One of the most grown-up review sites around

2019
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

TROUBADISC

Reger Violin Sonatas
Renate Eggebrecht violin

Brahms Symphony 3
Dvorak Symphony 8
Vivaldi
9 cello sonatas
Dussek
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

 

REVIEW Plain text for smartphones & printers

We are currently offering in excess of 51,000 reviews


Advertising on
Musicweb


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

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
Postmaster
Jonathan Woolf
MusicWeb Founder
   Len Mullenger

Support us financially by purchasing this from
 
Joachim BRÜGGE (b.1958)
Pieces for Strings (1987) [14:41]
Waltz for Strings (1998) [6:26]
B-A-C-H Variations (2012) [7:34]
Arrangements for Strings: Scarborough Fair (1986) [5:22]: (They Long To Be) Close To You [3:24]: Take Five [3:41]
Suite for Trio (2012) [12:38]
Prelude and Fugue about Brahms (1988 rev 1996) [4:25]
Salzburg Chamber Soloists/Lavard Skou-Larsen
rec. November 2013, Konzerhaus der Abtei Marienmünster
MUSIKPRODUKTION DABRINGHAUS UND GRIMM SACD 9241856-6 [58:15]

Joachim Brügge’s booklet biography is modest to the point of self-effacement - even his photograph takes up more space in the three-language documentation (English, German and French). Born in 1958, the German composer and musicologist studied in Lübeck and Göttingen and now works at the Mozarteum University in Salzburg. He seems to compose principally for chamber orchestral forces, of which this disc is an example.
 
There are six very brief movements in Pieces for Strings (1987), lissom, modal, amiable and fresh-faced examples with straightforward titles; ‘Like a Scherzo’ and ‘No Troubles in F’ have a certain down-to-earth, indeed disarming quality, rather like the music. Waltz for Strings (1998) is an easy listening experience though the three waltzes segue nicely into each other and don’t evoke or indeed invoke the Waltz King particularly.
 
Two of the pieces were composed very recently, in 2012. The B-A-C-H Variations is again stamped with no-nonsense titles much occupied by the concept of mood – Serious, Honest, Strange, Calm and Another Strange being the operative ones. No ‘Good’, oddly. I found the limited compass here somewhat devitalising and it’s hard to register much when the movements themselves are so short – mostly under 60 seconds. Invariably, perhaps, he ends the piece with a fugue.
 
The Suite for Trio is another piece from 2012 with its second movement a Bachian homage with Grieg smiling benignly in the central movement of five. A passage from the scherzo of Brahms’ Symphony No.3 emerges in the Prelude and Fugue about Brahms. Note the ‘about’; not ‘on’, though at only four minutes or so in length it doesn’t exactly hang about.
 
The three arrangements reveal another side of his compositional output. Scarborough Fair has a discursive introduction and some writing somewhat reminiscent of Copland, who also seems to haunt the Burt Bacharach/Hal David song Close To You which explores the higher and lower registers, epically of the fiddles and cellos. Take Five gets more of a smooth-over than a work-out in this arrangement and it sounds very decorous and airy.
 
The performances and recording are both sympathetic. Brügge’s music is likeable and, indeed, modest. I can’t imagine anyone, except the occasional Darmstadt refugee, actively disliking it.
 
Jonathan Woolf