One of the most grown-up review sites around

54,416 reviews
and more.. and still writing ...

Search MusicWeb Here



International mailing

Founder: Len Mullenger                                    Editor in Chief:John Quinn             

Some items
to consider


paid for


100th birthday of Mieczyslaw Weinberg on December 8, 2019.
Renate Eggbrecht has recorded all 3 violin Sonatas

FOGHORN Classics

Mozart Brahms
Clarinet Quintets

New Releases

Naxos Classical

Click to see New Releases
Get 10% off using code musicweb10

Nimbus Podcast

Obtain 10% discount

Special offer 50% off
15CDs £83 incl. postage

Musicweb sells the following labels

Altus 10% off
Atoll 10% off
CRD 10% off
Hallé 10% off
Lyrita 10% off
Nimbus 10% off
Nimbus Alliance
Prima voce 10% off
Red Priest 10% off
Retrospective 10% off
Saydisc 10% off
Sterling 10% off

Follow us on Twitter

Subscribe to our free weekly review listing

Sample: See what you will get

Editorial Board
MusicWeb International
Founding Editor
Rob Barnett
Editor in Chief
John Quinn
Seen & Heard
Editor Emeritus
   Bill Kenny
MusicWeb Webmaster
   David Barker
Jonathan Woolf
MusicWeb Founder
   Len Mullenger



Advertising on

Donate and keep us afloat



Recordings of the Month


From Ocean’s Floor


Conner Riddle Songs

Rodzinski Sibelius

Of Innocence and Experience


Symphonies 1, 2, 3


Jean SIBELIUS (1865-1957)
Popular Sibelius
Finlandia, op.26 (1900) [8:02]
Karelia Suite Op.11 (1893) - Intermezzo [4:04]; Ballade [8:14]; Alla Marcia [4:50]
Swan of Tuonela Op.22 No.3 (1893) [8:25]
En Saga, Op. 9 (1892, rev. 1902) [18:00]
Romance in C major Op.42 (1904) [6:03]
Tapiola Op.112 [18:04]
Royal Philharmonic Orchestra/Anthony Collins
Concertgebouw Orchestra/Eduard van Beinum
rec. September and December 1957, Walthamstow Assembly Hall, London except December 1952, Grote Zaal, Concertgebouw, Amsterdam (Tapiola)
BEULAH 6PD8 [75:42]

Experience Classicsonline

As a pendant to his 1952-55 symphonic cycle - and smaller pieces - with the LSO, Anthony Collins set down these recordings in 1957 with Beecham’s RPO. In the onrush to measure those earlier recordings against others, and in the nitpicky critical maelstrom, these later traversals will perhaps inevitably be overlooked. They were available on Beulah 5PD8 a good long while ago but have been re-released by the same label with the addition of an interloper, van Beinum’s 1952 Tapiola.

For these lighter works Collins certainly had the advantage of a very much better orchestra than for the symphonies, and one strongly and richly versed in Sibelian lore by this date. His Finlandia is snarly and powerful. The brass is fine, the strings a little compromised by the 1950s sonics, and the percussion especially so; the cymbals are rather puny. But Collins’ architectural instincts are true and the ascent to the climax is astutely gauged. It’s followed by a delightfully dispatched Karelia Suite which is played with piquant charm but avoids unctuous pointing. The rhythmic bases of the three movements are robustly attended to but the ex-viola player knows how to maximise string sonority effectively. The Romance is a watery little effusion.

Collins has the advantage of Leonard Brain’s cor anglais playing in the Swan of Tuonela in which the grave cantilena is memorably etched. Certainly there are some glassy sounding strings, a product of 50 year old sonics, but the direction of the music making is unproblematically fine. En Saga is similarly first class. Its episodes are contrasted and charted securely, the brass and wind choir contributions adding materially to the success of the reading. The passionate crest and relapses of the music are tangible, and the descent into near inaudibility is palpable.

Collins certainly had this music under his belt. Clearly this is a niche purchase for those interested in his historical work with the composer’s music, but anyone interested in that symphonic cycle would be advised to enlist this disc as ancillary evidence. The disc actually ends with that Amsterdam performance of Tapiola in which van Beinum delivers a performance of the most compelling intensity. It’s impossible not to be transported by the riven power of his direction and by the orchestra’s surging playing.

It ends a disc of contrasting moods and reflections - from the elemental and brooding to the wistful and light. Interpretative decisions are from the top drawer from both conductors.

Jonathan Woolf




















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

Pat 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

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.