One of the most grown-up review sites around

51,000 reviews
and more.. and still writing ...

Search MusicWeb Here



International mailing

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

Some items
to consider


colourful imaginative harmony
Renate Eggebrecht violin

Leticia Gómez-Tagle
Chopin, Liszt, Scarlatti

Guillaume LEKEU

Book 1 Book 2 Book3
Mota The Triptych: -Website

Acte Prealable returns
with New Releases

Superior performance

Shostakovich 6&7 Nelsons

Verdi Requiem Thielemann

Marianna Henriksson
An outstanding recital

Arnold Bax
Be converted

this terrific disc

John Buckley
one of my major discoveries

François-Xavier Roth
A game-changing Mahler 3


Bryden Thomson


Vaughan Williams Concertos

RVW Orchestral


Support us financially by purchasing this from

Barry MILLS (b.1949)
Elan Valley - orchestral (2016) [8:24]
Mandolin and Guitar Concerto (2003) [13:28]
Evening Rain - Sunset (2012) [6:51]
Guitar Concerto (2014) [31:48]
Mandolin Concerto (2016) [13:20]
Daniel Ahlert (mandolin)
Birgit Schwab (guitar)
Sam Brown (guitar)
Moravian Philharmonic Orchestra/Vronsky
rec. Redula Hall, Olomouc, Czech Republic, 2017
Stereo 24/192 (as reviewed) and 24/96; also available on CD CC6040-2
CLAUDIO BD-A CC6040-6 [71:33]

Barry Mills is a new name to me, and it makes a change to review music by someone who is both alive and younger than I am. Mills seems to be active around the Brighton area and has a considerable quantity of music of all sorts to his name. This is his fifth disc for Claudio. His website at is full of interest. It reveals amongst other things that he is mostly self taught and cannot be described as a professional composer because he worked as a postman to give himself afternoons to compose. One has to admire such dedication. One suspects that there are a lot of such people in the arts world who wish to create but cannot earn enough from it to live on. The history of music is full of such. It would seem that riches are not the expectation of most creative artists.

The two short orchestral pieces and the three concertos presented here were all written well within the last two decades. On this occasion he has gained the cooperation of a fully professional orchestra, in the Czech Republic, to present his works in the best possible light. Engaging with Claudio records to advise on, master and market the disc, as he has before, Mills has guaranteed one thing few can claim, even some of the biggest names, and that is well nigh perfect recording quality. Listening to these beautifully crafted works, full of the most delicate and attractive orchestral effects has been an easy job for this reviewer. Mills does not believe in making life uncomfortable for the audience in that these pieces, though clearly modern, are never raucous or noisy, and indeed often have a very tuneful quality. The tunes are sometimes folk melodies but treated to a rather atmospheric development. I am tempted to draw parallels with some of the gentler minimalists but Mills gets somewhere quite quickly and here at least none of his music outstays its welcome. The three concertos are each in several movements which have descriptive titles referring mostly to the environment. Mills is very much a landscape artist in music. The music has a meditative quality mixed with rhythmic flourishes that enliven the flow of colourful sounds giving a certain narrative quality to the experience. The soloists are all very expert players and articulate the music very cleanly under the intense audio scrutiny of a microscopically clear recording.

As implied above, all five works are well played and recorded with the usual outstanding Claudio fidelity, resulting from using very simple recording arrays placed in exactly the right position and of course using the finest microphones. The majors could learn much from this.

Dave Billinge


We are currently offering in excess of 51,000 reviews

Advertising on

Donate and keep us afloat


New Releases

Naxos Classical

Nimbus Podcast

Obtain 10% discount

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

Musicweb sells the following labels
Acte Préalable
(THE Polish label)
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