NEW & RECENT ARTICLES
Bellini's Norma - a
survey of recordings by Ralph Moore
[New] Piet Kee, Dutch organist - an
obituary by Kenneth Shenton
[New] The start of a new
round of national discography updates by Mike Herman
Stanfordian Thoughts 6: Fairy Day
by Christopher Howell
Piano Trio Discography & Review Index: Mozart
Ernst Maerzendorfer and the First
Recorded Cycle of Haydn Symphonies II by Christopher Howell
Second Thoughts and Short Reviews: Autumn
2018/1 by Brian Wilson
& Dan Morgan
Wagner's Tristan und Isolde - a survey of recordings
by Ralph Moore
Alpha Classics reissues and
other Outhere releases - a survey by Brian Wilson
Classical Music on
Stamps This week: The Mozart bicentenary in 1991
For over 20 years MusicWeb International has never operated a
PayWall. We can keep it free if you can be persuaded to make a donation.
Click the Donate button top right for more details.
Monday: Other reviews (nostalgia, books, jazz, other music); Friday: Articles.
Live performance reviews posted daily at
Seen and Heard
Shopping on-line? Help us by doing it through the
MusicWeb sales page..
Monday September 24th
Johannes BRAHMS (1833-1897)
Violin Sonatas, Rhapsodies, Intermezzi, Ballades - Egon Petri (piano), Joseph Szigeti (violin),
Samuel Lifschey (viola) rec. 1937/41
PRISTINE AUDIO PAKM076
All attest to Petri’s continuing significance as a Brahms exponent.
Luca MARENZIO (1553/4-1599)
Il Pastor Fido -
La Pedrina/Francesco Saverio Pedrini
rec. 2017/18 CLAVES CD50-1814 [52.30] [GH] The concept and the whole project is commendable.
Wolfgang Amadeus MOZART (1756-1791) Grabmusik, Bastien und Bastienne
Anna Maria Richter (soprano) Alessandro Fisher (tenor) Jacques Imbrailo
(baritone) Darren Jeffrey (bass) Classical Opera/Ian Page
rec. 2018 SIGNUM CLASSCS SIGCD547 [66:24] [CC]
The music is simply beautiful, and performed at the highest level.
Sergey RACHMANINOV (1873-1943)
Concerto No. 3, Variations on a Theme of Corelli - Boris Giltburg (piano),
Royal Scottish Ntl O/Carlos Miguel Prieto rec. 2016
Splendid performances in demonstration sound - if the coupling appeals, don’t hesitate.
Igor STRAVINSKY (1882-1971)
& Claude ARRIEU (1903-1990)
Violin Concertos - Jeanne Gautier (violin),
O Ntl de la Radiodiffusion-Télévision Française/Jacques Pernoo, Eugène Bigot
FORGOTTEN RECORDS FR981
A worthy effort to raise the profile of a sadly neglected violinist.
Joaquin TURINA (1882-1949)
Complete Music for Violin and Piano - Macarena Martínez (violin),
Juan Escalera (piano) rec. 2016/17
BRILLIANT CLASSICS 95626
There is much to enjoy in this undemanding music, especially with playing that is so committed and musically satisfying.
Ray Chen (violin) The Golden Age - London PO/Robert Trevino, Made in Berlin Qt rec. 2017 DECCA 4833852
[BW] Heart and soul Bruch and very enjoyable Heifetz and Kreisler
arrangements, but do the two halves hang together?
Dame Sarah Connolly (mezzo) Come to Me in My Dreams
- Joseph Middleton (piano) rec. 2017/18 CHANDOS CHAN10944 [77:18] [JQ]
Lovers of English song should hasten to hear this fine recital.
The Art of Brass
Cory Band/Philip Harper
DOYEN RECORDINGS DOYCD382 [77:31] [JWh]
A perfect CD to play to people who are a bit “sniffy” about brass bands.
Friday September 21st
Carl CZERNY (1791-1857)
Piano Trios -
Sun-Young Shin (violin) Benjamin Hayek (cello) Samuel Gingher (piano) rec.
2016/17 NAXOS 8.573848 [70:12] [PRB] Entertainingly undemanding to listen to, while offering some further insight into the development of the piano trio itself.
Gara GARAYEV (1918-1982)
Sonata, Preludes -
Vadim Repin (violin)
Murad Huseynov (piano) rec. 2014 TOCCATA CLASSICS TOCC0255 [61:14]
[SA] Both musicians are powerful advocates for these enthralling works.
OF THE MONTH Joseph
HAYDN (1732-1809) Piano
Sonatas Vol. 7 - Jean-Efflam
Bavouzet (piano) rec. 2017 CHANDOS CHAN10998
[72:42] [MG] There’s no better interpreter
of Haydn today than Bavouzet: he has the secret
of unlocking both his individuality and sheer
- Józef Elsner Opole PSO/Przemysław
Neumann rec. 2017 DUX 1425
[77.51] [MW] A superb introduction to a
significant but neglected composer in an exciting
Franz SCHUBERT (1797-1828)
Symphony No. 5 Johannes BRAHMS (1833-1897) Serenade No.
O Révolutionnaire et Romantique/Sir John Eliot Gardiner
rec. 2016 SOLI DEO GLORIA SDG729 [59:45]
[JQ] A most enjoyable pairing.
SIBELIUS (1865-1957) Orchestral works -
BBC Ntl O Wales/Thomas Søndergård rec. 2017/18 LINN RECORDS
CKD566 [75:06] [JWh] Some minor reservations but The Oceanides is a highlight.
WILLIAMS (1872-1958) - Symphony
No. 6, Dona nobis pacem -Blanche Christiansen
(soprano) William Metcalf (baritone) University
Utah Civic Chorale, Utah SO/Maurice Abravanel
rec. 1966 VANGUARD CLASSICS SVC7
[72.30] [RB] An astonishingly good bargain
coupling which still sounds good despite the
depredations of time.
des Orients Works by Ullmann,
Einem, Haas, Wellesz, Strauss & Gál - Simon
Wallfisch (baritone) Edward Rushton (piano)
rec. 2017 NIMBUS NI5971 [67:19]
[JW] Wallfisch brings plenty of character
and colour to these works, but the production
values leave something to be desired.
Thursday September 20th
Sergio ASSAD (b. 1952)
Concerto Fantasia, Five World Dances - Thanos Mitsalas (guitar),
Simos Papanas and David Bogorad (violins), Hara Seira (viola), Angelos Liakakis (cello), Yiannis Hatzis (double bass)
CLEAR NOTE 74651
A very satisfying disc.
RECORDING OF THE MONTH Alexander KASTALSKY (1856-1926)
Memory Eternal to the Fallen Heroes - Clarion Ch/Steven Fox rec. 2018
I shall have no hesitation in nominating this stunning recording as one of my choices of the year.
James MACMILLAN (b. 1959)
String Quartets - Royal String Qt rec. 2017
Powerful, intense and no-holds-barred performances, which suits this often highly charged music.
(1874-1935) Asrael Iša KREJČI (1904-1968)
Serenata - Südwestfunk O Baden-Baden/Karel Ančerl rec. 1967 SWR
CLASSIC SWR19055CD [74:54] [JWh] A very welcome addition to the Ančerl catalogue.
Alexandre TANSMAN (1897-1986) Symphonies
Vol. 1 - Melbourne Chorale,
Melbourne SO/Oleg Caetani rec. 2005 CHANDOS CHSA5041 SACD [64:37]
[RB] Rich in rising emotional sap.
Sir Donald TOVEY (1875–1940) Chamber Music Vol. 2
- Ormesby Ens rec. 2015 TOCCATA CLASSICS TOCC0226 [69:48]
[JWe] A lovely clear recording and fine work by the Ormesby Ensemble make a strong case for Tovey’s chamber music.
Ralph VAUGHAN WILLIAMS (1872-1958)
Mass, Te Deum - Joseph Wicks (organ),
David Blackadder (trumpet),
Ch St John’s College Cambridge/Andrew Nethsingha rec. 2017
SIGNUM CLASSICS SIGCD541
Another golden string to St John’s’ bow.
Luther - The noble art of music Utopia
rec. 2017 ET'CETERA KTC1577 [57:23]
[JV] A substantial contribution to the commemoration of the Reformation.
Wednesday September 19th
ARNELL (1917-2009) & Stanley
BATE (1911-1959) Violin Sonatas - Patrick
Wastnage (violin) Elizabeth Dunn (piano) rec.
2017 TOCCATA TOCC0492
[64:57] [JW] These are all premiere commercial
recordings and as such are warmly welcomed.
OF THE MONTH Mason
BATES (b. 1977) The (R)evolution
of Steve Jobs - Kelly Markgraf, Edward
Parks (baritone) Sasha Cooke (mezzo) The Santa
Fe Opera O/Michael Christie rec. 2017 PENTATONE
SACD PTC5186690 [47:34 + 46:41] [RHa]
Thrillingly recorded, Mason Bates’s
and Mark Campbell’s imaginative and coherent
opera is a must-hear.
BERSA (1873-1934) Complete
Piano Music Vol. 1 - Goran Filipec
(piano) rec. 2016 GRAND PIANO GP767
[56:12] [RB] Stormy headlong romanticism
and pensively cooling fragility.
BRUCKNER (1824-1896) Symphony
No. 8 - Royal Danish O/Hartmut Haenchen
rec. 2017 GENUIN GEN18622 [69:20]
[RMo] I cannot get excited about a recording
which evinces so little cognisance of the mystery
and transcendence inherent in the music.
Enrique GRANADOS (1867-1916)
Goyescas, Ochos valses poéticos -
Xiayin Wang (piano), rec. 2017 CHANDOS CHAN10995 [70:00] [CSe]
Wang’s power and virtuosity conjure both the yearning of late-nineteenth-century Romanticism and the gorgeous colours, textures, scents and sentiments of Spain.
Wolfgang Amadeus MOZART (1956-1791) Piano Concerto No. 23; Symphonies Nos 35
& 41 ‘Jupiter’ -
Michal Roll (piano), London Mozart Players/Harry Blech, rec. 1973/74 HERITAGE HTGCD209 [75:39]
A very timely reminder of a truly committed conductor.
Sergei PROKOFIEV (1891-1953)
Romeo and Juliet -
Baltimore SO/Marin Alsop, rec. 2015 NAXOS 8.573534-35 [2 CDs: 144:14]
Alsop’s Romeo and Juliet ranks with the best.
Trains of Thought
Works by Cuong, Françaix, Poulenc, Rossini & Shostakovich -
Poulenc Trio, rec. 2016 DELOS DE3543 [58:31]
[MR] Immense musical fun from an ensemble who bring so much life that one’s only reaction is to want to hear more of it.
Tuesday September 18th
DVORAK (1841-1904) Symphony
No. 9 Franz SCHUBERT
(1797-1828) Symphony No.8 - Munich
PO/Sergiu Celibidache rec. 1985/88 MÜNCHNER
[74:08] [JWh] Some will find it controversial,
but I will stick my neck out and say
that this is one of the great recordings of
the ‘New World’.
The Red Poppy - St Petersburg State SO/André
Anichanov rec. 1994 NAXOS 8.553496-7
[50:21 + 57:50] [RB] Tawdry gaud and corn
among golden acres that offer much to enjoy.
Joseph HAYDN (1732-1809)
Cello Concertos Nos. 1 and 2 Arnold SCHOENBERG (1874-1951) Verklärte Nacht - Trondheim Soloists/Alisa Weilerstein (cello)
rec. 2018 PENTATONE PTC5186717
[73:00] [BW] Oddities of coupling apart, a very fine first recording for Alisa
Weilerstein for Pentatone with her Trondheim Soloists.
STRAVINSKY (1882-1971) The Soldier’s
Tale - Malcolm Sinclair (narrator) LSO Chamber
En/Roman Simovic (violin) rec. 2015 LSO
LIVE LSO5074 SACD
[55:36] [RWe] A superbly recorded and magnificently
Vivaldi x2 - La Serenissima/Adrian Chandler
(baroque violin) rec. 2018 AVIE AV2392
[75.32] [MC] A sure-fire winner.
Anna Fedorova (piano) Four Fantasies rec. 2018 CHANNEL CLASSICS CCS41318
[DM] Accomplished playing, undermined by expressive reticence; odd programme,
The English Flute Unheard James Dutton (flute) Oliver Davies (piano)
rec. 2017 MPR 101 [75:14] [JW]
A wisely selected programme, with stylistically
Lamond (piano) The Liszt recordings
& Electrola electrical recordings
rec. 1919-1941 APR 7310 [3
CDs: 238:12] [SG] A handsome 150th anniversary