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

new MWI
Current reviews

old MWI
pre-2023 reviews

paid for

Acte Prealable Polish recordings

Forgotten Recordings
Forgotten Recordings
All Forgotten Records Reviews

Troubadisc Weinberg- TROCD01450

All Troubadisc reviews

FOGHORN Classics

Brahms String Quartets

All Foghorn Reviews

All HDTT reviews

Songs to Harp from
the Old and New World

all Nimbus reviews

all tudor reviews

Follow us on Twitter

Editorial Board
MusicWeb International
Founding Editor
Rob Barnett
Editor in Chief
John Quinn
Contributing Editor
Ralph Moore
   David Barker
Jonathan Woolf
MusicWeb Founder
   Len Mullenger


Advertising on

Donate and keep us afloat


New Releases

Naxos Classical
All Naxos reviews

Chandos recordings
All Chandos reviews

Hyperion recordings
All Hyperion reviews

Foghorn recordings
All Foghorn reviews

Troubadisc recordings
All Troubadisc reviews

all cpo reviews

Divine Art recordings
Click to see New Releases
Get 10% off using code musicweb10
All Divine Art reviews

All APR reviews

Lyrita recordings
All Lyrita Reviews


Wyastone New Releases
Obtain 10% discount



cover image

CD: MDT AmazonUK AmazonUS
Sound Samples & Downloads

Musical London, c. 1700
See below review for track list
Philippa Hyde (soprano)*
The Parley of Instruments (Judy Tarling (violin), Oliver Webber (violin)† Mark Caudle (bass viol and cello))/Peter Holman (harpsichord and organ)
rec. Potton Hall, Dunwich, Suffolk, UK 17-19 February 2010. DDD.
** premiere recordings
Booklet with texts included

Experience Classicsonline

This is a most pleasant snapshot of the kind of music that could be heard in London around the turn of the 18th century, from the time of the death of Purcell to the early years of Handel in the city. There may be nothing here to set your listening experience on fire, but, equally, there’s nothing to spoil it.

Much of the music is little-known – note the number of first recordings – indeed, some of the composers will be not much more for most listeners than names in text books. Only Purcell’s ‘Tell me some pitying angel’ (The Blessed Virgin’s Expostulation) is at all well known: in some respects it was a mistake to include it here, since it fits more neatly into collections of Purcell’s music, such as the King’s Consort on Hyperion. (Volume 3, CDA66623, available from the Hyperion Archive Service or on the wonderful complete set of church music on CDS44141/51: Bargain of the Month – see review). It fills a space better reserved for more unfamiliar material; it is, nevertheless, excellently performed here, with Philippa Hyde’s lucid voice fitting it to a T.

If the name William Croft rings a bell at all, it’s likely to be for his Purcell-inspired setting of the Burial Service, the epitome of stately Anglican music. That and other church music is very well presented by St Paul’s Cathedral choir on Hyperion’s inexpensive Helios label (CDH55252 – see review: try his harpsichord music, too, on Soundboard SBCD991 – see review). Croft’s pastoral ‘symphony song’, one of the premiere recordings here, offers a real contrast.

Handel’s Venus and Adonis is also claimed as a first recording, though there already exists a recent version by the Zefiro Ensemble on Deutsche Harmonia Mundi (8869763032) and the two most substantial arias were included on a recording of Handel’s English Cantatas on Avie (2 CDs, AV2153 – see review). What we are offered on the new CD is a reconstruction by Peter Holman, with the two recitatives re-composed. It’s convincing, but the two arias stand well enough on their own on Avie.

For me the major discovery was Nicola Haym’s Chandos Anthem – yes, other composers than Handel did set music for the Duke of Chandos at Cannons – a setting of parts of Psalm 51, different from the more famous Chandos anthems, but music which challenges Handel’s hegemony. It’s also almost unfailingly joyful, in a manner not entirely appropriate to one of the penitential psalms, but very easy on the ear.

I’ve already praised Philippa Hyde’s contribution to the Purcell work. Her performances in the other works are of equally high quality and she is most ably supported by the Parley of Instruments, who also work their customary magic in the instrumental interludes. The whole is woven together by master magician Peter Holman. The quality of Holman’s contribution I took for granted even before playing the recording, but Ms Hyde has been a major (re)-discovery. She sings Semira on the Hyperion recording of Arne’s Artaxerxes, the reissue of which I reviewed some time ago, but I hadn’t really taken on board the excellence of her singing till now. Actually, I note that I thought her diction less than exemplary in Arne – see review – a comment which certainly does not apply to the new recording. (Look out for a review of the new Linn Records version of Artaxerxes in my March 2011 Download Roundup).

My Arcam Solo refused to recognise the CD, but other less fussy – and less expensive – decks readily obliged. Otherwise the recording is excellent, though audiophiles will regret that there is no SACD and that the download from Chandos’ own site, comes in mp3 and lossless only, without the 24-bit option which they have been offering recently – a pity, since the original was, of course, recorded in 24-bit sound.

The excellent notes complete an offering which will appeal strongly, albeit to a limited audience. Even if you aren’t an expert in the music of this period, if you like Purcell and Handel, I’d encourage you to try this programme of music by their contemporaries. To end where I began, it may not set your listening experience afire, but you’re almost bound to enjoy it. If you’re not sure, like other Chandos recordings, it can be sampled via the invaluable Naxos Music Library.

Brian Wilson

Track list
Giovanni Battista DRAGHI (c.1640–1708)
‘Where art thou, God of Dreams?’* from Romulus and Hersilia (1682) for soprano, two violins, bass viol, and harpsichord [2:58]
** Trio Sonata in g minor for two violins, bass viol, and organ [8:24]
Henry PURCELL (1659–1695)
Tell me, some pitying angel, Z196 (1693)* [6:39]
Raphael COURTEVILLE (fl. c. 1675–c. 1735)
** Creep softly, purling streams (1687)* for soprano, two violins, bass viol, and harpsichord [3:58]
Nicola MATTEIS (fl. c. 1670–c. 1713)
Suite in d minor (1687) [7:44]
William CROFT (1678–1727)
** For rural and sincerer joys* Symphony song for soprano, two violins, bass viol, and harpsichord [7:45]
John WELDON (1676–1736)
** Suite in d minor for two violins, bass viol, and organ [10:04]
George Frideric HANDEL (1685–1759)
** Venus and Adonis, Cantata for soprano, violin, cello, and harpsichord – reconstructed by Peter Holman, HWV85 (c. 1711)*† [10:11]
Johann Christoph PEPUSCH (1667–1752)
** Sonata ‘Smallcoal’ in D for two violins, cello, and harpsichord [3:52]
Nicola Francesco HAYM (1678–1729)
Have mercy upon me, O God (1716)* Chandos anthem for soprano, two violins, cello, and organ [14:07]


































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.