104/5
[72:09 + 74:21] [SG] Beauty of tone, refinement and artful musicianship
rolled into one.
BERNSTEIN (1918-1990) Songfest George
GERSHWIN (1898-1937) An American in Paris Aaron
COPLAND (1900-1990) An Outdoor Overture - Wolf Trap
Opera, National Orchestral Institute Philharmonic/James Judd rec. 2018
NAXOS AMERICAN CLASSICS 8.559859 [69:37] [JQ] A
fine performance of Songfest, a work very well worth getting to know.
FREDDI (c1580-1643) Vespers - The Gonzaga Band/Jamie
Savan rec. 2019 RESONUS CLASSICS RES10245 [58:10] [JV]
Jamie Savan has done a lot of research about the composer and his
music, and it has been well worth the effort.
GÁL (1890-1987) Music for Viola Vol. 1 - Hanna
Pakkola (viola), Reijo Tunkari (violin), Irina Zabharenkova (piano),
Takuya Takashima (oboe), Ostrobothnian CO/Sakari Oramo rec. 2018/2019
TOCCATA CLASSICS TOCC0535 [81:27] [RHa] Another
truly worthwhile instalment of the burgeoning Gál discography.
Pieter HELLENDAAL (1721-1799) "Cambridge"
Sonatas - Johannes Pramsohler (violin) Gulrim Choï (cello) Philippe
Grisvard (harpsichord) rec. 2018/19 AUDAX ADX13720
[68:40] [GH] A luxurious presentation, in impressive performances
and in an ideal recording.
JANÁČEK (1854-1928) From the
House of the Dead - Peter Rose (bass) Evgeniya Sotnikova (soprano)
Bavarian State O & Ch/Simone Young rec. 2018 BELAIR CLASSIQUES
BAC173 DVD [97 mins] [LW] This new production of Janáček’s
From the House of the Dead is superb musically, but with controversial
PÄRT (b. 1935) Stabat Mater, L’abbé Agathon,
Salve Regina, Magnificat, Nunc dimittis - Gloriæ Dei Cantores/Richard
K Pugsley rec. 2018/19 GLORIÆ DEI CANTORES GDCD065 SACD
[69:02] [JQ] An admirable set of performances of choral music by
STRADELLA (1643-1682) San Giovanni Battista -
Paul-Antoine Benos-Djian (countertenor) Alicia Amo (soprano) Le Banquet
Céleste/Damien Guillon rec. 2019 ALPHA CLASSICS 579
[80:40] [DC] High-octane and with tremendous expressive range, this
performance reveals why this work was so popular in its day.
WAGNER (1813-1883) Die Walküre - Stuart
Skelton, Eva Maria Westbroek, Bavarian Radio SO/Sir Simon Rattle rec.
2019 BR KLASSIK 900177 [4 CDs: 217:50] [PCG] I
look forward to later instalments with eager anticipation.
Rabin (violin) A Genius on the Violin rec. 1954-62
PROFIL PH20003 [4 CDs: 309 mins] [JW] No surprises
Toscanini (conductor) Philharmonic-Symphony Orchestra
of New York: Complete Recordings Vol. 2 rec. 1929-1936 PRISTINE
AUDIO PASC588 [67:06 + 77:13] [DD] An invaluable sequel
to Volume One for lovers of fine conducting and with miraculous re-mastering.
Shostakovich Changed My Mind by Stephen Johnson publ.
2018 Notting Hill Editions [ST] Despite its deeply
personal nature, this remains a music book and a very fine one.