Aureole etc.




Nimbus on-line




If it’s the Czech works you’re after, do not hesitate

  Founder: Len Mullenger
Classical Editor: Rob Barnett


Some items
to consider

 


Enjoy the Gothenburg Symphony Orchestra wherever you are. App available for iOS and Android


Tudor 7188


Vaughan Williams Symphony 3 etc.


Lyrita New Recording


Lyrita Premiere Recordings

Lyrita 4CDs £16 incl.postage

Lyrita 4CDs £16 incl.postage


Decca Phase 4 - 40CDs


Judith Bailey, George Lloyd


BAX Orchestral pieces


CASKEN Violin Concerto

Schumann Symphonies Rattle


Complete Brahms
Bargain price

 

 

 

 

REVIEW



Gerard Hoffnung CDs

Advertising on
Musicweb


Donate and get a free CD

New Releases

Naxos Classical

Hyperion

Musicweb sells the following labels
Acte Préalable
Alto
Arcodiva
Atoll
CDAccord
Cameo Classics
Centaur
Hallé
Hortus
Lyrita
Nimbus
Northern Flowers
Redcliffe
Sheva
Talent
Toccata Classics


Follow us on Twitter

Subscribe to our free weekly review listing
sample
 


Buy through MusicWeb
for £12.50 postage paid World-wide.

Musicweb Purchase button

 

John PITTS (b. 1976)
Changes for 20 nifty fingers [3:04]
Toccata - Blue Frenzy [9:41]
Air 1 - Gentle Interweaving [3:34]
Fantasia 1 - Clockwork 5/4 [3:23]
Air 2 - After Satie [3:06]
Fantasia 2 - On the Westminster Chimes (for prepared piano) [4:11]
Air 3 - On an anagram [4:17]
Fantasia 3 - Parallel Octaves [5:18]
Air 4 - Sarabande [3:49]
Fantasia 4 - Wind Chimes [8:18]
Air 5 - Calmly Contented [3:57]
Fantasia 5 - Bells in 9/8 [3:38]
Air 6 - Modal Twist [4:11]
Fantasia 6 - Half-Second-Hand [5:33]
Air 7 - Cantabile Mist [5:56]
Fantasia 7 - All in a chord [5:54]
Steven Kings (piano); John Pitts (piano: Changes)
rec. Aug. 2008, Auditorium, Victoria Rooms, Bristol
CD.TP IPM08 [77:49]

Experience Classicsonline


I was a little nervous about the words "intensely pleasant music" which were repeated several times over the disc case and the booklet. It smelled of Richard Clayderman. However, don't worry: it is not intensely pleasant music, it is just good. What a relief.
 
The opening piece must be a counting nightmare for the two pianists: they are supposed to play overlapping bars of 14 vs. 15 quavers. But what a splendid result! It's as if Prokofiev's Toccata was rewritten by Steve Reich: rolling at you like a rollercoaster. Probably, this rolling effect is created by the unequal bar partitions - a perpetuum instabile, like Brahms' 2-to-3. It was hard to stop listening to it in "Repeat" mode and move on to the second piece.
 
Blue Frenzy is another toccata. This time it's not just a one-trick thing like the first one, but a multifaceted construction. The composer expertly works with motivic cells. Ten minutes pass as one: episodes are well measured, with times to ride and times to rest. Relentless ever-changing rhythm and jazzy harmonies propel the music forward.
 
Finally, there is the set of seven pairs of Airs & Fantasias. Brahms would probably call them Intermezzos and Capriccios, although in character they are closer to Debussy's Préludes (or, as is the case with Air 3, to Chopin's). As the insert notes put it, "The airs are essentially melody-dominated, and the fantasias are pieces in free form with a minimalistic use of repeated and rotating patterns". The Fantasias often explore the clock-bell-chime soundworld (just look at their titles), but this is well separated by more "horizontal" Airs. There are many pleasant discoveries - melodic, rhythmic, sonic - but almost no standard or predictable moves or clichés - at least, for me. The listener doesn't have to work hard to get into the music: a kind of minimalistic "submerge and relax" attitude will definitely do the trick. This is a colorful and interesting set by a talented composer. And if harmony is your thing, you'll find much to admire here.
 
The playing of Steven Kings is technically and emotionally perfect. It is dry enough to convey the youthful, fresh character of the music, yet not too dry, and so the music preserves all the lyricism and the crispiness. One minor thing, though: some moments seemed over-pedalled. The recording, mastered by Jonathan Scott, is very spacious. No: it's four-dimensional. You can almost see the notes materializing in the air. All in all, this is a rewarding disc. Well... intensely pleasant. But in a good sense!
 
Oleg Ledeniov

see also review by John France 
and Jonathan Woolf

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 


EXPLORE MUSICWEB INTERNATIONAL

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

 

Discographies
   Composer
      Composer surveys
   National
      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

Interviews
With Composers, Conductors, Singers, Instumentalists and others
Includes those on the Seen and Heard site

Nostalgia

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

Comment
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

Announcements

 

Community
Bulletin Board

Give your opinions or seek answers

Reviewers
Pat and present

Helpers invited!

Resources
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
Publishers
Other links
Newsgroups
Web News sites etc

PotPourri
A pot-pourri of articles

MW Listening Room
MW Office

Advice to Windows Vista users  
Questionnaire    
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
Dictionary
Magazines
Newsfeed  
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.