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Alphabetical Listing

PART 4
M-R

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+ Download

Gustav MAHLER (1860-1911) Symphony 4 Sunhae Im (soprano) Pittsburgh SO/Manfred Honeck rec. 2010 EXTON EXCL-00048 [57:40] [GD]

Continuous intervention by the conductor and the results are powerful and immediate.

RECORDING OF THE MONTH Gustav MAHLER (1860-1911) Symphony 5 Lucerne Fest O/Claudio Abbado rec. 2004 EUROARTS 2054074 [74:00] [DBi]

An essential purchase that places itself firmly with the top few of a long list of Mahler Fives.

Gustav MAHLER (1860-1911) Symphony 5 Lucerne Festival O/Claudio Abbado; Documentary/Jeremy Barham rec. 2004 EUROARTS 2056178 [95:00] [DM]

If you’re new to Mahler and/or this symphony then this DVD is a must-buy.

Gustav MAHLER (1860-1911) Symphony 1 Serge PROKOFIEV (1891-1953) Piano Concerto 3 Yuja Wang (pno) Lucerne Fest. O/Claudio Abbado rec. 2009 EUROARTS 2057968 [93:00] [CC]

This is a tremendous, glowing performance of the Mahler; the Prokofiev is almost as special.

Gustav MAHLER (1860-1911) Des Knaben Wunderhorn Thomas Hampson (baritone) Wiener Virtuosen/Ernst Ottensamer rec. 2010 DEUTSCHE GRAMMOPHON 477 9289 [66:57] [KM]

One of the finest recordings of these Mahler songs by today’s leading interpreter of these works.

Gustav MAHLER (1860-1911) Symphony 9 Staatskapelle Berlin/Daniel Barenboim rec. 2009 UNITEL/C MAJOR 703708 [74:09 + Bonus 22:34] [RC]

A splendid performance of this complex symphony.

Murat MALAY Mevlana, Yunus Emre Bosphorus SO, 'Golden Horn' SO/Tugrul Karatas rec. 2008-10 MEM PRODUCTIONS (no catalogue number) [47:33] [Byz]

Lovers of sophisticated classical music should stay well away.

Gian Francesco MALIPIERO (1883-1973) Tre commedie goldoniane, Stradivario, La Cimarosiana, Gabrieliana O della Svizzera Italiana/Christian Benda rec. 1997 NAXOS ITALIAN CLASSICS 8.570883 [58:02] [DM]

This is a most rewarding reissue, and a tantalising glimpse into Malipiero’s endearing sound-world. 

Ursula MAMLOK (b.1923) Collection Vol. 2 Garrick Ohlsson (piano) Daedalus Qt rec. 2007/9 BRIDGE 9293 [62:02] [Byz]

A tough and imaginative listen – relentless virtuosic demands.

Francesco MANCINI (1672-1737) Sonata 4 see VIVALDI

Igor MARKEVITCH (1912-1983)/Johann Sebastian BACH (1685-1750) The Musical Offering Rémy Baudet (violin) Hans van Loenen (wooden transverse flute) Jeroen Reuling (cello) Dirk Luijmes (harpsichord) Arnhem PO/Christopher Lyndon-Gee rec. 1997 NAXOS 8.572158 [51.58] [Byz]

Markevitch's Musical Offering is not a Stokowski-style lushification; Markevitch proves to be more sensitive.

Frank MARTIN (1890-1974) Jedermann, Der Sturm (excerpts) Werner EGK (1901-1983) The Temptation of St. Anthony Janet Baker (mezzo) Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau (baritone) Berlin PO/Frank Martin, Koeckert Qt, Bavarian RSO/Werner Egk rec. 1960/5 BRILLIANT CLASSICS 9206 [65:09] [RB]

Classic 1960s vintage recordings of twentieth century works for voice and orchestra in and toweringly potent performances.

Bohuslav MARTINU (1890-1959) Oboe Concerto see STRAUSS

William MATHIAS (1934 - 1992) Improvisations for Harp see 20th Century Harp Classics

Nicholas MAW (1935-2009) Sonata Notturna, Life Studies Raphael Wallfisch (cello) English String O/William Boughton rec. 1995, NIMBUS NI5471 [65:07] [WH]

Two fine twentieth-century English works for strings in magnificent performances.

BARGAIN OF THE MONTH Felix MENDELSSOHN (1809-1847) Sextet Conradin KREUTZER (1780-1849) Grand Septet Franz BERWALD (1796-1868) Grand Septet Alexander BORODIN (1833-1887) Piano Quintet Nikolai RIMSKY-KORSAKOV (1844-1908) Piano Quintet Wiener Oktett rec. 1968/72 DECCA ELOQUENCE 480 2397 [63:31 + 77:07] [BR]

Tickets to chamber music heaven.

Felix MENDELSSOHN (1809-1847) Violin Concerto, Octet James Ehnes (violin) Philharmonia O/Vladimir Ashkenazy, Seattle Chamber Music Soc rec. 2010 ONYX 4060 [57:31] [AM]

A warm Mendelssohn Concerto but a cool Octet from James Ehnes.

Felix MENDELSSOHN-BARTHOLDY (1809-1847) Octet, Piano sextet I solisti Filarmonici Italiani Jolanda Violante (piano) rec. 2009 CPO 777 524-2 [62:28] [DC]

A recommendable alternative with a period approach. 

Keeping the Doors Open Felix MENDELSSOHN (1809-1847) Violin Concerto Pyotr Ilyich TCHAIKOVSKY (1840-1893) Piano Trio Isaac Stern (violin) Mstislav Rostropovich (cello) Vladimir Horowitz (piano) Israel PO/Leonard Bernstein rec. 1967/76 SONY CLASSICAL 88697 753472 [JW]

I wouldn’t especially commend either performance.

Felix MENDELSSOHN (1809-1847) Piano Trios: in d; in c Schweizer Klaviertrio: Angela Golubeva (violin) Sebastien Singer (cello) Martin Lucas Staub (piano) rec. 2010 AUDITE 92.550 [57:08] [KS]
Splendid performances of some sublime music. A near perfect hour of music-making.

Felix MENDELSSOHN (1809-1847) The Beautiful Melusine Overture see Fritz Busch

Felix MENDELSSOHN (1809-1847) A Midsummer Night’s Dream see Reiner Rarities

Gian Carlo MENOTTI (1911-2007) The Saint of Bleecker Street, The Unicorn, the Gorgon & the Manticore Gabrielle Ruggiero (soprano) Gloria Lane (mezzo) David Poleri (tenor) unnamed Ch & O/Thomas Schippers rec. 1955/7 NAXOS 8.111360-61 [79:30 + 76:18] [JS]

Listening to these operas on disc gives only a partial picture of their character and merits.

RECORDING OF THE MONTH Claudio MONTEVERDI (1567-1643) Vespers of the Blessed Virgin Mary, Exultent caeli O of Age of Enlightenment/Robert Howarth rec. 2010 SIGNUM SIGCD237 [49:08 + 47:59] [JS]

In a word: magnificent.

Claudio MONTEVERDI (1567-1643) Vespro della Beata Vergine Nicholas Mulroy, Thomas Hobbs (tenor) New College Oxford Ch, Charivari Agréable/Edward Higginbottom, rec. 2009 NOVUM NCR 1382 [57:30 + 33:02] [JV]

A recording with many virtues but also some serious flaws.

Xavier MONTSALVATGE (1911-2002) Concertino 1 + 13, Tres postals il-luminades see TOLDRA

Wolfgang Amadeus MOZART (1756-1791) Die Zauberflöte Hans Peter Blochwitz (tenor) Willard White (bass) Natalie Dessay, Rosa Mannion (sopranos) Les Arts Florissants/William Christie rec. 1995 ERATO 2564 677426 [76.08 + 74.19] [MM-B]

Naturally accomplished and well judged with a fine performance by orchestra and singers.

Wolfgang Amadeus MOZART (1756-1791) Symphonies 39 & 41 English Baroque Soloists/Sir John Eliot Gardiner rec. 2006 SOLI DEO GLORIA SDG711 [66:51] [JQ]

Fine, vital live performances of two of Mozart’s greatest symphonies.

Wolfgang Amadeus MOZART (1756-1971) Sonatas for four hands Marie and Veronica Kuijken (pianoforte) rec. 2009 CHALLENGE RECORDS CC72363 [76:48] [DC]

Another winner from Challenge Classics. 

Wolfgang Amadeus MOZART (1756–1791) Duos for Violin and Viola see Michael HAYDN

Carl NIELSEN (1865-1931) Symphonies 1 & 5, Helios Overture, Flute Concerto, Clarinet Concerto, Maskarade Svend Simon SCHULTZ (1913-1998) Serenade Gilbert Jespersen (flute) Ib Erikson (clarinet) Danish State RSO/Thomas Jensen, Erik Tuxen, Mogens Wöldike rec. 1952/4 DECCA ELOQUENCE 480 1858 [78:46 + 77:56] [RB]

Nielsen recordings from the 1950s vanguard in recordings that sound as good as they are ever likely to sound. 

Pehr Henrik NORDGREN (1944 – 2008) The Good Samaritan, Wind quintet 2 see Arctic Hysteria

Jan NOVÁK (1921-1984) Sonata Serenata for Violin and Guitar see DUO TERES

Robert OBOUSSIER (1900-1957) Antigone see BLOCH

BARGAIN OF THE MONTH Giovanni PACINI (1796-1867) Il convitato di pietra Leonardo Cortellazzi (tenor) Geraldine Chauvet (mezzo) Transylvania State PCh, Cluj Südwestdeutsches CO Pforzheim/Daniele Ferrari rec. live, 2008 NAXOS OPERA CLASSICS 8.660282-83 [44.55 + 47.28] [RJF]

A different take on a well-known story is accompanied by a Pacini’s sure composition and an enjoyable first public performance.

Nicolò PAGANINI (1782-1840) Sonata no.1 in A , Sonata no.4 in A see DUO TERES

Giovanni Pierluigi da PALESTRINA (1525/6-1594) Missa Aeterna Christi munera, Sicut cervus desiderat, Vidi turbam magnam, Magnificat primi toni a 8 Westminster Cathedral Ch/James O'Donnell rec. 1991 HYPERION HELIOS CDH55368 [GD]

The Westminster Choir sing beautifully but there is no way that any choir can maintain results at this phenomenal level indefinitely

Charles Hubert Hastings PARRY (1848-1918) Symphony 1, From Death to Life English SO/William Boughton rec. 1991 NIMBUS NI 5296 [70:33] [RB]

Eloquent and broadly paced readings of works from the extremes of Parry’s career.

Vincent PAULET (b.1962) La Ballade des Pendus, Nuit, Partita 2, Cello sonata Isabelle Soccoja (mezzo) Marion Ralincourt (flute) Florent Héau (clarinet) Jean-Michel Dayez (piano) Parisii Qt; Arnaud Vallin (violin) Xavier Gagnepain (cello) Nicolas Krüger (director) rec. 2010 HORTUS 080 [75:27] [MS]

A substantial new collection of early works by a French composer with a lot to say … highly sympathetic and persuasive performances.

Flor PEETERS (1729–1774) Organ music D’Arcy Trinkwon (organ) rec. 2009 HYPERION CDA 67825 [73:38] [HC]

A generously filled selection of Peeters’ organ works in magnificent performances and recording.

Astor PIAZZOLLA (1921-1992) Las Cuatro Estaciones Porteñas see VILLA-LOBOS

David L. POST (b.1949) String Quartets 2-4, Fantasia on a Virtual Choral Hawthorne String Qt rec. 2002-7 NAXOS AMERICAN CLASSICS 8.559661 [59:54] [RC]

Chamber music mavens willing to sample fairly approachable contemporary works should find the disc rewarding. 

Francis POULENC (1899-1963) L’Histoire de Babar see DEBUSSY

RECORDING OF THE MONTH Sergei PROKOFIEV (1891-1953) Piano Concerto 2 Maurice RAVEL (1875-1937) Piano Concerto Anna Vinnitskaya (piano) Deutsches SO Berlin/Gilbert Varga rec. 2010 NAÏVE V5238 [54:30] [GD]

I can't wait to hear some more. 

Serge PROKOFIEV (1891-1953) Piano Concerto 3 see MAHLER

Giacomo PUCCINI (1858-1924) Madama Butterfly Victoria de los Ángeles (soprano) Giuseppe di Stefano (tenor) O & Ch Teatro dell'Opera di Roma/Gianandrea Gavazzeni rec. 1954 BRILLIANT CLASSICS 94206 [DB]

Classic performances alongside well judged work of an exceptional and under-recorded conductor.

RECORDING OF THE MONTH Sergei RACHMANINOV (1873-1943) Piano Concerto 2 Franz LISZT (1811-1886) Liebestraum 3, Mephisto 1, Hungarian Rhapsody 2 Nobuyuki Tsujii (piano) Deutsches SO Berlin/Yutaka Sado rec. 2007/8 CHALLENGE CLASSICS CC72371 [59:50] [MC]

Tsujii is a force to be reckoned with. 

Sergei RACHMANINOV (1873-1943) Symphonies 1-3, The Isle of the Dead, The Rock, Symphonic Dances, The Bells, Spring, Russian Songs Choral Arts Society of Philadelphia, Philadelphia O/Charles Dutoit rec. 1990-3 NEWTON CLASSICS 8802021 [4 CDs: 288:47] [RB]

Refined recordings and playing but where is the abandon? An excellent Second Symphony, though.

Sergei RACHMANINOV (1873-1943) Cello Sonata, Vocalise, Romance/Ballade, Elegie Pyotr Ilyich TCHAIKOVSKY (1840-1893) Nocturne, Pezzo capriccioso Marina Tarasova (cello) Alexander Polezhaev (piano) rec. Moscow, 2002. DDD ALTO ALC1132 [72:27] [RB]

Viscous hoarseness of tone complemented by nobility and emotionality.

Sergei RACHMANINOV (1873–1943) Symphonic Dances see TCHAIKOVSKY

Maurice RAVEL (1875-1937) Daphnis et Chloé Suites 1 & 2; Pavane pour une infante défunte; Alborado del gracioso; Rapsodie espagnole Concertgebouw O/Bernard Haitink rec. 1961/71 DECCA ELOQUENCE 480 2381 [56:58] [RB]

Healthy Ravel exegesis compromised somewhat by blunted dynamic contrast.

RECORDING OF THE MONTH
Maurice RAVEL
(1875-1937) Piano Concerto see PROKOFIEV


Ferdinand REBAY (1880-1953) Der Kleine Rosengarten, 6 Russische Volkslieder Maximilian Kiener (tenor) Gonzalo Noqué (guitar) rec. 2010 ARSIS 4240 [60:39] [Byz]

Rebay makes his understated, mellifluous yet persuasive way.

Ottorino RESPIGHI (1879-1936) Pini di Roma see Toscanini

BARGAIN OF THE MONTH Nikolai RIMSKY-KORSAKOV (1844-1908) Scheherazade, Tale of Tsar Saltan Seattle SO/Gerard Schwarz rec. 2010 NAXOS 8.572693 [66:37] [BR]

I put the disc on expecting ‘decent.’ But it’s not decent: it’s spectacular!

Nikolai RIMSKY-KORSAKOV (1844 – 1908) The Tsar's Bride Ekaterina Kudriavchenko (soprano) Vladislav Verestnikov (baritone) Arkady Mishenkin (tenor) Nina Terentieva (mezzo) Sveshnikov Russian Academic Ch, Bolshoi Theatre O/Andrey Chistiakov rec. 1992 BRILLIANT CLASSICS 93969 [75:33 + 70:41] [RMo]

Despite its distinct price advantage, it is hard to recommend this bargain Brilliant issue over the Philips.

BARGAIN OF THE MONTH
Nikolai RIMSKY-KORSAKOV (1844-1908) Piano Quintet see MENDELSSOHN

 

Joaquín RODRIGO (1901-1999) Complete Guitar Music Ignacio Rodes, Marco Socías, Carlos Pérez, Carles Trepat (guitars) rec. 1998-2007 BRILLIANT CLASSICS 9177 [OL]

There are some gems and pearls, but you won't appreciate them so much after going through similar, but less inspired works

John ROSE (b.1928) String quartets 1 & 2, Preludes & fugues, Essay on DSCH The Edinburgh Qt, Robert Melling (piano) rec. 2009/10 DIVINE ART DDA25092 [74:14] [RB]

Music of patent sincerity and some fascination.

RECORDING OF THE MONTH Gioachino ROSSINI (1792-1868) Petite Messe Solennelle Gewandhaus Ch & O/Riccardo Chailly rec. 2008 EUROARTS 2057428 [85:00] [RJF]

This performance not only elevates this rarely heard work to stand alongside the composer’s better-known Stabat Mater, but also the great Mass by his fellow Italian opera composer, Verdi.

RECORDING OF THE MONTH Johann Christoph ROTHE (1653-1700) St Matthew Passion Cantus Thuringia, Capella Thuringia/Bernhard Klapprott rec. 2009 CPO 777 554-2 [63:05 + 34:07] [JV]

This St Matthew Passion is a major discovery - the performance fully explores its expressive qualities.

BARGAIN OF THE MONTH Miklos ROZSA (1907-1995) Ben Hur, Quo Vadis, Julius Caesar - filmscores National PO & Ch, Royal PO & Ch/Miklos Rozsa, Bernard Herrmann rec. 1974-77 DECCA ELOQUENCE 480 3790 [47:10 + 52:47] [RB]

Magnificent performances and recordings.

Miklós RÓZSA (1907-1995) Overture to a Symphony Concert, Rhapsody, Notturno ungherese, Three Hungarian Sketches Mark Kosower (cello) Budapest SO MÁV/Mariusz Smolij rec. 2007/2009 NAXOS 8.572285 [JW]

Committed, idiomatic and sharply attuned to the composer’s sensibilities

Edmund RUBBRA (1901-1986) String Quartets 1, 3, & 4 Maggini Qt rec. 2009 NAXOS 8.572555 [54:51] [JF]

Played with sympathy and enthusiasm … an impressive addition to the catalogue.

John RUTTER (b. 1945) A Song in Season Cambridge Singers, Royal PO, City of London Sinf/John Rutter rec. 2002/10 COLLEGIUM COLCD135 [77:07] [JQ]

John Rutter’s many admirers will surely welcome this disc.


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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