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Alphabetical Listing

PART 2
A-B

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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Jehan ALAIN (1911-1940) Three Dances see DURUFLÉ

Hans Erich APOSTEL (1901-1972) String Quartet 1 see ZEMLINSKY

Carl Philip Emanuel BACH (1714-1788) Hamburg Symphonies 1-4, Harpsichord Concerto Solamente Naturali/Didier Talpain Marek Toporowski (harpsichord) rec. 2007 BRILLIANT CLASSICS 94042 [55.21] [GH]

If you do not know these extraordinary works then this as good a place as any to start. 

Johann Sebastian BACH (1685-1750) Goldberg Variations (arr. string trio) Amati String Trio rec. 1999, BRILLIANT CLASSICS 9184 [54:26] [OL]

Nowhere near the level of awe and fascination generated by Sitkovetsky’s arrangement for chamber string orchestra. 

Johann Sebastian BACH (1685-1750) Brandenburg Concertos 1-6, Harpsichord Concertos, Violin Concerto Elizabeth Wallfisch (baroque violin) Apollo’s Fire/Jeannette Sorrell, rec. 1999-2005 AVIE AV2207 [79:21 + 72:41] [MC]

A creditable release from Apollo’s Fire. 

Johann Sebastian BACH (1685-1750) Das Wohltemperierte Klavier Walter Gieseking (piano) rec. 1950 NEWTON CLASSICS 8802014 [3 CDs: 72:20 + 63:13 + 74:55] [DC]

Glad to make acquaintance with Gieseking’s ‘live’ sounding Bach.

Mily BALAKIREV (1837-1910) Octet see St Petersburg

Samuel BARBER (1910–1981) Violin Concerto see SHOSTAKOVICH

Samuel BARBER (1910-1981) Violin concerto see BERNSTEIN

Béla BARTÓK (1881-1945) Violin Concerto 2 see Art of Ivry Gitlis

Arnold BAX (1883-1953) Chamber Music for Harp Valse, In Memoriam, Fantasy Sonata, Harp Quintet, Sonatina Marcia Dickstein (harp) Evan Wilson (viola) Angela Wiegand (flute) Leslie Reed (English Horn) Rene Mandel (violin) Natalie Leggett (violin) Simon Oswell (viola) Timothy Landauer (cello) RUBEDO CANIS MUSICA RCM19801 [66:21] [RB]

This is a most desirable CD guaranteed to draw in all Baxians but also admirers of Ravel's Septet. 

Arnold BAX (1883-1945) Violin Sonata 2 see ELGAR

Ludwig van BEETHOVEN (1770-1827) Symphonies 4 & 6 The Netherlands SO/Jan Willem de Vriend rec. 2008 CHALLENGE CLASSICS CC72361 [74:29] [JS]

Clean, well recorded performances, combining many aspects of the modern trend towards historically informed performance with some features of a more traditional approach.

Ludwig van BEETHOVEN (1770-1827) Sonatas 30-32 Elisabeth Leonskaja (piano) rec. 2009 MUSIKPRODUKTION DABRINGHAUS UND GRIMM MDG 94316226 [69:36] [OL]

A very valuable view, though some decisions are questionable.

Ludwig van BEETHOVEN (1770-1827) String Quintets, Fugue Fine Arts Qt, Gil Sharon rec. 2008 NAXOS 8.572221 [72:44] [BW]

Stylish performances, well recorded, of attractive less-well-known Beethoven on an inexpensive but well-filled CD.

Ludwig van BEETHOVEN (1770-1827) String Quartet 13, Grosse Fuge Vertavo rec. 2008 SIMAX PSC1265 [56:16] [JW]

Laudable and technically very sound but over-nuanced.

Ludwig van BEETHOVEN (1770-1827) Symphony 9 Isobel Baillie (soprano); Kathleen Ferrier (contralto); Heddle Nash (tenor); William Parsons (baritone) London PO & Ch/Bruno Walter rec. live, 1947 MUSIC & ARTS CD1243 [62:04] [JS]

Very well worth hearing. 

Ludwig van BEETHOVEN (1770-1827) Piano Concerto 3 Pyotr Ilyich TCHAIKOVSKY (1840-1893) Piano Concerto 1 Mark Hambourg (piano) London SO/Malcolm Sargent, Royal Albert Hall O/Landon Ronald rec. 1926/9 PRISTINE AUDIO PASC223 [63:28] [JW]

Hambourg’s major statements stand as lasting examples of his too-often overlooked art.

Ludwig van BEETHOVEN (1770 – 1827) Fidelio Jessye Norman, Reiner Goldberg, Hans Peter Blochwitz, Kurt Moll, Dresden State Op. Ch, Staatskapelle Dresden/Bernard Haitink, rec. 1989 DECCA 478 2485 [71:46 + 62:28] [RMo]

Very good value, even if there is no libretto.

Ludwig van BEETHOVEN (1770-1827) Coriolan Overture see BRAHMS

Vincenzo BELLINI (1801 – 1835) I puritani Maria Callas, Giuseppe Di Stefano, Ch & O del Teatro alla Scala di Milano/Tullio Serafin rec. 1953 EMI CLASSICS 4563752 [69:11 + 73:23] [GF]

For Callas’s reading of Elvira’s role this is a ‘must have’.

Alban BERG (1885-1935) Violin Concerto, Three Orchestral Pieces Gidon Kremer (violin) Bayerischen RSO/Sir Colin Davis rec. 1983/4 NEWTON CLASSICS 8802018 [47:00] [DC]

Plenty of mood and atmosphere.

Alban BERG (1885-1935) Violin Concerto see Art of Ivry Gitlis

Lennox BERKELEY Violin Sonatina, Theme and Variations see RUBBRA

Leonard BERNSTEIN (1918-1990) Serenade after Plato’s ‘Symposium’ Ernest BLOCH (1880-1959) Baal Shem – Three Pictures of Chassidic Life Samuel BARBER (1910-1981) Violin concerto Vadim Gluzman (violin) Săo Paulo SO/John Neschling rec. 2007 BIS-SACD-1662 [70:31] [DM]

Strong, persuasive performances ... see Full Review

Heinrich Ignaz Franz VON BIBER (1644-1704) Mensa Sonora, Battalia Baroque Band/Garry Clarke rec. 2008/9 CEDILLE RECORDS CDR90000116 [56:50] [JV]

Questionable scoring and flat performance mean that Biber's table music doesn't come at all well. 

RECORDING OF THE MONTH Georges BIZET (1838 – 1875) Carmen Elina Garanca, Roberto Alagna, Metropolitan Opera Ballet, Ch & O/Yannick Nézet-Séguin rec. 2010 DEUTSCHE GRAMMOPHON 073 4581 [2 DVDs: 167:00 + 9:00] [GF]

This is a great achievement

Georges BIZET (1838 – 1875) Carmen Eva Mei, Marina Domashenko, Andrea Bocelli, Bryn Terfel, Ch & PO de Radio France/Myung-Whun Chung rec. 2005 DECCA 475 7646 [62:56 + 76:14] [GF]

Domashenko requires to be heard in this role and though this recording as a total experience doesn’t sweep the field it has a lot to recommend it.

Ernest BLOCH (1880-1959) Israel, Nigun, Schelomo Alexander Kniazev (cello) Russian State SO/Evgeny Svetlanov rec. 1988 BRILLIANT CLASSICS 9164 [67:55] [RB]

Bloch at his most cinematically vivid, the effect heightened by Svetlanov’s typically perfervid approach. 

Ernest BLOCH (1880-1959) Baal Shem – Three Pictures of Chassidic Life see BERNSTEIN

BARGAIN OF THE MONTH Luigi BOCCHERINI (1743-1805) Sonatas for Cello and Piano Fedor Amosov (cello) Jen-Ru Sun (piano) rec. 2008 NAXOS 8.572368 [67:46] [JS]

This has been an exceptionally and unexpectedly enjoyable disc.

Francois-Adrien BOIELDIEU (1775-1834) Die Weisse Dame RIAS Jugendorchester/Gernot Schulz rec. 2008 GENUIN GEN10534 [43:56 + 56:22] [JS]

Much of what is heard here is of high quality but with competition from EMI this set is at an overwhelming disadvantage.

Brian BOYDELL (1917-2000) The Complete String Quartets String Quartets 1-3, Adagio and Scherzo Carducci Qt rec. 2008 CARDUCCI CLASSICS CSQ8841 [64:28] [RB]

A distinctive and very beautiful realm. 

RECORDING OF THE MONTH Johannes BRAHMS (1833-1897) Piano Concerto 2, Klavierstücke Nicholas Angelich (pno), Frankfurt RSO/Paavo Järvi, rec. 2009 VIRGIN CLASSICS 2663492 [74:37] [JQ]

A performance of the Brahms Second Piano Concerto that deserves to be ranked among the very best.

Johannes BRAHMS (1833-1897) Symphony 4 Wolfgang Amadeus MOZART (1756-1791) Symphony 39 London SO/Josef Krips rec. 1950/1 PRISTINE AUDIO PASC231 [64:54] [MG]

A refreshing, classical Brahms 4 but a somewhat uneven Mozart 39.

Johannes BRAHMS (1833-1897) Songs for Chorus Arnold Schoenberg Ch/Erwin Ortner rec. 1993 WARNER CLASSICS APEX 2564 682404 [65:21] [LW]

A fine compilation of Brahms secular songs let down by a lack of texts.

Johannes BRAHMS (1833-1897) Symphony 4, Geistliches Lied, Fest- und Gedenksprüche Ludwig van BEETHOVEN (1770-1827) Coriolan Overture Monteverdi Ch, O Révolutionnaire et Romantique/Sir John Eliot Gardiner rec. 2008 SOLI DEO GLORIA SDG 705 [70:52] [JQ]

A fine Brahms Fourth Symphony set in a stimulating programme of other relevant pieces.

Havergal BRIAN (1876 – 1972) Symphonies 11 & 15, Overtures: For Valour; Dr Merryheart RTE Ntl SO/Tony Rowe, Adrian Leaper rec. 1993/97 NAXOS 8.572014 [77:10] [BBr]

It’s very good.

RECORDING OF THE MONTH see Milo
Frank BRIDGE
(1879-1941)
Cello sonata
Benjamin BRITTEN
(1913-1976) Cello sonata

Jane BROCKMAN (b.1949) Trio for flute, cello and piano see SHOSTAKOVICH

Max BRUCH (1838-1920) Violin Concerto 1 see Art of Ivry Gitlis

Anton BRUCKNER (1824-1896) Symphony 4 Dresden Staatskapelle/Herbert Blomstedt rec. Dresden, 1981 DAL SEGNO DSPRCD045 [67:08] [TB]

A fine and idiomatic performance of Bruckner’s best-loved work, recorded by Denon in 1981 and now reappears on Dal Segno at an appealing price. 

Gavin BRYARS (b. 1943) Second Book of Madrigals Vox Altera Ens/Massimiliano Pascucci rec. 2008 GB RECORDS BCGBCD16 [71:29] [WH]

The Italian Renaissance madrigal seen through contemporary eyes, superbly sung. 

Geoffrey BURGON (1941-2010) Viola Concerto, Merciless Beauty, Cello Concerto Sarah Connolly (mezzo) Philip Dukes (viola) Josephine Knight (cello) City of London Sinf/Rumon Gamba rec. 2009 CHANDOS CHAN10592 [62:43] [GH]

Utterly beautiful … simply and eloquently conceived.

Ferruccio BUSONI (1866-1924) Two Studies from Doktor Faust see SCHREKER

George BUTTERWORTH (1885 – 1916) Songs Roderick Williams (baritone); Iain Burnside (piano) rec. 2010 NAXOS 8.572426 [52:06] [BBr]

Very fine performances.

RECORDING OF THE MONTH William BYRD (1539/40-1623)
Infelix ego: The Byrd Edition - Volume 13 The Cardinall’s Musick/Andrew Carwood rec. 2009 HYPERION CDA67779 [61:17] [MG]

Performances of palpable commitment and exceptional quality.


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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