sat 29/04/2017

Classical CDs

Classical CDs Weekly: Laurence Crane, Martinů, Prokofiev

Laurence Crane: 6 Trios, 2 Solos and 1 Quintet The Ives Ensemble (RTF Classical)It's a rare pleasure to discover a contemporary composer whose work speaks with such effortless clarity. You'll know within a few seconds of Laurence Crane’s Trio for...

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Classical CDs Weekly: Harald Genzmer, Mendelssohn, Nicholas Phan

Harald Genzmer: Music for Trautonium Peter Pichler (mixture trautonium) (Paladino Music)The trautonium is described here as “the instrument of a lone man”. In this case, one Oskar Sala, who spent his long musical life associated with this...

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Classical CDs Weekly: Chopin, Glass, Alec Frank-Gemmill

 Chopin: Mazurkas Ivana Gavric (Edition Classics)Ivana Gavric suggests that Chopin’s Mazurkas are “short, poignant, diary entries”, and her performances remind us how the greatest composers are never constrained when writing miniatures. As with...

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Classical CDs Weekly: Haydn, Vaughan Williams, Johannes Pramsohler

Haydn: Sonatas and Variations Leon McCawley (piano) (Somm)Haydn's keyboard music needs this sort of persuasive advocacy. Four sonatas and a set of variations is a lot to pack in to a single disc, but the composer’s inability to waffle on is his...

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Classical CDs Weekly: Brahms, Bruckner, Poulenc

Brahms: Serenades 1 & 2 Gävle Symphony Orchestra/Jaime Martín (Ondine)You know within seconds that this release is going to be good: droning string fifths introducing the catchiest of horn solos, the tune echoed in some style by a winningly...

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Classical CDs Weekly: Alnæs, Granados, Kelly, Mompou

Eyvind Alnæs: Piano Concerto & Symphony Håvard Gimse (piano), Oslo Philharmonic Orchestra/Eivind Aadland (Lawo Classics)Eyvind Alnæs’s C Minor Symphony, written in 1897 after his return to Norway from studying in Leipzig, hints at great things,...

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Classical CDs Weekly: Bach, Sibelius, Temple University Wind Symphony

Bach: Solo Sonatas and Partitas Jeroen de Groot (JDG Records)Dutch violinist Jeroen de Groot recalls watching footage of Glenn Gould playing Bach's Goldberg Variations as a teenager, amazed by the brazen idiosyncrasies of Gould's pianism (“That...

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Classical CDs Weekly: Telemann, Alban Gerhardt, Wiener Symphoniker

 Telemann Fantasias for solo violin Aisha Orazbayeva (violin) (Prah Recordings)Telemann, too readily dismissed as a plodding hack, gets a radical makeover here; the tracklisting makes it seem as if Aisha Orazbayeva is giving us six of the...

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Classical CDs Weekly: Prokofiev, Strauss, Weinberg

 Prokofiev: Piano Sonatas 2, 6 and 8 Alexander Melnikov (Harmonia Mundi)These three sonatas provide a neat overview of Prokofiev’s compositional career, 1912’s No 2 blending heady romanticism with smiling, percussive modernism. I’d not realised...

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Classical CDs Weekly: Beethoven, Rasmussen, Shostakovich, Tchaikovsky

 Beethoven: Piano Sonatas Op.110 and Op.111, with music by András Szöllösy and Gyula Csapó Gábor Csalog (piano) (BMC)Two Beethoven sonatas coupled with shorter pieces by a pair of contemporary Hungarian composers makes for an engaging mixture....

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Classical CDs Weekly: Ghedini, Ives, Vaughan Williams

 Ghedini: Orchestral Music Orchestra della Toscana/Daniele Rustione (Sony)Yet more music you’ve never heard by a composer who really should be better known. Giorgio Federico Ghedini (1892-1965) wrote an opera based on Melville’s Billy Budd...

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Classical CDs Weekly: Brahms, Julius Eastman, Überbach

Brahms: Symphonies 3 and 4 NDR Elbphilharmonie Orchester/Thomas Hengelbrock (Sony)Brahms’s name is tucked away in disappointingly smallish print on this disc’s imposing cover. In case you’ve missed it, there’s a glitzy new concert hall in the...

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