Aureole etc.




Golden Age singers

Nimbus on-line




Faure songs
Charlotte de Rothschild (soprano);

  Founder: Len Mullenger
Classical Editor: Rob Barnett


Some items
to consider

 


Enjoy the Gothenburg Symphony Orchestra wherever you are. App available for iOS and Android


Tudor 7188


Vaughan Williams Symphony 3 etc.


Lyrita New Recording


Lyrita Premiere Recordings

Lyrita 4CDs £16 incl.postage

Lyrita 4CDs £16 incl.postage


Decca Phase 4 - 40CDs


Judith Bailey, George Lloyd


BAX Orchestral pieces


CASKEN Violin Concerto

Schumann Symphonies Rattle


Complete Brahms
Bargain price

 

 

 

 

REVIEW



Gerard Hoffnung CDs

Advertising on
Musicweb


Donate and get a free CD

New Releases

Naxos Classical

Hyperion

Musicweb sells the following labels
Acte Préalable
Alto
Arcodiva
Atoll
CDAccord
Cameo Classics
Centaur
Hallé
Hortus
Lyrita
Nimbus
Northern Flowers
Redcliffe
Sheva
Talent
Toccata Classics


Follow us on Twitter

Subscribe to our free weekly review listing
sample
 

alternatively
CD: MDT

Franz SCHUBERT (1797-1828)
Mass in E flat major, D950* (1828) [50:05]
Mass in A flat major, D678 (1822) [53:31]
Luba Orgonasova (soprano); Birgit Remmert (alto); Deon van der Walt (tenor); Anton Scharinger (bass); Wolfgang Holzmair (baritone and tenor II)*
Arnold Schoenberg Chor; Chamber Orchestra of Europe/Nikolaus Harnoncourt
rec. 24-25 June 1995, Stefaniensaal, Graz.
WARNER APEX 2564 67430-2 [50:05 + 53:31]

Experience Classicsonline

I came completely blind to these two works, the only large-scale masses Schubert wrote, in the hope that I would find in them the same emotional directness, melodic invention and combination of grandeur and pathos that I experience when listening to Schubert’s greatest music. As it turns out, I’m afraid I cannot quite share Harnoncourt’s enthusiasm for the earlier of these two works, the Mass in A flat of 1822, which strikes me as amongst the least inspired and least inspiring music that Schubert ever wrote. That is not to say that there are not striking and beautiful moments here, but by and large they are really rather “tame” by comparison with the liturgical music of Mozart, Haydn or Beethoven – or indeed the later Mass in E flat. Some of this has to do with the slightly distant acoustic of these live recordings, whereby the orchestra is very recessed compared with the voices, presumably the result of Harnoncourt’s evident desire to underline the weightiness of what is ultimately often very conventional writing. He emphasises a polished beauty of line and the contribution of the Chamber Orchestra of Europe is thus less vigorous and spicy than one might have wished.

The most original aspect of the earlier mass D678 is the prominence Schubert gives to the brass in an orchestra without flutes, according to the Viennese tradition, often introducing what sounds almost like hunting motifs. He also rather relies on repeated, chordal, punctuational figures for the brass which can sound gauche and over-emphatic. The Kyrie meanders somewhat, which could be said of quite a lot of this music. The over-long Gloria trundles along. The Credo begins with a bold, impressive brass fanfare followed by a slightly unconvincing fugue. Orgonasova notably soars both here and in the later mass, while the other soloists are competent, although I do not much care for Deon van der Walt’s falsetto-biased tenor or the weak bass.

There is much more to enjoy in the D950 from 1828 and first performed posthumously. The most striking innovation here is Schubert’s typically Romantic use of modulations, whereby the music suddenly takes unexpected directions. The opening of the Kyrie, with its warm blend of wind instruments, immediately signals a higher level of creativity and artistry than the D678 and the trio “Et incarnatus est” for soprano and two tenors in the Credo is sublime. The subsequent fugue and the one in the Agnus Dei are both much more assured. Perhaps one of the reasons for the comparative neglect of what many consider to be yet another of the masterpieces written by Schubert in his final year is the four-square nature of the Agnus Dei. It rather fades out without offering much of a consolatory nature – probably reflecting Schubert’s own unorthodox and wavering faith.

The Arnold Schoenberg Chor live up to their reputation as consummate professionals. Although the recording is live, you would scarcely know it from any audience noise, although the distanced orchestra mentioned above and a lack of definition in the sound might tip you off. I don’t think I will much listen to the earlier Mass, but the later work is a gem.


Ralph Moore



 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 


EXPLORE MUSICWEB INTERNATIONAL

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

 

Discographies
   Composer
      Composer surveys
   National
      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

Interviews
With Composers, Conductors, Singers, Instumentalists and others
Includes those on the Seen and Heard site

Nostalgia

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

Comment
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

Announcements

 

Community
Bulletin Board

Give your opinions or seek answers

Reviewers
Pat and present

Helpers invited!

Resources
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
Publishers
Other links
Newsgroups
Web News sites etc

PotPourri
A pot-pourri of articles

MW Listening Room
MW Office

Advice to Windows Vista users  
Questionnaire    
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
Dictionary
Magazines
Newsfeed  
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.