Monthly Archive: October 2016

Koussevitzky conducts Rare American Symphony Performances = HARRIS: Sym. No. 5; HILL: Sym. No. 1; DIAMOND: Sym. No. 2 – Boston Sym. Orch. – Pristine Audio

Koussevitzky conducts Rare American Symphony Performances = HARRIS: Sym. No. 5; HILL: Sym. No. 1; DIAMOND: Sym. No. 2 – Boston Sym. Orch. – Pristine Audio

Three eminently American, powerful symphonies find their debut performances with Koussevitzky restored. Koussevitzky conducts Rare American Symphony Performances = HARRIS: Symphony No. 5; HILL: Symphony No. 1 in B-flat Major, Op. 34; DIAMOND: Symphony No. 2 – Boston Sym. Orch. – Pristine Audio PASC 484, 77:49 [avail. in var. formats at www.pristineclassical.com] *****: Producer and […]

GYÖRGY LIGETI: Sonata for solo viola; Lux aeterna; Three Fantasies after Friedrich Hölderlin; ROBERT HEPPENER: Im Gestein – Susanne van Els, viola/Capella Amsterdam/musikFabrik/ Daniel Reuss – HM/Gold

GYÖRGY LIGETI: Sonata for solo viola; Lux aeterna; Three Fantasies after Friedrich Hölderlin; ROBERT HEPPENER: Im Gestein – Susanne van Els, viola/Capella Amsterdam/musikFabrik/ Daniel Reuss – HM/Gold

A very eclectic but interesting collection of modern works. GYÖRGY LIGETI: Sonata for solo viola; Lux aeterna; Three Fantasies after Friedrich Hölderlin; ROBERT HEPPENER: Im Gestein – Susanne van Els, viola/Capella Amsterdam/musikFabrik/Daniel Reuss – Harmonia mundi Gold HMG 501985, 64:31, (8/19/16) [Distr. by PIAS] ***1/2: Hungarian “modernist” composer György Ligeti was one of the more […]

JOHN ADAMS: The Dharma at Big Sur; My Father Knew Charles Ives – BBC Sym. Orch./ John Adams /with Tracy Silverman, electric violin – Nonesuch (2 CDs)

JOHN ADAMS: The Dharma at Big Sur; My Father Knew Charles Ives – BBC Sym. Orch./ John Adams /with Tracy Silverman, electric violin – Nonesuch (2 CDs)

JOHN ADAMS: The Dharma at Big Sur; My Father Knew Charles Ives – BBC Sym. Orch./ John Adams /with Tracy Silverman, electric violin – Nonesuch 2-CD disc set 79857-2, 52:00 (9/26/06) ****: John Adams at his best with an East Coast and West Coast-themed musical offering. This is not a new disc, as it was […]

MacMILLAN: Violin Concerto; Symphony No. 4 – Vadim Repin, v./Groote, voice/BBC Scottish Sym. Orch./ Donald Runnicles – Onyx Classics

MacMILLAN: Violin Concerto; Symphony No. 4 – Vadim Repin, v./Groote, voice/BBC Scottish Sym. Orch./ Donald Runnicles – Onyx Classics

MacMillan’s style has evolved over the years and here are two of his best works! JAMES MacMILLAN: Violin Concerto; Symphony No. 4 – Vadim Repin, v./Groote, voice/BBC Scottish Sym. Orch./ Donald Runnicles – Onyx Classics ONYX 4157, [Distr. by HM/PIAS], 65:24, (10/28/16) ****: I have heard many works by Sir James MacMillan over the years, […]

Lean – Lean – Music Wizards

Lean – Lean – Music Wizards

Lean in and listen: trio music which is loose and lingering.   Lean – Lean [TrackList follows] – Music Wizards 712411776534, 57:16 [9/16/16] ****: (Jerome Sabbagh – tenor and soprano saxes; Simon Jermyn – electric bass, effects; Allison Miller – drums, bike, effects) Lean is a New York City-based trio consisting of saxophonist Jerome Sabbagh, bassist […]

Lauren Bush, vocals – All My Treasures – Self-produced

Lauren Bush, vocals – All My Treasures – Self-produced

Lauren Bush – All My Treasures – Self-produced, 52:17 ***: (Available as an MP3 download on Amazon) An uneven effort but shows promise.  (Lauren Bush – vocals; Brandon Allen – sax; Miguel Gorodi – trumpet; Kieran McLeod – trombone; Liam Dunachie – piano; Andrew Rodd – bass; David Ingamelis – drums) Lauren Bush (no relation […]

The Marx Brothers  = The Cocoanuts, Animal Crackers, Monkey Business, Horse Feathers, Duck Soup – Blu-ray (3)

The Marx Brothers = The Cocoanuts, Animal Crackers, Monkey Business, Horse Feathers, Duck Soup – Blu-ray (3)

A Silver Screen Blu-ray collection of the first five (and funniest) Marx Bros. movies. The Marx Brothers  = The Cocoanuts, Animal Crackers, Monkey Business, Horse Feathers, Duck Soup – Blu-ray (3) (1929-1933/2016) Cast: Groucho Marx, Harpo Marx, Chico Marx, Zeppo Marx, Margaret Dumont Directors: Victor Heerman, Norman Z. McLeod, Joseph Santley, Robert Florey, Leo McCarey […]

Imperium, Blu-ray (2016)

Imperium, Blu-ray (2016)

A thriller again about an uncover agent – this time of white supremacist groups. Imperium, Blu-ray (2016) Cast: Daniel Radcliffe, Toni Collette, Burn Gorman, Nestor Carbonell, Sam Trammell Director: Daniel Ragussis Studio: Grindstone/ Lionsgate Premiere (11/1/16) Video: 2.40:1 for 16:9 screens, HD 1080p color Audio: English DTS-HD MA 5.1 Subtitles: English, English SDH, Spanish Extras: […]

GRANADOS: March of the Defeated; Torrijos; Suite on Galician Songs – Barcelona Sym. Orch. & Chorus/ Pablo Gonzalez – NaxosGRANADOS: Concerto in c “Patetico”; ALBENIZ: Concierto fantastico; Rapsodia espanola – Melani Mestre, p./ BBC Scottish Sym. Orch./ Martyn Brabbins – Hyperion

GRANADOS: March of the Defeated; Torrijos; Suite on Galician Songs – Barcelona Sym. Orch. & Chorus/ Pablo Gonzalez – Naxos
GRANADOS: Concerto in c “Patetico”; ALBENIZ: Concierto fantastico; Rapsodia espanola – Melani Mestre, p./ BBC Scottish Sym. Orch./ Martyn Brabbins – Hyperion

Two CDs involving Enrique Granados. GRANADOS: March of the Defeated (1899); Torrijos (1894); Suite on Galician Songs (1899) – Barcelona Sym. Orch. & Chorus/ Pablo Gonzalez – Naxos 8.573263, 54:47 (4/4/16) ****: GRANADOS: Concerto in c “Patetico”; ALBENIZ: Concierto fantastico in a, Op. 78; Rapsodia espanola – Melani Mestre, p./ BBC Scottish Sym. Orch./ Martyn […]

“Soaring Solo – Unaccompanied Works II” – Stephanie Sant’Ambrogio, violin & viola – MSR Classics

“Soaring Solo – Unaccompanied Works II” – Stephanie Sant’Ambrogio, violin & viola – MSR Classics

Don’t think twice about getting this wonderful recital. “Soaring Solo – Unaccompanied Works II” – Stephanie Sant’Ambrogio, violin & viola – MSR Classics MS 1627, 73:32 [Distr. by Albany] *****: This is Stephanie Sant’Ambrogio’s second solo disc, the first called “Going Solo” following this same sort of format. Here, the artist says “Soaring effortlessly high […]

BEETHOVEN: Symphony No. 4; SHOSTAKOVICH: Symphony No. 10 – Leningrad Philharmonic Orch./ Yevgeny Mravinsky (1955) – Praga Digitals

BEETHOVEN: Symphony No. 4; SHOSTAKOVICH: Symphony No. 10 – Leningrad Philharmonic Orch./ Yevgeny Mravinsky (1955) – Praga Digitals

Two Mravinsky performances from the Prague Spring 1955, of which the Shostakovich seems “definitive.” BEETHOVEN: Symphony No. 4 in B-flat Major, Op. 60; SHOSTAKOVICH: Symphony No. 10 in e minor, Op. 93 – Leningrad Philharmonic Orch./ Yevgeny Mravinsky (1955) – Praga Digitals PRD 350 115, 79:28 [Distr. by Harmonia mundi/PIAS] ****: Praga Digitals restores two […]

George Robert, sax – Plays Michel Legrand – Claves

George Robert, sax – Plays Michel Legrand – Claves

George Robert, sax – Plays Michel Legrand – Claves 50-1607, 55:16 ***: (George Robert, alto saxophone/ Torben Oxbol; arrangements and orchestral parts) Michel Legrand at the movies, on sax. With the passing of George Robert (1960-2016), we have lost a very fine jazz musician and esteemed educator. He played with many of the top big […]

A Slight Departure – Birdsong At Morning – Expanded Edition (Video & Pure Audio Blu-ray + CD) – Blue Gentian

A Slight Departure – Birdsong At Morning – Expanded Edition (Video & Pure Audio Blu-ray + CD) – Blue Gentian

A Slight Departure – Birdsong At Morning – Expanded Edition (Video & Pure Audio Stereo Blu-ray + CD) – Blue Gentian 008, 53:22 (7/21/15) ****: A very unusual video Blu-ray plus CD and unusual hi-res music too. (1st Amazon button may be for the CD alone, the 2nd for the Blu-ray) (Alan Williams – acoustic & […]

Audio News for October 21, 2016

Audio News for October 21, 2016

Musical America 2017 Awards – went to pianist Juja Wang for Artist of the Year, to Andrew Norman for Composer of the Year, to Finnish Susanna Mälkki for Conductor of the Year. to bass-baritone Eric Owns for Vocalist of the Year, and to Eighth Blackbird for Ensemble of the Year. Noisy Audiences and Music – […]

“Dragon” – Works for alto sax & sax quartet – Albany / DANIEL SMITH: Jazz Suite for Bassoon – Summit

“Dragon” – Works for alto sax & sax quartet – Albany / DANIEL SMITH: Jazz Suite for Bassoon – Summit

A nice classical-jazz couple of CDs featuring bassoon & sax. “Dragon” – Works for alto sax & sax quartet [TrackList follows] – William Perconti, alto sax/ Alloy Sax Quartet – Albany TROY1440, 49:25 ****:  DANIEL SMITH: “Jazz Suite for Bassoon” [TrackList follows] – Daniel Smith, bassoon/ Bruce Boardman & Steve Grey, p./others/ The Caravaggio Ensemble […]

“Encores: BACH, HANDEL, TELEMANN, MOZART” – Polish Ch. Orch. /Jerzy Maksymiuk – MD&G

“Encores: BACH, HANDEL, TELEMANN, MOZART” – Polish Ch. Orch. /Jerzy Maksymiuk – MD&G

“Encores: BACH, HANDEL, TELEMANN, MOZART” – Polish Chamber Orchestra /Jerzy Maksymiuk – MD&G 3210181-2, 50:01  [Dist. by E1] (9/30/16) ***: Some of this CD makes a good demo. B01IG479L4 Just making it onto the US market, this MD&G from 1984 features the great Polish Chamber Orchestra under its legendary conductor Jerzy Maksymiuk in early digital sound […]

Trios from Our Homelands” – REBECCA CLARKE: Piano Trio; ARNO BABAJANIAN: Piano Trio; FRANK MARTIN: Trio on Pop Irish Melodies – Lincoln Trio – Cedille

Trios from Our Homelands” – REBECCA CLARKE: Piano Trio; ARNO BABAJANIAN: Piano Trio; FRANK MARTIN: Trio on Pop Irish Melodies – Lincoln Trio – Cedille

We got a duplicate of this, so here is a second review opinion on the same recent CD. “Trios from Our Homelands” – REBECCA CLARKE: Piano Trio; ARNO BABAJANIAN: Piano Trio in f-sharp; FRANK MARTIN: Trio on Popular Irish Melodies – Lincoln Trio – Cedille CDR 9000 165, 64:15 ****: Rebecca Clarke (1886-1979) narrowly lost […]

“Under Stalin’s Shadow” = SHOSTAKOVICH: Symphonies Nos.  5 in d, 8 in c, 9 in E-flat; Suite from Hamlet – Boston SO/ Andris Nelsons – DGG (2 CDs)

“Under Stalin’s Shadow” = SHOSTAKOVICH: Symphonies Nos. 5 in d, 8 in c, 9 in E-flat; Suite from Hamlet – Boston SO/ Andris Nelsons – DGG (2 CDs)

A fine follow-up to the Grammified first release. “Under Stalin’s Shadow” = SHOSTAKOVICH: Symphonies Nos.  5 in d, 8 in c, 9 in E-flat; Suite from Hamlet – Boston SO/ Andris Nelsons – DGG 479 5201 (2 CDs), 76:44, 80:54 [Distr. by Universal] ****: It’s very nice to hear the BSO back on DGG. It’s […]

RATKJE: “And Sing” – Cikada with the Oslo Sinfonietta with vocals by Maja S.K. Ratkje – 2L

RATKJE: “And Sing” – Cikada with the Oslo Sinfonietta with vocals by Maja S.K. Ratkje – 2L

RATKJE: “And Sing” – Cikada with the Oslo Sinfonietta with vocals by Maja S.K. Ratkje – 2L multichannel SACD and Pure Audio Blu-ray – 2L-124-SABD (9/30/16), 44:00 [Distr. by Naxos] **: Ultra-contemporary music that will not be pleasant for all listeners. I hardly know how to review this disc from 2L. It contains two works […]

TCHAIKOVSKY: Serenade melancolique; Valse-Scherzo; Violin Con. in D; Souvenir d’un lieu cher – Jennifer Koh, v./ Odense SO/ Alexander Vedernikov – Cedille

TCHAIKOVSKY: Serenade melancolique; Valse-Scherzo; Violin Con. in D; Souvenir d’un lieu cher – Jennifer Koh, v./ Odense SO/ Alexander Vedernikov – Cedille

A great bargain to have the complete violin and orchestra pieces on one disc! TCHAIKOVSKY: Serenade melancolique, Op. 26; Valse-Scherzo, Op. 34; Violin Concerto in D, Op. 35; Souvenir d’un lieu cher, Op. 42 – Jennifer Koh, violin/ Odense SO/ Alexander Vedernikov – Cedille CDR 90000 166, 74:20 [Distr. by Albany] ****: Jennifer Koh is […]