One of the most grown-up review sites around
One of the most grown-up review sites around

Search MusicWeb Here


International mailing

Up to 40% off

  Founder: Len Mullenger

Some items
to consider

in the first division

extraordinary by any standards

An excellent disc

a new benchmark

summation of a lifetime’s experience.

Piano Concertos 1 and 2
Surprise Best Seller and now

A Garland for John McCabe


DIETHELM Symphonies

The best Rite of Spring in Years

BACH Magnificat

Brian Symphs 8, 21, 26

Just enjoy it!

La Mer Ticciati







Plain text for smartphones
and printers

Advertising on

Donate and keep us afloat


New Releases

Naxos Classical

Nimbus Podcast

Obtain 10% discount

Special offer 50% off

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
Senior Editor
John Quinn
Seen & Heard
Editor Emeritus
   Bill Kenny
Editor in Chief
MusicWeb Webmaster
   David Barker
MusicWeb Founder
   Len Mullenger



CD & Download: Pristine Classical

Pyotr Ilyich TCHAIKOVSKY (1840-1893)
Symphony No.5 in E minor, Op.64 (1888) [41:45]
Isaac ALBÉNIZ (1860-1909)
Iberia (1906-08) orch. Enrique Fernández Arbós [26:13]
Manuel de FALLA (1876-1946)
La Vida Breve: Interlude and Dance (1913) [6:42]
Minneapolis Symphony Orchestra/Antal Doráti
rec. April 1952 (Tchaikovsky) and April 1957 (Albéniz and de Falla)

Experience Classicsonline

Antal Doráti’s Minneapolis recordings were notable for their vitality, grandeur and technical excellence. The three under review demonstrate the point triumphantly, even when they may seem stylistically somewhat at odds with the music.
The main event is Tchaikovsky’s Fifth Symphony which was recorded over three days in April 1952 for Mercury. Doráti takes a decisive series of tempo decisions pretty much throughout, and this is a fleet and tensile reading. Pristine’s XR work on this mono recording has given depth to the sound spectrum, and the ambient stereo brings the advantage of warmth. I’ve not had the opportunity to listen to the original LP, so can’t comment on the nature of the work in any useful detail, but can say that it sounds attractive. I do wonder, however, to what extent the brass and, say, the lower string pizzicati have been boosted. Those whose experience of the symphony ranges in its earlier recordings from Alexander Kitschin, Rodzinski, Stokowski, Mengelberg, Koussevitzky, Lambert, Stock and Beecham may find Doráti unyielding and over-metrical but I happen to find him driving and exciting and cumulatively powerful.

He also recorded Enrique Fernández Arbós’s orchestration of Albéniz’s Iberia a few years later, this time in stereo. Fortunately there’s a benchmark, which is the orchestrator himself in his 1928 recording of El corpus en Sevilla, Triana and El Puerto, made with the Madrid Symphony Orchestra [Dutton CDBP 9782]. The grandiose, magnificently ebullient and assertive Minneapolis performances of the complete set only very seldom sounds remotely Spanish. In fact for some of the time it cleaves close to Tchaikovsky - more like a ballet waltz in Evocación, and in its grandiloquence and bravura sounding strangely like a symphonic finale in El Corpus en Sevilla. When Doráti slows down he can make his points well, but he hustles Triana too much. As an example of orchestral panache and discipline, as well as rhythmic tenacity, this can’t be faulted. As an example of fidelity to idiom, it leaves a great deal to be desired. The Interlude and Dance from Falla’s La Vida Breve was made at the same time and makes for a pleasing envoi.
If the reckoning here is the Tchaikovsky, and it’s likely to be, then this vital and energising account makes a most exciting impact.
Jonathan Woolf  

Masterwork Index: Tchaikovsky 5







































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

Pat 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.