NEW & RECENT ARTICLES
Thoughts: 5. The smaller orchestral works by Christopher Howell
[New] Piano Trio Discography & Review Index:
gioconda - a survey by Ralph Moore
Robert Pascall - an obituary by
Parry's Due: An approach to his music
by Michael Trott
In Search of Sibelius Six
by Christopher Howell
Listening Studio Report -
July 2018 by John Quinn
Second Thoughts and Short Reviews:
Summer 2018 Pt 1 by Brian Wilson and Dan Morgan
Classical Music on
Stamps This week: Opera & operetta from Austria
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Friday August 17th
Rodney BENNETT (1936-2012) Orchestral
Works Vol. 2 - BBC Scottish SO/John Wilson
rec. 2017 CHANDOS CHSA5212 SACD
[69.25] The Glory and the Dream
- Royal Birmingham Conservatoire Chamber Ch/Paul
Spicer, Nicholas Morris (organ) rec. 2017 SOMM
CÉLESTE SOMMCD0184 [62.43] [MC] Bennett’s
music is well served by both these new releases.
Luigi DALLAPICCOLA (1904-1975)
Il Prigioniero -
Graz Opera Ch & PO/Dirk Kaftan
rec. 2017 OEHMS CLASSICS OC970 [47:31] [SB]
A good new version of Dallapiccola’s breakthrough work, but not the best there is.
Frideric HANDEL (1685-1751)
Acis and Galatea - Dame Joan Sutherland
(soprano) Sir Peter Pears (tenor) St Anthony
Singers, Philomusica London/Sir Adrian Boult
rec. 1959-61 PRISTINE PACO149
[67.15 + 76.55] [PCG] A doubly valuable reissue.
Paul HINDEMITH (1895-1963)
Das Marienleben -
Juliane Banse (soprano)
Martin Helmchen (piano)
rec. 2017 ALPHA CLASSICS 398 [70:47] [SSi]
A wonderful performance of one of the most important works of the 1920s.
PĘKIEL (? - c1666)
Masses & motets
- Aldona Bartnik (soprano) Matthew Venner (alto)/Andrzej
Kosendiak rec. 2015 CD ACCORD ACD222-2
[66:18] [JV] Fine music, and the performances
are first class.
SHERWOOD (1866–1939) Concerto
for Violin and Cello Frederic
COWEN (1852–1935) Symphony
No.5 - Rupert Marshall-Luck (violin) Joseph
Spooner (cello) BBC Concert O/John Andrews rec.
2017 EM RECORDS EMRCD047 [77:49]
[RB] EM Records have done extremely well
here with two very substantial gaps filled with
the sort of affirmative imaginative style we
have become accustomed to from this label.
Mieczyslaw WEINBERG (1919-1996) Piano
Sonatas - Elisaveta Blumina (piano) rec. 2016 CPO 555104-2
[65:32] [SA] Blumina meets whatever challenges the composer presents with insightful playing that makes listening a joy.
Mozart in London
The Mozartists/Ian Page
[77:24 + 67:06]
A most enjoyable set, placing Mozart’s earliest music in context of the
London which he visited aged eight.
Thursday August 16th
Johann Sebastian BACH (1685-1750)
& Antonio VIVALDI (1678-1741)
Violin concertos - Julia Schröder (violin), Lautten Compagney Berlin
Outstanding performances and a sumptuously atmospheric recording, but outrageously sub-standard supporting information.
Felix BLUMENFELD (1863-1931) Piano Works
Karl-Andreas Kolly (piano) rec. 2017 MDG 904 2074-6 SACD [65:55]
[EJW] A highly recommendable selection of Blumenfeld’s piano music.
Anton BRUCKNER (1824-1896) String Quintet, Overture -
Prague RSO/Gerd Schaller rec. 2018 PROFIL PH16036 [57:12]
[RMo] A thoroughly successful and absorbing recording which makes a convincing case for Schaller’s skilful orchestration.
Franz LACHNER (1803-1890)
Symphony No. 3, Festival Overture - Evergreen SO/Gernot Schmalfuss rec. 2016
CPO 555 081-2
A highly skilled and spirited post-Beethovenian symphony recorded for the first time.
Giacomo MEYERBEER (1791-1864)
Le Prophčte - John Osborn (tenor) Marianne Cornetti (mezzo) Lynette Tapia
(soprano) Aalto Theatre Opera Ch,
Essener Philharmonic/Giuliano Carella
rec. 2017 OEHMS OC971 [3 CDs: 214:49]
[PSt] Very much a curate’s egg, but definitely worth considering for Osborn’s contribution.
John WILLIAMS (b. 1932)
At the Movies - Christopher Martin (trumpet), Dallas Winds/Jerry Junkin
REFERENCE RECORDINGS FR-142 SACD
Great fun and a worthy reminder of John Williams's remarkable music.
Eugene ZÁDOR (1894–1977)
The Plains of Hungary; Fantasia Hungarica; Variations on a Merry
Theme; Rhapsodies - Kálmán Balogh (cimbalom), Budapest
SO MÁV/Mariusz Smolij rec. 2015, 2017 NAXOS 8.573800
Attractive music well performed and recorded: an ideal introduction to
Sir Dan Godfrey (conductor)
A Sesquicentennial Salute rec. 1927-34
PRISTINE AUDIO PASC534
A worthy tribute with excellent transfers.
Wednesday August 15th
BRAHMS (1833-1897) & César
FRANCK (1822-1890) Violin Sonatas -
Ana Maria Valderrama (violin) Victor del Valle
(piano) rec. 2017 EUDORA EUD-SACD-1802
SACD [63:52] [MR] A very Spanish
take on two classics of the violin and piano
repertory, spiced up with a couple of miniature
Anton BRUCKNER (1824-1896) Symphony No. 7
RSO Stuttgart des SWR /Kurt Sanderling rec. 1999 SWR CLASSIC SWR19410CD [71:14] [TB] This is a great performance, eloquently projecting some of Bruckner's most gloriously lyrical music, while emphasising the music's powerful dramatic range.
Gabriel FAURÉ (1845-1924)
Complete Piano Music Vol. 4 - Jean-Claude Pennetier (piano) rec.
2017 MIRARE MIR356 [65:00] [RHa] A lifetime’s experience and a great deal of love inform Pennetier’s illuminating readings of late Fauré in superior recorded sound.
Friedrich von FLOTOW (1812–1883)
Martha - Maria Bengtsson (soprano), Katharina Magiera (mezzo-soprano), Frankfurter Opern- und Museums
O/Sebastian Weigle rec. 2016 OEHMS CLASSICS OC972 [75:02 + 47:26] [GF] Readers who contemplate acquiring a recording of this one-time favourite opera need look no further.
MOYZES (1906-1984) Symphonies Nos
1-4 - Slovak RSO/Ladislav Slovák rec. 1993/94
NAXOS 8.573650 [77:47]
NAXOS 8.573651 [64:23] [RB] Moyzes
merits exploring and pioneers should start with
the first disc.
SUK (1874-1935) Spring, Summer
Impressions, Piano Pieces, Moods - Jonathan
Plowright (piano) rec. 2017 HYPERION
CDA68198 [76:38] [JW] Eminently
likeable performances which should bring a new
audience to Suk.
Antonio VIVALDI (1678-1741)
Double Concertos - La Serenissima/Adrian Chandler rec. 2018 AVIE AV2392
[BW] Another very fine Vivaldi release from La Serenissima.
Alexander von ZEMLINSKY (1871-1942)
Die Seejungfrau -
ORF RSO Wien/Cornelius Meister rec. 2010/12 CPO 777 962-2 [55.34] [MC] Short run time aside, it’s hard to find fault with this.
Tuesday August 14th
BRAHMS (1833-1897) Symphony
No.1 Ludwig van
BEETHOVEN (1770-1827) Egmont Overture
Zoltán KODÁLY (1882-1967) Dances
of Galánta - Hungarian State SO/János Ferencsik
rec. 1966 ORCHESTRAL CONCERT CDs CD5/2009
[71.11] [DBi] Another win for live recordings
of past concerts - well worth hearing.
Short orchestral works - BBC Concert O/David
Lloyd-Jones rec. 2017 DUTTON EPOCH CDLX7354
SACD [80:47] [TB] These
performances are nicely shaped, and the various
solos are skilfully presented.
HOLMBOE (1909-1996) The
Chamber Concertos & Sinfonias -
Danish Ntl Ch O/Hannu Koivula rec. 1996-97 DACAPO
8.206004 [6 CDs: 6:19:45] [RB] A
lovingly assembled project, which will reward
long term listening as well as dipping and sampling.
Franz Xaver MOZART (1791-1844) Fantasy,
- Anna Liszewska (piano) rec. 2017 DUX 1441 [55:24]
Liszewska has a lightness of style and action that is ideally suited to this music.
Wolfgang Amadeus MOZART (1756-1791) La Clemenza di Tito
- Richard Croft (Tito),
Anna Stéphany (Sesto), Alice Coote (Vitellia)
Glyndebourne Ch, O Age of Enlightenment/Robin Ticciati rec. 2017 OPUS ARTE OABD7232D Blu-ray [138 mins] [MC] I will undoubtedly be playing this again soon.
Franz SCHUBERT (1797-1828) Symphonies Nos 3-6
Rosamunde - Concertgebouw O/Eduard van Beinum
rec. 1946-57 ELOQUENCE 482 5521 [75:42 + 74:26] [JW] A welcome reissue package.
Sebastián de VIVANCO (c.1551–1622)
Missa Assumpsit Jesus
- De Profundis/Robert Hollingworth
rec. 2017 HYPERION CDA68257
Very welcome: the performances at least equal the few otherwise available and
there is much new material.
Sepia & Amaranth Works by
Goossens, Jongen, Pierné & Smit - Ens Lumaka rec. 2017 ETCETERA KTC1600 [60:46] [MR] Powerfully communicative performances atmospherically recorded.
Monday August 13th
Johann Sebastian BACH (1685-1750)
St. Mark Passion -
Gutenberg-Kammerchor, Neumeyer Consort/Felix Koch rec. 2017 CHRISTOPHORUS CHR77423 [42:57 + 44:07]
[RHa] A brave and interesting attempt to solve the mystery of Bach’s incomplete Passion.
Max BRUCH (1838-1920)
Scottish Fantasy, Violin Concerto No.1 - ASMF/Joshua Bell (violin) rec.
2017 SONY 19075842002
Two very fine performances; well recorded apart from the spotlighting
of the soloist, which didn’t trouble me too much.
Ernő DOHNÁNYI (1877-1960)
String Quartet No. 3,
Sextet - The Nash Ensemble rec. 2017
A brilliant display of flexible playing from one of the leading chamber ensembles of our time in repertory which few other ensembles have ever managed to bring off with such élan.
Felix MENDELSSOHN (1809-47) Symphonies Nos 4
& 5 -
NDR Radiophilharmonie/Andrew Manze rec. 2016/17 PENTATONE PTC5186611 SACD [63:39]
Symphony No. 4, Hebrides overture, Midsummer Night’s Dream
London PO, Concertgebouw O/Eduard van Beinum
rec. 1949-55 ELOQUENCE 482 5515 [58:11] [RWM] Two sterling conductors offer contrasting, yet authoritative views of Mendelssohn’s music.
Jean-Philippe RAMEAU (1683-1764)
Keyboard Works - Virginia Black (piano)
Self-conscious, interventionist and unsuccessful.
Albert ROUSSEL (1869-1937)
Évocations, Pour une fête de printemps, Suite - Kathryn Rudge (mezzo-soprano), Alessandro Fisher (tenor), François le Roux (baritone),
BBC Philharmonic/Yan Pascal Tortelier rec. 2017
Fine new versions of some of Roussel’s most attractive works.
Sir Arthur SULLIVAN (1842-1900)
HMS Pinafore - D’Oyly Carte Opera Co,
Royal PO/James Walker
rec. 1971 ELOQUENCE 482 5357 [59:13 + 37:02] [RW] Good performances marred by the recording gimmicks.
Mordecai Shehori (piano)
Learning by Example Volume 4 rec. 2016
CEMBAL D’AMOUR CD184
An attractive sequence of sweetmeats, rather let down by the studio acoustic.