52,943 reviews
and more.. and still writing ...

Search MusicWeb Here



International mailing

  Founder: Len Mullenger             Editor in Chief: John Quinn               Contact Seen and Heard here  

Some items
to consider

Chopin Edition 17CDs
now available separately
£11 post-free anywhere


100th birthday of Mieczyslaw Weinberg on December 8, 2019.
Renate Eggbrecht has recorded all 3 violin Sonatas

Mozart Brahms
Clarinet Quintets


Recordings of the Month


Jean-Baptiste LEMOYNE

Enescu Ravel Britten

Debussy Images etc.

53 Studies on Chopin Études 1
Konstantin Scherbakov (piano)



Che fai tù? - Villanelles

Cyrillus KREEK
The suspended harp of Babel

violin concertos - Ibragimova

Peteris VASKS
Viola concerto - Maxim Rysanov

The Complete Lotte Schöne





Advertising on

Donate and keep us afloat


New Releases

Naxos Classical

Click to see New Releases
Get 10% off using code musicweb10

Nimbus Podcast

Obtain 10% discount

Special offer 50% off
15CDs £83 incl. postage

Musicweb sells the following labels

Altus 10% off
Atoll 10% off
CRD 10% off
Hallé 10% off
Lyrita 10% off
Nimbus 10% off
Nimbus Alliance
Prima voce 10% off
Red Priest 10% off
Retrospective 10% off
Saydisc 10% off
Sterling 10% off

Follow us on Twitter

Subscribe to our free weekly review listing

Sample: See what you will get

Editorial Board
MusicWeb International
Founding Editor
Rob Barnett
Editor in Chief
John Quinn
Seen & Heard
Editor Emeritus
   Bill Kenny
MusicWeb Webmaster
   David Barker
Jonathan Woolf
MusicWeb Founder
   Len Mullenger


Buy through MusicWeb
for £12 postage paid World-wide.

Musicweb Purchase button

Jakub Jan RYBA (1765-1815)
Czech Christmas Mass (“Hej, Mistře!”) [38:17]; Anon Czech Christmas Carols – Nesem vám noviny [2:39]; Štĕsti, zdravi, pokoj svatý [1:30]; A teče vodička [2:31]; Půjdem spolu do Betléma [1:32]; Čarovné noci [3:31]; Veselé vánoční hody [2:19]
Hana Škarková (soprano); Marie Vrbová (alto); Petr Leviček (tenor); Richard Novák (bass); Martin Jakubíček (organ); The Czech Philharmonic Choir of Brno The Czech Chamber Soloists/Petr Fiala rec. Brno, Besedni dům, 12 September 2012
Czech text of Mass included
ARCODIVA UP 0155 CD [53:00]

Experience Classicsonline

There is Christmas music which examines seriously and thoughtfully the meaning of Christmas. Ryba’s Christmas Mass is not like that. It is a simple expression of joy, with an almost child-like simplicity of idiom, following the main sections of the Mass but replacing the usual texts with a Czech text mainly concerning the angels appearing to the shepherds and the journey of the latter to see the new-born Christ. It is full of folksy melodies, textures and instrumentation, and listening to a recording of it is always a highlight of my Christmas.
I have owned several versions in the past, most recently one with the Choir and Orchestra of the Czech Madrigalists conducted by František Xaver Thuri (Naxos 8.554428). The present version has several clear defects compared with that on Naxos. The booklet with the latter includes both the Czech text and the English translation which is essential for full enjoyment unless you are fluent in Czech. It also has a more interesting coupling in Ryba’s Missa Pastoralis, shorter than the Christmas Mass but worth hearing.
The assortment of carols for choir and orchestra on the present disc is moderately entertaining heard once but does not seem to demand a rehearing. However before you decide that the Naxos disc is the one to have the more important matter of the actual performance needs to be taken into account. Quite simply, that on the new disc is markedly superior. Right from the start the pungent sounds produced by the organ and orchestra and the more lively playing suggest that this will be a performance of great vitality, enabling the listener immediately to picture the rustic celebrations of which it forms a part. Not that the performance is in any way lacking technically, but there is an obvious and abundant sincerity and eagerness which disarms criticism of the work or the performance. Admittedly there is little to choose between this version and previous versions that I have heard in terms of the inherent quality of soloists, choir, orchestra or recording but it does have the edge in terms of its projection of the fundamental character of the work.
At this point I can add little to help the prospective purchaser. The lack of text and translation and the uninteresting coupling do count against this disc but on balance I would not want to miss such an engaging performance of this very engaging work.
John Sheppard


































































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.