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[Part 1 New] [Part 2 A-B] [Part 3 C-L]
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Violin Concerto 2 see

Frederic CHOPIN (1810-1849) Etudes Op. 10 (1833) [27.42] Robert SCHUMANN (1810-1856) Fantasia in C Op. 17 (1839) [31.27]
Agustin Anievas (piano) NEWPORT CLASSIC NCD60179 [58.69] [RBe]

Lyricism and dreaminess without sentimentality.

Fryderyk CHOPIN (1810-1849) Transcriptions Jaroslaw KORDACZUK (b.1967) Sostenuto: Hommage ŕ Chopin Jolanta Stopka (violin) Magdalena Blum (piano) rec. 2009, DDD ACTE PRÉALABLE AP0208 [53:48] [JW]

Interesting idea: an all-Chopin transcription album but variably executed.

Fryderyk CHOPIN (1810-1849) Piano Sonata 3 see ALBENIZ

Fryderyk CHOPIN (1810-1849) Nocturnes see Ciccolini

RECORDING OF THE MONTH Jacobus CLEMENS non Papa (1510/1515-1555/6) Missa Pro Defunctis, Motets Brabant Ens/Stephen Rice rec. 2010 HYPERION CDA67848 [72.52] [GH]

Jacobus Clemens can be considered up there with the very best. 

Gloria COATES (b.1938) String Quartet 9, Sonata for Solo Violin, Lyric Suite Kreutzer Qt; Roderick Chadwick (piano) rec. 2008/2009 NAXOS 8.559666 [58:51] [Byz]

Naxos deserve plaudits for having the courage to bring Coates’ music to wider attention even if it is rather unlikely that our pop-drenched society will ever hear, let alone understand, her art.

Delfín COLOMÉ (1946-2008) Chamber Works Ad hoc String Qt, Alfredo Carlavilla, Marcos Palancares (saxophone) Francisco Alcocer (bassoon) Luis Navidad (contrabass) Agustín Maruri (guitar) Delfín Colomé (piano) rec. 1982-2010 EMEC E-096 [68:48] [Byz]

Varied, entertaining music, and a fitting tribute to a colourful composer.

Carson COOMAN (b.1982) A Trip to the Sky, Schumann Serenade for string trio, Quartet for Piano and Strings, Viola Quintet, Cavatina, Carson Cooman (piano) rec. 2010 MSR CLASSICS MS 1387 [68:01] [Byz]

An outstanding disc in every regard.

Aaron COPLAND (1900-1990) Appalachian Spring Suite, Short Symphony, Quiet City, Three Latin American Sketches Orpheus CO rec. 1988 BRILLIANT CLASSICS 9207 [60:52] [MC]

Hard to find fault with this winning release so superbly performed and recorded. 

Robert CRAWFORD (b.1925) Elegiac quintet, Clarinet quintet see VEALE

Louis François DAUPRAT (1781-1868) Grand Sextet Die Detmolder Hornisten rec. 1982 MUSIKPRODUKTION DABRINGHAUS UND GRIMM MDG3240087-2 [40:01] [Byz]

Music and performances are plain irresistible but what about the playing time? 

Claude DEBUSSY (1862–1918) Orchestral Works Vol. 5 O Ntnl de Lyon/Jun Märkl rec. 2009/2010 NAXOS 8.572568 [73:04] [BW]

Slow tempi and a too-serious box of toys preclude my recommendation, but others may – and do – disagree.

Claude DEBUSSY (1862-1918) Ibéria, La Mer Maurice RAVEL (1875-1937) Ma mère l’Oye Suite Boston SO/Charles Munch rec. 1958/61 ICA CLASSICS ICAD5014 [68:01] [WH]

Highly disciplined, rather hard-driven concert performances from a master conductor in his prime. 

Claude DEBUSSY (1862-1918) Violin sonata see Echoes of Paris

Antonín DVORÁK (1841-1904) Slavonic Dances 1st series Op.46 B78 (1878) [32:35] Slavonic Dances 2nd series Op.72 B145 (1886) [31:38] Kristina Krkavcová and Martin Kasík (piano) rec. January-February 2004, Liechtenstein Palace, Prague ARCO DIVA UP 0067-2 131 [65:09] [JW]

These performances are both enjoyable and sympathetic

Antonín DVORÁK (1841-1904) Requiem (1888) [94:19] Simona Šaturová (soprano); Jana Sýkorová (mezzo); Tomአčerný (tenor); Peter Mikulአ(bass) Czech Philharmonic Choir of Brno Brno Philharmonic Orchestra/Petr Fiala rec. live, Janáček Theatre Brno, November 2010 ARCODIVA UP0130-2132 [94:19] [ST]

A solid performance but acoustic problems make it a version you can’t really live with.

Antonín DVOŘÁK (1841-1904) Complete piano works Inna Poroshina (piano) rec. 1997/8 BRILLIANT CLASSICS 94085 [5 CDs: 271:16] [BR]

If you haven’t yet heard this often-excellent music, give it a try.

Edward ELGAR (1857-1934) Cello Concerto see WAGNER

Edward ELGAR (1857-1934) Cello Concerto see HAYDN

Rolande FALCINELLI (1920-2006) Improvisations Rolande Falcinelli (organ) rec. 1979-1986, HORTUS 079 [73:38] [DC]

Flamboyant and daring inventiveness.

Gerald FINZI (1901-1956) Lo, the Full Final Sacrifice see RESURRECTION

César FRANCK (1822-1890) Symphony Pyotr Ilyich TCHAIKOVSKY (1840-1893) Romeo and Juliet RAI SO Roma, Torino/Sergiu Celibidache rec. 1957/60 ISTITUTO DISCOGRAFICO ITALIANO IDIS 6611 [63:49] [CH]

A performance to stand at the summit of Franck interpretation, and it’s some time since I’ve been so completely gripped by Romeo and Juliet.

Hans GÁL (1890-1987) Intermezzos, Sketches, Sonata for Two Violins, Huyton Suite Ulrike Anton (flute) Russell Ryan (piano) Cornelia Löscher, Wolfhart Schuster (violin) rec. 2010 GRAMOLA 98896 [67.11] [GH]

Beautifully documented, superbly played and sympathetically recorded.

Luigi GATTI (1740-1817) Three concertos Paolo Ghedoni, Rita Macagna (violin) Stefano Canuti (bassoon) Andrea Dembech (piano) O da Camera del Conservatorio di Musica di Mantova rec. 2008/9 BRILLIANT CLASSICS 94146 [69:19] [GPu]

Rewarding music by a Salzburg Kapellmeister who deserves to escape from Mozart’s ‘shadow’.

Alexander GLAZUNOV (1865-1936) Sten'ka Razin see TCHAIKOVSKY

Christoph Willibald GLUCK (1714-1787) Ezio – dramma per musica in three acts (1750 Prague version) [98:00] Soloists Prague Symphony Chamber Orchestra/Jirí Petrdlík rec. 2010 ARCODIVA UP 0141-2232 [2 CDs: 98:00] [ST]

If you’re a serious collector of Gluck then you can pick up this set without fear of disappointment.

Nicolas GOMBERT (c.1495-c.1560) Magnificat Octavi Toni, Missa Tempore Paschali, O Rex gloriae Robin Blaze (counter-tenor) Toby Watkin (tenor) Giles Underwood (bass) Henry's Eight/Jonathan Brown rec. 1996 HYPERION HELIOS CDH55323 [65:31] [MS]

A splendid, idiomatic, persuasive yet appropriately reserved account of Gombert's great Mass … a very desirable CD. 

Henryk GÓRECKI (1933-2010) The Three String Quartets Royal String Qt rec. 2010 HYPERION CDA67812 [48:47 + 55:54] [MS]

An excellent set of recordings of all Górecki's finished string quartets played utterly sympathetically and with real insight.

RECORDING OF THE MONTH Edvard GRIEG (1843 - 1907) Violin Sonata 1 Béla BARTÓK (1881 - 1945) Sonata for solo violin Richard STRAUSS (1864 - 1949) Violin Sonata Vilde Frang (violin) Michail Lifits (piano) rec. 2010 EMI CLASSICS 9476392 [78:49] [GF]

Give us more of Vilde Frang, please, EMI! 

Edvard GRIEG (1843-1907) Lyric Pieces see Ciccolini

Ricard Lamote de GRIGNON (1899-1962) Monocromies see TURINA

George Frideric HANDEL (1685 – 1759) Arias from Giulio Cesare in Egitto Natalie Dessay (soprano) Sonia Prina (contralto) Stephen Wallace (counter-tenor) Le Concert d’Astrée/Emmanuelle Haďm rec. 2010 VIRGIN CLASSICS 9078722 [65:32] [GF]

This disc is highly attractive.

George Frideric HANDEL (1685 - 1759) Il trionfo del Tempo e del Disinganno Lucy Crowe (soprano) Anna Stephany (mezzo) Hilary Summers (contralto) Andrew Staples (tenor) Early Opera Company/Christian Curnyn rec. 2010 WIGMORE HALL LIVE WHLIVE0042/2 [65:56 + 71:34] [JV]

Not particularly dramatic performance of Handel's oratorio.

Emil HARTMANN (1836-1898) Nordic and German Songs Iben Vestergĺrd (soprano) Cathrine Penderup (piano) rec. 2010 DANACORD DACOCD 712-713 [60:06 + 64:44] [GF]

This issue can’t be recommended.

Johann Adolph HASSE (1699-1783) Cleofide Emma Kirkby (soprano) Agnes Mellon (soprano) Derek Lee Ragin (counter-tenor) Rheinische Kantorei, Capella Coloniensis/William Christie rec. 1986 CAPRICCIO 7080 [4 CDs: 230:16] [KM]

A delightful opera by a forgotten composer; if you like Handel, check out Cleofide. 

Franz Josef HAYDN (1732-1809) Cello Concerto 1 Camille SAINT-SAËNS (1835-1921) Cello Concerto 1 Edward ELGAR (1857-1934) Cello Concerto Mstislav Rostropovich (cello) London SO/Gennady Rozdhestvensky BBC BBCL 4198-2 [67:35] [GA]

Full-blooded engagement.

Joseph HAYDN (1732-1809) Haydn’s Music for England Judith Nelson (soprano) Paul Elliott (tenor) Academy of Ancient Music/Christopher Hogwood (fortepiano) rec. 1978 DECCA ELOQUENCE 480 0388 [48:06 + 48:32] [JS]

Superb music, well played and recorded.

Franz Joseph HAYDN (1732-1809) Complete Early Divertimenti Simon Standage (violin) Haydn Sinf Wien/Manfred Huss rec. 1993-2009 BIS CD 1806-08 [5 CDs: 5:45] [KM]

A mixed bag of early Haydn, from bland to delightful.

Franz Joseph HAYDN (1732-1809) Songs and Cantatas Emma Kirkby (soprano) Marcia Hadjimarkos (fortepiano) rec. 2009 BRILLIANT CLASSICS 94204 [56:42] [BW]

Excellent value – you may not like the poetry but Haydn’s music and the performances amply compensate.

Franz Joseph HAYDN (1732-1809) Missa Brevis, Creation Mass Rebel Baroque O/J. Owen Burdick & Jane Glover rec. 2001/2008 NAXOS 8.572127 [53:08] [WK]

Overall, a very serviceable disc of these two masses, although some listeners may miss the more traditional full-orchestra treatment.

Joseph HAYDN (1732-1809) Piano Sonata Hob. XVI:34 see Prokofiev

Herbert HOWELLS (1892-1983) Like as the Hart Desireth Waterbrooks see Resurrection

Engelbert HUMPERDINCK (1854 – 1921) Dornröschen Brigitte Fassbaender, Armgart Chor des Bayerischen Rundfunks, Münchner RSO/Ulf Schirmer rec. 2008 CPO 777 510-2 [40:06 + 50:03] [GF]

This live recording is splendid and the music is mostly fresh and melodious and well worth hearing.

Michael HURD (1928-2006) Pop Cantatas John Addison (narrator) Alexander Wells (piano) Members of New London O, New London Children’s Ch/Ronald Corp rec. 2009 NAXOS 8.572505 [67:02] [NB]

Anything that stays in the memory for forty years with such pleasurable clarity has to be a winner.

RECORDING OF THE MONTH  Charles IVES (1874-1954) A Concord Symphony, orch. Henry Brant Aaron COPLAND (1900-1990) Organ Symphony Paul Jacobs (organ) San Francisco SO/Michael Tilson Thomas rec. 2010 SFS MEDIA 82193600382 [77:07] [KM]

A must for any fan of Ives. The Concord Symphony is a magnificent realization, and the performance here is top-notch.

Zoltán KODÁLY (1882-1967) Dances from Galánta, Háry János Béla BARTÓK (1881-1945) 2 Portraits, First Rhapsody György LIGETI (1923-2006) Concert Românesc Mihaela Costa (violin) Gulbenkian O/Lawrence Foster rec. 2009 PENTATONE PTC 5186 360 [76:41] [BR]

A solid 75 minutes of pure pleasure, highlighted by a surprising Ligeti folk concerto.

Zoltán KODÁLY (1882-1967) Dances of Galanta Wolfgang Amadeus MOZART (1756-1791) Clarinet concerto Ludwig van BEETHOVEN (1770-1827) Symphony 8 Jan Mach (clarinet) Prague SO/Jirí Kout rec. live, 2010 FOK 0003-2 031 [70:21] [JW]

Maybe a tempter for fans of these artists but really it’s not possible to recommend this disc beyond that constituency.

György LIGETI (1923-2006) Concert Românesc see KODÁLY

Franz LISZT (1811-1886) Symphonic Poems: Ce qu’on entend sur la montagne, Prometheus, Festklänge Dresdner Philharmonie/Michel Plasson rec. Dresden, 1995 BERLIN CLASSICS 0300136BC [64:33] [IL]

Engaging, exciting performances of some of Liszt’s lesser-known symphonic poems. 

Franz LISZT (1811-1886) Rhapsodie Espagnole see Prokofiev

David LUMSDAINE (b.1931) White Dawn - Soundscapes I-V, Blue Upon Blue, A Tree Telling of Orpheus, A Norfolk Songbook, Cambewarra Peter Lawson (piano) Jonathan Price (cello) John Turner (recorders) Lesley-Jane Rogers (soprano) Gemini/Martyn Brabbins rec. 1984-2004 METIER MSV28519 [60:29 + 59:21] [GH]

Quite brilliant and utterly convincing. 

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 week] [Recommended recordings]



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