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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]


Superbudget £5.99 or less Budget £6-7.99 Medium £8-10.99 Full price £11+
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Kalevi AHO (b. 1949) Piano Concerto, Symphony 13 Antti Siirala (piano) Lahti SO/Osmo Vänskä rec. 2004/5 BIS-CD-1316 [68:49] [NB]

A disc to which I will return in the expectation of greater understanding.

Isaac ALBÉNIZ (1860-1909) Piano Music - Vol. 6 Rapsodia Española, Navarra, Piano Sonata 5, Troisième Suite ancienne, Azulejos, Piano Concerto 1 Miguel Baselga (piano) Tenerife SO/Lü Jia rec. 2007/9 BIS BIS-CD-1743 [75:43] [DM]

Alicia De Larrocha may just have met her match. 

Tomaso ALBINONI (1671-1751) Concerti Op.10 Collegium Musicum 90/Simon Standage rec. 2007 CHANDOS CHAN0769 [69:15] [J-PJ]

All nine concertos bristle with dynamism and unbounded energy.

BARGAIN OF THE MONTH Robert Livingston ALDRIDGE (b.1954) Clarinet Concerto, Samba Aaron COPLAND (1900-1990) Clarinet Concerto David Singer (clarinet) A Far Cry O, Shanghai Qt rec. 2008/9 NAXOS 8.559667 [49:44] [BR]

An enjoyable new concerto and an old favorite, played with love and wit

David ALPHER American Reflections David Alpher (piano) Jonathan Cohler (clarinet) Maureen Gallagher (viola) Robert Honeysucker (baritone) Myron Lutzke (cello) Robert Lynam (string bass) Martha Moor (harp) Jean Newton (harpsichord) Kenneth Radnofsky (tenor saxophone) rec. 1998 ONGAKU 024-112 [70:38] [RB]

To date this is the only all-Alpher CD. I feel there will be more. There deserves to be more.

William ALWYN (1905-1985) Clarinet Sonata, Oboe Sonata, Viola Sonata, Suite for Oboe & Harp, String Trio, Conversations Robert Plane (clarinet) Lucy Gould (violin) Sarah Francis (oboe) Sarah Jane Bradley (viola) Lucy Wakeford (harp) Sophia Rahman (piano) Hermitage String Trio, rec. 2009 NAXOS 8.572425 [75:53] [JF]

A good insight to the composer’s musical development

RECORDING OF THE MONTH Johann Sebastian BACH (1685-1750) Orgel-Büchlein Helmut Walcha (organ) rec. 1950/2 PRISTINE AUDIO PAKM036 [52:06 + 46:03] [MS]

It's good to have these classic and interpretatively superb recordings of one of Bach's most compelling organ works available. The transfer quality is almost as satisfying as the performance. 

Johann Sebastian BACH (1685-1750) Partitas for solo violin (arr. guitar) Timo Korhonen (guitar) rec. 2009 ONDINE ODE 1164-2D [62:16 + 21-07] [ST]

Certainly worth exploring if you're willing to try the partitas on a guitar.

Johann Sebastian BACH (1685-1750) Great Choral Works Wiener Singakademiechor; Stuttgarter Hymnus-Chor; Lübecker Kantorei; Stuttgarter Kammerorchester/Karl Münchinger rec. 1964-74 NEWTON CLASSICS 8802001 [9 CDs: 627:05] [MC]

This set will disappoint very few and delight many. 

Johann Sebastian BACH (1685-1750) The Well-Tempered Clavier Books 1 and 2 Andrei Gavrilov, Joanna McGregor, Nikolai Demidenko, Angela Hewitt rec. 2000 EUROARTS 2050308 [2 DVDs: 121:00 + 139:00] [KM]

A unique visual presentation of an iconic work. 

Johann Sebastian BACH (1685-1750) Music for Lute-Harpsichord Elizabeth Farr (lute-harpsichord) rec. 2007 NAXOS 8.570470-71 [77:33 + 70:55] [JV]

This interesting programme of lesser-known pieces by Bach is marred by inadequate recording and interpretative shortcomings.

Johann Sebastian BACH (1685-1750) Keyboard Concerto 1, Partitas 5 & 6, Fugues Glenn Gould (piano), Columbia SO/Leonard Bernstein rec. 1957 NAXOS HISTORICAL 8.112049 [65:09] [JW]

Gould’s clarity and sense of rhythmic energy, that inner dynamo that was his Bachian motor.

Johann Sebastian BACH (1685-1750) Cantatas for the Complete Liturgical Year Vol.10 Siri Thornhill (sop.) Petra Noskaiová (alto) Christoph Genz (ten.) Jan Van Crabben (bar.) La Petite Bande/Sigiswald Kuijken, rec. 2008 ACCENT ACC 25310 [73:21] [GD]

May not be the last word on Bach, but close to the last word on Kuijken's Bach.

Johann Sebastian BACH (1685-1750) Cantatas for the Complete Liturgical Year Vol.11 Gerinde Sämann (sop.) Petra Noskaiová (alto) Christoph Genz (ten.) Jan Van Crabben (bar.) La Petite Bande/Sigiswald Kuijken, rec. 2008 ACCENT ACC25311 [55:30] [GD]

Kuijken and his ever-changing forces are certainly capable of far better things than this.

Bach and Friends A reflection on the power and genius of Bach's music MICHAEL LAWRENCE FILMS no number [1:56:00 + 1:26:00] [MS]

An effort to popularise Bach to non-specialist listeners. Some perceptive sequences make this worth a look - despite being rather overpriced.

Krzysztof BACULEWSKI (b.1950) Works for Orchestra Jadwiga Rappé, Podlasie Opera and Philharmonic O (Bialystok)/Szymon Bywalec rec. 2009 DUX 0725 [31:18] [JW]

Impressively controlled and powerfully conveyed … a fine disc

Henk BADINGS (1907-1987) Concerto for Two Violins, Symphony 3 Herman Krebbers (violin); Theo Olof (violin) Hague PO/Willem van Otterloo rec. 1955 PRISTINE AUDIO PASC 230 [53:07] [RB]

A well carried through revival of two contrasted Badings works from a 1950s LP.

Samuel BARBER (1910-1981) Complete Orchestral Works Royal Scottish Ntl O/Marin Alsop rec. 1999-2004 NAXOS AMERICAN CLASSICS 8.506021 [6 CDs: 370:30] [RB]

The RSNO positively glows in this extremely welcome and romantically rewarding set.

Béla BARTÓK (1881-1945) Duke Bluebeard’s Castle Robert Lloyd, Elizabeth Laurence, London PO/Adam Fischer rec. 1988 NVC ARTS 505186705222 [63:00] [J-PJ]

Dramatic punch and visual variety make this compulsive viewing.


RECORDING OF THE MONTH
Arnold BAX (1883 - 1953) Legend-Sonata see BRIDGE


Franz Ignaz BECK (1734-1809) Sinfonias Toronto CO/Kevin Mallon rec. 2009 NAXOS 8.570799 [66:20] [J-PJ]

A distinctive voice exploring a range of tonalities. Full of rhythmic and melodic contrast.

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

The relatively neglected Quintet Op. 29 finds Beethoven at the top of his form, in music at once bold and imaginative, and the Fine Arts Quartet with Gil Sharon respond with confidence and aplomb.

Ludwig van BEETHOVEN (1770-1827) Leonore Overture 3, Egmont Overture, Symphony 7 Los Angeles PO; Israel PO/Zubin Mehta rec. 1974/82 DECCA ELOQUENCE 480 1136 [62:40] [MSJ]

Familiar interpretive paths, but run with vigor.

BARGAIN OF THE MONTH Ludwig van BEETHOVEN (1770–1827) Piano Concerto 5, Symphony 4 Edwin Fischer (piano), Philharmonia O, Vienna PO/Wilhelm Furtwängler rec. 1950/51 NAXOS 8.112025 [75:38] [BBr]

Genius is the word.

RECORDING OF THE MONTH Ludwig van BEETHOVEN (1770-1827) Violin Sonatas 9 & 10 Edward Dusinberre (violin) David Korevaar (piano) rec. 2009 DECCA 476 3898 [65:13] [GD]

Could easily become the benchmark for a generation to come.

Ludwig van BEETHOVEN (1770–1827) Egmont Overture, Symphony 6 Carl Maria von WEBER (1786–1826) Overtures: Euryanthe, Abu Hassan Robert SCHUMANN (1810–1856) Manfred Overture, Alpenkuhreigen & Zwischenaktmusik Berlin State Opera O/Max von Schillings rec. 1928-9 PRISTINE AUDIO PASC 228 [77:59] [BBr]

Not to be missed by anyone interested in the art of orchestral performance

Ludwig van BEETHOVEN (1770-1827) Piano Sonatas 6, 12, 14 & 27 Angela Hewitt (piano) rec. 2009 HYPERION CDA67797 [63:54] [CC]

This is characteristically thought-provoking playing, although none of the four performances topple any of the greats in this repertoire.

Ludwig van BEETHOVEN (1770-1827) Meerestille und Glückliche Fahrt see SALIERI

George BENJAMIN (b. 1960) Shadowlines, Viola, Viola, Three Studies, Piano Sonata Pierre-Laurent Aimard, George Benjamin (piano) Tabea Zimmermann, Antoine Tamestit (viola) rec. 1980-2003 NIMBUS NI5713 [69:46] [MS]

Features four of Benjamin’s most exciting and enticing piano and solo string compositions. Not to be missed

Alban BERG (1885-1935) Lulu-Suite see HENZE

Alban BERG (1885-1935) Lulu-Suite see WEILL

Hector BERLIOZ (1803-1869) Symphonie fantastique, La damnation de Faust (excerpts) Les nuits d’été, Overtures Régine Crespin (soprano) Suisse Romande O/Ernest Ansermet rec. 1963-7 DECCA ELOQUENCE 480 0053 [3 CDs: 64:33 + 68:26 + 43:15] [DM]

Another worthy addition to the growing list of Ansermet reissues.

Hector BERLIOZ (1803-1869) Symphonie Fantastique, Les Francs-Juges overture London Classical Players/Roger Norrington rec. 1988 VIRGIN CLASSICS 6285792 [64:47] [GD]

A historical curiosity is probably the best way to summarise this recording.

Georges BIZET (1838-1875) Complete Piano Music Julia Severus (piano) rec. 2008 NAXOS DIGITAL 8.570831-32 [71:03 + 61:17] [BR]

All of this piano music is pretty, though none of it is great. 

Georges BIZET (1838 – 1875) Carmen Franco Corelli, Giulietta Simionato, Mirella Freni, Ch & O Teatro Massimo di Palermo/Pierre Dervaux rec. 1959 ISTITUTO DISCOGRADICO ITALIANO IDIS 6571/72 [73:35 + 69:35] [GF]

This issue can hardly have any claims to being a library version though it has its moments.

Ernest BLOCH (1880-1959) String Quartet 1 see SHOSTAKOVICH

John BLOW (1649-1708) I was glad when they said unto me see Music for St Paul’s

Luigi BOCCHERINI (1743-1805) Symphonies 3, 8 & 21 London Mozart Players/Matthias Bamert rec. 2009 CHANDOS CHAN10604 [65:55] [J-PJ]

Lilting melody and gentle pizzicati.

Giovanni BOTTESINI (1821-1889) Fantasia on themes of Rossini, Passioni amorose, Gran Duetto 2, Concerto a due Contrabassi Thomas Martin, Timothy Cobb (double-bass) Christopher Oldfather (piano) rec. 2007 NAXOS 8.572284 [67:05] [JS]

Out of the way but rewarding … strange but characterful sounds resonate in the memory.

BARGAIN OF THE MONTH William BOYCE (1711-1779) Trio Sonatas The Parley of Instruments/Peter Holman rec. 1995 HYPERION DYAD CDD22063 [61:07 + 61:51] [JW]

This idiomatically played twofer makes renewed demands on lovers of Boyce’s very individual and engaging works. 

William BOYCE (1711-1779) Lord, thou hast been our refuge see Music for St Paul’s

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

For those who like their Brahms measured and precise

Johannes BRAHMS (1833-1897) Symphony 3 Jaroslav KRCEK (b. 1939) Symphony 5 Prague SO/Jiri Kout rec. 2010 FOK 002-2 031 [62:28] [RB]

Surprising consonant partners ... see Full Review

Johannes BRAHMS (1833-1897) Complete Lieder Edition Vol. 9 Iris Vermillion (mezzo); Juliane Banse (soprano); Andreas Schmidt (baritone); Helmut Deutsch (piano) rec. 1996-9 CPO 999 840-2 [49:04] [EM]

I cannot fault the performances of these glorious late songs of Brahms’s - exquisite songs and singing.

Johannes BRAHMS (1833-1897) Nänie, Gesang der Parzen, Alto Rhapsody, Schicksalslied Alice Coote (mezzo) Bayerischen Rundfunks Ch, Bamberger SO, Bayerische Staatsphilharmonie/Robin Ticciati rec. 2009 TUDOR 7167 [48:08] [JQ]

Very fine pieces by Brahms, which are well served in these excellent recordings

Johannes BRAHMS (1833-1897) Piano Sonatas 2 & 3, Intermezzi Hélène Grimaud (pno) REGIS RRC1327 [78:55] [GD]

A valuable addition to anybody's Brahms collection.

Johannes BRAHMS (1833-1897) Violin Sonatas Anne-Sophie Mutter (violin); Lambert Orkis (piano) rec. 2009 UNITEL CLASSICA/DEUTSCHE GRAMMOPHON 073 4617 [78:00 + 31:00] [DC]

Essence of Brahms.

Havergal BRIAN (1876-1972) Overtures: For Valour, Doctor Merryheart, Symphonies 11 & 15 RTÉ Ntl SO/Tony Rowe, Adrian Leaper rec. 1993/7 NAXOS 8.572014 [77:10] [JF]

I always have a major problem when I listen to any Symphony by Havergal Brian – it immediately becomes my favourite of the series!

RECORDING OF THE MONTH Frank BRIDGE (1879 - 1941) Cello Sonata Benjamin BRITTEN (1913 - 1976) Cello Sonata Arnold BAX (1883 - 1953) Legend-Sonata Johannes Moser (cello), Paul Rivinius (piano) rec. 2009 HÄNSSLER CLASSIC CD 93.257 [66:45] [BBr]

A very special issue. 

Frank BRIDGE (1879-1940) Piano quintet, Three Sketches, Phantasie, Pensiero, Allegro Appassionato, Violin sonata, Spring Song London Bridge Ens rec. 2009 DUTTON EPOCH CDLX7254 [76:40] [RB]

A blend of passionately torrid romance and a lighter emotional hand.


RECORDING OF THE MONTH
Benjamin BRITTEN (1913 - 1976) Cello Sonata see BRIDGE


Benjamin BRITTEN (1913-1976) Les Illuminations, Chansons françaises see FINZI

Max BRUCH (1838-1920) Violin Concerto 1 see MENDELSSOHN

RECORDING OF THE MONTH Anton BRUCKNER (1824-1896) Symphony 4 Minnesota O/Osmo Vänskä rec. 2009, BIS-SACD-1746 [63:21] [DC]

No reservations whatsoever.

Anton BRUCKNER (1824-1896) Symphony 5 Suisse Romande O/Marek Janowski rec. 2009 PENTATONE CLASSICS PTC 5186 351 [73:54] [MC]

Janowski demonstrates splendid control of structure.

Anton BRUCKNER (1824-1896) Symphonies 4 & 7 Munich PO/Christian Thielemann rec. 2006/8 UNITEL CLASSICA/C MAJOR 701908 [RMay]

These are performances that should be heard by all lovers of Bruckner’s music

Anton BRUCKNER (1824-1896) Symphony 7 Staatskapelle Dresden/Herbert Blomstedt rec. 1980 DAL SEGNO DSPRCD046 [67:50] [NB]

An impressive interpretation and a superb testament to a great orchestra.

Paul BURKHARD (1911-1977) Sieben Stufen des Lebens... Hans SCHAEUBLE (1906-1988) Die Rose & der Schatten Emmy Hürlimann (harp), Manfred Preis (clarinet), Martin Suter (organ), Nico Kaufmann, Hans Schaeuble (pno), Paul Burkhard (conductor), rec. 1959/77 GUILD GHCD2357 [73:35] [JW]

As for a ready market this is for the most particular of Swiss specialists – an Archive Special

Arthur BUTTERWORTH (b. 1923) Symphony 5, Three Nocturnes, The Quiet Tarn, The Green Wind, Coruscations, Gigues Royal Scottish Ntl O/Arthur Butterworth rec. 2010 DUTTON EPOCH CDLX 7253 [67:49] [RB]

Whets the listener's appetite for more Butterworth.

George BUTTERWORTH (1885-1916) Songs from A Shropshire Lad, Folk Songs from Sussex Roderick Williams (baritone); Iain Burnside (piano) rec. 2010 NAXOS 8.572426 [52:05] [JW]

I enjoyed this disc greatly despite my localised reservations. It’s well recorded, and well balanced too.

BARGAIN OF THE MONTH Dietrich BUXTEHUDE (c.1637-1707) Organ Works Lionel Rogg rec. 1977-78 EMI CLASSICS GEMINI 4563292 [77:24 + 77:57] [BW]

An excellent bargain for novices and seasoned collectors alike.


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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