One of the most grown-up review sites around

Search MusicWeb Here
Google seem to have closed down local search engines. You can use this FreeFind engine but it is not so comprehensive
You can go to Google itself and enter the search term followed by the search term.


International mailing

  Founder: Len Mullenger              Founding Editor: Rob Barnett              Contact Seen and Heard here  

Some items
to consider

Piano Concertos 1 and 2
Surprise Best Seller and we have not even reviewed it yet. Multiple copies sold.

La Mer Ticciati




simply marvellous

Outstanding music

Elite treatment

some joyous Gershwin

Bartok String Quartets
uniquely sensitive

Cantatas for Soprano


Reviews from the last 7 days
236 reviews completed so far this month.

Gerard Hoffnung CDs

Advertising on

Donate and get a free CD


New Releases

Naxos Classical

Nimbus Podcast

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


[New] Download News 2014/3 by Albert Lam & Brian Wilson

[New] A survey of some recently released recordings of Beethoven piano sonatas by Brian Reinhart

[New] National discography update: East-Central Europe & Balkan symphonies by Mike Herman

Collector's Edition: Piano 15 hours of great performances by legendary artists of the 20th century from Idéale Audience [LM]

MWI Recommends - Bach cello suites & Dvorak symphony 9.


A new book about Constant Lambert will shortly be published by Boydell & Brewer - see here for details

English Music Festival, May 23-26 - see here for details.

Ronald Corp's cantata, And all the trumpets sounded, available for performances - see here for details

Hoffnung postcards are back on sale

In order to persuade more of you to make a donation to MusicWeb International we are giving away CDs - click the Donate button top right for more details.

Publishing schedule
Monday: Other reviews (nostalgia, books, other music), Wednesday: MWI Recommends, Friday: Articles.
Live performance reviews posted daily at Seen and Heard
Jazz reviews posted weekly

Shopping on-line? Help us by doing it through the MusicWeb sales page.


Monday March 31st

Eyvind ALNÆS (1872-1932) Piano music - Erling R Eriksen (piano) rec. 2007/8 TOCCATA CLASSICS TOCC 0067 [75.27] [PCG] This music is rightly treasured in Norway and deserves wider circulation.

Johann Sebastian BACH (1685-1750) Brandenburg Concertos - Freiburger Barockorchester rec. 2013
HARMONIA MUNDI HMC902176-77 [44:43 + 45:26] [BW] Fairly recently there have been five very fine versions of the Brandenburgs: this now joins them.

Ludwig van BEETHOVEN (1770-1827) Symphonies 5 & 6 - Royal PO/Felix Weingartner rec. 1927 PRISTINE AUDIO PASC399 [60:52] [JS] Fascinating and convincing.

Johannes BRAHMS (1833-1897) Symphony 3 Claude DEBUSSY (1862-1918) La Mer Ernest CHAUSSON (1856-1899) Poème de l'amour et de la mer - Janet Baker (mezzo) London SO/Evgeny Svetlanov rec. 1975
ICA CLASSICS ICAC 5123 [72:41] [SG] Svetlanov excelling in non-Russian fare.

Melchior FRANCK (c.1579-1639) Choral Works - Manja Stephan (soprano) Gero Parmentier (lute) Norddeutscher Kammerchor/Maria Jürgensen rec. 2013 MUSIKPRODUKTION DABRINGHAUS UND GRIMM 9021829-6 SACD [68:37] [JV] These motets are nicely sung but the expressive aspects are not fully explored.

Michael KIMBER (b.1945) Music for Viola Vol. 2 - Marcin Murawski (viola) Concertino CO/Marek Siwka rec. 2013 ACTE PREALABLE AP0321 [59:46] [Byz] Communicating Kimber's infectious, stylish music to the world.

Krzysztof PENDERECKI (b. 1933) Symphony 7 - Iwona Hossa, Izabella Kłosińska (sopranos) Agnieszka Rehlis (alto) Rafał Bartmi’nski (tenor) Wojciech Gierlach (bass) Podlasie Opera Ch, Polish Sinfonia luventas Orchestra/Krzysztof Penderecki rec. 2012 DUX 0900 [63:06] [DC] Impressive, problematic, but also irresistible.

Sergei RACHMANINOV (1873-1943) Piano Concerto 3 Sergei PROKOFIEV (1891-1953) Piano Concerto 2 - Yuja Wang (piano) Simón Bolívar SO of Venezuela/Gustavo Dudamel rec. 2013 DEUTSCHE GRAMMOPHON 4791304 [71:41] [DM] Decent Rachmaninov, misjudged Prokofiev; raw accompaniment and recording.

Dmitri SHOSTAKOVICH (1906-1975) Suite on Verses by Michelangelo and other song cycles - Gerald Finley (bass-baritone) Helsinki PO/Thomas Sanderling rec. 2013 ONDINE ODE 1235-2 [62:00] Ildar Abdrazakov (bass) BBC Philharmonic/Gianandrea Noseda rec. 2005 CHANDOS CHAN10358 [72:49] Anatoli Kotscherga (bass) Cologne RSO/Michail Jurowski rec. 1994/96 BRILLIANT CLASSICS 94649 [58:08] [DM] Finley's DSCH debut is a winner; Abdrazakov isn’t far behind, with Kotscherga a distant third.

Mortale, che pensi? Reliquie di Roma, III - Atalante/Erin Headley rec. 2011 NIMBUS ALLIANCE NI 6266 [66:30] [JV] The performers' ability to communicate the emotional content of the music is this disc's main asset.

Other reviews

Early and Late Music from Denmark, Greenland and the Faroe Islands - Gáman (Bolette Roed (recorder, tin whistle) Rune Tonsgaard Sorensen (violin, piano, carving board) Andreas Borregaard (classical accordion, melodeon, carving board) Poul Bjerager Christiansen (violin) rec. 2012/13 DACAPO 6.220640 SACD [49.52] [GH] Everything is beautifully recorded and enthusiastically and brilliantly performed. 

Frank Sinatra - At His Peak Axel Stordahl and his Orchestra rec. 1944-47 SOUNDS OF YESTERYEAR DSOY 953 [TA] A generous collection.

Friday March 28th

Johann Sebastian BACH (1685-1750) Inventions; Sinfonias - Simone Dinnerstein (piano) rec. 2013 SONY CLASSICAL 88883 795972 [53:30] [DC] Very nice.

Howard BLAKE (b. 1938) The Barber of Neville - Wind concertos - Jaime Martin (flute) Andrew Marriner (clarinet) Gustavo Núñez (bassoon) ASMF/Sir Neville Marriner rec. 2012 PENTATONE CLASSICS PTC5186506 SACD [68:24] [JQ] A delight from start to finish.

Ernst BLOCH (1880-1959) Violin Sonata 2 Leoš JANÁCEK (1854-1928) Violin Sonata Dmitri SHOSTAKOVICH (1906-1975) Violin Sonata - Midori (violin) Ogur Aydin (piano) rec. ONYX 4084 [2012] [JW] These fine performances have been beautifully recorded.

Paul DUKAS (1865-1935) The Sorcerer’s Apprentice; Velléda; Polyeucte overture - Les Siècles/François-Xavier Roth rec. 2011/12 MUSICALES ACTES SUD ASM12 [55:54] [JW] Another excellently performed and recorded Roth-directed disc.

Edvard GRIEG (1843-1907) Landkjenning; Sigurd Jorsalfar; Olav Trygvason Edmund NEUPERT (1842-1888) Resignation Malmö SO/Malmö Opera Orchestra/Bjarte Engeset rec. 2009/12 NAXOS 8.573045 [64.19] [NB] A very fine disc indeed.

Felix MENDELSSOHN (1810-1849) Symphonies 4 & 5, The Hebrides overture - City of Birmingham SO/Edward Gardner rec. 2013 CHANDOS CHSA5132 SACD [66:04] [JF] The playing is enthusiastic and balances the intimacy and drama of much of this music.

RECORDING OF THE MONTH Wolfgang Amadeus MOZART (1756-1791) Piano Concerto 24 Ludwig Van BEETHOVEN (1770-1827) Piano Concerto 3 - Yevgeny Sudbin (piano) Minnesota O/Osmo Vänskä rec. 2011/12 BIS BIS-SACD-1978 [66:16] [SG] These are highly polished and well-rehearsed performances that set the bar high.

Modest MUSSORGSKY (1839-1881) Pictures from an Exhibition; Songs and Dances of Death; The Nursery - New Zealand SO/Peter Breiner rec. 2012 NAXOS NBD0036 BD-A [78:26] [BW] A powerful performance of a very effective arrangement in stunning BD-A sound.

Igor STRAVINSKY (1882-1971) Le Sacre du Printemps; Capriccio; Symphony of Psalms Michel Béroff (piano) The English Bach Festival Chorus; LSO/Leonard Bernstein rec. 1972 ICA CLASSICS ICAD5124 DVD [82:00] [JQ] A great exhibition of Bernstein at work.

Giaches de WERT (1535-1596) O mors, quam amara est - Motets, Book I - Collegium Musicum Amsterdam/Anthony Zielhorst rec. 2013 BRILLIANT CLASSICS 94684 [74:41] [JV] The singing is good but a smaller ensemble would have been preferable.

Thursday March 27th

Charles-Valentin ALKAN (1813-1888) Complete Recueils de Chants Vol. 2 - Stephanie McCallum (piano) rec. 2012 TOCCATA CLASSICS TOCC0158 [79:19] [JW] McCallum is fully inside the music and deserves plaudits for her acutely perceptive dedication to the Alkan cause.

Ludwig van BEETHOVEN (1770-1827) Piano Sonata 8 Fryderyk CHOPIN (1810-1849) Etudes, Scherzo No. 2 Claude DEBUSSY (1862-1918) Estampes - Katarzyna Pietroń (piano) rec. 2013 ACTE PREALABLE AP0328 [49:34] [Byz] The low sales that seem inevitable in the current climate are unlikely to dent Pietroń’s spirit; nor should they.

Benjamin BRITTEN (1913-1976) Cello Symphony, Cello Sonata - Zuill Bailey (cello) North Carolina Symphony/Grant Llewellyn; Natasha Paremski (piano) rec. 2013 TELARC TEL-34412-02 [56:10] [LW] Zuill Bailey’s Britten performances produce mixed results.

Antonín DVOŘÁK (1841-1904) Cello Concerto in B minor William WALTON (1902-1983) Cello Concerto - Gregor Piatigorsky (cello) Boston SO/Charles Munch rec. 1957/60 PRISTINE AUDIO PASC 398 [72:08] [JQ] Two famous Piatigorsky performances now heard to best advantage in these very good Pristine transfers.

Edvard GRIEG (1843-1907) Piano Works - Ivana Gavric (piano) rec. 2012 CHAMPS HILL RECORDS CHRCD067 [66:02] [BR] Dry sound only barely hampers this outstanding pianist.

Aram KHACHATURIAN (1903-1978) & Antonín DVOŘÁK (1841-1904) Violin Concertos - Thomas Magyar (violin) Vienna SO/Wilhelm Loibne, Rudolf Moralt rec. 1953/4 FORGOTTEN RECORDS FR827 [66:44] [JW] A pliant and introspective slant. Convincing playing, adequately accompanied, drably recorded.

Claudio MONTEVERDI (1567-1643) & Tarquinio MERULA (1594/5-1665) Madrigals of Love and Loss - James Gilchrist, Thomas Walker (tenors) Katherine Watson, Anna Dennis (sopranos) Arcangelo/Jonathan Cohen rec. 2013 HYPERION CDA68019 [70:01] [BW] An excellent introduction to the later books of madrigals.

Wolfgang Amadeus MOZART (1756-1791) Violin Concertos - Mirijam Contzen (violin) Bayerische Kammerphilharmonie/Reinhard Goebel rec. 2013 OEHMS CLASSICS OC 862 [55:36 + 67:51] [DC] A serious prospect and full of fresh discovery.

Sergei RACHMANINOV (1873-1943) All Night Vigil, O mother of God vigilantly praying - Lorna Perry (alto) Andrew Shepstone (tenor) Joyful Company of Singers/Peter Broadbent rec. 2013 NIMBUS ALLIANCE NI 6250 [57.21] This may prove to be an enjoyable new ‘take’ on the work [PCG] Much to commend this account of the All-Night Vigil but it’s not a first choice [JQ]

Albert ROUSSEL (1869-1937) Complete Piano Music Vol. 1 - Jean-Pierre Armengaud (piano) rec. 2012 NAXOS 8.573093 [64:14] [PRB] Highly-accomplished playing with an idiomatic sense of style.

Wednesday March 26th

Reinhold GLIERE (1875-1956) Symphony 3 Il’ya Muromets - Buffalo PO/JoAnn Falletta rec. 2013 NAXOS 8.573161 [71:40] [RMay] An excellent performance enhanced by its superb sound-picture and all that even without the attractive Naxos price.

Paul HINDEMITH (1895-1963) The Golden Hindemith - Henninge Landaas (viola) Vegard Landaas (saxophone) Rolf-Erik Nystrøm (saxophone) Elzbieta Nawrocka (piano) Bjørg Lewis (cello) rec. 2004-2007 LAWO CLASSICS LWC 1005 [55:25] [MC] Short playing time but a marvellous disc, impressively played and recorded. 

Leevi MADETOJA (1887-1947) Symphonies 1 & 3, Okon Fuoko Suite - Helsinki PO/John Storgårds rec. 2013 ONDINE ODE1211-2 [66:39] [DM] Fine performances of these two symphonies; Storgårds’ Okon Fuoko is no match for Sakari’s though.

RECORDING OF THE MONTH Franz SCHUBERT (1797-1828) Der Wanderer - Florian Boesch (baritone) Roger Vignoles (piano) rec. 2012 HYPERION CDA68010 [64:45] [RMo] All lovers of the Schubertian Lied will want to own this - indispensable.

Othmar SCHOECK (1886-1957) Notturno Franz SCHREKER (1878-1934) Der Wind - Stephan Genz (baritone) Leipzig Str Qt, Stefan Arzberger (violin) Matthias Moosdorf (cello) Marco Thomas (clarinet) Clemens Röger (horn) Olga Gollej (piano) rec. 2013 MUSIKPRODUKTION DABRINGHAUS UND GRIMM MDG 307 1815-2 [50:34] [NB] An enjoyable disc of very fine music in sensitive and subtle performances. 

Robert SCHUMANN (1813-1869) Scenes from Goethe’s Faust - Iwona Hossa (soprano ) Anna Lubanska (alto) Daniel Kirch (tenor) Jaakko Kortekangas (baritone) Andrew Gangestad (bass) Warsaw Boys’ Ch, Warsaw Philharmonic O & Ch/Antoni Wit rec. 2009 NAXOS NBD0015 BD-A [116.42] [PCG] The Britten recording brings the characters to life with a stunning immediacy which the performers in this Polish recording are unable to match.

Giuseppe VERDI (1813-1901) Ernani - Neil Schicoff (tenor) Michèle Crider (soprano) Carlos Álvarez (baritone) Roberto Scandiuzzi (bass) O & Ch der Wiener Staatsoper/Seiji Ozawa rec. 1998 ORFEO C861132I [79:16 + 43:09] [ST] Only for die-hard fans of the artists involved. 

The Britannic Organ Vol. 7: Welte’s Swiss Organists - Rare Historic Welte Rolls OEHMS CLASSICS OC 846 [73:11 + 76:30] [JW] Technically the organ sounds in excellent estate and the production values throughout this release are very high indeed.

The Merton Collection Merton College at 750 - Anne Steppler (organ) Ch of Merton College, Oxford/Peter Phillips and Benjamin Nicholas rec. 2013 DELPHIAN DCD34134 [74:04] [BW] Shares the desirability of the previous two Merton/Delphian productions.

RECORDING OF THE MONTH Road 66 American Piano Music - Shani Diluka (piano) rec. 2013 MIRARE MIR239 [69:55] [BR] A brilliantly crafted piano recital of American music is my first Recording of the Year contender.

Tuesday March 25th

Algernon ASHTON (1859-1937) Piano Music Vol. 1 - Daniel Grimwood (piano) rec. 2008 TOCCATA CLASSICS TOCC0063 [74:25] [JF] The playing of these technically challenging works is superb … freshness and vitality always to the fore.

Kurt ATTERBERG (1887-1974) Orchestral works Vols 1 & 2 - Gothenburg SO/Neeme Järvi rec. 2012/13 CHANDOS SACD CHSA5116 & CHSA5133 [70:14 & 61:12] [BR] This frustrating Atterberg series acts as a summary of Neeme Järvi’s entire career: adventurous but cold, lacking in empathy. 

Hans Werner HENZE (1926-2012) Symphonies 2 & 10 -Berlin RSO/Marek Janowski rec. 2012-2013 WERGO WER67252 [56:35] [MC] The cause of Henze and twentieth-century music in general couldn’t be better served than with this stunning Wergo release.

Julius ISSERLIS (1888-1968) Piano Music - Sam Haywood (piano) Steven Isserlis (cello) rec. 2013 HYPERION CDA68025 [62:27] [JW] Haywood plays this music with consummate sensitivity and has been well recorded.

Dmitri SHOSTAKOVICH (1906-1971) Song of the Forests, The sun shines over the motherland, Poems on Words of Revolutionary Poets - Vladimir Ivanovsky (tenor), Ivan Petrov (bass) Moscow PO/Alexander Yurlov, USSR SO/Konstantin Ivanov, Leningrad Radio & TV Ch/Grigori Sandler rec. 1961-1970 PRAGA SACD DSD350060 [79:00] [RB] A valuable and generously timed disc with ringingly authentic performances, still raw in their vehemence and zeal. 

Tracy SILVERMAN (b. 1960) Between the Kiss and the Chaos, Axis and Orbits - Tracy Silverman (electric violin) Calder Qt DELOS DE 3439 [57:20] [DC] Highly approachable and hugely enjoyable.

Ralph VAUGHAN WILLIAMS (1872-1958) On Wenlock Edge, Blake Songs Jonathan DOVE (b. 1959) The End Peter WARLOCK (1894-1930) The Curlew - Mark Padmore (tenor) Nicholas Daniel (oboe) Britten Sinf/Jacqueline Shave rec. 2012 HARMONIA MUNDI HMU807566 SACD [72:35] [ST] A very successful disc showcasing some very fine English song-cycles in first rate performances. 

Richard WAGNER (1813-1883) Overtures & opera excerpts Hans Werner HENZE (1926-2012) Fraternité - Jonas Kaufmann (tenor) Staatskapelle Dresden/Christian Thielemann rec. 2013 C MAJOR 714908 DVD [108:00] [ST] So all is good here, but I couldn’t help but wonder how wise it was to issue it as a DVD? 

Intermezzo Works by Dvorak, Sarasate, Massenet & others - Duo Intermezzo: Ralf Mathias Caspers (violin) Tamaki Takeda-Caspers (piano) rec. 2012 GENUIN GEN13544 [68:34] [JW] Let’s have more from this duo. 

A Tale of Two Cellos Julian Lloyd Webber & Jiaxin Lloyd Webber (cellos) John Lenehan (piano) Catrin Finch (harp) rec. 2013 NAXOS 8.573251 [62:43] [BW] Too much slow and heartfelt music here for my liking, but I expect it to sell well.


ArkivMusic has more than 10,000 titles in its ArkivCD reissue program. These are recordings that have previously been out of print or otherwise unavailable.