Brief Notes

BBC Music Magazine - - Contents -

JS Bach Or­gan Works (Vol 3) Masaaki Suzuki (or­gan) BIS-2421 Suzuki’s lat­est Bach disc takes him to Freiberg’s great Sil­ber­mann, an in­stru­ment Bach may have played. The solo tex­tures he elic­its are mag­i­cal – and the Pas­sacaglia fugue roars might­ily! (OC) ★★★★

Joanna Bailie

Ar­ti­fi­cial En­vi­ron­ments Plus-mi­nus En­sem­ble NMC D252

This is a fas­ci­nat­ing record­ing; Bailie’s imag­i­na­tion knows few bounds. The mu­sic bends, shifts and dis­lo­cates, danc­ing and weav­ing in and out of real-world sounds. (MB) ★★★

Derek Ber­mel Mi­gra­tions etc Al­bany Sym­phony et al Naxos 8.559871 What a melt­ing pot of mu­si­cal styles! Ber­mel’s end­less in­ven­tion ini­tially ruf­fles your feath­ers but leaves you breath­less in the end. Cap­ti­vat­ing and colour­ful. (MB) ★★★★

Brahms Ein Deutsches Re­quiem Chris­tiane Karg (so­prano) et al Har­mo­nia Mundi HMM 902635 Brahms’s Re­quiem is here treated to rich, yet taste­fully re­strained or­ches­tral play­ing while the small-ish forces of the Swedish Ra­dio Choir em­ploy an im­pres­sive range of dy­nam­ics and fine tun­ing. (OC) ★★★★

Burgmüller 25 Etudes faciles et pro­gres­sives etc

Carl Peters­son (piano)

Grand Piano GP816

Lis­ten­ing to these beginners’ stud­ies may well bring a tear of rem­i­nis­cence to those of us who learnt them as chil­dren. Sim­ple they may be, but as a col­lec­tion, they are ex­cep­tion­ally charm­ing. ( JP) ★★★★ Louis Couperin Suites

Ri­naldo Alessan­drini (harp­si­chord) Naïve OP 30577

Alessan­drini is a thrilling guide through Couperin’s twist­ing, pi­quant har­monies, sharp rhythms and sigh­ing phrases. The record­ing, how­ever, could have been a lit­tle warmer. (OC) ★★★★

De­bussy Prin­temps etc Sin­ga­pore Sym­phony Orches­tra BIS 2232

The ad­mirable agility of soloist Claude De­lan­gle makes the Rhap­sodie pour orchestre et sax­o­phone the high­light here. There’s pol­ished play­ing through­out, though Noc­turnes is per­haps a lit­tle too prim and proper. ( JP) ★★★★

Flury The Death of Sap­pho etc Nurem­berg Sym­phony et al

Toc­cata Clas­sics TOCC 0427

So­prano Ju­lia So­phie Wag­ner scin­til­lates in Richard Flury’s set­ting from Grill­parzer’s Sap­pho; the one-act Ger­man ver­sion of Os­car Wilde’s A Floren­tine Tragedy is worth ex­plor­ing. (CJ) ★★★

Philip Glass

Not Do­ings of an In­som­niac

Robert Black (bass)

Or­ange Moun­tain Mu­sic OMM 0137

This in­trigu­ing work is de­scribed as a Par­tita; the seven solo dou­ble bass move­ments are in­ter­spersed by read­ings from works by Yoko Ono and oth­ers, played and re­cited by Robert Black. (CJ) ★★★

Hof­mann Flute Con­cer­tos

Uwe Grodd (flute) et al Naxos 8.573967 Leopold Hof­mann com­posed fist­fuls of flute works; these easy-lis­ten­ing con­cer­tos – played by Uwe Grodd and the Czech Cham­ber Phil­har­monic – are en­joy­able but quickly for­got­ten. (CJ) ★★ Ka­balevsky Sym­phonies Nos 1 & 2 Malmo Sym­phony Orches­tra

Naxos 8.573859

A real dis­cov­ery – Ka­balevsky’s Co­las Breugnon over­ture sounds like Rus­sian Bern­stein while the two sym­phonies are unashamedl­y Ro­man­tic, full of east­ern soul. Thor­oughly en­joy­able. (OC) ★★★★

Per Nørgård Whirl’s World etc En­sem­ble Midtvest Da­capo 8.226136

A cap­ti­vat­ing disc of works by the Dan­ish com­poser in stel­lar recorded sound. Layer upon layer of hyp­notic sounds wash over you, with a pow­er­ful ghost­like qual­ity in the stand­out ti­tle work. (FP) ★★★★

Of­fen­bach Com­plete Piano Works Marco Sollini (piano) CPO 555 287-2 This trip­tych of discs is packed with Of­fen­bach salon rar­i­ties – along with the Galop in­fer­nal – and is ideal lis­ten­ing fod­der for the com­poser’s bi­cen­te­nary year. (CJ) ★★★★

Poulenc • Se­abourne • Vladi­gerov Cham­ber Works

Irina Borissova (vi­o­lin),

Gi­a­como Bat­tarino (piano)

Sheva Con­tem­po­rary SH 226

Sweet and ten­der Poulenc shines at the cen­tre of this pro­gramme; a won­der­ful light­ness of touch in the play­ing that never com­pro­mises in­ten­sity. (MB) ★★★

Alexan­der Rah­bari My Mother Per­sia Paula Rah­bari (vi­o­lin) et al Naxos 8.574064

The ti­tle alone,

My Mother Per­sia, should give an idea of these tone po­ems’ dis­tinc­tively Mid­dle-east­ern modal sound­world. Rah­bari’s mu­sic is dra­matic and eerily haunt­ing, though the play­ing has its rough edges. (JP) ★★★ Ni­cholas Simp­son String Quar­tets

Zelkova Quar­tet et al

Stone Records 5060192780­871 Con­sid­ered and con­tem­pla­tive mu­sic from the British com­poser, played by Manch­ester’s Zelkova Quar­tet with a youth­ful zeal. (MB) ★★★★

R Strauss Don Quixote etc Daniel Müller-schott (cello) et al Or­feo C 968 191

From one of Strauss’s ear­li­est works to his late tone poem, this disc ex­plores the com­poser’s shift from Ro­man­ti­cism to Mod­ernism ex­pertly. In a su­perb live record­ing, Don Quixote is full of drama. Pow­er­ful stuff. (FP) ★★★★

Across the Lake Works by Mahler, John Wil­liams et al

Lake Brass Gen­uin GEN 19651

Lake Brass brings us a fun se­lec­tion of film and clas­si­cal mu­sic. The de­liv­ery would be aided by much cleaner ar­tic­u­la­tion and a stronger sup­port­ing choir. (FP) ★★

Col­lab­o­ra­tion

Works by Max Richter et al

Var­i­ous Artists Mer­cury KX 481 7225 Chore­og­ra­pher Wayne Mcgre­gor has com­mis­sioned a broad range of mu­sic over the years. Pri­mar­ily sound­scapes, many of the tracks com­bine or­ches­tral forces with house-style elec­tronic beats. (FP) ★★★

Haydn and the Harp

Works by Haydn, Ragué et al

Chiara Granata (harps) et al

Glossa GCD 923517

There’s much to en­joy here, not least the nifty ar­range­ment for harp and vi­o­lin of Haydn’s Sym­phony No. 71 by Louis-charles Ragué.

The sleevenote­s de­tail­ing Haydn’s re­la­tion­ship with the in­stru­ment are ex­cel­lent. ( JP) ★★★★

The Last Rose of Sum­mer

Songs by Vaughan Wil­liams et al The Queen’s Six

Signum Clas­sics SIGCD598

In a spot­less record­ing, The Queen’s Six de­liver hand­picked folk­songs from the British Isles, with fas­ci­nat­ing ac­com­pa­ny­ing notes. Oc­ca­sion­ally bor­der­ing on schmaltz, but en­joy­able. (FP) ★★★★

A Love Let­ter to Liver­pool

Songs by Ives, Ban­tock et al Jen­nifer John­ston (mezzo) et al

Ru­bi­con RCD1044

In an imag­i­na­tive pro­gramme that ranges from songs by Mark Simp­son and Stephen Hough to The Bea­tles’ Black­bird, the Mersey­side mezzo stylishly pays homage to her home city and its sea­far­ing her­itage. ( JP) ★★★★

Mis­ter Bach’s Euro­pean Jour­ney Works by JS Bach et al

An­drea Bac­chetti (piano) mu­sic­me­dia MM05

There’s some beau­ti­ful play­ing here of French and English suites, with de­cent at­tack and ar­tic­u­la­tion, but the whole thing sounds as if it were recorded in a car­peted sit­ting room. (OC) ★★★

No­body Move… Piano Works by Ran­dall Woolf et al

Sarah Bob (piano) Avie AV2401

Mostly pre­miere record­ings of new works sup­ported by Bos­ton’s lon­grun­ning New Gallery Con­cert Se­ries. A must-lis­ten for con­tem­po­rary fans. (CJ) ★★★★

Pal­ette

Works by Fauré, Ibert et al En­sem­ble Nuanz et al

Ars Pro­duk­tion ARS 38 282

Gor­geous colours abound in this pal­ette of French works for flute and strings, deftly per­formed and ex­pertly ar­ranged by flautist Nathanael Carré. An ap­peal­ing disc. (MB) ★★★★ Re­view­ers: Michael Beek (MB),

Oliver Condy (OC), Claire Jack­son (CJ), Freya Parr (FP), Jeremy Pound ( JP)

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