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July 30th

Click for alphabetical listings by composer:
[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]
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Anthony Rolfe Johnson


Equipment Review BRENNAN JB7 CD storage facility for up to 5000 CDs

Sir Charles Mackerras - Obituaries by Bill Kenny and Brian Reinhart and a summary of his legacy on disc by Rob Barnett

David Fanshawe - An obituary

Orville Harrold - Tenor by Mike Harrold

July Download Roundup - Brian Wilson

Some Thoughts on John Eliot Gardiner's Bach Cantata Pilgrimage Series Kirk McElhearn


21st Bard Music Festival "Berg and his World" - August 13-22 (New York State)

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Basil Tschaikov – The Music Goes Round and Around Fastprint Publishing 2009 ISBN: 978-184426-647-0 £12.99 [JW]

More than a memoir, less than a tract ... see Full Review

MUSICWEB Special Offer

We had great success with selling the Haydn Symphonies as mp3 files put onto CD (see review). This time we offer the complete organ works of J.S.Bach played by Kevin Bowyer on 8CDs containing 320 kbps mp3 files and a complete set of notes as a pdf file. You can buy these through MusicWeb for just £23 post-free here. Reviews by Brian Wilson and Kirk McElhearn
Same Price: Complete Haydn Symphonies on mp3 CDs review

NOTE: These sets cannot be played on a normal CD player. You will need one of the following: a computer; a portable MP3 device (like an iPod, but not limited to iPods); a DVD player; the latest generation of in-car disc players.

Celebrating Fifty Years devoted to British Music
4CD sets £18 post free world-wide

EXCLUSIVE Buy both sets for just £28 post free world-wide
See Review [RB]

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The latest downloads:
The Romantic Generation: Charles Rosen (piano) Music of Chopin, Liszt & Schumann from NI2559 CD Rreview
Mountain Songs -Robert Beaser from NIM2560 CD review
Beethoven piano Sonatas -Feltsman from NI2561
Serge Prokofiev Six Pieces from the ballet Romeo and Juliet (1935) Dmitry Shostakovich Seven Preludes from Op.34 (1933) Dmitry Shostakovich Sonata for viola and piano, Op.14 from NI 6117 see CD Review

Latest CDs

Mahler Military Music
Bohuslav Martinů
Le Jour de Bonté (The Day of Charity) - opera with libretto
Nicolaus Kraft (1778-1853) Cello Concertos

Vintage Children’s Favourites
– 48 original mono recordings from 1926 to 1959
The Golden Age of the Gramophone The 42 Best Loved Popular Classical Recordings 1907-1945


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We are reducing to 5 reviews most days during the Summer vacation period.

Friday July 30th

Alan HOVHANESS (1911–2000) Symphonies 7, 14 & 23 TCM Wind O/Keith Brion, rec. 2008 NAXOS AMERICAN CLASSICS 8.559385 [62:43] [JW]

Admirers of the composer need not hesitate

Franz LEHÁR (1870 - 1948) Der Zarewitsch Alexandra Reinprecht, Christina Landshamer, Bayerischen Rundfunks Ch; Münchner Rundfunkorchester/Ulf Schirmer rec. 2009 CPO 777 523-2 [62:53 + 59:48] [NB]

Instructive but flawed

Leopold MOZART (1719-1787) Sinfonias Münchener Kammerorchester/Hans Stadlmair rec. 1995/8 TUDOR 737 & 7066 [59:03 + 72:38] [DC]

Consistent quality - approved and appreciated

Gioachino ROSSINI (1792-1868) L’Italiana in Algeri Lorenzo Regazzo, Ruth Gonzalez, Transylvania State PCh, Virtuosi Brunensis/Alberto Zedda rec. 2008 NAXOS 8.660284-85 [68:57 + 67:17] [JS]

The freshness of new discovery

The Golden Age of Light Music – British Cinema and Theatre Orchestras Vol. 3 rec. 1927-39 GUILD LIGHT MUSIC GLCD 5168 [79:23] [JW]

Compiled with a sure eye and ear


Thursday July 29th

Aaron COPLAND (1900 – 1990) Clarinet Concerto; Suite: Appalachian Spring Gerald FINZI (1901 -1956) Clarinet Concerto; Romance Sarah Williamson (clarinet) O of the Swan/David Curtis rec. 2009 SOMM SOMMCD 244 [78:12] [BBr]

There are better versions

Pietro MASCAGNI (1863-1945) Cavalleria Rusticana Ruggero LEONCAVALLO (1857-1919) Pagliacci José Cura, Ch & O Zurich Opera House/Stefano Ranzani rec. 2009 ARTHAUS MUSIK 101 490 [151:00] [IL]

A visual treat with some impressive deliveries if it is not as memorable as the best of Cav and Pag

Fanny MENDELSSOHN-HENSEL (1805-1847) Piano works Heather Schmidt (piano) rec. 2007 NAXOS 8.570825 [67:18] [JW]

Genuine verve and an animated refinement

Richard STRAUSS (1864-1949) Also Sprach Zarathustra, Don Juan, Till Eulenspiegels lustige Streiche, Metamorphosen, Tod und Verklärung Staatskapelle Dresden/Herbert Blomstedt rec. 1987/89 DAL SEGNO DSPRCD050 [51:09 + 68:10] [NB]

Versions to return to with pleasure

Concert Parisien à l'époque de Louis XV: Jean-Philipp RAMEAU (1683-1764) Troisième Concert Georg Philipp TELEMANN (1681-1767) Quatuor Michel BLAVET (1700-1768) Sonata Antoine FORQUERAY (1672-1745) La Buisson Jean-Philipp RAMEAU Cinquième Concert Jean-Marie LECLAIR (1697-1764) Trio-sonata Grégoire Jeay (transverse flute), Hélène Plouffe (violin), Juan Manuel Quintana (viola da gamba), Luc Beauséjour (harpsichord) rec. 2009 ANALEKTA AN29926 [63:37] [JV]

There is more drama and contrast in French music than these interpretations suggest


Wednesday July 28th

Luigi BOCCHERINI (1743-1805) Cello Concertos Wen-Sinn Yang (cello); Streicherakademie Bozen/Georg Egger rec. 1999 ARTS 47754-8 [image] [79:01] [DC]

Skill and refinement all round – won’t disappoint

Gaetano DONIZETTI (1797-1848) L’Elisir d’Amore Siurina, Auty, Daza, Di Pasquale, Pretorian; The Glyndebourne Chorus; London PO/Maurizio Benini rec. 2009 OPUS ARTE OA 1026 D [126:00] [RF]

More a provincial performance than that from an international house

Alun HODDINOTT (1929-2008) Variants for Orchestra, Night Music, Sinfoniettas 1 & 3, The Sun London SO, New PO/David Atherton, Norman Del Mar rec. 1967-75 LYRITA SRCD.333 [68.43] [GH][RB]

I can only strongly advise you to obtain your copy of this disc urgently [GH] Music that is dissonant and pithy yet impressively approachable [RB]

John JEFFREYS (b. 1927) Idylls and Elegies Various performers DIVINE ART DDA25082 [68:57] [JQ]

An excellent introduction to the music of John Jeffreys for those unacquainted with it

John JEFFREYS (b.1927) Northumbria and beyond - Songs by John Jeffreys Ian Partridge(tenor); Jennifer Partridge(piano) rec. 1991-4 DIVINE ART DDV24128 [72:38] [JQ]

I urge all lovers of English songs to seek out this very fine disc

Giovanni Battista PERGOLESI (1710)-1736) Stabat Mater, Salve Regina Katia Ricciarelli (soprano); Manuela Custer (alto); Francesco Baroni (organ) I Filarmonici CO/Giorgio Croci rec. 1995 TACTUS TC711602 [60:07] [J-PJ]


Igor STRAVINSKY (1882-1971) Le Sacre du Printemps Silvestre REVUELTAS (1899-1940) La noche de los mayas Simón Bolívar Youth O of Venezuela/Gustavo Dudamel rec. 2010 DEUTSCHE GRAMMOPHON 477 8775 [64:07] [JQ]

A disc with that rare “Wow!” factor

The 5 Browns In Hollywood: The 5 Browns rec. 2009 E1 ENTERTAINMENT EIE-CD-2041 [63:00] [JW]

The playing has vigour and panache

Images and Impressions: Music for flute and harp including William ALWYN (1905-1985) Naiades Vincent PERSICHETTI (1915-1987) Serenade 10 Anthony PAYNE (b.1936) A 1940s Childhood Andre JOLIVET (1905-1974) Alla Rustica Judith Hall (flute); Elinor Bennett (harp) rec. 1989 NIMBUS NI5247 [59:45] [CR]

An excellent disc which has much to offer and deserves to be heard

Constantin Silvestri A Bournemouth Love Affair George ENESCU (1881-1955) Symphony 1, Orchestral Suites Wolfgang Amadeus MOZART (1756-1791) Symphony 29 Sergei PROKOFIEV (1891-1953) Symphony 1 Constantin SILVESTRI (1913-1969) Three Pieces for Strings Antonin DVORÁK (1841-1904) Slavonic Dances 3-5 Bournemouth SO/Constantin Silvestri rec. 1960s NIMBUS ALLIANCE/RMA NI 6124 [70:33 + 76:13] [NB][RB]

Heartfelt exuberance, sensitivity and quicksilver fleetness


Tuesday July 27th

Johann Sebastian BACH (1685-1750) The Bach Cantata Pilgrimage - Volume 11 Cantatas for the 20th & 21st Sundays after Trinity Magdalena Kožená (soprano) Monteverdi Ch; English Baroque Soloists/Sir John Eliot Gardiner. rec. 2000 SOLI DEO GLORIA SDG 168 [64:55 + 80:10] [JQ]

Those who are collecting this excellent series should add this pair of discs to their shelves as soon as possible

Giacomo CARISSIMI (1605-1674) Oratorios Les Voix Baroques/Alexander Weimann rec. 2009 ATMA ACD2 2622 [67:42] [MS]

A splendid, atmospheric and technically precise and accurate collection of four of Carissimi's lovely oratorios

John FIELD (1782-1837) Complete Piano Concertos Paolo Restani (piano) Nice PO/Marco Guidarini rec. 2007/8 BRILLIANT CLASSICS 93783 [4 CDs: 226:27] [BW]

Enjoyable and unjustly neglected music in recommendable performances and recordings at a modest cost

George GERSHWIN (1898-1937) A Gershwin Songbook, I Got Rhythm, Piano Concerto Aalborg SO/Wayne Marshal rec. 1992-5 EMI CLASSICS 6066882 [77:53] [WK]

Creditable performances of two Gershwin masterpieces

RECORDING OF THE MONTH Rosso : Italian baroque arias by Sartorio, Stradela, Handel, Vivaldi, Scarlatti, Porpora & Marcello Patricia Petibon (soprano) Venice Baroque O/Andrea Marcon rec. 2009 DEUTSCHE GRAMMOPHON 477 8763 [75:24] [BW]

Well-known and unknown arias, all made to sound superb


Monday 26th July

Cantate Contarini Marta Infante (mezzosoprano); Ars Atlántica/Manuel Vilas rec. 2008 ENCHIRIADIS EN 2027 [61:45] [JV]

Great stuff, outstanding performances - but no English translations of the lyrics

26 Danish Violin Concertos - Vol.4 Niels Wilhelm GADE (1817-1890) Carl NIELSEN (1865-1931) Otto MALLING (1848-1915) Axel GADE (1860-1921) Knudage RIISAGER (1897-1974) Kai Laursen (violin) rec. 1966-78 DANACORD DACOCD 467-468 [60:41 + 63:03] [NB]

Flaws but credit to Kai Laursen and his prophet-in-the-wilderness role of promoting so much music that he clearly cared passionately about

The Great Pianists - Masters of the Piano Roll Vol. 11 Shura Cherkassy and Leopold Godowsky (piano) rec. c. 1916-29 DAL SEGNO DSPRCD 051 [60:10] [JW]

Reflects central repertoire, erring on the side of panache, dance rhythms, and sentiment

Migrations Sofia GUBAIDULINA (b.1931) 7 Etüden fur Kontrabass, Pentimento Klaus AGER (b.1946) Migrations Sofia Gubaidulina (Donner-Tube); Ens Mobile rec. 2009 THOROFON CTH 2569 [60:04] [MS]

Interesting tonalities, concepts behind them and convincing execution to that end

Remembrance of Things Past John DOWLAND (1563-1626) Peter CROTON (b.1957) Theresia Bothe (soprano); Peter Croton (lute); Derek Lee Ragin rec. 2009 GUILD GMCD 7341 [62:34] [JW]

A somewhat out of the way disc

Click for alphabetical listings by composer:
[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]
[last 5 days] [Recommended recordings]



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