Monthly Archive: April 2017

PERGOLESI: Stabat Mater; BACH: Cantatas 54 & 170 – La Nuova Musica/ David Bates, Lucy Crowe (sop.), Tim Mead (ten.) – Harmonia Mundi

PERGOLESI: Stabat Mater; BACH: Cantatas 54 & 170 – La Nuova Musica/ David Bates, Lucy Crowe (sop.), Tim Mead (ten.) – Harmonia Mundi

A vivid and breathtaking rendition of Pergolesi’s masterpiece strangely saddled between Bach canatas. PERGOLESI: Stabat Mater; BACH: Cantatas 54 & 170 – La Nuova Musica dir. David Bates with Lucy Crowe and Tim Mead – Harmonia Mundi 907589 64:16 (5/5/17) ****: (Lucy Crowe: soprano/ Tim Mead: countertenor) Jean Jacques Rousseau, muddle-headed in so many of […]

“Raindamage” = Music of Valgeir SIGURDŎSSON, Úlfur HANSSON, Hlynur Aðils VILMARSSON – Nordic Affect – Sono Luminus

“Raindamage” = Music of Valgeir SIGURDŎSSON, Úlfur HANSSON, Hlynur Aðils VILMARSSON – Nordic Affect – Sono Luminus

Some very reflective and ‘icy’ sounds sure to get your attention. “Raindamage” = Valgeir SIGURDŎSSON: Raindamage; Antigravity; Úlfur HANSSON: ÞỲÐ; Skin Continuum; Hlynur Aðils VILMARSSON: Noa::Ems; [:n:] – Nordic Affect – Sono Luminus SLE-70008 [Distr. by Naxos], 39:06, (2/24/2017) ***1/2: I literally closed my eyes while listening to this very picturesque and very unusual set […]

HAYDN: Symphonies no. 53, no. 64, no. 96 – Oregon Symphony/Carlos Kalmar – Pentatone

HAYDN: Symphonies no. 53, no. 64, no. 96 – Oregon Symphony/Carlos Kalmar – Pentatone

HAYDN: Symphonies no. 53 “the Imperial”, no. 64 “Tempora Mutantur”, no. 96 “the Miracle” – Oregon Symphony/Carlos Kalmar – Pentatone SACD 5186 612, 61:51 (4/7/17) *****: A well chosen concert of Haydn symphonies performed under the baton of Carlos Kalmar and played by the superb Oregon Symphony. If you were to visit the city of […]

NOVAK: In the Tatra Mountains; Lady Godiva; Eternal Longing – Buffalo Phil. Orch./ JoAnn Falletta – Naxos

NOVAK: In the Tatra Mountains; Lady Godiva; Eternal Longing – Buffalo Phil. Orch./ JoAnn Falletta – Naxos

Relatively neglected but richly colorful scores by Novak have opulent realization from the BPO under JoAnn Falletta.   Vitezslav NOVAK: In the Tatra Mountains, Op. 26; Lady Godiva – Overture, Op. 41; Eternal Longing, Op. 33 – Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra/ JoAnn Falletta – Naxos 8.573683, 52:47 (4/14/17) ****: I first encountered the often “shimmering” music […]

ECLIPSE = Chamber music by Mischa Zupko – Sang Mee Lee (v.)/ Wendy Warner (c.)/ Mischa Zupko (p.) – Cedille

ECLIPSE = Chamber music by Mischa Zupko – Sang Mee Lee (v.)/ Wendy Warner (c.)/ Mischa Zupko (p.) – Cedille

A wonderment of shades of color infatuate this fascinating composer’s music. “ECLIPSE – Chamber music by Mischa Zupko” = Rising; Fallen; From Twilight; Eclipse; Nebula; Shades of Grey; Love Obsession – Sang Mee Lee, violin/ Wendy Warner, cello/ Mischa Zupko, piano – Cedille CDR 90000 168, 67:45 [Distr. by Naxos] ***1/2: This is my first […]

WUORINEN: Eighth Symphony; Fourth Piano Concerto – Peter Serkin (p.)/ Boston Symph. Orch./ James Levine – Bridge

WUORINEN: Eighth Symphony; Fourth Piano Concerto – Peter Serkin (p.)/ Boston Symph. Orch./ James Levine – Bridge

Two beautifully conceived and highly expressive works. Charles WUORINEN: Eighth Symphony, “Theologoumena”; Fourth Piano Concerto – Peter Serkin, piano/ Boston Sym. Orch./ James Levine – Bridge 9474, 59:39 [Distr. by Albany] *****: It is a quote from Neo-Platonist commentator Maximus of Tyre (2nd – 3rd c.) that first inspired Wuorinen to create the tone poem […]

Reflections in Cosmo – Reflections in Cosmo – RareNoise

Reflections in Cosmo – Reflections in Cosmo – RareNoise

Norwegian rock-jazz that is forceful, imposing and heavy. Reflections in Cosmo – Reflections in Cosmo [TrackList follows] – RareNoise RNR073, 40:41 [1/20/17] ****: (Kjetil Møster – baritone, tenor and soprano saxophone; Hans Magnus Ryan – guitar; Ståle Storløkken – keyboards; Thomas Strønen – drums) The Norwegian quartet Reflections in Cosmo is ready-to-hear for those who […]

Daniel HOPE: “For Seasons” = Music of VIVALDI, BACH, RAMEAU, RICHTER, TCHAIKOWSKY, BRAHMS – Daniel Hope (v.)/Zürcher Kammerorchester – DGG

Daniel HOPE: “For Seasons” = Music of VIVALDI, BACH, RAMEAU, RICHTER, TCHAIKOWSKY, BRAHMS – Daniel Hope (v.)/Zürcher Kammerorchester – DGG

Very creative and highly entertaining but unusual! Daniel Hope, “For Seasons” [Track List follows] – Daniel Hope, violin/Zürcher Kammerorchester – Deutsche Grammaphon DGG 479 6922, 79:33, (3/03/2017) ****: The first – and certainly not even the most captivating – thing that catches your attention about this wonderfully eclectic and entertaining collection from violinist Daniel Hope […]

Led Bib – Umbrella Weather – RareNoise

Led Bib – Umbrella Weather – RareNoise

UK jazz-rockers Led Bib have it covered, from fear of crustaceans to bug invasions, and from shopping to cooking. Led Bib – Umbrella Weather [TrackList follows] – RareNoise RNR071, 75:01 [1/20/17] ****: (Mark Holub – drums; Pete Grogan, Chris Williams – alto saxophone; Liran Donin – bass; Toby McLaren – keyboards) English jazz-rock combo Led […]

Michael RABINOWITZ: Uncharted Waters – Cats Paws Records

Michael RABINOWITZ: Uncharted Waters – Cats Paws Records

Michael Rabinowitz again showcases the virtuosity of the bassoon in a warm acoustic setting. Michael RABINOWITZ: Uncharted Waters – Cats Paws Records 9855, 56:50 (4/22/17) ****: (Michael Rabinowitz: bassoon/ Ruslan Khain: bass/ Nat Harris: guitar/ Vince Ector: drums) The first time I heard the sound of the bassoon I didn’t whether to laugh or cry. […]

Leonard Rose = Cello Concerti by DVORAK, SAINT-SAENS; Cello Sonatas by BEETHOVEN, BRAHMS; TCHAIKOVSKY: Rococo Variations – Leonard Rose, cello – Doremi

Leonard Rose = Cello Concerti by DVORAK, SAINT-SAENS; Cello Sonatas by BEETHOVEN, BRAHMS; TCHAIKOVSKY: Rococo Variations – Leonard Rose, cello – Doremi

Doremi provides us a template of what a recorded tribute to Leonard Rose should contain, including several significant chamber-music additions. Leonard Rose = DVORAK: Cello Concerto in b minor, Op. 104; SAINT-SAENS: Cello Concerto No. 1 in a minor, Op. 33; TCHAIKOVSKY: Rococo Variations, Op. 33; BEETHOVEN: Cello Sonata in D Major, Op. 102, No. […]

Andrejs Osokins, Pianist = Piano works of BACH, HAYDN, BEETHOVEN, RAVEL, LISZT – Andrejs Osokins (p) – International Piano Forum

Andrejs Osokins, Pianist = Piano works of BACH, HAYDN, BEETHOVEN, RAVEL, LISZT – Andrejs Osokins (p) – International Piano Forum

Latvian piano virtuoso Andrejs Osokins makes a powerful impression in Romantic Music. Andrejs Osokins, Pianist = BACH: WTC, I: Prelude No. 8 in e-flat minor, BWV 853; Fugue in d-sharp minor, BWV 853; HAYDN: Piano Sonata No. 53 in e minor; BEETHOVEN: Piano Sonata No. 23 in f minor, Op. 57 “Appassionata”; RAVEL: Gaspard de […]

BEETHOVEN: Triple Concerto; BRAHMS: Double Concerto – Isaac Stern (v.) / Leonard Rose (c.) / Eugene Istomin (p.) / Cleveland Orchestra/ George Szell – Doremi

BEETHOVEN: Triple Concerto; BRAHMS: Double Concerto – Isaac Stern (v.) / Leonard Rose (c.) / Eugene Istomin (p.) / Cleveland Orchestra/ George Szell – Doremi

The Stern-Rose-Istomin Trio and George Szell make a Cleveland Orchestra evening quite compelling. BEETHOVEN: “Triple” Concerto for Violin, Cello, and Piano in C Major, Op. 56; BRAHMS: “Double” Concerto for Violin, Cello and Orchestra in a minor, Op. 102 – Isaac Stern, violin/ Leonard Rose, cello/ Eugene Istomin, piano/ Cleveland Orchestra/ George Szell – Doremi […]

Rogue One, A Star Wars Story, Blu-ray (2017)

Rogue One, A Star Wars Story, Blu-ray (2017)

The first Star Wars stand-alone features is a rousing success. Rogue One, A Star Wars Story, Blu-ray (2017) Cast: Felicity Jones, Diego Lua, Alan Tudyk, Donnie Yen, Wen Jiang Director: Gareth Edwards Screenplay based on characters created by George Lucas Studio: Lucasfilm/Walt Disney Studios 141495 (4/4/17) [3 discs] Video: 2.39:1: 1 for 16:9 screens, HD […]

The Labéque Way (2017)

The Labéque Way (2017)

A wonderful documentary on probably the leading two-piano team in the classical world. The Labéque Way (2017) Cast: Katia & Marielle Labéque, Alessandro Baricco, Sir Simon Rattle, Semyon Bychkov Director: Félix Cabez Studio: EuroArts Music International 2064058 (3/3/17) Video: 1.33:1 for 16:9 screens, color Audio: English, PCM stereo No region code Extras: Complete performances of […]

PIAZZOLLA: Homage á Liége; Escualo; Tanguedia; SZMEREK: Fantazja; Concerto – Elwira Sliwkiewicz-Cisak, accordion with guitar & Tangilio Quintet/Lublin Ch. Orch./Piotr Wijatkowski – DUX

PIAZZOLLA: Homage á Liége; Escualo; Tanguedia; SZMEREK: Fantazja; Concerto – Elwira Sliwkiewicz-Cisak, accordion with guitar & Tangilio Quintet/Lublin Ch. Orch./Piotr Wijatkowski – DUX

A fine combination: Piazzolla and Szmerek in interesting works. PIAZZOLLA: Homage á Liége; Escualo; Tanguedia; SZMEREK: Fantazja; Concerto – Elwira Sliwkiewicz-Cisak, accordion with guitar & Tangilio Quintet/Lublin Ch. Orch./Piotr Wijatkowski – DUX 1278 [Distr. by Naxos] (7/8/16) ****: Who knew that there was a composer in Poland who would pair up beautifully with Piazzolla? Leave […]

Toscanini Conducts American Music, Volume 1 = LOEFFLER: Memories of  My Childhood; CRESTON: Choric Dance No. 2; GOULD: Lincoln Legend; GERSHWIN: Rhapsody in Blue – Earl Wild, piano/ Benny Goodman, clarinet/ NBC Symphony Orchestra/ Arturo Toscanini – Pristine Audio

Toscanini Conducts American Music, Volume 1 = LOEFFLER: Memories of My Childhood; CRESTON: Choric Dance No. 2; GOULD: Lincoln Legend; GERSHWIN: Rhapsody in Blue – Earl Wild, piano/ Benny Goodman, clarinet/ NBC Symphony Orchestra/ Arturo Toscanini – Pristine Audio

Arturo Toscanini leads a wartime concert that celebrates the American musical character.  Toscanini Conducts American Music, Volume 1 = LOEFFLER: Memories of  My Childhood (Life in a Russian Village); CRESTON: Choric Dance No. 2; GOULD: Lincoln Legend; GERSHWIN: Rhapsody in Blue – Earl Wild, piano/ Benny Goodman, clarinet/ NBC Symphony Orchestra/ Arturo Toscanini – Pristine […]

Audio News, April 21, 2017

Audio News, April 21, 2017

April 21, 2017 OPPO Releases UDP-205 Audiophile Universal Player 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray Disc Player Gets an Audio Performance Boost OPPO Digital has released its UDP-205 4K Ultra HD Audiophile Blu-ray Disc player. A step-up version of the recently released UDP-203, the UDP-205 brings top-of-the-line audio performance to a universal player that supports 4K Ultra […]

Impromptu = Impromptus by SCHUBERT, CHOPIN, BEETHOVEN, DVORAK, IVES, LISZT, and GERSHWIN – Shai Wosner – Onyx

Impromptu = Impromptus by SCHUBERT, CHOPIN, BEETHOVEN, DVORAK, IVES, LISZT, and GERSHWIN – Shai Wosner – Onyx

Impromptu = Impromptus by SCHUBERT, CHOPIN, BEETHOVEN, DVORAK, IVES, LISZT, and GERSHWIN – Shai Wosner – Onyx 4172, 74:43 (4/7/17) ****: Imagining a posthumous gathering of improvisational geniuses jamming on varying notions of the impromptu. As an introduction to his recording Impromptu, Shai Wosner invites us to consider what would happen “if we got together […]

Stories for Our Time = Ida GOTKOVSKY; Elaine FINE; Anne GUZZO; Cecilia MCDOWALL; Hillary TANN; Faye-Ellen SILVERMAN – Music for Trumpet and Piano / Thomas Pfotenhauer, trumpet; Vincent Fuh, piano – MSR Classics

Stories for Our Time = Ida GOTKOVSKY; Elaine FINE; Anne GUZZO; Cecilia MCDOWALL; Hillary TANN; Faye-Ellen SILVERMAN – Music for Trumpet and Piano / Thomas Pfotenhauer, trumpet; Vincent Fuh, piano – MSR Classics

A diverting collection of trumpet and piano music by contemporary women composers Stories For Our Time: Music for Trumpet and Piano by Women Composers – Thomas Pfotenhauer, trumpet; Vincent Fuh, piano – [World Premiere Recordings] MSR Classics CD MS 1589 TT: 65:25 (11/11/16) [Distr. by Albany] *** This is a unique disc from MSR Classics, […]