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Friday April 17th
141 reviews completed so far this month
Brian Couzens, Chandos founder
Died 17 April 2015, aged 82

Johann Sebastian BACH (1685-1750) The Art of Fugue - Angela Hewitt (piano) rec. 2013 HYPERION RECORDS [DC] BWV1080 has been reset – this is now your new default reference (piano).

Johannes BRAHMS (1833-1897) Serenades 1 & 2 - Gewandhaus O Leipzig/Riccardo Chailly rec. 2014 DECCA [SB] If you want the serenades in a fine modern recording Chailly’s new version is now the one to go for.

RECORDING OF THE MONTH René de CASTÉRA (1873-1955) Concert, Sicilienne, Piano Trio - Linda Hall (piano), Samuel Magill (cello), Lucian Rinando (flute), Dean LeBlanc (clarinet), Elmira Darvarova (violin) rec. 2011 AZUR CLASSICAL [DJB] Only rarely does one uncover a gem such as that which has been unearthed here.

Francois COUPERIN (1668-1733) Ordres 24-27 - Katherine Roberts Perl (harpsichord) rec. 2013 MUSIC & ARTS [JW] Captures the many moods and textures with stylish but unselfconscious intimacy. A success from beginning to end.

RECORDING OF THE MONTH James MACMILLAN (b. 1959) St Luke Passion - Netherlands Radio Ch & PO/Markus Stenz rec. 2014 CHALLENGE CLASSICS SACD [JQ] A superb first recording of an important, gripping score by James MacMillan: a ‘must’ for all his admirers.

Maurice RAVEL (1875-1937) Daphnis et Chloé, Pavane pour une Infante défunte - Netherlands Radio Ch, Rotterdam PO/Yannick Nézet-Séguin rec. 2012/14 BIS BIS-1850 SACD [63:27] Doesn’t quite displace Monteux, Munch or Dutoit but it comes closer than any other recording that I know [BW] Everything about this is great except the conducting, which is adequate [BR].

Camille SAINT-SAËNS (1835-1921) Danse macabre; Cyprès et Lauriers; Symphony 3 - Vincent Warnier (organ) Orchestre National de Lyon/Leonard Slatkin rec. 2013/2014 NAXOS [LW] Slatkin, the Lyon Orchestra, and organist Warnier excel in Saint-Saëns.

Comédie et Tragédie Vol. 1 Jean-Baptiste LULLY (1632-1687) Le Bourgeois gentilhomme suite Jean-Féry REBEL (1666-1747) Les Elémens Marin MARAIS (1656-1728) Alcyone suite - Tempesta di Mare/Gwyn Roberts, Richard Stone rec. 2014 CHANDOS [JV] Rather tame and bland, and not very theatrical.

I Musicisti dell' imperatore Works by Caldara, Piania, A Scarlatti & Vivaldi - Raffaella Milanesi (soprano) G.A.P. Ensemble rec. 2014 PAN CLASSICS [JV] In Milanesi's performances the dramatic and expressive qualities of these cantatas is perfectly conveyed.

Henryk Szeryng (violin) Concertos by Nardini, Schumann & Vieuxtemps - SWR SO Baden-Baden und Freiburg/Hans Rosbaud rec. 1955/57 HÄNSSLER CLASSIC [SG] This outstanding release should keep the memory of this great violinist before the listening public.

NEW & RECENT ARTICLES

[New] Download News 2015/4 by Brian Wilson & David Barker

National Discographies: Central European & Balkan Concertos S-Z by Mike Herman

A to Z of the Piano Trio Repertoire by David Barker: "B" Composers Part 2

Pianist Martin Jones in Conversation with Robert Beattie

MWI Recommends - Mozart piano concerto 23 & Johann Strauss II waltzes etc.

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