MusicWeb International One of the most grown-up review sites around 2024
60,000 reviews
... and still writing ...

Search MusicWeb Here Acte Prealable Polish CDs

Presto Music CD retailer
Founder: Len Mullenger                                    Editor in Chief:John Quinn             

Some items
to consider

new MWI
Current reviews

old MWI
pre-2023 reviews

paid for

Acte Prealable Polish recordings

Forgotten Recordings
Forgotten Recordings
All Forgotten Records Reviews

Troubadisc Weinberg- TROCD01450

All Troubadisc reviews

FOGHORN Classics

Brahms String Quartets

All Foghorn Reviews

All HDTT reviews

Songs to Harp from
the Old and New World

all Nimbus reviews

all tudor reviews

Follow us on Twitter

Editorial Board
MusicWeb International
Founding Editor
Rob Barnett
Editor in Chief
John Quinn
Contributing Editor
Ralph Moore
   David Barker
Jonathan Woolf
MusicWeb Founder
   Len Mullenger


Advertising on

Donate and keep us afloat


New Releases

Naxos Classical
All Naxos reviews

Chandos recordings
All Chandos reviews

Hyperion recordings
All Hyperion reviews

Foghorn recordings
All Foghorn reviews

Troubadisc recordings
All Troubadisc reviews

all Bridge reviews

all cpo reviews

Divine Art recordings
Click to see New Releases
Get 10% off using code musicweb10
All Divine Art reviews

All Eloquence reviews

Lyrita recordings
All Lyrita Reviews


Wyastone New Releases
Obtain 10% discount

Subscribe to our free weekly review listing



Sound Samples & Downloads

Wolfgang Amadeus MOZART (1756-1791)
Piano Sonata in F major, K.533/494 (1786/88) [25:45]
Ludwig van BEETHOVEN (1770-1827)
Piano Sonata No.17 in D minor, Op.31/2 “Tempest” (1801/02) [27:56]
Piano Sonata No.31 in A flat major, Op.110 (1821) [22:25]
Jill Crossland (piano)
rec. March 2003, Old Granary Studio, Norfolk
previously Calico Classics CCCR101

Experience Classicsonline

This recital grew on me. In the beginning I was turned off by some unusually slow tempi and the close sound of the piano, which really growls in the lower register. But the more I listen, the more I like these interpretations. I still think that some places are too heavy but I do like Crossland’s sincere lyrical approach, and would definitely love to hear this program from her in the concert hall.
The opening movement of the Mozart rolls and bubbles. The sound is grand, and you’ll feel that the music was not written for the instrument it is played on. Still, the playing is expressive; the left hand is well marked and has weight. Crossland finds more drama here than you’ll hear in some lighter interpretations. She also takes the second movement slower than the prescribed Andante - more like an Adagietto. The pianist demonstrates good Mozartean clarity: the performance is canorous, transparent and beautiful. The light clouds come and pass, and soft radiance remains. The ornamentation is delicate. In the Rondo finale, the childish innocence of the refrain is set off by the lyrical emotion of the inner episodes. Crossland’s tempo is flexible, and she quickens or slows it to emphasize and accentuate. I know that some of you prefer a strict beat in your Mozart, so be warned.
The Tempest is one of Beethoven’s most spectacular creations. Crossland manages to find something new about the piece. First and foremost, it seems that she has decided to ignore completely the “Tempest” association; it is indeed posthumous and unreliable. Her first movement is slow and viscous; it feels like trying to run through waist-deep water. I waited in vain for the customary lightning bolts, and at times wanted to shout “Please, please, roll, go for it!” On the other hand, it’s hard to resist this masterful suspense and the feeling of a great pregnant power, like a tightly coiled spiral. The Adagio is static, but with a sense of purpose. Its development is enthralling, though at times the steps are too heavy. The finale is also slower than usual, which gives it quite a different character. It is now a light, melancholic waltz, feminine and inspired, with occasional outbursts of thunder; a strange feeling. The music is more tender and serene than usual, it feels almost like Brahms. After a few listenings I came under the spell and, though I don’t think this reflects the composer’s intentions, I admit that this is a beautiful interpretation. All details are very clear, and there is a “butterfly” feeling of soaring on the wind.
After such tenderness in the finale of the Tempest, I expected Crossland to excel in the Elysian heights of Op.110. Indeed, the first movement is very good, with expressive accents and sensitive rubato. Alas, the lower region of the piano growls away. This spoils the picture and does not let the two hands blend well. It is like eating steak with whipped cream! I am pretty sure this is the fault of the instrument and the recording choices. The bold and bright Scherzo is cheerfully grotesque. Crossland’s performance has more hues than the usual monochrome range, and her careful presentation brings out many details. The spiritual heart of this work lies in its last movement, a strange union of a lugubrious Adagio and a passionately hopeful Fugue, which ends in a glory of bell-ringing. Crossland gives a compelling reading. Her Arioso really sings, and the Fugue is powerful yet humane. In the second instance of the Arioso, the bass is heavy again. This lends the music a different character, throwing a bridge to the Tempest with its subterraneous thunder; at the same time compromising its surreal glow. The ecstatic ending has excellent drive. The entire complex structure is very cohesive.
On the whole, this is a consistent and well thought-out recital. The order of the works is well planned, leading us from the youthful clarity of Mozart, through the turbulent passions of the Tempest, to the resignation and redemption of Op.110. On the other hand, the sound and some interpretive decisions made me frown rather too often. These interpretations represent an interesting view but are not definitive. Some of Crossland’s decisions are questionable but shouldn’t all good, searching interpretations be open to question? In art, there is no single golden truth, a single way of “doing it right”, and that’s the beauty of it. 

Oleg Ledeniov  





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

Past 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.