tue 20/02/2018

Classical CDs

Classical CDs Weekly: Diethelm, Grieg, Tippett

Diethelm: Symphonic Works Royal Scottish National Orchestra/Rainer Held (Guild)Swiss composers? There's Honegger, and Frank Martin… add to that list one Caspar Diethelm (1926-1997), a prolific musical polymath and teacher who also dabbled in...

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Classical CDs Weekly: Shostakovich, Christoph Prégardien, Nataša Mirkovič

Shostakovich: Symphony No 6, Sinfonietta (Quartet No 8, arr. Abram Stasevich) Estonian Festival Orchestra/Paavo Järvi (Alpha Classics)The one false note here comes in the form of Paavo Järvi’s description of Shostakovich's Symphony No 6, referring...

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Classical CDs Weekly: Brahms, Sterndale Bennett, Fieri Consort

Brahms: Piano Concerto No. 2, Strauss: Burleske Joseph Moog (piano), Deutsche Radio Philharmonie/Nicholas Milton (Onyx)It's not you, it's me. That’s probably what I'd say to Brahms in attempting to explain why I generally prefer his craggy D minor...

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Classical CDs Weekly: Beethoven, Stravinsky, Tallis

 Beethoven/Liszt: Complete Symphonies Yury Martynov (Erard, 1837 and Blüthner, 1867) (Alpha Classics)These performances were recorded between 2011 and 2015 and originally released as single discs. If you missed them first time round, snap up...

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Classical CDs Weekly: Bach, Bennett, Béla Fleck & Abigail Washburn

 Bach: Brandenburg Concertos 1-6 Berliner Barock Solisten/Reinhard Goebel (Sony)This set’s arrival sent me scurrying back to listen again to Reinhard Goebel's 1985 DG set of Bach’s Brandenburgs with Musica Antiqua Koln: hyperactive, sharp-...

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Classical CDs Weekly: Brahms, Janáček, George Martin, Dmitry Masleev

 Brahms: Clarinet Sonatas, Janáček: Sonata (arr. Brill) Shirley Brill, Jonathan Aner (piano) (Hänssler Classic)Brahms's pair of clarinet sonatas are the epitome of autumnosity, were such a word to exist. Pipe-and-slippers music, which isn't...

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Classical CDs Weekly: Feldman, Schumann, Vaughan Williams

 Morton Feldman: Piano, Violin, Viola, CelloMark Knoop (piano), Aisha Orazbayeva (violin), Bridget Carey (Viola), Anton Lukoszevieze (cello) (Another Timbre)Morton Feldman's output can serve as a useful post-Christmas palate-cleanser. His is...

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Classical CDs Weekly: CPE Bach, Martinů, Walton

CPE Bach: Tangere Alexei Lubimov (tangent piano) (ECM)The term "tangent piano" suggests something hard-edged and angular, but no: the latin word tangere means "to touch", and the mysterious-sounding tangent piano was an expressive, short-lived...

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Classical CDs Weekly Special: Callas Live

Remastered they may be, but the 20 live operas recorded here between 1949 and 1964 vary soundwise from clean at best to atrocious, with all the caprices of stage noise and audience participation seemingly acceptable at the time (so often there's the...

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Classical CDs Weekly: Adams, Schubert, BBC Legends

The John Adams Edition Berliner Philharmoniker, conducted by John Adams, Gustavo Dudamel, Alan Gilbert, Kirill Petrenko and Sir Simon Rattle (Berliner Philharmoniker)That the Berlin Philharmonic can release a lavish four-disc collection of music by...

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Classical CDs Weekly: Christmas CDs, part 2

 Bach: Magnificat in E flat, Missa in F Monteverdi Choir, English Baroque Soloists/John Eliot Gardiner (SDG)John Eliot Gardiner first recorded Bach’s joyous Magnificat in the 1980s. This revisit gives us the work’s less familiar original...

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Classical CDs Weekly: Sollazzo Ensemble, Barbara Hannigan, Zoltán Kocsis

Sollazzo Ensemble: Parle Qui Veut - Moralising songs of the Middle Ages (Linn)Here, Anne Stone’s fascinating sleeve essay does get a bit Dan Brown at times: there's mention of a mysterious song collection called the Squarcialupi Codex, and talk of a...

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