One of the most grown-up review sites around

51,000 reviews
and more.. and still writing ...

Search MusicWeb Here



International mailing

  Founder: Len Mullenger             Editor in Chief: John Quinn               Contact Seen and Heard here  

Some items
to consider


Reger Violin Sonatas
Renate Eggebrecht violin

Brahms Symphony 3
Dvorak Symphony 8
9 cello sonatas
Piano Music

Clara Schumann
piano concerto

Asmik Grigorian

Breathtaking Performance
controversial staging
Review Westbrook
Review Hedley
Every lover of Salome should see this recording
Mullenger interpretation

Vraiment magnifique!

Quite splendid

Winning performances

Mahler Symphony 8
a magnificent disc

a huge talent

A wonderful disc

Weinberg Symphonies 2 & 21
A handsome tribute!

Roth’s finest Mahler yet

Mahler 9 Blomstedt
Distinguished performance


Plain text for smartphones & printers

We are currently offering in excess of 51,000 reviews

Advertising on

Donate and keep us afloat


New Releases

Naxos Classical

Nimbus Podcast

Obtain 10% discount

Special offer 50% off
15CDs £83 incl. postage

Musicweb sells the following labels

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

Support us financially by purchasing this disc from
Gottlieb MUFFAT (1690-1770)
Parthie in D minor, MC B.2 [14:36]
Componimenti Musicali no.7 MC A.19 [9:53]
Parthie Parisien in A minor, MC B.19 [20:16]
Componimenti Musicali no.1 (Parthie in C) MC A.13 [20:20]
Naoko Akutagawa (harpsichord)
rec. Schüttbau, Rügheim, Germany, 13-15 March 2012. DDD
NAXOS 8.572610 [65:05]

Gottlieb Muffat was the youngest son of the more celebrated Georg (1653-1704), and spent most of his long life employed by the imperial court of Vienna. Though perhaps not quite the genius his father was, the opening few seconds of Japanese harpsichordist Naoko Akutagawa's recital are all that is required to establish that Muffat junior was still a composer of some originality. These four works, an ear-catching conspectus of his extant corpus, are packed with enough keyboard hex and heterogeneity to leave the listener hoping more lost manuscripts may yet turn up. The dark-edged drama of the Parthie Parisien is especially arresting - that Handel cribbed a number of Muffat's ideas is no surprise. Nevertheless, he was no outright trailblazer, and his harmonically bold, sumptuously ornamented music belongs firmly under the banner of high Baroque - Haydn's Vienna was a parallel one.
The most impressive competition for this Naxos release is a recording of all seven Componimenti Musicali by Mitzi Meyerson on Glossa in 2009 (GCD 921804). That clearly has the edge when it comes to completion, but as a double-disc at more than twice the price of a Naxos single, exists in a different price orbit. There are also older recordings of five or six of the suites by Joseph Payne on Centaur (CRC 2502) and Borbala Dobozy on Hungaroton (HCD 31309-10).
This is Naoko Akutagawa's fifth disc for Naxos, the latest in a cosmopolitan series of complete or selected harpsichord works by Frenchman Gaspard Le Roux (8.557884), German Johann Graupner (8.570459) and Italian Bernardo Storace (8.572209), with a more recent complement of violin sonatas by Franz Benda, accompanying Hans-Joachim Berg (8.572307). Critical assessment of her playing has always been positive, and rightly so: here too she is reassuringly confident and expressive, as well as galvanically virtuosic.
Sound quality is very good too. The period reproduction harpsichord has a quiet mechanism and an earthy masculine tone which, in Akutagawa's poetic hands, even seems amenable to a range of dynamic shadings. Alison Dunlop's interesting booklet notes go into some detail regarding the travels of Muffat manuscripts and the concomitant travails of Muffat musicologists.
Collected reviews and contact at