Search MusicWeb Here


selling Internationaly

aSymphonies 1 and 5 £9.00 post free

See also Symphonies 2 and 3

Vision of Judgement £9 post free

Newest Releases


Symphonies 1,2,4 £11.75 post free

  Founder: Len Mullenger
Editor-in-Chief: Rob Barnett

Some items
to consider

 

  • Menuhin lost tapes
  • Overtures SACD
  • Krommer Flute Quartets
  • Schubert Piano Trios 2CD
  • Menuhin lost tapes


Let me tell you


David Pia


Beethoven Rattle


Highly Impressive


Matthews Shostakovich
Sheer delight!


To live with


outstanding retrospective


A superb celebration


flair, insight, controversy


outstanding singing

 


Sheer bliss


best thing I’ve heard this year

this really exciting release

 

REVIEW
Plain text for smartphones & printers


Gerard Hoffnung CDs

Advertising on
Musicweb



Donate and get a free CD

New Releases

Naxos Classical

Musicweb sells the following labels
Acte Préalable
Altus
Arcodiva
Atoll
CDAccord
Cameo Classics
Hallé
Hortus
Lyrita
Nimbus
Prima voce
Red Priest
Redcliffe
Retrospective
Saydisc
Sheva
Toccata Classics
Wyastone


Follow us on Twitter

Subscribe to our free weekly review listing
sample

Sample: See what you will get

Editorial Board
MusicWeb International
Editor in Chief
   
Rob Barnett
Seen & Heard
Editor Emeritus
   Bill Kenny
Editor in Chief
   Stan Metzger
MusicWeb Webmaster
   David Barker
MusicWeb Founder
   Len Mullenger


Support us financially by purchasing
this disc through MusicWeb
for £10.50 postage paid world-wide.

Franz LISZT (1811-1886) transcr. August STRADAL (1860-1930)
Complete Symphonic Poems - Volume Two
Orpheus: Symphonic Poem No. 4 (1853–54) (first recording) [12:36]
Tasso, Lamento e Trionfo: Symphonic Poem No. 2 (1854) (first recording) [21:00]
Hungaria: Symphonic Poem No. 9 (1854) (first recording) [21:18]
Hamlet: Symphonic Poem No. 10 (1858) [16:56]
Risto-Matti Marin (piano)
rec. Kuusaa Hall, Kuusankoski, 30 Nov 2007, 6-7 Aug 2012.
TOCCATA CLASSICS TOCC0092 [71:50]


 
In the 1970s LP cycles of Liszt’s transcriptions of Beethoven symphonies exercised some fascination. Those first forays by Cyprien Katsaris have been emulated by a fair few pianists since then.
 
August Stradal, whose life overlapped with that of the composer by some 26 years, has done a similar service for Liszt in making thoroughly grown-up versions of Liszt’s thirteen tone poems. Stradal was not the first – Malcolm Macdonald in his extended liner essay mentions that Carl Tausig prepared solo versions of eleven of the twelve works but some of these have been lost and what survives lacks the worked-through finesse and burly grandeur of Stradal’s efforts. Liszt made his own two piano version of these works but Stradal’s inspired efforts open the door to a much wider constituency. It is interesting to note that the orchestral versions themselves were prepared by Joachim Raff from Liszt’s piano manuscripts.
 
If you have already been drawn to Risto’s earlier Toccata volume then you will have acquired this one long before this review appears. Others dipping their toes into the cycle cannot fail to come away from the experience impressed.
 
The diminutive Orpheus drips self-absorbed romance and ominous atmosphere. Much of this mood-concentrated music exercises a sort of hypnosis on the listener – try the sustained slow-swirling introduction to Tasso. Hamlet establishes a similar spell. It has plenty of gloomy clouds but also grumbles, cascades and raves with Mephisto fury. In these aspects it is redolent of Malediction and Totentanz. Contrast the poetry with the Francesca da Rimini-style storms that follow. Risto is not short on panache as we can hear in the often resplendent final pages of these works. Hungaria follows Tasso. Alongside its struttingly rustic chivalry even the bombast works well. The shrill bagpipe whistle at the end of the poem comes off far more splendidly than it has any right to do from a ‘mere’ piano.
 
I am not at all sure that these solo versions do not work better as pieces of music than the orchestral editions which in Haitink’s (Philips) hands often had my attention drifting. Masur (EMI) was better as was Solti (Decca) but even they struggled.
 
Roll on Risto’s cycle of the Stradal Bruckner symphony arrangements. Stradal’s version of Bruckner 8 played by Risto is something I would very much like to hear. I can live in hope.
 
Meantime keep scanning the skies for vol. 3 of this eminent Liszt entry.
 

Rob Barnett