News from around the world

September 2022 New Releases

Browse a selection of new recordings

 

Here is our list of new releases, as of 31 August 2022, ordered by release date.

Our regular writers will receive an email about this list, and will be asked to choose which items they would like to review. If you have submitted details of an album and it is chosen for review, we will request a review copy from you, your label or its UK distributor.

The list has been prepared quickly. Apologies for any omissions, or if the information is not up to our usual standards. Please let us know if you find any mistakes.

Unless otherwise specified, each item is a single CD.

Extra information about some new releases can also be found here.

 

11 NOVEMBER 2022

Schubert: The Wanderer
Mathieu Gaudet, piano
Analekta AN29187
Release: 4 November 2022
Schubert: The Wanderer by pianist Mathieu Gaudet is the seventh volume in his wonderful collection The Complete Sonatas and Major Works for Piano of the great Austrian composer Franz Schubert. This album features Schubert's Fantasy in C major, D 760. Majestic, brilliant, powerful, virtuosic, exciting; a panoply of superlatives comes to mind when considering the summit that is this piano masterpiece, commonly known as Wanderer Fantasy.

 

4 NOVEMBER 2022

Space Time Continuo - Pachelbel : The Magnificat Fugues
Amanda Keesmaat, cello, 5 string cello, director; Camille Paquette-Roy, cello; Elinor Frey, cello, cello piccolo; Sylvain Bergeron, archiluth; Luc Beauséjour, organ
Analekta AN28911
Release: 4 November 2022
The links that weave this entire musical program together, and which in fact inspired it, are the 15 fugues among the 95 covering the eight church modes that Pachelbel composed as a prelude to the Magnificat canticle at the vespers sung in St. Sebastian. Concise, unostentatious and characterized by clear and transparent harmonies and textures, according to the scholar Ewald V Nolte, the fugues - most of them transcribed and arranged here by conductor Amanda Keesmaat for various combinations of cello, archlute and organ - show Pachelbel to be a shrewd and pragmatic, but above all sensitive, contrapuntalist.

 


28 OCTOBER 2022

Sparks: Eye of London
Beth Mehocic; Gregory W Brown; Ferdinando DeSena; Mark Dal Porto; Eric Klein; Don Bowyer; Sergio Cervetti; Daniel Perttu; Mark John McEncroe; Hans Bakker; Brian Wilbur Grundstrom
London Symphony Orchestra / Miran Vaupotić
Navona Records NV6454
Release: 28 October 2022
Navona Records presents Sparks: Eye of London, an assembly of original fanfares performed by the London Symphony Orchestra. Drawing from the compositional strengths of today's composers, the orchestra navigates chaos and order, isolation, and ascension towards triumph through passionate orchestral writing reminiscent of the fire that burns within us. A collection spanning thought-provoking narratives, scenic synesthesia, soothing passages, and the whimsically abstract, the London Symphony Orchestra explores a vast musical landscape of emotions, tackling each with precision and verve.

Amplify - Changing America's Playlist - All Classical Portland's RII Vol 1
Lauren McCall; Mélanie Hélène Bonis; Keyla Orozco; Coleridge-Taylor Perkinson; Jasmine Barnes
Navona Records NV6456
Release: 28 October 2022
Globally recognized for its unique radio programming, innovative collaborations, and community outreach, All Classical Portland presents AMPLIFY, a response to the industry's inequities in classical music recordings. The works of five contemporary composers are brought to light in this album, each infused with recollections of stories, cities, and movements that have made an impact along the artists' journey. With an impressive roster of emerging composers and performers, Amplify marks a monumental achievement in highlighting voices in classical music, and is a step in helping to change America's playlist.

Buzz Brass - Horizons
Analekta AN28929
Release: 28 October 2022
Buzz Brass's third album under Analekta label presents masterpieces from Aram Khatchatourian, Paul Dukas, Camille Saint-Saëns, George Gershwin, Lew Pollack, Claude Bolling and Astor Piazzolla. This Brass quintet has been travelling the world and captivating classical music lovers since 2002. Whether alone or with guest artists, Buzz Brass's highly original performances never fail to leave an impression. The ensemble has performed over 1,700 concerts for more than 400,000 music lovers across North America, Europe and China. The innovative arrangements for brass quintet and guest musicians add new shades to the original colours of this music program.

Charles Richard-Hamelin, Andrew Wan - Schumann : The Three Violin Sonatas
Analekta AN29003
Release: 28 October 2022
After recording the sonatas for violin and piano by Ludwig van Beethoven, a triptych that won numerous awards, including the Juno for Classical Album of the Year - Small Ensemble (2022) and an ADISQ award, Andrew Wan and Charles Richard-Hamelin continue their fruitful collaboration by performing the complete sonatas for violin and piano by Robert Schumann (1810-1856). A perfect work to highlight the complicity that has developed between the concertmaster of the Montreal Symphony Orchestra and the pianist who won the silver medal at the 2015 Frédéric Chopin International Piano Competition.

Nino Rota: Fellini's La Dolce Vita
CAM Sugar
Release: 28 October 2022
Nino Rota's timeless score for Federico Fellini's Oscar-winning masterpiece La Dolce Vita is presented by CAM Sugar in a newly remastered version of the original album with 14 tracks previously unreleased on vinyl and digital. Frequently regarded as one of the greatest films of all time, La Dolce Vita was a watershed moment for Italian cinema globally and this release presents a unique opportunity to hear its iconic score as never before. La Dolce Vita's instantly recognisable score has been fully restored and remastered from the original master tapes. A highlight includes a previously unreleased vocal version of the main theme performed by Katyna Ranieri – currently being used as the soundtrack to the latest international FIAT 500 advert starring Leonardo Di Caprio. Blending jazz, rock and roll, Latin rhythms and circus music, the score perfectly captures the glamorous, jet-setting Roman nightlife as well as the solitude and dissatisfaction depicted in Fellini's opus. Rota was a prolific composer for film, scoring over 150 during his lifetime and dozens for Fellini's films - their artistic partnership is one of the most iconic in the history of cinema. Alongside La Dolce Vita, Rota is also known for composing the music for the first two films of Francis Ford Coppola's Godfather trilogy, the second of which earned him the Academy Award for Best Original Score. The previously unreleased vocal version of the main theme features Academy Award nominee Katyna Ranieri (who also performed Grammy-winning song “More / Modelle in Blu” from Mondo Cane) singing Dino Verde's exceptional lyrics which evoke the elegance and frenzy of the Roman cafes and nightclubs on Via Veneto during the Dolce Vita years. CAM Sugar is the most extensive and representative catalogue of Italian original soundtracks, with over 2000 original scores from over 400 composers. Soundtracks from the archive have won over 500 international awards, including an Oscar for “Best Original Score” for Il Postino. The CAM Sugar team undertakes extensive research to revive and remaster tracks from the archive, 70% of which is currently unreleased. They undertake specialized work to restore original master tapes, reinforcing the legacy of the soundtracks for current and future listeners to enjoy. This release marks a new installment of CAM Sugar's Heritage series, the label's collection dedicated to the scores that made the history of Italian cinema.

 


14 OCTOBER 2022

Ruth Gipps: Orchestral Works Vol 2
Juliana Koch, oboe; BBC Philharmonic Orchestra / Rumon Gamba
Chandos CHAN 20161
Release: 14 October 2022
Ruth Gipps (1921-1999) was born in the English seaside resort of Bexhill-on-Sea. Encouraged as a child by an ambitious pianist mother, she appeared locally as a prodigy pianist. She was accepted by the Royal College of Music in 1937, at the age of sixteen, having won the Caird Scholarship. She quickly matured, both as composer and pianist. She studied with Vaughan Williams and Gordon Jacob, and later the oboe with Leon Goossens. During the Second World War she gained a position as oboist with the City of Birmingham Orchestra and devoted a great deal of her time to composing. Three of the works on this album were composed during the war: the Oboe Concerto, the tone poem Death on the Pale Horse, and the overture Chanticleer (derived from an opera which, sadly, she never completed). The manuscript of the Third Symphony is dated 1 November 1965 and the work was first heard when Gipps introduced it with her London Repertoire Orchestra, on 19 March 1966. Its first professional performance took place on 29 October 1969, Gipps directing the BBC Scottish Orchestra, but it has since gone largely unheard, until now.

Chamber Works by Alberto Hemsi
ARC Ensemble
Chandos CHAN 20243
Release: 14 October 2022
Alberto Hemsi was born in 1898 in Turgutlu (also known as Cassaba), in Anatolia (present-day Turkey). Although there had been a Jewish presence in Anatolia for more than 2,000 years, the population expanded considerably following the Alhambra Decree of 1492, with the arrival of Sephardim from Spain and Portugal. It then dwindled precipitously with the disintegration of the Ottoman Empire, the rise of Nazism, the creation of the state of Israel, and the escalation of anti-Semitism in the Arab world. Having completed his training at the conservatory in Milan, Hemsi returned to Anatolia determined to collect and notate as much traditional Sephardic music as he possibly could. A fascination with national folk music had taken root throughout Europe – Bartók and Kodály in Hungary, Dvořák and Smetana in Bohemia, and Vaughan Williams and Gustav Holst in England being the most familiar examples. Because his research was not defined by political or geographical boundaries, Hemsi was compelled to survey the myriad communities spread throughout the vast Sephardic diaspora. He was as fascinated by this musical heritage as he was concerned about its survival but, like so many composers, he also understood how traditional melodies, together with the various performance styles and conventions that supported them, could provide inspiration and nourishment for his own music.

Angèle Dubeau - Portrait : Alex Baranowski
Analekta AN28750
Release: 14 October 2022
In keeping with her passion for seeking out rare musical gems, Angèle Dubeau presents Portrait: Alex Baranowski, the sixth in her series of albums dedicated to current composers, which began in 2008 with Portrait: Philip Glass. A successful young composer based in London, many times awarded and a graduate of Paul McCartney's LIPA, Alex Baranowski offers beautiful, generous music rich in sound atmospheres. Under the breathtaking interpretation of Angèle Dubeau and her remarkable ensemble, La Pietà, this work reveals a wonderfully expressive and sensitive writing for the violin. The album includes several key works from Baranowski's catalog as well as three previously unreleased pieces, including ''Wiosna", a commission that the composer describes as one of his most intimate works.


12 OCTOBER 2022

Ralph Vaughan Williams: Serenade
Albion Records ALBCD053
Release: 12 October 2022
Serenade is Albion's eight and final release in this calendar year, so it is appropriate that it is released on Ralph Vaughan Williams's 15oth birthday, Wednesday 12 October 2022. Of course CDs are only ever released on a Friday, so it is officially available from Friday the 14th – but participating retailers will be offering it for sale two days early in the spirit of the anniversary. Slightly tongue in cheek, I suggested in the booklet that it is a party album for this special birthday.  If so, it is the sort of party that Vaughan Williams would have enjoyed – with five world premiere recordings and a number of transcriptions made especially for the album. We have re-used a few tracks in order to link disparate sound worlds together, but 80% of the total playing time is represented by new recordings. At the heart of the album is David Briggs' dreamy organ transcription of Serenade to Music, played at Truro Cathedral. It was held back from our recent Transcriptions from Truro recording because there was insufficient space for it. David also gives us The March Past of the Kitchen Utensils from The Wasps – now that really is a party piece – and what the French would call a sortie based on Sine Nomine. The premiere recordings comprise a Flourish for Three Trumpets and no less than four unpublished 'Cambridge' Flourishes for Four Trumpets, played by members of the Tredegar Band, who also give us a brass band arrangement of Two Herefordshire Carols, as harmonised by Vaughan Williams, under their conductor, Ian Porthouse. There are three folk songs – new recordings for this album, made at the same time as the four albums of our complete Folk Songs series, each of the three soloists singing a folk song previously recorded by one of the others. Lynn Arnold and Charles Matthews reprise the early Suite for Four Hands on One Pianoforte, with the original version of the Minuet. Charles Matthews goes on to play organ arrangements of three works by Vaughan Williams. We conclude with a hymn tune that Vaughan Williams named after his cousin and best man, Ralph Wedgwood, known to his friends as Randolph – set to words that Vaughan Williams salvaged from a Moody and Sankey hymn: God be with you till we meet again. This is a quiet end to a well-behaved party, looking forward to another 150 years of great music.

 

7 OCTOBER 2022

Shhh!! Ensemble (Edana Higham, Zac Pulak) -  Meanwhile
Analekta AN29139
Release: 7 October 2022
Percussionist Zac Pulak and pianist Edana Higham, the two members of the duo SHHH!! Ensemble, have carved a space for themselves as compelling performers and commissioners of electrifying new music. The music of Meanwhile is visceral and colourful, exploring a wide range of percussion instruments, including piano, prepared piano, marimba, vibraphone, crotales, cymbals, gongs and bells, tom-toms, timpani, and more. Meanwhile is a celebration of big, bold sonority and is the result of four years of collaborations with some of Canada's most creative voices, such as Jocelyn Morlock, Kelly-Marie Murphy et John Beckwith.

Citadel of Song: Ballate From Boccaccio's Decameron
Anakronos, Caitríona O'Leary
Heresy Records HERESY028
Release: 7 October 2022
Dublin-based Heresy Records to release Citadel of Song, a new double-album by Anakronos, whose critically acclaimed debut album The Red Book of Ossory received 5 stars from The Irish Times and was called one of the best albums of the year by RTÉ Lyric fm, The Journal of Music amongst others. Comprised of a group of internationally celebrated musicians,  Anakronos' recording and performance projects centre on finding ancient texts (lyrics) whose melodies have been lost or forgotten. The works are reconstructed, creating fresh interpretations that fuse Medieval Music with Jazz, Contemporary Classical and Progressive Rock. With Citadel of Song, Anakronos presents the ten songs from Giovanni Boccaccio's 14th century masterpiece, The Decameron. Citadel of Song sings the enduring and complex story of romance against the backdrop of imperiled humanity. As the Black Death ravages Florence, 10 young aristocrats (and their servants) leave the city and go into the countryside to build a fortress of songs, stories and dances that will protect them from pandemic-induced soul-destroying fear and creeping dispassion. This is the frame story of Boccaccio's Decameron, the iconic masterpiece of Western literature written during & relating to the plague that swept through Asia, North Africa and Europe between 1347 and 1351. The 7 women and 3 men who flee Florence spend ten days feasting, conversing and telling stories. At the end of each day, when 10 stories have been told by each of the 10 storytellers, one of them sings a song. The lyrics to the songs by Boccaccio are given, the music is left to the imagination of the reader. Anakronos' director and singer Caitríona O'Leary has reconstructed the songs, setting Boccaccio's lyric poetry to music from 14th century Italy. True to its name, Anakronos has taken these songs from 700 years ago and fused them with sounds and moods of today. While the ongoing cataclysm of the pandemic always remains suspended in the background, the songs in The Decameron centre on the joyful, hopeful, anxiety-ridden, obsessive & painful aspects of romantic love - an enduring preoccupation of humanity. Caitríona O'Leary, an internationally acclaimed singer, known for her work in Early Music, Traditional Irish music and Folk,  states, 'I plunged into the surviving codices looking for ballate that most closely matched the syllable count of Boccaccio's poetry; and, after carefully following the underlay of the original borrowed songs (exquisitely florid phrases, funkily syncopated hockets, rest-broken words and all), took them to my bandmates for us to use as the starting point in our journey to somewhere else entirely.'

 


1 OCTOBER 2022

Martynov Edition
Opus Posth Ensemble, The Sirin Choir, Tatiana Grindenko, Alexei Lubimov and others
Brilliant Classics 96380 (7 CDs)
Release: 1 October 2022
The most comprehensive survey ever assembled on record of a major Russian composer working in the post-Soviet school of simplicity and transcendence. Born in 1946, Vladimir Martynov is one of several composers from the former USSR whose music taps into a vein of perpetual memory and farewell. Literally so in the case of Der Abschied, an eight-movement cycle for small ensemble which stands on the threshold like a guest at a gathering of friends, unable or unwilling to shut the door behind them and venture out alone. There are notable ancestors for this style among the Austro-German Romantics, especially Franz Schubert, but the style itself became defined by composers such as Martynov towards the end of the last century, and continues into this one, touched by an ineffable melancholy which seems to recognise an end-point for music itself, and takes comfort in the fragmentary recovery of melody and harmony from an Edenic state of Classicism. One of Martynov's most distinguished contemporaries was the Ukrainian composer Valentin Silvestrov, who talked of a 'genetic aural well' for Russian music which, like Orthodox prayer, cannot be learnt as a text, but which exists beyond any text. Silvestrov explicitly recognised his own output as 'meta- music' or even 'post-music', and the same could be said of many pieces in Martynov's output. Tiny motifs and gestures are layered and expanded across a meditative space in a distinctively Russian form of Minimalism that bears certain similarities with the better- known outputs of Pärt and Schnittke but pursues a consciously more austere path: both the Requiem and Stabat mater are imbued with the timeless qualities of chant and ancient melisma. Martynov's music began to attract a certain cult following in the West during the 1990s with performances and recordings made principally by the violinist Gidon Kremer and his former partner, Tatiana Grindenko. As both a violinist and conductor, Grindenko has continued to keep Martynov's flame burning, and she leads most of the performances here, which were made mostly in Moscow over the course of several years and in several cases receive here their first international release. Released to mark Martynov's 75th birthday, the collection is introduced by a major new essay from Alexei Lubimov (another performer who, like Grindenko, has been immersed in the composer's output for decades) and features extensive notes on the individual works. As Lubimov concludes: 'In the combination of his various roles as “non- composer”, scholar, creator of his own rituals, provocateur to the audience, Martynov succeeds to an astonishing degree in putting his finger on the points of pain in our time, and offers us the hope of healing through music.'

Beethoven: The 9 Symphonies Transcribed for Piano by Liszt
Giovanni Bellucci, piano
Brilliant Classics 94863 (5 CDs)
Release: 1 October 2022
Issued complete for the first time, a new recording of Franz Liszt's iconic piano transcriptions of the nine Beethoven symphonies. As the Italian pianist Giovanni Bellucci remarks in an extensive booklet introduction, this album is the fruit of study over the past 20 years and more, into the worlds of both Beethoven and Liszt and their meeting point in these transcriptions where the Hungarian composer sought to honour his forebear as the original leader of an artistic movement we now think of as Romanticism, where the composer places himself at the front and centre of his works. Liszt's transcriptions diverged from the ready-made arrangements which publishers rapidly produced and reprinted to meet the demands of amateur and domestic audiences. Here, the symphonic world of Beethoven is not merely experienced as a distant echo but translated into the idiom of the virtuoso piano which swept across Europe during the latter half of the 19th century, led by Liszt and Clara Schumann. Thus in these performances, Bellucci seeks a kind of fidelity to the Romantic age of the transcriptions rather than the Classical age of the original works. Taking broad tempi and probing deeply into textures which, after all, condense the soundworld of an entire orchestra into the span of ten fingers, Bellucci presents an individual and compelling new vision of works which renew themselves at the hands of each new generation's interpreters. The cycle reaches its climax with the Ninth, recorded live at the 2014 Lisztomania Festival in France, with the participation of the Czech Philharmonic Choir of Brno and soloists Hana Škarková, Lucie Hilscherová, Michal Lehotský and Martin Gurbal. Other studio sessions have taken place in the famous Salle de Musique at La Chaux de Fonds in Switzerland, between 2018 and 2021. 'In completing the project,' Bellucci remarks, 'I would like to borrow Franz Liszt's words and make them mine, albeit just for a moment: 'The piano is, for me, what the frigate is for the sailor, indeed, perhaps even more, because the piano is my word, is my life.'

J.S. Bach: Miscellaneous Pieces for Harpsichord
Pieter-Jan Belder, harpsichord
Brilliant Classics 96065 (3 CDs)
Release: 1 October 2022
Over a career spanning more than 30 years, the Dutch harpsichordist and conductor Pieter-Jan Belder has become renowned as a Bach interpreter with his surveys in concert and on record of the keyboard and orchestral masterpieces such as The Well-Tempered Clavier, the Brandenburg Concertos and no fewer than three recordings of the Goldberg Variations. On this new album, recorded in 2020 and 2021 on a modern Titus Crijnen copy of a Ruckers model, Pieter-Jan Belder turns to the overlooked corners of Bach's early writing for the harpsichord. These include standalone fugues, fantasias and suites based on themes by contemporary composers such as Reincken and Albinoni. Nevertheless, there is no sense of routine or technical exercise about them. The pieces here are almost all extrovert, playing to the strengths of the young Bach as a performer as well as composer, and already demonstrating that confidence which would go on to mark his mature compositions. An appreciation of French flair is discernible in the F minor Suite BWV823 and elsewhere, but the dominant influence is the keyboard writing of Girolamo Frescobaldi, whose toccatas and canzonas were studied by Bach from an early age. The better-known pieces here include the sober and songful Aria variata BWV989 with its courtly French theme, and the E flat Prelude, Fugue and Allegro originally written for lute, but which also finds a happy home on the harpsichord. The most famous but also most uncharacteristic piece is the mysterious Capriccio 'on the departure of a beloved brother' which appears to be a work of Bach's late teenage years, though no definite corroborative proof of its commission or purpose has yet come to light. Rather, it seems unique in Bach's output as a humorous parody of styles and emotions.

Dal Barba: Requiem and Other Sacred Music
Coro Istituzione Armonica; Ensemble Il Narvalo / Alberto Turco
Brilliant Classics 96189
Release: 1 October 2022
Daniel Pio Dal Barba (1715–1801) is known for his role as maestro di cappella at Verona Cathedral, as well as his successful career as an opera composer and male soprano, also in Verona. His large catalogue of liturgical music is mostly well preserved, and his sacred music can be considered a simplified version of the dominant style (in terms of harmony, counterpoint and timbre) of the first half of the 18th century. His compositions were most often written for a relatively small ensemble (three or four voices, two violins and basso continuo), whereas works by his contemporaries would typically include wind instruments also. Dal Barba's Messa da morto breve, or Short Requiem Mass, dates from 1779. The central text of the introit ('Te decet hymnus, Deus in Sion'; 'Praise to you, o God in Zion') comprises an extract from Psalm 64 (verses 2–5) and is entrusted by Dal Barba to the solo soprano and bass, whilst the antiphon is sung by the chorus. The invocations of the Kyrie are given three distinct musical forms: a chorus with cantabile melodic lines, a duet in triple metre, and finally a fugue, with a theme that recalls the one Mozart used in the Kyrie of his Requiem K.626, composed over ten years later. The most substantial part of Dal Barba's Messa da morto breve is the Dies irae. Dal Barba divides the sequentia, the hymn text sung between the Epistle and Gospel readings, into three solo arias, and three where the chorus takes centre stage. The three chorus sections of the Dies irae start with a motif recalling the corresponding Gregorian theme. Throughout the complex Latin text, the chorus alternates between isorhythmic passages and imitative sections, with a style comprising simple melodic lines and recurring harmonies, culminating in the cadence of the Amen. The Messa da morto breve concludes with the Libera me, a long responsory used to say farewell to the body. It is interesting to note that the atmosphere generated by the minor keys (G minor and C minor) is continuously interrupted by the key of E flat major, which Dal Barba uses to emphasis the text 'Requiem aeterna' and to pre-empt the 'serenity' that appears following the conclusion of the final cadence, symbolising believers' hope for resurrection. The Gloria is a miniature cantata for three- voice chorus and soloists, divided up into the typical nine sections, a model which was used by many other European composers, including J S Bach. The Te Deum was, and still is, listened to as a hymn of thanks at the end of the year, and it was frequently sung to avert natural disasters or war. In Dal Barba's Te Deum, various solos are interwoven with the sections of text entrusted to the chorus, and the final section returns to some of the harmonic and melodic ideas used in the opening of the work.

Antonio Ruiz-Pipó: Complete Music for Guitar
Michele Di Filippo, guitar
Brilliant Classics 96300 (2 CDs)
Release: 1 October 2022
Born in Granada in 1934, Antonio Ruiz-Pipó learnt the guitar in his youth but trained as a pianist in Barcelona, where he was taught by Frank Marshall, doyen of the Spanish piano school made famous by Alicia de Larrocha. Further study in Paris refined Ruiz-Pipó's compositional technique, and he taught at the École Normale from 1977 until his death in 1997. Despite his early experience as a guitarist, Ruiz-Pipó did not write from the perspective of a 'guitarist- composer' such as Ponce, Brouwer or Dyens. Rather, his relationship with guitar was both visceral and remote, reflecting the physical distance separating him from his heritage. Nevertheless, there is an unmistakably Hispanic character to pieces such as the Seis Canciones y danzas and two sets of Preludes which made him a favourite composer for the guitarist Narciso Yepes, who became one of the foremost exponents of classical guitar in the generation after Segovia. The Spanish folk tradition is seamlessly integrated by Ruiz-Pipó within his own, distinctive and evolving musical voice, which bridges the divide between a tonal-modal centre and free chromaticism. The collection begins with the upbeat Sonata 'pur un taxi' and concludes with the late, autumnal moods of the five Otonales. Highlights in between include a light- hearted Requilorio (set of 'fripperies') premiered by Yepes, and homages to Cabezon and Mudarra, two great vihuelist-composers of the 16th century. There is a forward-looking edge yet also nostalgic patina to Ruiz-Pipó's guitar writing which lends this music an individual profile that stands out in the landscape of the Spanish guitar in the 20th century. The album marks the label debut of the Italian guitarist Michele Di Filippo, born in 1994, who is also an experienced composer for his instrument.

Petr Eben: Velvet Revolution - Complete Organ Music Vol 1
Janette Fishell, organ
Brilliant Classics 96312 (3 CDs)
Release: 1 October 2022
When the Czech composer Petr Eben died in 2007, he was renowned and performed the world over as a composer for choirs and organ. Nevertheless, 15 years on, this album inaugurates the first attempt at a complete survey of his output for the organ – an output so rich and individual that it has come to define a late 20th- century sound for the instrument as characterfully as Marcel Dupré achieved some six decades earlier. Eben's individuality as a composer may be traced in part to the influence of the environment in which he was brought up, the Renaissance town of Český Krumlov. This background shaped his humanist mission for art, a conviction arising perhaps from his wartime internment at the concentration camp in Buchenwald. Nevertheless, a deep faith also burns within large-scale cycles such as Job, which battles with matters of life and death in a richly chromatic language, evidently informed by the composer's own formidable gifts as an improviser. Alongside Job, the first volume of this projected integrale presents the monumental Faust cycle for organ, which tells the story of Goethe's antihero in nine vividly illustrative pieces, including an Easter chorus, a drinking song, a Witches' Sabbath and finally a sublime epilogue. Eben first came to international attention as an organ composer with the Laudes composed in 1964: the stern, archaic and magnificent quality of these hymns has proved adaptable to organs across the world and interpretations by countless organists. In Janette Fishell, Eben's music for organ finds a supremely dedicated interpreter of international experience and technical finish. As professor of organ at Indiana University, she is recognised as a leading scholarly authority on Eben's organ music, the subject of her doctoral dissertation; she produced the first study of his organ works in English. Subtitled 'Velvet Revolution', this complete survey will be illustrated by a series of online films about Eben's life and work; Fishell supplies authoritative annotations to her own performances on this album, which will make essential listening for all students and enthusiasts of 20th-century organ music.

J S Bach: Concertos for Recorder, Vol 2
Erik Bosgraaf, recorder; Collegium Musicum Riga
Brilliant Classics 96394
Release: 1 October 2022
With a catalogue of acclaimed albums for Brilliant Classics stretching well into double figures, the Dutch recorder virtuoso Erik Bosgraaf goes back to Bach for his latest release, with an album of arrangements as imaginatively conceived and as stylishly executed as Volume 1 (94296), released in 2011, which won glowing reviews from the international music press. Bach wrote as inventively and idiomatically for the recorder throughout his career as he did for every other instrument at his disposal, but he left no concertos in which the instrument takes the spotlight. Thus Bosgraaf and his colleagues have attempted to answer the question, what might Bach have done, or could he have done, if he had written concertos for the recorder? They have looked for inspiration to the cantatas, and not only those where Bach composed memorable recorder parts such as the Actus Tragicus. For example, the album's opening G major concerto is compiled from a tenor aria of dazzling runs in BWV74, followed by the sorrowful opening Sinfonia of BWV12 (in which the oboe originally takes the starring role), and then another tenor aria from BWV81 which graphically illustrates the foaming waves of a stormy sea. In both aria transcriptions, Bosgraaf's recorder takes over the vocal line, and paints vivid sound pictures with his remarkable palette of tone colours. A second concerto in D major draws its music from similar sources, followed by a Partita which the Dutch musicologist has arranged from movements of the Fifth French Suite. A further concerto is supplied by a relatively 'straight' transcription of the familiar (but sublime) A minor Concerto for violin, BWV 1041. In between and around these inventive 'new' concertos, Erik Bosgraaf and his colleagues offer contrasting standalone points of reflection with chorale and sinfonia transcriptions such as the spellbinding opening movement of Wir danken dir BWV29, which Bach himself arranged from the opening Preludio of the E minor Partita for solo violin. There is every good reason to follow Bach's example and arrange freely in celebration both of his unique powers of invention and expression, and of performers in full command of their recreative gifts.

Raffaele Bellafronte: Piano Sonatas; 12 Preludes
Alessandro Deljavan, piano
Brilliant Classics 96414
Release: 1 October 2022
Born in 1961, the Italian composer Raffaelle Bellafronte has produced a wide-ranging body of work in a modern tonal idiom. Previous albums of concertos, guitar music and chamber works paint a portrait of a lively mind and a personal voice embracing large dramatic gestures and lyric reflection, each as quintessentially 'Italian' in their expression as the other. The set of 12 Preludes opens with a magnificently imposing evocation of stillness, coloured by the kind of bittersweet harmonies to be found in Bartok and the sense of musical space associated with Messiaen, building a surprisingly complete soundworld within the brief space of three minutes. The remaining preludes are no less ingenious in their economy of mood and gesture. Melancholy and frenzy alternate; glittering and asymmetrical rhythms stand in stark opposition to slow ostinato figurations; dense contrapuntal writing is cast against terse homophony. Bellafronte trained as a pianist himself, and he composes for the full spectrum of the instrument's heroic and sensual possibilities. There is a satisfying crunch to the harmonies and immediately appreciable breadth of vision to the opening paragraphs of the Sonata Prima Désaccord (2006),where contrapuntal and propulsive ostinato writing combine to pull the listener through a compelling narrative which feels longer than its 12-minute duration. From three years later, the Second Sonata experiments with a Haydnesque binary form of two quick movements – a nervous, lopsided march followed by a frustrated would-be fugue with a brutal and macabre conclusion. The Third Sonata (2014) is the most substantial piece here in both duration and ambition, launched with a momentum worthy of Bartók or Alkan. The quick-slow-quick form is superficially conventional, but it encloses a wealth of surprising excursions which challenge tonal stability and once more pitch the listener into a pianistic tumult. Attracting a range of renowned pianists such as Zlata Chochieva and Maria Argentiero, Bellafronte's piano music is tackled here with superb assurance by Alessandro Deljavan, no stranger to the Brilliant Classics and Piano Classics catalogues himself, with acclaimed albums of Chopin, Taneyev and Godard to his credit.

Undine: Music for Flute & Piano
Reinecke; Debussy; Doyen; Mouquet
Rebecca Taio, flute; Luca Colombarolli, piano
Brilliant Classics 96695
Release: 1 October 2022
Each piece on this album, titled Undine, takes inspiration from fairy tales, myths and poems. These works perfectly represent the hidden symbolism and fervent romanticism of this period, and the aura of magic and allure they emanate is undeniable. Alongside the more well-known pieces by Debussy, Reinecke and Mouquet, Undine features a piece by the almost forgotten composer Albert Doyen (1882–1935), whose music blends perfectly into the context of this poetic journey. Reinecke is largely known for his flute music, which spans the 19th century, although his music still reveals the influence of the first German Romantics, particularly Mendelssohn and Schumann. Reinecke was inspired to write Undine Sonata after reading Friedrich de la Motte Fouqué's eponymous fairy tale, which suited the German Romantics' penchant for the supernatural. The fairy tale describes the water-nymph Undine's search for earthly love, and each of the four movements evokes a precise moment in the story. The work brims with emotion, inspired by the romantic allure of the protagonist. Prélude à l'après-midi d'un faune, inspired by symbolist poet Stéphane Mallarmé's L'Après- midi d'un faune, was written for full orchestra. Enraptured by the intensely sensual atmosphere of Mallarmé's poetry, Debussy's interpretation overflows with passion and exuberance. In this piece Debussy shows how the expressions of the soul can be transformed into sounds and beauty, offering glimpses of wonderment as well as myriad splashes of colour. The present version for flute and piano was made by Karl Lenski and derives from two sources: a little-known autograph particell from the estate of Alfred Cortot and Debussy's own arrangement of the work for two pianos. Inspired by the Debussian style, Albert Doyen wrote five Poèmes grecs. The use of whole- tone harmonies and the attention to fleeting, subtle sonorities are reminiscent of Debussy's Prélude à l'après-midi. However, following the publication of Poèmes Grecs, the young composer fell into complete obscurity. Also influenced by Greek mythology is Mouquet's best-loved work, La Flûte de Pan. Mouquet's sonata presents three tableaux of the Greek god Pan: Pan and the shepherds, Pan and the birds, and Pan and the nymphs. The first movement is characterised by two themes, one evoking a mountain scene, the other representing Pan's sweet singing. The music of the second movement is melancholic, reflecting the woodland solitude of Pan the god, whilst in the final movement the dance rhythms are interspersed with languid dreamy moments.

George Onslow: Piano Quintets Op 70 and Op 76
Nepomuk Fortepiano Quintet
Brilliant Classics 96720
Release: 1 October 2022
Hailing from an aristocratic English family, George Onslow (1784-1853) grew up as a nobleman in Clermont-Ferrand, France. From the 1830s onwards, Onslow appeared frequently in Parisian musical circles. At this time, opéra comique was the favoured musical genre. Composers such as Meyerbeer, Rossini, and Donizetti were popular, alongside the dazzling Romantic piano music of Liszt and Chopin. Onslow's strict classical style, however, made him unique in Paris at that time, earning him the nickname, 'French Beethoven'. Onslow concentrated primarily on instrumental chamber music; his opus includes 36 string quartets, 34 quintets and 3 piano quintets. The Piano Quintet Op.76, written in 1846, is an arrangement of his 4th Symphony. An interesting feature of this work is the nickname of the Finale, 'Le Coup de Vent'. Although not mentioned by Onslow himself, this movement is suggestive of the Aeolian harp, an instrument popular in the 19th century. When placed by an open window, this instrument, consisting of strings in a box, would vibrate in the wind, producing an ethereal sound. Onslow might have been imitating this effect in the Finale with his use of rapid chromatic scales and a glass-like tinkling that can only be achieved with a special pedal effect available on some instruments of that period. A piano quintet can be composed for different combinations of instruments: violin, viola and two cellos, or, as was often the case in the second half of the 19th century, two violins, viola and one cello. The combination including double bass that the Nepomuk Fortepiano Quintet employs was used mainly in the first half of the 19th century. George Onslow composed a number of quintets with two cellos. At one performance one of the cellists did not arrive and so the virtuoso double bassist Domenico Dragonetti, who was by chance present, suggested that he replace the absent cellist. The composer resisted at first, fearing that the resulting sound colour would be unpleasant, but the performance was such a great success that he was immediately convinced. After his death in 1853, Onslow's fame faded rapidly, and his works fell out of favour. Fortunately, there has been an increase in interest in his works in recent times, and his compositions can be heard frequently in concert halls today.

MacDowell: Piano Sonatas 1 & 2; Woodland Sketches
Giorgio Trione Bartoli, piano
Piano Classics PCL10227
Release: 1 October 2022
Edward MacDowell (1860-1908) spent formative years in France and Germany, impressed Liszt and others with his talents as a pianist and composer, and became a respected teacher and composer on his return to the US, dying before he reached 50 after sustaining injuries in a traffic accident and treating the ensuing depression with potassium bromide. As a composer, MacDowell's most enduring legacy lies in small-scale piano sets such as the Woodland Sketches first published in 1896, where subtle manipulations of harmony, melodic contour and texture take on evocative meaning. MacDowell alternates between dramatic and humourous moods with a Schumann-like rapidity of thought. MacDowell's four piano sonatas break out of the character-piece mould into epic musical statement, as indicated by their titles: 'Tragic' and 'Heroic' for the first two. On the one hand, these sonatas are large-scale, impassioned works, steeped in the late Romantic virtuoso tradition; yet at the same time, their projection of stern nobility gives them a curious emotional detachment that mixes uneasily with their expansive idiom. Even in the tremendous First, a homage to MacDowell's former teacher Joachim Raff, the sorrow is represented rather than expressed. There are few works of the period that are simultaneously so tumultuous and so remote. MacDowell expressed his aesthetic philosophy in words as lofty as his music, which he called 'a kind of soul-language'. He intended each movement of the “Eroica” to evoke a part of the Arthurian legend, including a spirited scherzo to match the Doré illustration in which the knight of the Round Table is surrounded by elves. Born in 1996, Giorgio Trione Bartoli won many piano competitions in his native Italy before making his career as a performer specialising in Liszt and the central-Romantic repertoire, and as a professor of piano presently based at the conservatoire in Foggia. This release marks his debut on Piano Classics.

Tansman: Piano Music
Maria Argentiero, piano
Piano Classics PCL10260
Release: 1 October 2022
Alexandre Tansman (1897-1986) was born in Poland but spent most of his musical life in Paris, always referred to himself as 'un compositeur polonais' despite becoming a French citizen in 1938. His Transatlantic Sonatina was the result of a 1927 trip to the US, where he discovered jazz. The opening Foxtrot mixes up Joplin and Gershwin, before an exquisite 'Spiritual and Blues' and finally a swinging Charleston. Tansman was a marvellous tune-smith with a Polish heritage but a French accent gained from his move to Paris in 1919. There he absorbed elements of cabaret, music-hall, café, jazz and fashionable dances, blurring boundaries between artistic and popular music. The Trois préludes en forme de blues pick up the stylistic theme hinted at in the middle movement of the sonata. Le tour du monde en miniature (1933) affirms Tansman's status as among the most cosmopolitan composers of the 20th century: a whirlwind 12-movement suite that sets out among the coconut groves of California and ends up dancing a tarantella in Naples, having stopped off in far-eastern jungles and temples along the way. Maria Argentiero ends her uniquely compiled survey of Tansman's piano music with a world premiere recording of the Esquisses javanaises (1945) – a set of three tone-pictures for the piano which returns to the central panels of the Tour de monde and their potent evocations of eastern culture from a western perspective. Born in 1985, the Italian pianist Maria Argentiero gained an enthusiastic online following during lockdown with her streamed performances of repertoire from Haydn to Satie, Kapustin and beyond. She teaches in Rome and specialises as a performer in quirkier voices from the past century such as Tansman. The booklet features a thorough profile of the composer and his piano music, plus an interview between Maria Argentiero and Marianne Tansman, the composer's daughter, who recalls him as a 'very loving but very anxious' father.

Cecile Chaminade: Piano Music Volume 2
Mark Viner, piano
Piano Classics PCL10249
Release: 1 October 2022
The first volume of Cécile Chaminade's piano music on Piano Classics won the same kind of universal accolades as the rest of Mark Viner's fast-growing catalogue of albums for the label. His masterful advocacy is helping her to regain the reputation she enjoyed during her lifetime, when she could count Queen Victoria among her legion of ardent fans, in a long and fruitful career capped by becoming the first female composer to be awarded the Legion d'honneur, in 1913 – when she still had more than 30 years of productive music-making ahead of her. Chaminade (1857-1944) is principally remembered today as a composer of salon music, but she began her career writing on a much grander scale and with loftier expressive ambitions, both for the piano and in other genres. Such ambitions leave a mark on the set of six Etudes de concert which Mark Viner has compiled from different opus numbers (distinct from the Op 35 set recorded on Volume 1), beginning in dazzling style with the flashing runs of the Etude romantique, Op 132 and ending with the no-nonsense counterpoint of the Etude scolastique, Op 139. Au pays dévasté Op 155 (In the devastated country) is one of Chaminade's most profound conceptions, among the most serious of her late works, published in 1919 in the wake of the First World War, which she had spent as a nurse to wounded soldiers away from the front line. However, there is also plenty of Chaminade the charmer here, at the peak of her powers in the Six Pièces humoristiques – the first and last of which receive their world premiere recordings here. The album opens with Ondine, among her most supple and delicately textured tone-poems, and closes with the irrepressibly cheeky Lolita, a 'caprice espagnol' worthy of Carmen herself. Further highlights in between include a swaying and sensuous Danse creole Op 94 and the offbeat, coquettish Guitare Op 34. Under Mark Viner's fingers, Chaminade casts the same spell here as she did over audiences across Europe 150 years ago.

 


30 SEPTEMBER 2022

Berg: Violin Concerto; Three Orchestral Pieces
James Ehnes, viola; BBC Symphony Orchestra / Andrew Davis
Chandos CHSA 5270 (Hybrid SACD)
Release: 30 September 2022
Born in 1885, Alban Berg was one of the most significant composers of the Second Viennese School, whose output proved tremendously influential in the development of music in the twentieth century. He was a student of Schoenberg, who found that his juvenile compositions were almost exclusively written for voice; his natural ability to write lyrical melodic lines (even in later life while following the restrictions of twelve-tone serialism) probably remained the most outstanding quality of his style. His Op 1 Piano Sonata was the fulfilment of a task set by Schoenberg to write non-vocal music. The Passacaglia, written between the sonata and World War I was only completed in short-score, and may have been intended to form part of a larger work. Both pieces are recorded here in skilful orchestrations by Andrew Davis. The Three Orchestral Pieces were composed alongside his first great masterpiece, Wozzeck, and could be seen as a tribute to his musical hero, Mahler. The Violin Concerto, from 1935, was commissioned by the American violinist Louis Krasner, but was inspired by the premature death (from polio) of Manon Gropius, the daughter of Alma Mahler and the architect and Bauhaus founder Walter Gropius, hence the subtitle 'to the memory of an angel'. It proved to be one of the composer's final works as Berg died later that year as the result of an abscess from an insect sting.

Schubert: String Quintet; Quartettsatz
Brodsky Quartet; Laura van der Heijden, cello
Chandos CHAN 10978
Release: 30 September 2022
Celebrating its fiftieth anniversary this year, the Brodsky Quartet has performed more than 3,000 concerts on the major concert stages of the world and has released more than seventy recordings. A natural curiosity and insatiable desire to explore have propelled the group in many artistic directions and continue to ensure it not only a place at the very forefront of the international chamber music scene but also a rich and varied musical existence. As they comment in their booklet note: 'It seems fitting to mark the milestone by recording this epic and most celebrated of chamber works, Schubert's String Quintet in C major, a piece which we have lived with since childhood, and which we have played with a long line of illustrious cellists. One of our earliest performances took place with Terence Weil, our mentor at college, at his retirement concert, just as we were starting out on our professional journey. Now the wonderful young Laura van der Heijden, who comes to this recording with a maturity which belies her years, represents with respect to us a similar age gap, proving that age is insignificant where there is a meeting of musical minds. Now we look forward to whatever our sixth decade might bring.'

Vivaldi: The Four Seasons; Chevalier de Saint-George: Violin Concertos Op 5 & Op 8
Renaud Capucon, violin
Erato 5054197189753
Release: 30 September 2022
Renaud Capuçon, firmly established as today's leading French violinist, describes Vivaldi's Four Seasons as 'a highlight of the violin repertoire'. His first recording of the work is in conjunction with the Orchestre de Chambre de Lausanne, of which he became Artistic Director in Autumn 2021. He complements the Vivaldi with two concertos composed in Paris in the 1770s – more than forty years after Vivaldi's death, and far less well-known to today's listeners. The Guadeloupe-born composer Chevalier de Saint-George (1745-1799) has a discography including 12 violin concertos, 10 symphonies, two sets of string quartets and several operas. The Handel & Haydn Society in Boston proclaimed him 'a notable composer ..., and one of the first of African descent in classical music'. This album features Saint-George's concertos No 9, Op 8 in G major and No 1, Op 5 in C major.

Vaughan Williams: The New Collector's Edition
Vernon Handley, Adrian Boult, Richard Hickox, Meredith Davies
Warner Classics 0190296245374 (30 CDs)
Release: 30 September 2022
Celebrated as the musical poet of the English landscape, Vaughan Williams was also a visionary composer of enormous range: from the pastoral lyricism of The Lark Ascending and the still melancholy of Silent Noon to the violence of the Fourth Symphony and the grand ceremonial of All people that on earth do dwell. As we celebrate the 150th Anniversary of his birth (12 October), this edition presents all the major orchestral, chamber, vocal and stage works, as well as many lesser pieces and rarities, across 30 CDs, with performances conducted by Vernon Handley, Richard Hickox, Sir Adrian Boult, Sir David Willcocks, Anthony Rolfe Johnson, Ian Partridge, Robert Tear, Sir Charles Groves and Meredith Davies.

RCO – Nikolaus Harnoncourt Live, The Radio Recordings (1981-2012)
RCO 19007
Release: 30 September 2022
Specially curated by the artistic committee of the RCO, this 15-CD boxset pays tribute to the late guest conductor, Nikolaus Harnoncourt. Released for the very first time on audio, much of these recordings have been cleared exclusively for this release.


23 SEPTEMBER 2022

Abel Selaocoe – Where is Home (Hae Ke Kae)
Warner Classics 190296224324
Release: 23 September 2022
A fast-rising global star, Abel Selaocoe is redefining the parameters of the cello, moving seamlessly across a plethora of genres and styles while projecting his own unique vision. Combining consummate musicianship with a fearless creative spirit, Selaocoe possesses a deep passion for a broad array of musical styles with a particular interest in highlighting the links between Western and non-Western musical traditions. His much-anticipated debut album, Where Is Home (Hae Ke Kae), is fiercely ambitious in its musical range. Alongside fresh perspectives on a selection of solo cello repertoire by Bach and Platti, ten of the fourteen tracks are compositions by Selaocoe, including the album's opening track Ibuyile, which features a guest appearance from legendary US cellist Yo-Yo Ma. A multitude of Selaocoe's close collaborators also appear on the album, which draws heavily on Selaocoe's personal experiences of South African culture, blending vibrant timbres, heart-tugging folk melodies and infectious rhythms to dazzling effect.

Leoncavallo: Zingari
Soloists; Opera Rara Chorus; Royal Philharmonic Orchestra / Carlo Rizzi
Opera Rara ORC61
Release: 23 September 2022
Artistic Director Carlo Rizzi conducts the restored and original version of Zingari as it was first heard over 100 years ago at its London world première. Recorded in the studio before a performance at London's Cadogan Hall with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, Krassimira Stoyanova sings the role of Fleana and is joined by Arsen Soghomonyan as Radu, Stephen Gaertner as Tamara and Łukasz Goliński as Il Vecchio, together with the Opera Rara Chorus.

Driftwood
Liona Boyd; William Beauvais; Traditional Catalan, arranged by Miguel Llobet; Ben Lahring; Seymour Bernstein; Graeme Koehne
Ben Lahring, guitar
Release: 23 September 2022
Driftwood was recorded ten years after Ben Lahring's first album, My Stage (released August 2012). Over half the tracks are original compositions: Tracks 4-6 are a three-movement work titled Firstborn of the Dead - a piece with some religious connotations stemming from Lahring's time as a church Music Director/Pastor. Track 9, Over The Pacific, is a 2021 revisiting of themes that he first composed about twenty years ago while living in tropical Darwin, Australia. Track 10, Driftwood, takes inspiration from Poem on his birthday by Dylan Thomas. Just as Thomas composed his poem in reaction to his 35th birthday, Lahring composed Driftwood as a 35-year-old reflecting on life and aging. Track 11, Fair Winds and Following Seas, is a solemn farewell that acknowledges loss while anticipating newness.

Franz von Suppé: Die Reise um die Erde in 80 Tagen ('Around the World in 80 Days')
Janáček Philharmonic Orchestra / Dario Salvi
Naxos 8574396
Release: 23 September 2022
Franz von Suppé became famous all over the world for the easy brilliance of his operetta melodies. He also achieved great success with theatrical stage music, including this version of Jules Verne's adventure novel Around the World in 80 Days. Verne's interest in science and new discoveries reflects the optimism of the late 19th century, and Suppé's music is a perfect reflection of the light and dark in the narrative, evocatively tracking Phileas Fogg's enterprising and at time dangerous voyage, and taking in the exotic orient and Gold Rush America along the way. The stage version of Jules Verne's Die Reise um die Erde in 80 Tagen was made not long after the original novel's publication, but while Around the World in 80 Days has become an iconic tale through numerous classic films, Suppé's expressive music for the story has until now been largely forgotten. This world premiere recording of a musical journey alongside Phileas Fogg, Passepartout and the rescued Princess Aouda is sure to grab the attention of all kinds of listeners, and we are delighted to be able to add it to the Naxos catalogue.

Elgar: Complete Organ Works (Organ Sonatas; Vesper Voluntaries; Nimrod)
Tom Winpenny, organ
Naxos 8574366
Release: 23 September 2022
The organ was a formative part of Edward Elgar's musical upbringing, and for a time he was organist at St George's Catholic Church in Worcester. The symphonic scale and distinctive themes of the First Sonata contrast with the more liturgical atmosphere of the Vesper Voluntaries, while the rousing Second Sonata is an arrangement of Elgar's Severn Suite for brass. This album comprises Elgar's original works for organ as well as the complete arrangements made by the composer himself and those made by four distinguished contemporary organists.

Ron Goodwin: Drake 400 Suite; 633 Squadron: Theme; New Zealand Suite – British Light Music, Vol 11
New Zealand Symphony Orchestra / Ron Goodwin
Naxos 8555193
Release: 23 September 2022
Ron Goodwin is famous for several iconic film scores such as the rousing 633 Squadron. His was an instantly recognisable musical voice, combining an innate ability to write both memorable tunes and to evoke the many moods demanded by film directors, qualities that extend into the gloriously evocative Drake 400 and New Zealand Suites. Goodwin's long and distinguished career earned him multiple Ivor Novello Awards and a Golden Globe Award among many other accolades. Conducted by the composer, this recording represents the best of a true leader in the field of popular music.

Peter Breiner: Mornings, Evenings and Late Nights – Calm Romantic Piano Music, Vol 3
Peter Breiner, piano
Naxos 8574474
Release: 23 September 2022
Peter Breiner is one of the world's most recorded musicians with over 200 releases and more than two million albums sold, of which his Beatles Go Baroque alone reached sales of a quarter of a million copies. In addition to being a multifaceted composer, arranger and conductor, Breiner is also a pianist, and the third of his Calm Romantic Piano Music series melds melodic substance with delicate musical expressiveness. The original and descriptive miniatures heard on this album present music of touching tranquillity and beauty.

Alchemy – New Music for Trumpet and Orchestra
Fábio Brum, trumpets, cornets, flugelhorn, horn; Real Orquesta Sinfónica de Sevilla / Noam Zur
Naxos 8579119
Release: 23 September 2022
Like alchemists of old, attempting to recombine the four elements, here Fábio Brum presents four distinct musical languages in a programme forged during lockdown. Gabriele Roberto's Tokyo Suite charts the astonishment of a traveller dazzled by the vast megapolis, whereas Dimitri Cervo's The Brazilian Four Seasons offers a colourful, energetic panorama of the natural and human worlds. Fábio Brum's very personal musical journey is highlighted by the contrast between the Talmudic contemplation of Menachem Zur's De Profundis and the abstract ruminations of Nicola Tescari's Trumpet Concerto 'Nine Moods'.

Pierre Jalbert: Air in Motion
Escher String Quartet, Carol Wincenc
Orchid Classics ORC100203
Release: 23 September 2022
Following the release of his outstanding album String Theory on Orchid Classics, American composer Pierre Jalbert returns with Air in Motion: world-premiere recordings that celebrate his long relationship with the Escher Quartet, as well as paying tribute to flautist Carol Wincenc during her 50th anniversary season. Jalbert is an “acknowledged chamber-music master” (The New Yorker) and in his String Quartet No. 4, dynamic shapes such as spiral, waveform or labyrinth are the catalysts for each movement. His String Quartet No. 6, 'Canticle', invokes the idea of ritual, with colour added by the use of crotales (small, bell-like discs). Air in Motion brings a flute into the ensemble, adding a new dimension suggested by the flow of air through a column of metal.

m o s: mnemonic
Ivo Fina, Alexander Kranabetter, Johannes Wakolbinger
Col Legno COL15015
Release: 23 September 2022
The Vienna based trio m o s (formerly month of sundays) is creating instrumental music that oscillates between acoustic and electronic sound aesthetics. Drawing influences from minimalist and improvised music, m o s fuses spontaneous interplay with meticulous structures. After their debut release in 2015 they were invited to renowned festivals all over Europe and selected for the New Austrian Sound of Music (NASOM) program in 2018. For their new release m o s teamed up with the Iranian artist Katayoon Valamanesh, who created introspective visuals for their live performances.

Karen Sunabacka: Curlicue
Darryl Friesen, piano
Ravello Records
Release: 23 September 2022
Wide skies, whistling winds, and a love for the great outdoors take center stage on Karen Sunabacka's Curlicue, a collection of eight works for solo piano performed by Darryl Friesen. Each piece tells a story of Sunabacka's wilderness adventures, from the titular Curlicue's explorations of the twists, turns, and curls of a river, to Falling in the Water's conjuration of girls jumping into water and sheets of rain pummeling tents, to Lost's encapsulation of the fear and dread of losing one's way. Friesen's crisp performance brings each piece to life, transporting listeners to the Canadian woodlands and prairies for an adventure all their own.

John Dante Prevedini: On Liberty - An Augenmusik Piano Suite
Arpaviva Recordings AVDL004
Release: 23 September 2022
Classical Music Daily's own John Dante Prevedini (born 1987) composed nine meditations on the theme of 'liberty' with the suite composed in the tradition of Augenmusik (also known as 'eye music'), a genre of notated music that conveys an element of visual art. The music on this album is based on a transcription of the image of the Statue of Liberty into notated music. Other practitioners of Augenmusik include George Crumb and Karlheinz Stockhausen. Prevedini, a composer and performer, uses a 'total art' approach to highlight unconventional facets of everyday life through a multidisciplinary lens. He holds a DMA from the University of Hartford Hartt School (in composition with history and theory minors), an MM in composition from the University of Rhode Island, an MBA from Salve Regina University, and a BA from Connecticut College with a triple major in Music, East Asian Studies, and BCMB (Biochemistry and Cellular and Molecular Biology).

 

19 SEPTEMBER 2022

String Quartets
Tippett Quartet
SOMM Recordings SOMM 0656
Release: 19 September 2022
SOMM Recordings celebrates the 150th anniversary of Ralph Vaughan Williams' birth with insightful, deeply felt accounts of his String Quartets Nos 1 and 2, coupled with Gustav Holst's Phantasy Quartet, by the Tippett Quartet. This major release sheds new light on one of the enduring friendships of 20th-century British music, Vaughan Williams and Holst having first met at the Royal College of Music in 1895.

 

16 SEPTEMBER 2022

Michael Hersch: the script of storms
New Focus Records (digital only)
Release: 16 September 2022
The album features two works by Hersch: cortex and ankle based on texts by Christopher Middleton, and the script of storms based on texts by Fawzi Karim. Hersch's work has been described as 'so sincere in his darkness, and so sophisticated in his expressivity, that
he can make the morbid magical' (New York Magazine). Composer Georg Friedrich Haas has written that Hersch 'is the explorer of an unconditional, radical expressivity that reveals the human abyss without any palliation.' In the eleven-movement cortex and ankle, Hersch engages texts of British poet Christopher Middleton (1926-2015), a poet Hersch worked extensively with from their initial meeting in Germany in 2001. Hersch avoids 'word painting' with Middleton's poetry, and instead uses the text to create anchor points for his creative process rather than infer any literal interpretations. In the case of cortex and ankle, the texts evoke a foreboding 'overall trajectory of descent' into oblivion. Performed by Netherlands-based Ensemble Klang, cortex and ankle features acclaimed soprano Ah Young Hong who has been a powerful muse in much of Hersch's recent vocal writing including his 2012 chamber opera On the Threshold of Winter, the 2015 song cycle a breath upwards, and in the 2016 debut performance of cortex and ankle. Ensemble Klang's tradition of performing without a conductor, along with their unique instrumentation of saxophones, trombone, keyboards, percussion, and guitar in cortex and ankle makes for a creative environment of heightened innovation and collaboration. The second work on the album, the script of storms, sets texts of Iraqi poet and painter Fawzi Karim (1945-2019), another artist that Hersch has worked closely with. Hersch has described Karim's world as “a remarkable and disquieting place; a landscape of empathy, beauty and often unspeakable horror” (PN Review). Deeply influenced by a childhood steeped in conflict and political coups, Karim's work often evokes a sense of graphic brutality but with an intense feeling of love for humanity. The visceral nature of Karim's creativity is not only present in the text for the script of storms, but in several paintings printed alongside the album's liner notes. Hersch's the script of storms is performed by Ah Young Hong and the BBC Symphony Orchestra led by conductor Tito Muñoz.

Bruno de Sá – Roma Travestita
Warner Classics 0190296619809
Release: 16 September 2022
The young Brazilian singer Bruno de Sá, a rare example of a natural male soprano, was described by Opera as 'astounding ... with a high register of soprano purity.' His Erato debut, Roma travestita, explores a period when men habitually assumed female operatic roles on the public stages of Rome. Recorded with Il Pomo d'Oro and conductor Francesco Corti, the programme has been researched and assembled by the musicologist Yannis François. The album comprises arias written between 1721-1760, featuring compositions by well-known composers (Vivaldi, Alessandro Scarlatti, Vinci, Galuppi and Piccini) and rarities by Capua, Arena, Cocchi, Conforto and Garcìa Fajer. For eight of the thirteen arias, this album represents their first recording.

Harry Partch: The Bewitched
The Anthology of Recorded Music
New World Records NWCRD001
Release: 16 September 2022
The Anthology of Recorded Music releases a Composer's Recordings, Inc. (CRI) digital re-release of Harry Partch's The Bewitched (1955) with new artwork by New York photographer Reuben Radding and a commissioned essay by Marc Sabat, paired with a newly commissioned composition, Taylor Brook's Block (2022), on New World Records. Composer's Recordings, Inc. (CRI), founded in 1954 by New York-based composers Oliver Daniel, Otto Luening, and Douglas Moore was arguably one of the greatest examples of collective effort to promote avant-garde American music of the Twentieth century. Nate Wooley, editor of the music journal, Sound American, picked 50 vital LPs from CRI's back catalog for special treatment and re-release in digital format. Wooley says, 'These releases, rather than being a downloadable re-hash of existing material, propose to contextualize the historical piece by placing it alongside the work of contemporary artists who have been influenced by the CRI original. Among the new material is a musical response to the original, in this case, a glorious work for steel string guitar and electronics, Block, by Canadian-born composer Taylor Brook, which is accompanied by his notes on the connection between his thought and Harry Partch's The Bewitched as well as the full score for his piece. Marc Sabat, now based in Berlin, is one of the most rigorous explorers of just intonation (JI) in composition and theory, and his writing about Harry Partch is, like his music, full of personal discovery and deep understanding. This release is the first of a series aimed at opening a new world of new sound to new people, and it is our hope that this release will have you, like Sabat, 'completely entranced by the magical 'language of ratios.' The cover art for each release has also been re-thought, and features a photo by New York street photographer and musician, Reuben Radding.' Partch wrote his dance-satire The Bewitched to explore how civilization can move forward through rediscovering our ancient past. It showcases the composer's pioneering writing for the female voice, unfolding across ten scenes based on everyday American life plus a prologue and epilogue. The witch appears in each of the scenes, using her magic to provide help and context to each real-life situation. This recording is a remastering of the original mono master tapes from The Harry Partch Collection Volume 4 The Bewitched – A Dance Satire (1955). The Anthology of Recorded Music commissioned composer Taylor Brook to write Block in 2022 to accompany this re-release of the CRI recording of Harry Partch's The Bewitched. Block complements and contrasts The Bewitched, taking inspiration from a spoken introduction given by Partch at a performance of The Bewitched in Chicago in 1957. Brook says, 'In this introduction, Partch discusses our listening habits, playing on the expression of 'in one ear and out the other,' by stating that he wants to create a 'block between the ears ... and when this block is effective all kinds of wonderful things happen: nerve impulses quicken, the adrenal glands begin to secrete their ecstatic hormones, the pancreatic juices begin to ooze.' Partch achieves this through his corporeal aesthetic, combining sound and sight in the musical theatre works that dominated his late output, The Bewitched among them. For myself, the immersed mental state is more often achieved using sound only – rather than exciting all the senses, focusing in on a single one. Combining the guitar with a corpus-based electronic accompaniment, Block invites the listener to enter the ecstatic experience that Partch describes.'

Romantic Revolution Volume II
Michael Dussek, piano
SOMM Recordings SOMM 0657
Release: 16 September 2022
SOMM Recordings is delighted to announce the second volume of Romantic Revolution, a revelatory exploration by pianist Michael Dussek of the musical relationship between his ancestor, Jan Ladislav Dussek, and Fryderyk Chopin. Volume II focuses on music composed during the period 1789 to 1846 spanning the early years of Dussek's compositional career and the final years of Chopin's.

Isola
Sequoia string duo
Self-released
Release: 16 September 2022
Isola [pronounced ee-so-la] is the thought-provoking debut album from talented string duo Sequoia. Set for release on Friday 16th September 2022, this body of work was the brainchild of Fergus Hall and combines the talent of a number of celebrated Scottish artists, including narration and poetry by Alexander McCall Smith and Hamish Henderson, with an aim of bringing contemporary Scottish classical music into the spotlight. The music within Isola explores the tactility and fragile timbres of string instruments, shifting between melodic line and gesture, spoken word and grit. It takes influence from free improvisation and Scottish traditional music, as well as contemporary classical practices. The album features two large works composed by Fergus Hall which were the catalyst for the entire project. Having written the pieces for string duo in 2019 and 2020, Fergus was hoping to record the tracks but later developed an idea to create a body of work encapsulating not just his own music, but that of other emerging composers from the Scottish contemporary classical music scene - including Aileen Sweeney, Rylan Gleave and Sonia Killmann. Sequoia, adopting its name from the species of tree, is a Glasgow based string duo comprising violinist Alice Rickards and cellist Sonia Cromarty. Since launching at the 2010 Edinburgh Fringe, they have firmly rooted their place in the Scottish arts scene, revealing an innate desire to use music to explore, recognise and engage with the natural world. The pair are known for championing new music by Scottish based composers; thus, an innovative and exciting collaboration was born. Fergus Hall said: 'I really enjoy independently implementing creative projects like this one, and opening up opportunities to peers within the industry. Though we are all individual in our compositional voices on the album, there is a commonality to the way we approach string instruments that focuses on the grittier side of the instruments with heavy influence from folk music and free improvisation. Sequoia were the perfect fit for this album, not only because they are highly skilled musicians, but because conservation and the natural environment are a central to their musical practice, themes that are often pertinent in our work as young artists. The title track of the record, Isola (meaning island), examines the wildlife and landscape of the deserted St Kilda Archipelago, with themes of isolation, distance, and remoteness. This sets the scene for the rest of the album with much of the music being concerned with landscape and natural phenomena but also distance, separation and the fragility of the natural world.' The track Isola was written by Fergus in collaboration with celebrated Scottish author Alexander McCall Smith. Each artist responded to the work of the other throughout the writing process; McCall Smith himself is featured in the recording, reading a poem which was inspired by - and also inspired - the music. The other main body of work on the album, Crossing the Simeto, also features poetry. Archival recordings of poet and folklorist Hamish Henderson, obtained with the blessing of his family, are heard throughout the track, which was written by Fergus in 2019 in celebration of the centenary of Henderson's birth. The process of making the entire album took a number of years, with each piece of music being written at different times. Some tracks were written years before the pandemic, some just as it was starting, and some amid various lockdowns with musicians collaborating via zoom. The sense of separation brought on by these lockdowns did nothing to deter Fergus' vision and instead enhanced the themes of isolation and vulnerability throughout the record. The album was recorded over three and a half days at Luss Parish Church in Loch Lomond. It was recorded on site and mixed by Gus Stirrat and mastered by Geoff Allan.

Maestrino Mozart
Marie-Eve Munger, soprano; Les Boréades de Montréal / Philippe Bourque
ATMA Classique ACD2 2815
Release: 16 September 2022
For her second collaboration on the ATMA Classique label, Canadian soprano Marie-Eve Munger releases Maestrino Mozart, an album devoted to Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart's rarely-heard arias composed between the ages of 10-16. Maestrino Mozart features Munger alongside Les Boréades de Montréal and conductor Philippe Bourque in a program curated to contradict any assumption that Mozart's earliest works are merely simple or juvenile through sparkling performances of dramatic and emotionally powerful works such as Mitridate and Lucio Silla. Mozart's father, Leopold, presented Wolfgang in concert at the courts of Munich and Vienna at the age of six. Described as a joyful and charming child, for whom performing was fun, Wolfgang immediately embarked on a tour of Europe that ended up lasting three and a half years. The earliest work on this album – the touching aria 'Per quel paterno amplesso', K 79 – was likely composed on this tour, when he was only ten years old. Munger says, 'My own journey into this repertoire began at the start of my career, when I was lucky enough to be offered a role in Il sogno di Scipione in New York. I had thought I knew the composer a little, but quickly realized my ignorance when I learned that Mozart had written no fewer than eight dramatic works before he reached the age of 17! My curiosity was piqued. During the last few years, I have collected what I thought to be his most exceptional arias and recitatives for soprano, written between the ages of 10 and 16. I hope to take the audience on a musical journey to try to gain some insight into the development of this incomparable phenomenon.'  Die Schuldigkeit des ersten Gebots, K 35, (The Duty of the First Commandment) was Mozart's first musical contribution to the Salzburg court and his first attempt at writing a substantial dramatic work, written when he was only eleven.  In 'Ein ergrimmter Löwe brüllet' (An enraged lion roars), he displays a great capacity for effective musical description. In order to extinguish gossip in Vienna, claiming that Leopold was writing in his son's name, his father persuaded the emperor to commission Wolfgang's first opera, La finta semplice, K 51, at age twelve, in which the playful 'Colla bocca' and heartfelt “Amoretti che ascosi” offer a young baroness's developing experience of love. While that opera's premiere was delayed due to conspiracies and smallpox outbreaks, Mozart was commissioned to write the Singspiel Bastien und Bastienne K 50, based on Rousseau's Le devin du village, capturing the rustic essence of the libretto and, in 'Mein liebster Freund', a touching simplicity, full of pathos. Now a composer in his own right, at the age of fourteen, Mozart traveled to Milan where he wrote Mitridate, rè di Ponto, K 87 (1770) in close collaboration with the singers, who were delighted with virtuoso arias that express a range of extreme dramatic conflicts and demonstrate surprisingly profound psychological insight for a composer so young. The opera was such a success that on opening night, the audience acclaimed, 'Evviva il maestro! Evviva il maestrino!' Following the success of his trip to Italy, commissions flowed in and he soon returned for Ascanio in Alba, K 111. Planned for the wedding of Archduke Ferdinand, it was intended to act only as a divertissement between the acts of an opera seria by Hasse, but reports claim that 15-year-old Mozart's sparkling inventiveness received all of the applause. Back in Salzburg, Wolfgang was commissioned to write a one-act serenade for the coronation of the new archbishop. Il sogno di Scipione, K 126 features long and virtuosic arias, as well as new ways of using the orchestra – fueled, perhaps, by the eight symphonies Mozart was writing that year. Wolfgang returned quickly for his second commission in Milan. Munger says, 'Even if Mitridate was the bigger success, it is still, in my opinion, in writing Lucio Silla, K 135 that Mozart finally came of age as a musical dramatist. He breaks the codes, he no longer confines himself to da capo arias, he increases the richness of his orchestrations, and we hear the wave of tense Sturm und Drang approaching. The work may not be completely balanced, due to circumstances beyond his control, but it offers a real window on operatic reform in action. Wolfgang may only have been 16 years old, but he was already a pioneer.' Born in Saguenay, Québec, Canadian coloratura soprano Marie-Eve Munger enjoys a flourishing career in both North America and Europe. She has earned a global reputation for her 'warm, lyrical' (The Associated Press) voice 'with glassy-clear coloratura' (The New York Times) as well as her strong stage presence.

Africa Sings
Bella Bellow, Philip Glass, Duke Ellington, Alexander Zemlinsky
Angélique Kidjo, Martin Archrainer, Bruckner Orchester Linz / Dennis Russell Davies
Orange Mountain Music OMM0155
Release: 16 September 2022
A probing celebration into African music, through classical music and jazz, through legacy and tradition. The recital begins with Angélique Kidjo singing Bella Bellow's Senye, segueing into the premiere recording of Philip Glass's orchestral song-cycle Three Ifé Songs, composed for Kidjo in 2014. The focus goes then to American music with Duke Ellington's Black, Brown and Beige in Maurice Peress orchestral arrangement, before shifting to Europe and Alexander Zemlinsky's Symphonic Songs sung by Martin Achrainer which set, in translation into German, the poems of the great Harlem Renaissance poets Langston Hughes, Jean Toomer, Countee Cullen, and Frank Horne. Kidjo joins the venerable Bruckner Orchester Linz and conductor Dennis Russell Davies who cruise through the Ellington before digging deep into the Zemlinsky with baritone Martin Achrainer in tour-de-force performances from beginning to end.

The Enescu Project
George Enescu, Jules Massenet, Béla Bartók, Eugène Ysaÿe, George-Ioan Păiş, Gabriel Fauré, Maurice Ravel
Nicolas Dautricourt, Capriccio Quartet
Orchid Classics ORC100202
Release: 16 September 2022
The Enescu Project began life in the concert hall and has now been faithfully recorded to create this album. The programme is devoted to the music of the great Romanian composer and violinist George Enescu, and to that of his contemporaries and friends, creating a sense of the context in which Enescu was composing. Enescu studied at the Paris Conservatoire with Massenet and Fauré; rubbed shoulders and shared a stage with Bartók and Ravel; was the dedicatee of a sonata by Ysaÿe; and Debussy attended the premiere of Enescu's First Symphony. Music by these composers, for different instrumental combinations, leads us to the focus of the album: Enescu's beautiful Octet for strings, a work composed when he was only nineteen and which had a profound impact on violinist Nicolas Dautricourt when he first heard it. Dautricourt is joined for this recording by a gathering of exceptional string players, and the album booklet includes a QR code that takes listeners to the spoken texts included in the original concert version of this fascinating project.

The Auer Legacy, Vol 1: Efrem Zimbalist
Efrem Zimbalist, Samuel Chotzinoff, The Victor Orchestra, Francis Moore, Emanuel Bay, Harry Kaufman
Biddulph Recordings 85018-2
Release: 16 September 2022
The Russian-born violinist Efrem Zimbalist (1889-1985) is featured in the first volume of 'The Auer Legacy'. The Hungarian-born Leopold Auer was the greatest violin pedagogue at the beginning of the twentieth century, and Biddulph recordings is launching a series of CDs devoted to his greatest students. Efrem Zimbalist was the first of Auer's students to achieve international fame. Renown for the patrician elegance of his playing, he recorded a host of short violin pieces early in his career. Zimbalist was also a superb composer, who not only wrote many works for violin and piano, but also composed an elaborate piano concerto as well as a full-length opera entitled Landara. He succeeded Auer as the principal violin teacher at the Curtis Institute, and eventually became the school's Director of Music for over twenty-five years. This CD surveys Zimbalist's recordings made over a twenty-year span. In addition to a selection of short violin encores, it features the violinist's only two commercial recordings of multi-movement works: the Brahms Violin Sonata No 3 in D minor and Ysaye's Solo Violin Sonata No 1 in G minor.

Giuseppe Verdi: Gustavo III (Un Ballo in Maschera)
Filarmonica Arturo Toscanini, Orchestra Rapsody, Coro del Teatro Regio di Parma, Piero Pretti, Anna Pirozzi, Amartuvshin Enkhbat, Anna Maria Chiuri, Giuliana Gianfaldoni, Fabio Previati, Fabrizio Beggi, Carlo Cigni, Cristiano Olivieri, Federico Veltri, Roberto Abbado
Dynamic CDS7937 (3 CDs)
Release: 16 September 2022
The composition of Un Ballo in Maschera caused Verdi many problems. What began as an opera called Gustavo III was subject to censorship by the Neapolitan and Roman authorities, so its libretto, location and title all changed. The subject, however, is still the murder of Riccardo (Gustavo) at the masked ball, couched in a musical language in which the seriousness of Italian opera is infused with French vivacity. The opera's structure is carefully symmetrical in the great terzets, and the themes of duty, pleasure, drama and humour are rendered with masterful clarity.

Fernando Sor: Variations
Christian El Khouri, guitar
Dynamic CDS7949
Release: 16 September 2022
Fernando Sor was born at a time when the guitar enjoyed increasing prominence. He differed from other virtuoso-composers for the instrument such as Giuliani and Carulli due to his far greater sense of harmonic refinement. Sor's studies and exercises have been fundamental to guitarists for two centuries, and his sequence of Themes and Variations are his best-known compositions. His three collections based on popular French melodies have enjoyed popularity as has Les Folies d'Espagne avec Variations et un Menuet, but his masterpiece remains the Introduction et Variations sur un Thème de Mozart, a sublime example of his skill.

Salon de Budapest
Thomas Albertus Irnberger, Pavel Kašpar, Brigitta Simon
Gramola 99249 (Hybrid SACD)
Release: 16 September 2022
Thomas Albertus Irnberger, violin, and Pavel Kašpar, piano, lead us with their album Salon de Budapest into the bourgeois salon of the late 19th century – an oasis amid the 'good old days' which weren't, of course, that good to begin with: mired turmoil, social inequalities, and wars as much and more than ever since. The invited audience were to listen to Hungarian dances by Brahms, Kodály or Rachmaninoff, Csárdás' by Franz Lehár, Miska Hauser or Jenő Hubay, Romances, Fantasies and other melodies by Tchaikovsky, Leopold Auer, Carl Bohm or Joseph Joachim. Some songs from operettas by Lehár, Jenő Huszka, Emmerich Kálmán and Pongrác Kacsóh with the Hungarian soprano Brigitta Simon complete this musical visit to the Salon de Budapest.

Piano music from Vienna
Erich Wolfgang Korngold, Christoph Ehrenfellner, Alban Berg, Fritz Kreisler, Sergei Rachmaninoff
Maximilian Kromer, piano
Gramola 99253
Release: 16 September 2022
Piano music from Vienna – the composers who first come to mind will rarely be Erich Wolfgang Korngold, Alban Berg, Christoph Ehrenfellner and Fritz Kreisler. The young Viennese pianist Maximilian Kromer, who can already be heard internationally on the biggest stages, deliberately leaves out Viennese Classicism with its somewhat well-trodden paths, and illuminates an even wider, refreshing spectrum of Viennese piano music with his debut album. While grand complexity and thorough chromatic explorations are imminent in the piano sonatas of Korngold's and Berg's, the New Viennese Dances by Ehrenfellner (composed in 2019) and the dances “Liebesleid” and “Liebesfreud” by Kreisler, transcribed by Rachmaninoff, combine the element of the Viennese waltz, which, like the so-called Second Viennese School, is part of the musical DNA of the performer's hometown.

Wolfgang Amadé Mozart: The Late Viennese Violin Sonatas K 454 – 481 – 526
Tomoko Mayeda, violin and piano
Gramola 99269
Release: 16 September 2022
Violinist by profession, the Japanese-born Viennese musician Tomoko Mayeda also learned to play the piano from the age of four. Her teacher and mentor Paul Badura-Skoda often took the time to teach her at the piano in addition to his support as a pianistic accompanist at countless concerts and a joint CD recording. Mayeda had for a long time cherished the wish of being able to accompany herself at the piano, which she was finally able to realize during the pandemic through technical refinements: First, Mayeda recorded the piano part, to which the violin was then recorded in a second recording session. Since the otherwise usual and necessary agreements regarding musical features are omitted the result is Tomoko Mayeda “100%”, an uncompromising interpretation of W A Mozart's late Viennese violin sonatas (B-flat major, K 454; E-flat major, K 481; A major, K 526).

Ich liebe dieses Land 'I Love This Land'
Hugo Wolf, Franz Schubert, Gustav Mahler, Richard Strauss, Zi Huang, Zaiyi Lu
Xin Wang, Niels Muus
Gramola 99275
Release: 16 September 2022
'I Love This Land!' is the title of this CD, which is released on the occasion of the fiftieth anniversary of diplomatic relations between China and Austria by Gramola. The present compact disc immortalizes the wonderful singing voice of Austria-based Chinese artist Xin Wang, who on this recording interprets works by the Austrian composers Franz Schubert, Hugo Wolf and Gustav Mahler, the German composer Richard Strauss, in addition to Chinese art songs that highlight the special unifying element. Xin Wang is accompanied by the Danish-American pianist Niels Muus, who is well-known to the Austrian audience as a professor at the Music and Arts University of the City of Vienna as well as before as casting director of the Vienna Volksoper, and who is well acquainted with the international audience as an opera conductor, on the piano 'Julius Feurich 280' which was produced in Germany in 1928. The release of this CD for the fiftieth anniversary of relations between China and Austria is thus a happy occasion, one that bears witness to the artistic connection between these two countries by an exceptional artist who is as dedicated to the interpretation of music as she is to cultural exchange. To underscore her artistic and personal closeness to Austria, she tellingly chose the text to the art song by Zaiyi Lu, 我爱地(“I Love This Land”) as the title of this CD.

 

9 SEPTEMBER 2022

'Rune' Fashion-Opera by Alastair White
Patricia Auchterlonie, soprano; Simone Ibbett-Brown, mezzo-soprano; Ben Smith, Siwan Rhys and Joseph Havlat, pianos
Metier MSV 28626
Release: 9 September 2022
A vast cosmological fantasy featuring an ensemble of three grand pianos, Rune is the final part of the 'fashion-opera' cycle by Scottish composer Alastair White (born 1988) following the highly acclaimed releases of Robe and Woad. On a planet where history is forbidden, a young girl dares to tell her story. A voyage across galaxies and millennia, hers is a tale of the archipelagos of Khye-rell and their matterwork, through transdimensional canals and sealanes to the Rune of the universe's origin. This song, her story – through the very act of being told – will have consequences beyond imagining ... This is an audio version of the live premiere production which was presented as part of the Tête-à-Tête Opera Festival 2021 – now with remastered HD sound.

Robert Saxton: Portrait
Roderick Williams, baritone; Madeleine Mitchell, violin; James Turnbull, oboe; Clare Hammond and Andrew West, pianos; Fidelio Trio; St Paul's Sinfonia / Andrew Morley
Metier MSV 28624
Release: 9 September 2022
These works by Robert Saxton were written between 2013 and 2019 and represent his continuing journey of exploration in modal and harmonic structures; complex in structure but creating no jarring modernist difficulty for the listener.  A mix of orchestral, chamber and vocal works, it features top performers including world-renowned baritone Roderick Williams and equally famous (and now film star) Clare Hammond. The world premiere live performance of Robert's 'A Hymn to the Thames' is on Friday 16 September.

Rodney Lister: Faith-Based Initiatives
Chiara Quartet; Jonah Sirota, viola; Charles Blandy, tenor; Collage New Music / David Hoose
Metier MSV 28618
Release: 9 September 2022
Though the works on this album are varied in genre, from vocal to string quartet, they share a common theme, explicit in the song cycle Friendly Fire and implicit in the other works; that theme embodies grief, personal or for the plight of people blighted by war; hope in the backing of action by faith. Rodney Lister is a composer based in New England.  His biography is impressive and features commissions from the US Library of Congress and many leading ensembles, and a wealth of compositions, articles and other writings.

Second Child - Music by Kevin Raftery
Clare Hammond, piano; Marmen String Quartet; Exaudi / James Weeks; Berkeley Ensemble / Paul Cott
Metier MSV 28600
Release: 9 September 2022
This 'Second Child' album follows Kevin Raftery's first portrait recording for Métier, which included his First String Quartet and other chamber works. Here his Second Quartet is partnered with choral works (both sacred and secular), and works for solo piano, violin duo and ensemble. Raftery's music may be mildly dissonant at times and harmonically adventurous, but is always brilliantly constructed: new music which is a joy to hear.
 
Coal: New Music for saxophones by Dorone Paris
Noam Dorembus, tenor sax; Maayan James, baritone sax; Eli Korman, soprano sax; Kim Kedar, alto sax
Metier MSV 92109 'mini-album'
Release: 9 September 2022
Dorone Paris is a composer and saxophone player specialising in New Music and Avant Garde performance. Being raised in Israel influenced her political ideas and affected her musical creativity, aesthetics and philosophy. In the words of the composer, COAL explores the vast colours and possibilities of saxophones by examining and channelling the compounded challenges of the last several years: from a climate crisis to a global pandemic to the possibility of an international nuclear war. As such, some of the soundworlds in this album are harsh and unforgiving, a call for light. Her collaboration with Saxophonist Noam Dorembus has been shaped by the words of their mentor Arie Shapira: 'It is necessary to invent new parameters of listening. I want to be a partner to an adventure, not a historical experience; that I'm hearing a new sound.'

Frank Peter Zimmermann – The Complete Warner Recordings
Warner Classics 0190296317880 (30 CDs)
Release: 9 September 2022
Modest and self-effacing, Frank Peter Zimmermann is a sophisticated musician whose career path is universally admired. This 30-CD boxset celebrates his eminent recording history with EMI/Warner Classics, a collaboration which began in March 1984. Highlights in this box include the complete cycle of Mozart's violin concertos, Paganini's 24 Caprices, Ysaÿe's six violin sonatas and the complete sonatas of Prokofiev – with Zimmermann playing both parts in the Sonata for two violins. The box also represents his chamber music work, including performances of Mozart's Piano Quartets Nos. 1 and 2, and the Brahms Horn Trio.

Natalie Dessay – Delibes: Lakmé
Erato 0190296279096
Release: 9 September 2022
A reissue of the 1997 recording of Delibes' Lakmé starring Natalie Dessay alongside Gregory Kunde, José van Dame, Delphine Haidan, Franck Leguérinel, Patricia Petibon, Xenia Konsek and Bernadette Antoine.

Karim Al-Zand: The Leader and other works
Navona Records NV6469
Release: 9 September 2022
The Leader from Canadian-American composer Karim Al-Zand is at once timeless and also deeply relevant for the age we live in. A commentary on the rise of fascist tyranny, its titular piece tells the story of a buffoonish charlatan who is adored despite his ridiculous behavior, echoing concerns of the modern day in this chamber opera based on Eugene Ionesco's 1953 satire Le Maître. Another vocal work, Songs from the Post Truth Era similarly comments on the political realities (or unrealities) of our time. The album features several other chamber works by Al-Zand including his Six Bagatelles, with music inspired by the art of Robert Motherwell (1915–1991).

Escape
David Mastikosa
Ravello Records RR8075
Release: 9 September 2022
Composer David Mastikosa's Escape is the work of an ambitious young composer whose skill belies his age. Born in 1992 in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Mastikosa is currently one of the most active contemporary classical music composers in his home country, and writes music for film and media. Escape features works composed in a variety of styles and arrangements. Poslovice is a chamber piece inspired by old Serbian folk proverbs and suggests a hidden, tongue-in-cheek storyline. Detune was written specifically to encourage younger pianists to explore the vast soundscapes locked within the instrument. Trichord for Viola and Accordion is purposefully sparse; Mastikosa leaves free space for performers to exercise their own creativity. Escape is both an artistic triumph in its own right and an early milestone in Mastikosa's promising career.

Serenata – Brazilian Music for Chamber Orchestra
Carlos Gomes, Francisco Braga, Alberto Nepomuceno, Leopoldo Miguéz
English Chamber Orchestra / Neil Thomson
Naxos 8574405
Release: 9 September 2022
This year marks 200 years since the proclamation of Brazil's independence, by Dom Pedro I in September 1822. Developed in collaboration with the Brazilian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, The 'Music of Brazil' series presents around 100 orchestral, chamber, choral and vocal works from the 19th and 20th centuries will be recorded by the country's top orchestras, ensemble and artists. Brazilian composers in the 19th century often sought state scholarships to enable them to study in Europe where they were to become influenced by the German, Italian and French compositional schools. They also became involved in the vogue for writing suites based on ancient dances, such as Nepomuceno's delightful Ancient Suite, premiered at Grieg's home, or Braga's Madrigal-Pavana which evokes the belle époque ballrooms of Rio de Janeiro. Miguéz's Suite in the Old Style is polyphonic and lively, while Gomes' Sonata for Strings is his finest non-operatic work.

Pedro I of Brazil: Te Deum; Credo
Concentus Musicum de Belo Horizonte, Minas Gerais Philharmonic Orchestra / Fabio Mechetti
Naxos 8574404
Release: 9 September 2022
Dom Pedro I was the first Emperor of Brazil, proclaiming its independence from Portugal in 1822. A gifted musician, Pedro I is one of only a few monarchs to have become known as a composer. A performance of his Abertura ('Overture') was organised in Paris in 1832 with some in the audience convinced that it had been composed by Rossini, while the Hino da Independência do Brasil ('Hymn to the Independence of Brazil') remains one of the country's best-loved anthems. Operatic in character, the Te Deum celebrated the baptism of Pedro's first son, and the joyous Credo is one of his most frequently performed works.

William Walton: The Complete Façades
Hila Plitmann, Fred Child, Kevin Deas, Virgina Arts Festival Chamber Orchestra / JoAnn Falletta
Naxos 8574378
Release: 9 September 2022
Edith Sitwell's invitation to William Walton to collaborate on an innovative, revolutionary new work came at a critical moment in the young composer's career, and Façade proved to be his first great success. The peerless combination of a peculiarly English dry wit, genuine pathos and superlative technical skill remains an extraordinary achievement. Sitwell's verses conjure a satirical and poignant world of bourgeois late-Victorian England, while Walton's settings unfailingly enhance and enrich the texts in a work in which words and music are unquestionably of equal importance. This release includes the first recording of Small Talk (1922) and three numbers first performed in 1977 but subsequently rejected by the composer. This recording includes not only the refined and polished Façade – An Entertainment as it was left by its creators, but also includes the verses and settings that were re-worked for Façade 2 – A Further Entertainment in the 1970s and other numbers originally conceived for the work and later substituted for other verses, making this recording as complete an edition of the whole piece as anyone could desire. The team of narrators for this recording is a particularly strong one. Hila Plitmann is a two-time GRAMMY Award-winning soprano and actress, while Kevin Deas has gained international renown as one of America's leading bass-baritones. Fred Child is the host of APM's Performance Today, the most-listened-to classical music radio show in the USA.

Russian Ballads – Prokofiev; Shostakovich; Kissin
Gabriel Schwabe, cello; Roland Pöntinen, piano
Naxos 8574377
Release: 9 September 2022
The 20th century saw an abundance of notable Russian cellists inspiring an extensive repertoire by Soviet composers. In the cello sonatas by Shostakovich and Prokofiev, both composers explore the rich and emotive timbre of the instrument with expressive subtleties and bittersweet emotions, alongside their typical touches of wit and irony. Internationally acclaimed pianist Evgeny Kissin has recently returned to composing, and his Cello Sonata is akin to a ballad in its restraint and introspection.

Henri Tomasi: Complete Violin Works – Violin Concerto 'Périple d'Ulysse'; Capriccio
Stéphanie Moraly, violin; Romain David, piano; Orchestre de la Garde républicaine / Sébastien Billard
Naxos 8579091
Release: 9 September 2022
Henri Tomasi's violin works are little known but they offer a compact insight into the direction of French 20th-century composition. The Violin Concerto 'Périple d'Ulysse' is a late work, by turns alluring, tragic and violent, conveyed through rhapsodic virtuosity and a rich sense of colour. The Capriccio is full of elegance and refinement with emotional intensity in its slow movement and brilliance in its finale. Chant hébraïque conjures up oriental motifs while the sequence of early works for violin and piano reference Tomasi's Corsican heritage and evoke quasi-cinematic exoticism.

Weich küsst die Zweige der weiße Mond - lieder by Erich Zeisl
Ulf Bästlein, baritone; Charles Spencer, piano
Naxos 8551459
Release: 9 September 2022
'Melody is the heart of music – and you can't construct melodies. They are the essence of a musical gift'. This was the firm belief of Erich Zeisl, who in the 1930s was considered one of the most promising musical talents in Austria. Zeisl mastered the most disparate of musical styles, and although his output was firmly rooted in the Romantic idiom, he permanently pushed its harmonic boundaries. Central to Zeisl's output was the lied, but having been silenced by the Nazis in 1938 he composed no more lieder in exile in America. It is shameful that these works which have such an important place in the history of music and ideas are only now made accessible to a wider public. (Album contains twenty first recordings.)

Richard Danielpour: Twelve Études for Piano; Piano Fantasy; Lullaby; Song Without Words
Stefano Greco, piano
Naxos 8559922
Release: 9 September 2022
Richard Danielpour is one of the most decorated, frequently performed and recorded composers of his generation. His commissions include works for some of the most celebrated artists of our day. Each of the Twelve Études is dedicated to a particular pianist with its own substantial technical demands, but all are conceived as concert pieces with a self-contained narrative. The variations in the Piano Fantasy are based on the final chorale of Bach's St Matthew Passion. All of these world premiere recordings were made in close collaboration between the composer and acclaimed pianist Stefano Greco.

Digital Mist – Works for Violin and Piano
Chen Yi, Nathan Currier, Sebastian Currier, George Tsontakis
Patrick Yim, Kiu Tung Poon, Sebastian Currier
Naxos 8559903
Release: 9 September 2022
This recording represents a survey of American music composed for violin and piano between 1980 and 2010. These masterpieces are by four American composers distinguished by the highest honors of their profession, and whose international careers and creative voices have been shaped by major political, social, and cultural events during the last 50 years. From the ethereal electronic sounds that surround the players in Sebastian Currier's Digital Mist to the Chinese evocations in the complete violin and piano works of Chen Yi, this collection has been made in close collaboration with the composers and includes three first recordings.

Heitor Villa-Lobos: Complete String Quartets
Danubius Quartet
Marco Polo 8206006 (6 CDs)
Release: 9 September 2022
Heitor Villa-Lobos once confessed that he loved to write string quartets, stating 'one could say that it is a mania'. His seventeen quartets form a substantial part of his chamber music output, covering a long career that embraced national pride and musical experimentation leading to the rarefied atmosphere of the final masterpieces. Often drawing on the musical folklore of Brazil, these quartets are an outpouring of spontaneous and daring invention. Ranging from austere polyphony to compelling expressiveness and virtuosity, they represent one of the most distinctive bodies of chamber works in 20th-century music. Villa-Lobos is best known for his orchestral works, and this Marco Polo edition of the complete String Quartets seeks to redress the balance towards his substantial chamber music output while joining our highly collectable Naxos editions of the Complete Symphonies and the Bachianas Brasileiras. Pianist Sonia Rubinsky won a Latin GRAMMY for her recordings of the solo piano music.

Bartók: Divertimento for String Orchestra; Piano works arranged for percussion ensemble by Bernhard Wulff; Music for Strings, Percussion and Celesta
Deutsche Radio Philharmonie / Pietari Inkinen
SWR Classic SWR19110CD
Release: 9 September 2022
Bartók's Music for Strings, Percussion and Celesta (1936) enjoyed right from the beginning a roaring success, being praised by critics as a masterpiece. It was also the composer's last work published by Universal-Edition in Vienna. A fierce opponent of National-Socialism, he stopped co-operating with his main publisher soon after. The Divertimento (1939), though definitely not a 'lightweight', does hardly give any indication of the political circumstances and events at the time it was created. The piano works on the present recording, arranged for percussion ensemble, are in their original form miniatures whose strong rhythms almost predestinate them for percussion arrangements. (Bartók himself experimented extensively with percussion instruments and was familiar with them.) Pietari Inkinen is one of the noted rising stars on the international conducting scene. His comprehensive experience in both opera and symphonic repertoire enable him to shape various repertoire into powerful, convincing interpretations. As chief conductor of the Deutsche Radio Philharmonie, he achieved superb performances.

Les Ballets Russes
Stravinsky, Debussy, Dukas, Ravel, Poulenc, Schmitt, Tchaikovsky, De Falla, Prokofiev, Strauss, Auric, Rimsky-Korsakov, Milhaud, Tommasini, Sauget
SWR Sinfonieorchester Baden-Baden und Freiburg; Deutsche Radio Philharmonie Saarbrucken Kaiserslautern
SWR Classic SWR19431CD (10 CDs)
Release: 9 September 2022
Les Ballets Russes was founded by director Sergei Diaghilev in 1909. The company never actually performed in Russia – it made its debut in Paris, and the world was to be its home during its twenty years of existence. With his concepts and commissions, Diaghilev fostered collaborations between the most exciting artists of the time, working with composers such as Stravinsky, Ravel, Prokofiev, Debussy and Satie, artists like Picasso, Kandinsky and Matisse, choreographers including Fokine, Nijinsky and Balanchine, and costume designers such as Coco Chanel. He set in motion a groundbreaking artistic revolution, the echoes of which still reverberate even today. The company's productions were hugely successful, and Diaghilev most certainly elevated the careers of the artists he commissioned, in the process introducing an international audience to myths and legends and music and design motifs that would otherwise have remained unknown. The significance of music within all this cannot be overestimated – Diaghilev, in fact, came to ballet through his love of music. SWR Classic has released many of the ballets commissioned or produced by Diaghilev, featuring music by composers from Stravinsky through to Richard Strauss. These are now being re-released as a ten CD boxed set.

Medtner: Complete Piano Sonatas, Vol 3
Paul Stewart, piano
Grand Piano GP888
Release: 9 September 2022
Medtner's fourteen piano sonatas, the most significant achievement in this genre by any major composer since Beethoven, span his career. The Sonata-Ballade explores a tempestuous musical allegory – the triumph of Light over Darkness, of Faith over Doubt; while the Sonata in A minor is cast in a single, terse movement, with folkloric elements and frequent use of bell-like features that exude Russianness. By contrast, the 'Night Wind' Sonata is a monumental epic of exceptional complexity that stunned Rachmaninov and led composer and critic Sorabji to call it 'the greatest piano sonata of modern times.'

José Antônio Rezende de Almeida Prado: Complete Nocturnes; Ilhas
Aleyson Scopel, piano
Grand Piano GP890
Release: 9 September 2022
Prado's colossal piano cycle Cartas Celestes ('Celestial Charts') offers a paradigm of audacious invention (GP709, 710, 746, 747) but between 1985 and 1991 this prolific Brazilian composer also wrote a set of 14 nocturnes that display the genre's lyrical impulses. Along with abstract elements and features such as synesthesia, used in homage to his teacher Messaien, the full range of influences can be felt in Almeida Prado's Nocturnes: Chopin, Scriabinesque colour, bossa-nova, Brahms-like intervals, serenity and radiant songfulness. Ilhas ('Islands') is a mystical but programmatic work, the predecessor of Cartas Celestes in many essential elements. Aleyson Scopel is an award-winning Brazilian pianist and one of Almeida Prado's greatest contemporary advocates.

Perfect Moods – Contemplative, contemporary piano miniatures
Baal Hasulam, Haro Stepanian, Valentin Silvestrov, Philip Glass, Tanya Ekanayaka, Mikael Ayrapetyan
Mikael Ayrapetyan, Elisaveta Blumina, Nicolas Horvath, Tanya Ekanayaka
Grand Piano GP898X (6 CDs)
Release: 9 September 2022
Perfect Moods is a collection of acclaimed albums that together present a multi-cultural journey of inspiring and contemplative modern piano repertoire for the 21st century. Armenian pianist Mikael Ayrapetyan explores his countryman Haro Stepanian's exquisite Preludes; the spiritual and sensual Melodies of the Upper Worlds by the prominent Kabbalist Baal HaSulam; as well as Ayrapetyan's own A Whole in 12. Composer-pianist Tanya Ekanayaka performs her Twelve Piano Prisms – a diverse mix of melodies from her native Sri Lanka combined with music from other countries and genres. The album devoted to Valentin Silvestrov presents an essential overview of this Ukrainian composer's 'post-modern' piano music, with its lingering allusions to the past. For Philip Glass the focus is on love, not least in music for the BAFTA-winning score for The Hours, but also in the breathtaking Modern Love Waltz. All of the composers included in this set showcase contemporary piano music at its most accessible, tonal and expressive.

 


2 SEPTEMBER 2022

Pieter Hellendaal: Six Grand Concertos Op. 3
La Sfera Armoniosa / Mike Fentross
Challenge Classics CC72911
Release: 2 September 2022
A live recording of the complete set of Concerti Grossi in the Handelian style by the foremost Dutch composer of the late Baroque. Following on from the great examples of and Handel's works, Hellendaal develops his own proper approach to the Concertos for string orchestra. This is the fourth recording by Dutch leading Baroque group La Sfera Armoniosa and its leader Mike Fentross for Challenge Classics.Eighteenth-century London musical
life was strongly oriented towards Italian music, with Arcangelo Corelli as the prime example. Corelli never visited England, but his music was heard everywhere, at home and on the concert stage. Handel and Geminiani, who composed in a style based on Corelli's work, took full advantage of this 'Corellimania'. No wonder, then, that also foreign composers living in England were inspired by the work of the big three and continued their formula for success. Among these continuators (which sounds better than followers) Pieter Hellendaal must be counted. Hellendaal was born in 1721 in Rotterdam as the son of a candle maker. Around 1740 he was in Padua for a while to be trained as a violinist and composer with Giuseppe Tartini, Europe's most famous violin teacher. Hellendaal then settled in Amsterdam, nevertheless chose to leave for London in 1751, presumably with the
hope of greater fame and income. The London period lasted from 1751 to 1760. His Six Grand Concertos were issued in 1758 by the London music publisher John Walsh. Later, in Cambridge, Hellendaal was appointed organist of Pembroke Hall Chapel in 1762 and he would spend the rest of his life, a time span of almost forty years, in the city. He died in 1799, aged 78. The Six Grand Concertos of 1758 are his only known works for orchestra. The characteristic of such a 'grand concerto' – a translation of the Italian concerto grosso – is the distinction between solo and tutti parts. In Hellendaal's Grand Concertos there are four soloists, two violinists, an alto player, and a cellist, who together form the concertino. Hellendaal certainly took the work of his three illustrious predecessors Corelli, Handel and Geminiani as a starting point, but he added a completely individual interpretation to it. The result is a set of six masterpieces. Conductor/lutenist Mike Fentross has largely earned his credits as an early music specialist. He is working all over Europe as a conductor, soloist and basso continuo player and he is professor of lute and basso continuo at the Royal Conservatory The Hague. In 2006 he founded the baroque orchestra La Sfera Armoniosa.

La Petite Bande 50th Anniversary: Johann Sebastian Bach
La Petite Bande / Sigiswald Kuijken
Challenge Classics CC72917 (9 CDs)
Release: 2 September 2022
This amazing box celebrates the 50th anniversary of one of the most influential and seminal Baroque ensembles of the recording history: La Petite Bande and its conductor, Sigiswald Kuijken. The box contains the St Matthew Passion, the St John Passion, the Christmas Oratorio and the Mass in B minor. All these works are performed according to the
individual and strictly musicologically based criteria elaborated by the great musician and scholar Sigiswald Kuijken. 'It was September 1972, just after the final notes of Lully's opera Bourgeois Gentilhomme, to a text by Molière, had been recorded by a fairly random assembly of musicians who had got together for the first time to do this – mostly young and enthusiastic advocates of authentic Baroque performance, directed by Gustav Leonhardt, harpsichord maestro and discerning driving force behind this recording. Dr Alfred Krings, of the German Harmonia Mundi recording label, then asked the inevitable question of what name this previously non-existent ensemble should be given on the record sleeve ... With a delicate, slightly enigmatic smile on his face, Gustav Leonhardt conjured up his suggestion of 'La Petite Bande'. Leonhardt was a man of somewhat
aristocratic demeanour and I instantly felt I recognised a subtle but unmistakeable reference to the slightly "gang- like" aspect of our hitherto unblooded musical get-together, and I was happy about this covert allusion as I felt really at home in this brand new grouping. But a few seconds later (presumably because I was gazing at him in puzzled confusion), he explained to me what his suggestion was all about: La Petite Bande, he said, was the name used sometimes at the court of Louis XIV to describe a smaller and most likely better qualified group of musicians, called upon for auspicious occasions only, in other words a sort of musical elite. I swallowed my views on this apparent
contradistinction and immediately said I agreed entirely with the suggestion. Nothing "gang- like" about this group; rather a prestigious, elite Bande de musiciens. Personally, I felt that we were reaching a bit too high, but most of all I was relieved and happy that this problem (of giving the infant a name) had been dealt with. When I look back now, I'm astonished and grateful that this unusual birth of our "little band" – obviously more the result of happy circumstance than premeditated decision – has continued to define the character and ambience of our collaboration over the entire 50 years of our existence as an 'action group'. When you're a musician, or playing in a group of musicians, you need to play every concert as if it were the very first, but at the same time perhaps the very last. This keeps the work mint- fresh and banishes any suffocating routine. The real, deep reason for playing any music at all (even if you play on your own) is your connection to the situation you're transcending, which gives you the most personal, inner satisfaction. If this feeling ever starts to evaporate, where's the fun? Yes, this is the breath that keeps us musicians alive, and we've always chosen musicians who can share this same breath with us. The mentality – that common philosophy about the work – is absolutely the most important aspect; it very largely determines the quality that can then be communicated to our audience. In the most literal sense, a musician must always remain an amateur – a 'dilettante' – as only then will the listener share in the enjoyment. - Sigiswald Kuijken

Voyage - Marina Rebeka & Mathieu Pordoy
Prima Classic PRIMA014
Release: 2 September 2022
Marina Rebeka's first piano recital album invites the listener to travel with the flair of 19th century chamber music, written by French composers, sung in French, Italian, German, and Russian. Some musical objects resist scholarly classifications. Straddling two genres or requiring an unusual membership, they escape the boxes in which we like to lock each score before carefully storing it in a thematic catalogue. The same goes for mélodies composed by French people on foreign texts: should they be considered as French mélodies? Are they losing their French character? Are they even still mélodies or do they become lieder, songs, or any other form specific to the language used? By bringing together works by French musicians composed on French, Russian, German and Italian texts, or in the Tuscan dialect, this album encourages us to make a change of scale, to break the frames and respond to an invitation to travel. Most of the mélodies in this recital were composed between 1860 and 1890, that is to say on the threshold of the Belle Époque and the Second Industrial Revolution. Behind the mirage of national identities, we will perceive a European context conducive to dreams of escape and a cosmopolitanism embodied by great musical figures, such as Henri Duparc, Cécile Cheminade, Maurice Ravel, Camille Saint-Saëns, Charles-Marie Widor, Gabriel Fauré, Charles Gounod, and the extraordinarily talented female composers Marie Jaëll and Pauline Viardot. Marina Rebeka and Mathieu Pordoy approach this eclectic repertoire using a rainbow of musical colours, succeeding indeed in capturing the very essence of each piece. An exquisite album for the musically curious and the armchair traveller alike. Latvian soprano Marina Rebeka is one of the leading opera singers of our time. Since her international breakthrough at the Salzburg Festival in 2009 under the baton of Riccardo Muti, Rebeka has been a regular guest at the world's most prestigious concert halls and opera houses, including the Teatro alla Scala (Milan), the Opéra National de Paris, the Metropolitan Opera (New York), the Royal Opera House Covent Garden (London), the Bavarian State Opera (Munich), the Vienna State Opera, and the Zurich Opera House. She collaborates with leading conductors, including Riccardo Muti, Zubin Mehta, Antonio Pappano, Valery Gergiev, Fabio Luisi, Yannick Nézet-Séguin and Daniele Gatti. The variety of her repertoire ranges from Baroque, through bel canto and Verdi, to Tchaikovsky and Britten. As an active and widely acclaimed concert performer, Rebeka has given recitals at many of the world's most prestigious venues, such as the Teatro alla Scala in Milan, the Grosses Festspielhaus in Salzburg, the Opernhaus Zürich, and others. Rebeka's discography includes releases with Deutsche Grammophon, Warner Classics (EMI), BR Klassik and Naxos. She has recorded Rossini's Petite Messe Solennelle, Mozart's arias, Amor Fatale (an album of Rossini's arias), Verdi's full opera Luisa Miller, and Mozart's La Clemenza di Tito. On her own record label, Prima Classic, she has released the album Spirito (scenes and arias of the dramatic bel canto), Verdi's opera La Traviata, and her solo albums Elle (French opera arias) and Credo (a selection of sacred and spiritual music). Rebeka also sang the role of Imogene in the recording of Bellini's Il Pirata, an album released by Prima Classic that received the 2022 International Classical Music Award (ICMA) for opera recording of the year. In December 2016, Rebeka was granted the Order of the Three Stars, the highest award of the Republic of Latvia, for her cultural achievements.

Haydn: String Quartets Opp 42, 77 & 103
Takacs Quartet
Hyperion Records Ltd CDA68364
Release: 2 September 2022
'Does it need saying that they're awfully good?' was The Strad's rhetorical take on the Takács Quartet's previous Haydn recordings for Hyperion. With more marvellous Haydn on offer here, it's a verdict which listeners will certainly share.

Lux Aeterna
The Gesualdo Six / Owain Park
Hyperion Records Ltd CDA68388
Release: 2 September 2022
'A sequence for the souls of the departed, to be heard by those who remember them' is how Owain Park characterizes this latest release from The Gesualdo Six. As always with this remarkable group, performances are equally outstanding whether of Tallis or Tavener.

Ensemble Allegria - Britten, Hagen, Strauss
LAWO LWC1241
Release: 2 September 2022
Ensemble Allegria presents here a combination of works as an invitation
to enjoyment as well as reflection. We are offered variations, metamorphoses and fragments, three different artistic working concepts. Variation and metamorphosis are similar artistic tools inasmuch as the material to be used is workable and encourages modification. At the same time, the basic material is recognisable or, in any case, reconstructible. Of course in the works heard here the motif of transformation is intended. And whereas musical variations — as with Benjamin Britten — typically retain a
theme's form and length more or less unaltered, a metamorphosis — as Richard Strauss calls his work — can by contrast pertain to everything from the shortest motifs to entire movements. Lars Petter Hagen's "Strauss Fragments" were commissioned by Ensemble Allegria. All three composers on this CD stand in debt to an older colleague. Britten had a close association with his teacher Frank Bridge and reveals this through his variations. Strauss explicitly cites Ludwig van Beethoven's third symphony in his "Metamorphoses", and Hagen's composition is based on this latter work. Composing on the basis of music one does not hold in high regard often results in a caricature. This is by no means the case here.

Nils Henrik Asheim: Salmenes Bok
Oslo Cathedral Choir / ; Nils Henrik Asheim, organ; Kare Nordstoga, organ
LAWO LWC1232
Release: 2 September 2022
The process behind this work originates from when Oslo Cathedral commissioned a largescaled work by Nils Henrik Asheim for the inauguration of the church's new main pipe organ in 1998. The composer suggested including a choir to create a cycle of texts from the Book of Psalms, and the Oslo Cathedral Choir were more than willing to participate, with their dedication to the piece being integral to the work's development. Organ builders Ryde & Berg made both the main organ (with 53 voices) and the choir organ (16 voices), with the combination of the two becoming central to the concept of the work. The two instruments bathe the room in an immersive soundscape, with the choir representing the voice inside this. The composer himself chose a selection of lines taken from 21 hymns, with the view to creating a holistic narrative through use of contrasts. Five 'Allelujah' movements for organ complete each of the sections of the work. In the 1998 version, these were improvised movements for solo organ, but in the revised version from 2019 the movements were re-composed as organ duos. The titles of these five movements are taken from Psalm 150, vv1-3.

Noskowski, Franck: Sonatas For Violin And Piano
Adam Wagner, violin; Dariusz Noras, piano
Dux Recording Producers DUX1861
Release: 2 September 2022
The presented album is an encounter of two different creative individualities personified by Zygmunt Noskowski and Cesar Franck. We will listen to their sonatas, both written for violin and piano, in parallel keys (differing only in mode). These works were created at a similar time; they are only 15 years apart. However, despite so many similarities, these are two completely different musical worlds. The awareness of both among music lovers is also radically different: Noskowski's work is little known even among Polish listeners,
whereas Franck's composition has been performed almost continuously since the moment it was published, also in arrangements.The Sonata in A Minor for violin and piano by Noskowski is kept in a classical convention of the sonata- allegro form. However, one can hear therein a wide, narrative breath of musical phrases, which listeners know from the composer's symphonic output. On the other hand, Franck's piece, the Sonata in A Major for violin and piano, presents a different convention – these are wandering motifs penetrating the musical tissue of the entire piece and, above all, deep emotional saturation dominating the character of the work. So different and yet somehow similar works grow out of the spirit of their era – open to new trends but still sometimes focused on the past.
The violin is played by Adam Wagner, a well-known and respected Polish violinist with a successful stage career. He is accompanied by Dariusz Noras, a chamber pianist whose interpretations have already been appreciated many times, both in Poland and abroad.

Sepia Ensemble Contemporary Musicians
Dux Recording Producers DUX1691
Release: 2 September 2022
The album is a collection of compositions created in the last two decades, except for one by Krzysztof Penderecki, which has been around for more than half a century. However, they all speak the language of contemporary music, represented by artists from all over the world. We launch our musical journey with Quartetto per archi no. 1 by Krzysztof Penderecki, composed at the threshold of his artistic career, which is a manifestation of sonorism in music. This technique is also referred to by the piece Rocking Music by Ewa Fabianska- Jelinska, composed almost sixty years later, influenced by, among others, rock music. The ensemble is varied and also includes brass instruments. The composition Donsu Dances by Japanese creator Atsuko Ezaki is also written for a diverse ensemble. The author suggested the piece's programme idea in the title of the work: sophisticated, traditional Japanese fabric, which translates into the musical tissue of the work. Swedish composer Lars Carlsson (Vindarna vaxlar, or change of wind) and Marcel Chyrzynski (Betelgeuse, name of a star) revealed their inspiration with natural phenomena, more and more often present in contemporary music. Artur Kroschel described his trio for clarinet, piano and cello as Gestures, as if referring to the language of symbols, non- verbal communication, in which music expresses itself best. Rafal Zapala stayed with an unconstrained form of Scherzo,
in which six instruments hold a dialogue, each of them fully expressing its sonic individuality. All pieces are performed by Sepia Ensemble Contemporary Musicians, one of the few and leading contemporary music ensembles in Poland.

Musical Landscapes
Cracow Guitar Quartet
Dux Recording Producers DUX1780
Release: 2 September 2022
The very title of the presented album, Musical Landscapes, promises a musical journey through musical landscapes, each of which characterized by a different tradition and mood. The works come from different eras and were composed by different artists. On this CD, they share an extremely interesting arrangement idea and a perfect performance by the musicians from the guitar ensemble Cracow Guitar Quartet. The idea of 'musical landscapes' refers to the cultural background from which the individual pieces originate: the Far North (fragments of the music drama Peer Gynt by Edward Grieg), rainy Cuba (from the composition by Leo Brouwer), hot Spain (Fandango by Luigi Boccherini) or Night on Bald Mountain by Modest Mussorgsky, full of fiery Eastern Slavic temperament. Well-known works,
such as the famous Brandenburg Concerto by Johann Sebastian Bach, have, however, gained a completely unexpected sound due to a guitar ensemble transcription. Thanks to this, eight musical journeys recorded on the album are a return to familiar places but in a completely new version. The ensemble consists of Milosz Maczynski, Joanna Baran- Nosiadek, Lukasz Dobrowolski and Mateusz Puter.

Romantic Duets
Justyna Reczeniedi, soprano; Anna Radziejewska, mezzo-soprano; Krzysztof Trzaskowski, piano
Dux Recording Producers DUX1813
Release: 2 September 2022
The album Romantic Duets takes listeners on an unobvious and surprising journey: Romantic music in its most intimate version expressed through female voices with words of poems written by creators of different eras. These songs have been performed and recorded many times, but it is the choice of compositions and their mutual interweaving dialogue that are always of utmost significance. On this album, we suggest you to listen to duets accompanied by piano, a vocal form that gained the greatest popularity in the nineteenth century as a form of home music making but also as part of a repertoire able to reflect the most sublime feelings and their personal, deeply intimate nature. The composers ofthese songs are artists whose output fell on the 19th century, e.g. Gioacchino Rossini, associated primarily with opera, the brilliant Felix Mendelssohn-Bartholdy, the famous pianist Jozef Wieniawski (Henryk's brother), the late Romantic artist Ernest Chausson and Pauline Viardot, one of the few officially respected female composers of her day. The Romantic idiom, despite some stylistic and expressive changes, was also continued by composers whose works were already associated with new trends present in music at the threshold of the 20th century – Jan Kar 322;owicz and his son Mieczyslaw, Wladyslaw Zelenski and Gabriel Faure. The performers are two artists, soloists of the Polish Royal Opera: Anna Radziejowska (mezzo-soprano) and Justyna Reczeniedi (soprano). The singers are accompanied on the piano by Krzysztof Trzaskowski.

Out Of Step
Lars Lien, saxophone; Sergej Osadchuk, piano
LAWO LWC1237
Release: 2 September 2022
'This recording is the culmination of a process spanning several years, in which the performers delved into the works of composers found right in their own backyard. The facts are that all but one of the composers on this recording were born in the 1940s (the exception here is Mark Adderley, who was born in 1960). All of the composers are Norwegian, except for Anders Eliasson from Sweden and Adderley, who is half English, half Swedish, and has lived in Norway since 1981. Three of the composers have worked as professors at the Norwegian Academy of Music, an institution that has been at the forefront of the education of Norwegian composers since its establishment in 1973. These facts have not in themselves been instrumental in the choice of repertoire; rather it was more important that the works were composed for saxophone and piano, and that we as performers believed that they were works that deserved to be realized into sound, and given attention beyond their catalog listings in various music libraries. There is so much fantastic music created in Norway and the Nordic countries that we wanted to bring some of it to light in order to make musicians and audiences, potentially all over the globe, more aware of the high quality of works from these countries. The recording also documents some of the different artistic directions and variations to be found among Norwegian and Nordic
composers around the turn of the millennium.' – Lars Lien

Krzysztof Meyer: Canti Amadei; Symphony No 5 For String Orchestra, Op 63
Bartosz Koziak, cello; Polish Chamber Philharmonic Orchestra / Rafal Janiak
Dux Recording Producers DUX1803
Release: 2 September 2022
This music, written in the 1970s and 1980s, despite the passage of time, still intrigues the audience with its beautiful, narrative melody and interesting formal solutions. Krzysztof Meyer (born 1943) is a Polish composer who eagerly refers to early musical traditions, entering into a dialogue with them. He is also familiar with the concept of programme music: his music communicates with the world, tells about it, makes memories, co-operates with the listener's imagination. The composition Canti Amadei – Concerto da camera per violoncello, Op 63 refers to one of Krzysztof Meyer's favourite artists – Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart. In this five-movement, dynamic chamber concerto, Meyer included quotations from works of the great Viennese. In turn, the second of the recorded compositions, Symphony No 5 for string orchestra, Op 44, transfers the listener into the world of a sonic tale in which the narrative is taken over by successive instruments or their groups, influencing the listener's imagination through textural and colouristic changes. Among the performers, there are cellist Bartosz Koziak and the Polish Chamber Philharmonic Orchestra Sopot under the baton of Rafal Janiak.

Adrian Robak: Reflexions
Anna Firlus, harpsichord, organ; Krzysztof Firlus, viola da gamba, pardessus de viole and double bass
Dux Recording Producers DUX1848
Release: 2 September 2022
Reflexions is an extraordinary surprise for listeners. It contains premiere recordings of a young Polish composer, surprising both with an unusual selection of instruments and the richness of the compositional techniques and means of expression used. The composer is Adrian Robak, born in 1979, a versatile artist, experimenting with the possibilities of instruments and their sound, departing from traditional, historical forms. On the CD, he combines instruments associated with early music – harpsichord, viola da gamba (as well
as its soprano 'sister' – pardessus de viole), double bass and organ, rarely used in duets and usually associated only with sacred music. The musical possibilities of the instruments are explored in a whole range of compositional techniques, present in all four cycles of the presented compositions. The expressive intensity, achieved, among others, thanks to virtuoso passages, strong rhythm-driven factor, juxtaposed with lyrical fragments, with a large emotional load, expressed through a lively melodic line, makes this music full of passion and extraordinarily intense. The harpsichord and organ part are performed by Anna Firlus, soloist and chamber musician, member of {oh!} orkiestra historyczna, while the viola da gamba, pardessus de viole and double bass are played by Krzysztof Firlus, a versatile musician, also associated with {oh!} orkiestra historyczna. Both are among the leading Polish artists dealing with both early and contemporary music.
They have released a number of award- winning and critically acclaimed recordings. In addition, they are active performers and teachers.

Fatma Said – Kaleidoscope
Warner Classics 5054197140099
Release: 2 September 2022
Egyptian soprano Fatma Said blazed onto the classical scene with her multi-award-winning debut on Warner Classics, El Nour, honoured with two Awards apiece from Gramophone and BBC Music Magazine in 2021. The young opera singer now follows her success with an equally imaginative and even more colourful release: Kaleidoscope, named for its cross-cultural and genre-defying programme, showcasing the talents and passions of the star, particularly dance. The album features works from opera, operetta, and film, sung in no less than six languages - French, German, English, Spanish, Italian and Arabic. Several songs derive from 1930s films, including numbers such as Berlin's 'Cheek to Cheek', Piazolla's 'J'oublie', Weill's 'Youkali', and the ever-popular 'I Could Have Danced All Night' from My Fair Lady. Offenbach's 'Barcarolle' from Les Contes d'Hoffmann and Gounod's 'Valse' from Roméo et Juliette are two examples of the operatic offerings on the disc, in addition to works from operettas by Johan Strauss, Lehár, Messager and D'Estalenx, and Massenet. The album concludes with the crowd-pleaser 'I Wanna Dance with Somebody', made famous by the pop icon Whitney Houston.

Johann Sebastian Bach: Italian Concerto; French Overture
Mahan Esfahani, harpsichord
Hyperion Records CDA68336
Release: 2 September 2022
Mahan Esfahani again highlights the radicalism, virtuosity and sheer joyousness of the works recorded here, both in his playing and in his uncommonly engaging booklet notes.

Joseph Haydn: Cello Concertos in C & D; Paul Hindemith: Trauermusik
Christian Poltéra, Münchener Kammerorchester
BIS Records BIS2507 (SACD)
Release: 2 September 2022
Joseph Haydn once remarked: 'I was not a magician on any instrument, but I knew the power and effect of all of them.' This knowledge he used to good effect in his cello concertos, composed some twenty years apart for two different cellists in 'his' orchestra at the court of Prince Esterhazy. Both works are firmly established in the concert repertoire, but this has not always been the case. Concerto No 1 in C major was long believed to be lost and it was only in 1961 that a set of parts were discovered in the Prague National Museum. The D major concerto, on the other hand, was never lost, but for a very long time there was doubts concerning its provenance. Only when Haydn's manuscript was found in 1954 could the work's authorship be clarified beyond doubt. These two jewels in the cello repertoire are here performed by the acclaimed Swiss cellist Christian Poltéra who also directs the Münchener Kammerorchester. Closing the disc is a work composed some 150 years later: the composer and viola player Paul Hindemith wrote his Trauermusik for himself to perform at a concert commemorating the death of George V of England in 1936. It is here heard in the version for cello and strings.

Franz Schubert: The Symphonies
Swedish Chamber Orchestra / Thomas Dausgaard
BIS Records BIS2514 (4 Hybrid SACDs)
Release: 2 September 2022
It was only after his death that Franz Schubert's symphonic works made an impact in music history. In fact, the first public performance of any of Schubert's symphonies took place at a memorial concert held a few weeks after the composer had passed away, on 19th November 1828. The work that was heard at that occasion was Symphony No.6, D589, the 'Little C major', while the two undisputed master works of the series – the 'Great C major' and the 'Unfinished' – had to wait until 1838 and 1865, respectively, before being performed. The six symphonies that precede them in the list of completed works were all composed between 1813 and 1818, while Schubert was still only 21 years of age. In a style above all oriented on Haydn and Mozart, they are youthful in the best sense of the word and display a disarming freshness which the present performances convey to perfection. The four discs gathered here were released singly between 2010 and 2014, receiving critical acclaim in the international music press: the reviewer in The Daily Telegraph (UK) described the experience as 'having a layer of varnish removed from a much-loved painting' while his colleague in Fanfare wrote that the approach by Thomas Dausgaard and the Swedish Chamber Orchestra 'changes the landscape', proposing that the cycle 'could become a first choice among any available.' The set also include some shorter orchestral works, among them the much-loved Rosamunde Overture.

Telemann: Recorder Sonatas
Dan Laurin, recorder; Anna Paradiso, harpsichord; Mats Olofsson, cello
BIS Records BIS2555 (SACD)
Release: 2 September 2022
Over the past decades, Dan Laurin has established himself as one of the most interesting recorder players of our time. His more than 30 critically acclaimed releases on BIS range from a seminal 9-disc set of van Eyck's Der Fluyten Lust-hof to contemporary concertos. The first recordings Laurin made for the label were of duets by Georg Philipp Telemann, and since then he has returned to the composer several times, recording chamber music and concertos. It is only now that he has set the complete sonatas on disc, however – works that he describes in his liner notes as forming part of most recorder players' 'musical DNA'. Performing them here with his regular chamber music partners Anna Paradiso and Mats Olofsson, Laurin revels in the wide technical and emotional scope of the sonatas as well as their stylistic diversity. In the C major sonata TWV 41:C5 Telemann looks backwards as he pays tribute to his illustrious forerunner Corelli, while the Empfindsamkeit of the Affettuoso of the D minor sonata is very much of its time – and throughout the collection there are traces of composer's fascination for Polish folk music.

Ülo Krigul: Liquid Turns
Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir, Tallinn Chamber Orchestra / Kaspars Putniņš
BIS Records BIS2590 (SACD)
Release: 2 September 2022
Ülo Krigul studied in Tallinn and Vienna, and has written music in a wide variety of genres. Three works on the present disc – And the Sea Arose, Aga vaata aina üles ('But Look Always Up') and liquid turns – were completed in 2019–20 when Krigul was composer-in-residence with the Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir. Linked by a common concept and the recycling of musical material, the three form a triptych-like set, here preceded by Vesi ise ('Water Is') from 2015. The latter is the first piece that Krigul wrote for the choir and its conductor Kaspars Putniņš and includes ideas that has been carried over into their later collaboration. If Vesi ise here functions as a prelude, liquid turns is to an extent a summation of the programme: the composer has sampled text and music from the two preceding works and random phrases interact and emerge as a new whole. Krigul has chosen his texts from the New Testament, the writings of the philosopher Uku Masing and the sound poetry of Ilmar Laaban.

Gity Razaz: The Strange Highway
All-American Cello Band, Francesca dePasquale, Scott Cuellar, Inbal Segev, Katharina Kang Litton, Metropolis Ensemble / Andrew Cyr
BIS Records BIS2634
Release: 2 September 2022
Gity Razaz was born in Tehran, where she spent her formative years before moving to the United States in 2002. Razaz's identity as an immigrant is integral to her artistic work, in terms both of the subject matter that attracts her and the musical structures she employs. The relationship between the grounded and the ephemeral inhabits much of her music: her choice of titles reveals a poetic sensibility, but her music is never purely cerebral. Instead it is often anchored by the visceral, as with the punchy rhythms and earthy colours of The Strange Highway for cello octet. That piece, which has given name to the album, takes its inspiration from a poem by the Chilean author Roberto Bolaño. Two other works on the disc also have extra-musical roots: Legend of Sigh is a retelling in music of an Azerbaijani folktale while Metamorphosis of Narcissus was inspired by the famous painting by Salvador Dalí. In both these works Razaz embraces electro-acoustic techniques as a means of enhancing her palette. The five works on the disc were composed between 2007 and 2020, with the earliest piece being Duo for violin and piano. The latest work is Spellbound, a solo for viola inspired by the mournful sound quality of Persian instruments such as the ney and kamanche.

Valentin Silvestrov: Requiem für Larissa
Priska Eser, Jutta Neumann, Andreas Hirtreiter, Wolfgang Klose, Michael Mantaj, Chor des Bayerischen Rundfunks, Muenchner Rundfunkorchester / Andres Mustonen
BR Klassik 900344
Release: 2 September 2022
Valentin Silvestrov is probably the best-known Ukrainian composer, and his "Requiem for Larissa", now released on CD by BR-KLASSIK, was written in response to the unexpected death in 1996 of his wife, the music and literature scholar Larissa Bondarenko. She had stood by his side from the very beginning of his artistic career. It was in 1999, shortly before the turn of the millennium, that Silvestrov was finally able to complete his Requiem. He did not set a drama of the Last Judgement to music, as Mozart, Berlioz or Verdi had done before him, but rather wrote a lament - in seemingly endless, world-forlorn repetitions. The composer stepped out of the present and into the past, commenting on his life with Larissa with memories of music that had inspired her, and with profound allusions, retrospections and epilogues of the most personal nature.

Shostakovich: Concerto for Piano, Trumpet and String Orchestra No 1, Op 35 in C minor; Symphony No 9, Op 70 in E-flat major
Yefim Bronfman, Hannes Läubin, Symphonieorchester des Bayerischen Rundfunks / Mariss Jansons
BR Klassik 900204 (1 LP - vinyl)
Release: 2 September 2022
'Increasingly, Shostakovich's music is captivating people all over the world and appealing to their deepest emotions. Almost like no other, it bears witness to a traumatic political epoch while remaining a timeless expression of existential human feeling and experience. For me personally', said conductor Mariss Jansons, who died two years ago, 'Shostakovich is one of the most serious and sincere composers of them all.' Now BR-Klassik is releasing the two outstanding performances by this important Soviet-Russian composer on LP: his impressive Concerto for Piano, Trumpet and String Orchestra, and his Ninth Symphony - performed live by the Symphonieorchester des Bayerischen Rundfunks under its long-time principal conductor Mariss Jansons.

Leo Blech: Alpenkönig und Menschenfeind (The Alpine King and the Misanthrope)
Ronan Collett, Hrólfur Saemundsson, Sonja Gornik, Irina Popova, Tilmann Unger, Anne-Aurore Cochet, Hyunhan Hwang, Pawel Lawreszuk, Fanny Lustaud, Anna Graf, Opernchor Aachen, Sinfonieorchester Aachen / Christopher Ward
Capriccio C5478 (2 CDs)
Release: 2 September 2022
Around 1902 Leo Blech took the subject of the 'original romantic-comic magic' play by Viennese theatre manager/actor/playwright Ferdinand Raimund, adapted it, and turned it into his fifth opera. A cantankerous misanthrope terrorises family and servants with his paranoid mistrust. He's cured only when faced with his own behaviour, courtesy of a supernatural role reversal. Highbrow opera meets folksy farce with unexpectedly sumptuous and splendidly orchestrated music that lies somewhere between Wagner and Humperdinck. The opera's premiere at the Dresden Court Theatre was a sensational success. All of Blech's music was subsequently banned and, once the Nazi horror was over, it never returned. Now you can hear what we missed.

Anton Bruckner: Symphony No 3 (1873 Version)
ORF Vienna Radio Symphony Orchestra / Markus Poschner
Capriccio C8086
Release: 2 September 2022
Bruckner revised his Third Symphony more than any other: there are three manuscript versions, two published versions from within his lifetime, a separate manuscript of the Adagio, and revision fragments from 1874, 1875 and 1876 that have also survived. In its first version (used for this recording), it is Bruckner's longest and most overtly Wagnerian symphony. When Bruckner expert Robert Simpson got to study Nowak's edition of this version in 1977, he threw his previously held opinions overboard and declared it an 'achievement ... progressively maimed in successive versions.' As part of this completist cycle, Markus Poschner will present the work at all stages of its pruning, but this is the obvious point at which to start.

Bach: Masses
The Sixteen, Harry Christophers
CORO COR16194 (2 CDs)
Release: 2 September 2022
Bach's four Lutheran Masses feature almost no Lutheran material at all. Sometimes called 'Missa brevis', musically they are almost entirely made up of movements borrowed from Bach's Cantatas. While often overshadowed by the more famous Mass in B minor, the beauty of these short Masses is that they represent Bach's own choice of his finest Cantata movements. Despite their exquisite beauty, featuring splendid choruses and deeply moving arias, there are relatively few recordings of the Masses. This collection combines The Sixteen's recordings into one collection. Just eight singers join The Sixteen's orchestra to perform the Masses, allowing the beauty of the virtuosic vocal lines to be heard with absolute clarity.

Haydn: London Symphony No 103; Theresienmesse
Mary Bevan, Catherine Wyn-Rogers, Jeremy Budd, Sumner Thompson, Handel and Haydn Society / Harry Christophers
CORO COR16192
Release: 2 September 2022
The Handel and Haydn Society celebrates Haydn with a dazzling pairing of two of the composer's masterpieces. In one of his final performances as Artistic Director of the Society, Harry Christophers leads the ensemble and a stellar cast of soloists in Haydn's monumental 'Theresienmesse' (Mass in Bflat major - Hob.XXII:12) and his Symphony No. 103 in E-flat major (Hob.I:103) the 'Drumroll' - one of Haydn's twelve 'London' symphonies composed between 1791 and 1795 when London was the indisputable musical capital of Europe.

Bernardo Pasquini: L'Idalma overo Chi la dura la vince
Arianna Vendittelli, Anita Rosati, Margherita Maria Sala, Rupert Charlesworth, Juan Sancho, Morgan Pearse, Rocco Cavalluzzi, Innsbrucker Festwochenorchester / Alessandro De Marchi
CPO 555501-2 (3 CDs)
Release: 2 September 2022
It's already a tradition: at the opening of the Innsbruck Festival there's a baroque opera rediscovery. This time it is 'L'Idalma overo Chi dura la vince' (Idalma, or Whoever perseveres wins) by Bernardo Pasquini. Competing against Alessandro Scarlatti, Pasqini composed his 'Idalma' in the Roman Carnival of 1680. It is about marital fidelity and steadfast love: themes that were already a favorite of Italian noble houses in the 17th century, and Bernardo Pasquini was, after all, in the service of the Roman Borghese family for over forty years. Together with Giovanna Barbati, conductor and artistic director of the Festwochen Alessandro de Marchi has created a new version of the work, which has been forgotten for some 350 years, based on the composer's own handwriting. This version dispenses with lengthy musical repetitions and instead scores with a fireworks display of affects: brilliant arias full of expressivity and power, instrumental richness, sweeping ensembles and a sensitive musical design that takes full account of the permanent change of affects and dramatic situations.

Hans Gál: Piano Quartet in A major; Suite Op 24; Concertino Op 43; Impromptu
Gottlieb Wallisch, Aron Quartett, Franz Liszt Chamber Orchestra / Hartmut Rohde
CPO 555276-2
Release: 2 September 2022
The program of this CD offers a varied selection of chamber music with piano written by Hans Gál between 1922 and 1940. Among these, the main work on the album is undoubtedly the Piano Quartet written for the one-armed pianist Paul Wittgenstein. The work consists of four substantial movements, and each of the movements is uniquely melodic; moreover, there are strong contrasts between the two light and airy movements II and IV on the one hand, and the dignified opening movement and delicate Adagio on the other. Richness and variety characterize this most productive period of composer Hans Gál. The rest of the program is of a decidedly lighter character than the Piano Quartet and shows Gál at his most fluid, melodic.

Max Reger: Organ Works, Vol 8
Gerhard Weinberger
CPO 555342-2 (2 Hybrid SACDs)
Release: 2 September 2022
Our successful Reger edition can finally continue, and critics continue to be more than enthusiastic about the previous installments, Musik & Theater even claiming, 'These recordings are among the best currently available in organ music by Reger.' And now the penultimate volume No 8 again with two SACDs in best surround sound. The focus is on Reger's Op 67. In May 1901, Reger informed Straube of his intention to 'write 30 chorale preludes to the best-known chorales'. Over time, the project grew to 52 preludes. In the letter of 22 October 1902 to the publishing house Lauterbach & Kuhn in Leipzig, Reger wrote with regard to the collection Zweiundfünfzig leicht ausführbare Vorspiele zu den gebräuchlichsten evangelischen Chorälen Op 67 that he could 'probably say without arrogance that no such collection has been published since J S Bach'. In fact, Reger is to be agreed here without any reservations: Reger's Op 67 was a work that can be compared to Bach's 'Orgelbüchlein' in terms of content as well as scope and pedagogical intention.

Ernst Wilhelm Wolf:mSelected Works for Clavier
Flóra Fábri
CPO 555490-2
Release: 2 September 2022
On her latest CD, Flora Fabri interprets the highly praised sonatas and a fantasy by Ernst Wilhelm Wolf on a 'tangent grand'. The ingenious invention of this grand piano for the time around 1770 is an intermediate form of clavichord, harpsichord and fortepiano. When a key is struck, a wooden stick with a leather head is struck against the string from below, and a second stick dampens the string again. Wolf (...) belongs not only (...) among our classical and best composers in any subject, but is also original. More recognition seems hardly possible from the perspective of the Sturm und Drang: The introduction that Ernst Ludwig Gerber chooses in 1792 to his encyclopedia article on Ernst Wilhelm Wolf paints in a few words the picture of an original genius whose artistic uniqueness dominates a maximum of professional expertise. He was a pupil of Gottfried Heinrich Stölzel. In Gotha he became acquainted with the music of Carl Philipp Emanuel Bach and Carl Heinrich Graun, which strongly influenced him. Above all, he appreciated the works of Bach, with whom he had a lifelong friendship. At the University of Jena he was mainly engaged in music, and he was given the direction of the Collegium musicum, which gave him the opportunity to perform his own compositions.

Carl Loewe: Symphonies No 1 in D minor & No 2 in E minor; Themisto Overture
Jenaer Philharmonie / Simon Gaudenz
CPO 555319-2
Release: 2 September 2022
Of Carl Loewe's oeuvre, his comprehensive Lied edition is best known. In contrast, his two symphonies are rarities that we do not want to withhold from you. Unfortunately, nothing is really known about the exact circumstances of the composition and premiere of the two symphonies. With regard to the E minor symphony, Loewe himself at least left the note that the composition was completed on 15 December 1834. With regard to the D minor symphony, it is assumed that it was composed in 1835. Especially the D minor symphony, which was composed later, comes up with surprises in its formal layout. The instrumentation is very similar to his first symphony in E minor, but the frequent use of four horns is striking, with which Loewe takes a step further towards the typical Romantic instrumentation. When looking at the sequence of movements, the interchange of slow movement and scherzo is striking, and in the harmonic structure Loewe allows himself an extravagant excursion into F-sharp major in the introduction of the fourth movement. The CD is completed with Loewe's Themisto Overture, a compressed drama whose atmosphere comes to a head with tremolo surfaces, falling lines and syncopated counter-motives.

In London Town: British Organ Music on the Dobson Organ of Saint Thomas Church, Fifth Avenue
William Walton, John Ireland, Edward Elgar, Judith Bingham, Percy Whitlock, Simon Preston, Thomas Tallis, Herbert Howells, Andrew Carter
Benjamin Sheen, organ
CRD Records CRD3541
Release: 2 September 2022
CRD is releasing a single disc of British Organ Music on the Dobson Organ of Saint Thomas Church, Fifth Avenue, New York City, played by noted concert organist Benjamin Sheen. This collection contains a swath of organ music from composers such as William Walton, John Ireland, Thomas Tallis and including first recordings of an arrangement of an Elgar piece 'In London Town' by Benjamin's father, Graham Sheen, as well as a first recording of Larcrimae by Andrew Carter, written in the memory of John Scott.

Rued Langgaard: Piano Works, Vol 4
Berit Johansen Tange
Dacapo 6.220662 (SACD)
Release: 2 September 2022
Listening to Rued Langgaard's works for solo piano is like reading an open book. All through his life, Langgaard had a close relationship with the piano and composed well over 50 works for the instrument, in which his development as a composer, and as a person, can be traced step by step. In this fourth volume of piano works by the deeply original Danish composer, Berit Johansen Tange captures the fierce inner life of Langgaard, his charm and incomparable twists in colour and mood that are all part of Langgaard's both delicate and visionary expression.

Bent Sørensen: The Island in the City
Trio con Brio Copenhagen, Danish National Symphony Orchestra / Jukka-Pekka Saraste
Dacapo 8.226086
Release: 2 September 2022
Bent Sørensen's quietly spoken universe incorporates loneliness, nostalgia and a feeling of loss and leave-taking. Of the works on this album, his triple concerto, L'Isola della Città (2015), has a purity that makes it one of the composer's most immediate and gripping orchestral works. His dramatic Second Symphony (2019) dives into the resonance of music's classical history, where every sound is considered with the greatest care and refinement.

Matias Vestergård: Idylls, elegies
Esbjerg Ensemble, Signe Asmussen, Magnus Larsson, Rei Munakata
Dacapo 8.226546
Release: 2 September 2022
Even as he emerges onto Denmark's new music scene as a major new voice, Matias Vestergård is a rarity on it: a composer fluent, flexible, prolific and poly-stylistic who draws on genres ranging from hymnody to cabaret while probing some of the basic theories of sound and its production. The music recorded here was written during Vestergård's years at the Academy of Music in Copenhagen, charting a process of self-discovery described by the composer as 'my younger self trying to deal with the serious classical music heritage I love.'

Domenico Scarlatti: Violin Sonatas
Boris Begelman, Arsenale Sonoro, Alexandra Koreneva, Ludovico Minasi
Obsidian CD720
Release: 2 September 2022
The place of Domenico Scarlatti in the history of eighteenth century music is certainly exceptional. This exquisite and imaginative group of works is included in the fourteenth volume of Scarlatti's manuscript sonatas preserved in the Marciana Library in Venice. Although known as keyboard sonatas, research reveals that they were very likely to have been conceived for performance on the violin – multi-movement works, often showing the presence of figured bass accompaniment, rapid changes of register and numerous passages better suited to a violin than a keyboard instrument all support the theory. This is flashy and virtuosic writing for violin at its finest.

Brahms, Berg: Violin Concertos
Christian Tetzlaff, Deutsches Symphonie-Orchester Berlin / Robin Ticciati
Ondine ODE 1410-2
Release: 2 September 2022
On this new concerto album one of the greatest violinist of his generation, Christian Tetzlaff, offers profound interpretations of two deeply dramatic and lyrical concertos – those of Brahms and Berg – together with the Deutsches Symphonie-Orchester Berlin conducted by Robin Ticciati.

Tālivaldis Ķeniņš: Symphonies Nos 2, 3 & 7
Latvian National Symphony Orchestra / Andris Poga
Ondine ODE 1401-2
Release: 2 September 2022
This is the final volume in the first-ever complete recorded cycle of symphonies by Tālivaldis Ķeniņš (1919–2008), one of the most prominent post-WW2 composers in Latvia and Canada. This album includes three of the composer's eight numbered symphonies performed by the Latvian National Symphony Orchestra under Andris Poga.

Karol Szymanowski: Stabat Mater, Op 53; Krzysztof Penderecki: Dies Irae; Threnody to the Victims of Hiroshima
Elena Mosuc, Annette Markert, Anton Scharinger, Chorus sine nomine, Ewa Izykowska, Zachos Terzakis, Stephen Roberts, Wiener Konzertchor, ORF Vienna Radio Symphony Orchestra / Michael Gielen
Orfeo C210311
Release: 2 September 2022
Despite their different musical languages, all works by the Polish composers Karol Szymanowski and Krzysztof Penderecki presented on this album have in common the inherent character of a lament: Szymanowski's Stabat mater, which was completed in 1926 and is based on a Polish translation of the Latin medieval poem, is considered as one of the most important compositions of the twentieth century. Penderecki's three-part oratorio Dies Irae was commissioned for a commemoration day in remembrance of the murder victims at the former concentration camp in Auschwitz, and hence carries the epithet 'Auschwitz Oratorium'. The album closes with a Threnos for fifty-two string instruments dedicated to the victims of Hiroshima. The final haunting bars of this composition present a tutti cluster, starting in a triple forte and fading out to quadruple piano.

Edvard Grieg: Music for Cello
Daniel Müller-Schott, cello; Herbert Schuch, piano
Orfeo C240221
Release: 2 September 2022
Edvard Grieg, arguably the most popular composer ever to emerge from the Scandinavian peninsula, made substantial contributions to the chamber music canon with his violin sonatas rather than with his works for cello: only one sonata for cello and piano (Op 36) was written for this line-up. Daniel Müller-Schott, always driven to expand the musical repertoire for his instrument and with a keen sense of transcriptions, for this all-Grieg album – which is his twentieth album on the label Orfeo – hence transcribed and recorded for the first time the Violin sonata in C minor, Op 45, No 3, for the cello. Accompanied by his long-standing duo-partner Herbert Schuch on piano, the short Intermezzo in A minor (EG 115) guides us to the second part of the album, where the duo presents selected songs of various characters transcribed for cello and piano.

Poul Ruders: Clarinet Quintet; Throne; Piano Quartet
Rudersdal Chamber Players
OUR Recordings 6.220680 (SACD)
Release: 2 September 2022
With his characteristic wit and quirkiness, Grammy-nominated Danish composer Poul Ruders has summed up his mission as a composer as being 'To entertain, to enrich, and to disturb, not necessarily in that order'. Born in Ringsted, Denmark in 1949, Ruders achieved international fame with his opera The Handmaid's Tale (1996-98), a work whose aching tenderness, grotesque irony, despair and timeliness has established a permanent place in the repertoire. Ruders' own intuitive development as a composer has enabled him to create works which manage to be strikingly modern, yet avoiding any the clichés of European modernism, but above all, imbued with the power to speak to the emotions of an audience. The current program features works spanning thirty years, beginning with the elliptical Throne (1989) for clarinet and piano and two major chamber works, the Clarinet Quintet and Piano Quartet, dating from 2014 and 2016 respectively. The Rudersdal Chamber Players, founded in 2017 by violinist Christine Pryn, are the ideal interpreters for Ruders' stylistically fluid scores, finding the classical 'roots' in works like the Clarinet Quintet (beautifully performed by Jonas Frølund, one of the most talented clarinet players of his generation in the world today) as well as the surprising intimacy of the Piano Quartet.

Beethoven: Piano Trios, Op 1, Nos 1 & 2
Rautio Piano Trio
Resonus Classics RES10305
Release: 2 September 2022
Beethoven's Piano Trios Op 1 were first performed in 1793 at one of the chamber music soirées held at the home of Prince Karl Lichnowsky – the dedicatee of the whole set – and in the presence of Beethoven's teacher, Joseph Haydn. The influence of Haydn is clearly apparent in both works, with Beethoven enhancing his teacher's trademark rhythmic drive with an energetic drama that was to become one of the most distinctive characteristics of Beethoven's later chamber music. The Rautio Piano Trio returns to Resonus with this first volume of the complete cycle of Beethoven's Piano Trios, recorded on period instruments. This is the culmination of the Trio's wider project charting the evolution of the piano trio from its emergence in the mid-eighteenth century, with the music of J C Bach, C P E Bach, Mozart and Haydn, through to Beethoven's complex and mature realisation of the genre.

Elisabeth Lutyens: Piano Works, Volume 2
Martin Jones, piano
Resonus Classics RES10306
Release: 2 September 2022
Continuing his landmark survey of the piano works of Elisabeth Lutyens, pianist Martin Jones delves deeper into the music of this undeservedly neglected composer. This second volume features further world premiere recordings including pieces from her early maturity such as The Check Book, a compelling collection of twelve miniatures for children; Piano e Forte that recalls Lutyens's lifelong enthusiasm for the music of Debussy and explores the possibilities of the instrument in a way she had never attempted before; and Maybe–Encore Op 159, which was Lutyens' final work for piano composed in 1982. Also included is an early unpublished sonata movement (Allegro molto) possibly written as early as the 1930s.

Walter Gieseking
Debussy
The first Columbia recordings
APR APR_6040 (2 CDs)
Release: 2 September 2022
Walter Gieseking (1895–1956) has long been regarded as one of the supreme interpreters of Debussy, his recordings having achieved almost definitive status. But it's generally his later recordings from the early 1950s which have been reissued time and time again. His first Columbia recordings, mostly made in the 1930s, are much less known, yet many critics have regarded them as even finer than the later remakes. Here then are these legendary discs in what we consider to be the finest transfers from the original 78s they have ever had.

The Launy Grøndahl Legacy, Volume 2
The Danish Radio Symphony Orchestra, Thorkild Graae Jørgensen, Milton Seibæk, Carl Bloch, Ingbert Michelsen, Launy Grøndahl
Danacord DACOCD882 (2 CDs)
Release: 2 September 2022
Danish conductor and composer Launy Grøndahl (1886-1960) was the leading figure developing the Danish Radio Symphony Orchestra all from the very first beginning of the orchestra in the 1920s until his retirement in 1956. He was also a truly original composer with links to Carl Nielsen and back to Mendelssohn, however with a certain flair for the French impressionism. The new series of CD releases will contain every single recording which can be found of Grøndahl, both live and studio recordings as well as his commercial releases. New digital transfers and extensive booklet notes.

Brahms: Piano Sonata No 2; Piano Sonata No 3; Scherzo Op 4
Oleg Marshev, piano
Danacord DACOCD900
Release: 2 September 2022
A trio of thunderous roars from a young keyboard lion: Johannes Brahms was still in his teens when he composed this standalone Scherzo and pair of sonatas. With these pieces, he won Schumann's lifelong friendship and support. Two of the sonata movements are inspired by songs of love and loneliness, but every bar here is vintage Brahms, even as the product of his youth.

Gunnar Johansen:Piano Works
Solon Pierce, piano
Danacord DACOCD908
Release: 2 September 2022
'Gunnar Johansen was one of the most remarkable figures in twentieth century music.' - Gordon Rumson. First time on CD, new recordings of piano works of Danish-American pianist-composer Gunnar Johansen, best known as a pianist but also a prolific composer for his instrument, including two of Johansen's piano sonatas, and shorter pieces from 1928 to 1977, played by young American pianist Solon Pierce.

The Thomas Jensen Legacy, Volume 12
Frederik Rung, Hakon Børresen, C.F.E Horneman, Eduard DuPuy, Fini Henriques, K.A Wieth-Knudsen, Svend S. Schultz, Knudåge Riisager, Tage Nielsen
Danish Radio Symphony Orchestra, Copenhagen Philharmonic Orchestra / Thomas Jensen
Danacord DACOCD922 (2 CDs)
Release: 2 September 2022
A feast of previously unpublished broadcast recordings, focused on music for the stage and including much repertoire otherwise unrecorded. The main work is a three-act comedy by Frederick Rung, telling the story of The Three-Cornered Hat with a light touch and delightful duets and arias. Rare overtures, suites and scenes fill out a rich portrait of the Danish operatic scene in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, completed by a pair of powerful mid-century orchestral pieces.

The Thomas Jensen Legacy, Volume 13
Carl Nielsen, Jean Sibelius
Danish Radio Symphony Orchestra, Tivoli Concert Hall Symphony Orchestra / Thomas Jensen
Danacord DACOCD923 (2 CDs)
Release: 2 September 2022
The First and Fourth symphonies of Jean Sibelius, in previously unpublished live recordings from the early 1960s, are major additions to the recorded legacy of Thomas Jensen. As a young cellist, Jensen had known and played under both Nielsen and Sibelius, and his interpretations of their symphonies are stamped with authority: respectful of the score while seeing deep inside its mysteries.

Tonny Landy: Danske sange / Danish Songs
Tonny Landy, Friedrich Gürtler, Ingolf Olsen, Kaja Bundgaard
Danacord DACOCD938
Release: 2 September 2022
As he turns eighty-five years old, Danish tenor Tonny Landy is still among the finest singers of his generation. This release features immaculate performances of Danish songs which Tonny Landy recorded for the Danish branch of RCA between 1966 and 1969. This is the first CD release of these truly unique and much sought-after recordings. Tonny Landy selected twenty-five beautiful Danish songs and with his brilliant tenor voice he is on the level of the great Aksel Schiøtz. All the songs in this new release feature a short English synopsis.

Andrea Tarrodi: Four Elements
Delphine Constantin-Reznik, Nordic Chamber Orchestra, Nordic Chamber Ensemble, JoAnn Falletta, Patrik Ringborg
DB Productions DBCD204
Release: 2 September 2022
Nordic Chamber Orchestra, led by multiple award-winning conductors JoAnn Falletta and Patrik Ringborg, perform works by multiple award-winning Swedish composer, Andrea Tarrodi. Andrea Tarrodi needs no further presentation in Sweden and the international audiences has also opened their hearts to her accessible, colourful music. In 2020, she was the first Swedish composer ever to receive a commission for the BBC's Last Night of the Proms.

Giya Kancheli: 18 Miniatures; Middelheim
Piet Koornhof, Albie van Schalkwyk, Susan Mouton
Delos DE 3589
Release: 2 September 2022
Delightful chamber music of Giya Kancheli, regarded as one of Georgia's greatest composers.

Ellen Taaffe Zwilich: Cello Concerto & Other Works
Zuill Bailey, Santa Rosa Symphony, Elizabeth Dorman, Joseph Edelberg, Francesco Lecce-Chong
Delos DE 3596
Release: 2 September 2022
Lyrical and delightful music by Ellen Zwilich — the beautiful cello concerto with soloist Zuill Bailey, the humorous 'Peanuts® Gallery' and more, with the Santa Rosa Symphony and conductor Francesco Lecce-Chong.

Magic Music Box: Works by Ravel, Dukas, Elgar, Stravinsky and Danksagmüller
Marion Krall and Lars Schwarze, organ duo
Genuin Classics GEN22799
Release: 2 September 2022
The organ duo Marion Krall and Lars Schwarze take us to enchanted lands with their new Genuin CD, playing their own transcriptions of great orchestral works for organ with four hands and four feet. Since the Baroque era, orchestral works have been transcribed for the organ. Even today, the instrument's various colours make it possible to discover new, unexpected, but equally rich sounds in seemingly familiar works. The internationally awarded duo has now recorded works by Paul Dukas, Edward Elgar, Maurice Ravel and Igor Stravinsky. The contemporary contribution is the radiant tone poem Kalliope by the Austrian composer Franz Danksagmüller, which is positively overflowing with imagination. A surprising CD featuring the sound of the organ in all its grandeur and moments of true intimacy.

Fenster (Window): Works by Strieder, Rayeva, Grime, Czernowin, Huber, Mundry and Neuwirth
Fidan Aghayeva-Edler, piano
Genuin Classics GEN22775
Release: 2 September 2022
In the middle of the 2020 lockdown, Fidan Aghayeva-Edler, an internationally active and recognized artist in the contemporary music scene, recorded the CD Fenster (Windows). In this Genuin production, she has exclusively compiled world premiere recordings by some of the world's leading female composers. There are works by Olga Neuwirth, Isabel Mundry, Olga Rayeva, Helen Grime, Chaya Czernowin and Margarete Huber, as well as the titular Fenster by Jeanne Artemis. An insight into seven different tonal worlds, which the inspiring pianist explores with her vast knowledge of contemporary playing practices and enormous sensitivity.

Music of the Golden Age: Works by Arrigoni, Vivaldi, Le Cocq, Castello, Uccellini, Scarlatti, de Murcia and Marais
sixty1strings
Genuin Classics GEN22793
Release: 2 September 2022
A golden age is brought to life for us by sixty1strings on their new Genuin CD. Their unique instrumentation of mandolin, harp and guitar presents a thrilling programme of baroque music from Spain, Italy and France. Konstanze Kuß (Spanish baroque harp), Ekaterina Solovey (baroque mandolin) and Negin Habibi (baroque guitar) plunge into the sensual compositions by Antonio Vivaldi, Marin Marais and Domenico Scarlatti with enthusiasm and panache. Both original compositions and arrangements are performed, and the mandolin serves as a full-fledged, silvery-singing substitute for a diva in a hoop skirt and wig ...

Meeting Leo Brouwer
Lux Nova Duo
Genuin Classics GEN22794
Release: 2 September 2022
The Lux Nova Duo takes up the cause of composer Leo Brouwer. The Cuban old master is well known to guitarists and lovers of guitar music but deserves more attention for his gripping, pulsating and multifaceted music! In the unusual line-up with Lydia Schmidl on accordion and Jorge Paz Verastegui on guitar, the Lux Nova Duo presents smaller and more extensive works by Brouwer, such as his Souvenir de Liège, the expansive Triptico concertante or the centuries-spanning Folía a través de los siglos. Through the subtle playing of the Lux Nova Duo, we discover Brouwer's stylistic range, which extends from folkloristic impressions to new, advanced musical language.

Momentum: Works for cello and piano by Beethoven, Brahms and Schumann
Antoaneta Emanuilova, Endri Nini
Genuin Classics GEN22796
Release: 2 September 2022
From the very first moment, the atmosphere seems to glow in Beethoven's last sonata for violoncello, with which Antoaneta Emanuilova and Endri Nini open their new CD Momentum. Momentum stands for the potency of the ideal moment, its inherent dynamism, and its independence from temporal processes. In addition to Beethoven, the two award-winning musicians perform Brahms' Cello Sonata in D and Schumann's Adagio and Allegro, works of great inner fervour that demand the attention of listeners and musicians alike at every moment and yet reward this effort many times over with incredible inner richness. Emanuilova and Nini play the three late works, which are by no means serene, with crackling energy.

Robert Schumann: Complete Works for Piano
Florian Uhlig
Hanssler Classic HC20015 (19 CDs)
Release: 2 September 2022
 


26 AUGUST 2022

Daniil Trifonov
Chamber Music
Deutsche Grammophon 00028948635207 (digital only)
Release: 26 August 2022
Daniil Trifonov, the great Russian virtuoso, is perhaps best known for his bewildering prowess as a solo pianist. Yet deep in his heart lies a passionate love for chamber music, sparked by unique collaborations with close friends during his summers at the Verbier Festival. This release features two iconic Trios from independent realms of the repertoire. First, Trifonov is joined by violinist Ilya Gringolts and cellist Truls Mørk for an emblazoned reading of Beethoven's Geistertrio. This offering is beautifully paired with the G Minor Piano Trio of Bedřich Smetana, which features radiant performances from fellow-superstars Leonidas Kavakos and Gautier Capuçon.

 


19 AUGUST 2022

Robert Lemay: Soliloques - 7 microludes for alto saxophone
Stéphane Sordet, saxophone
CMC Centrediscs CMCCT 12222
Release: 19 August 2022
Soliloques ('Soliloquies') is a series of very short pieces (microludes) for solo alto saxophone. To say everything with little is the idea of this work. The seven pieces, each between thirty seconds and one minute long, are like sentences or a few words thrown on paper, sketches, or brush strokes. The piece was written during the pandemic for French saxophonist Stéphane Sordet and is a tribute to the Hungarian composer György Kurtág, a great master of the miniature. 'These miniatures of varied moods require the saxophonist to play around colors, expressions, and dynamics, going from very diaphanous characters to more percussive and spectral ambiances. The variety of the discourse of the soliloquies, though quite short pieces, is such that we find within them the main writing trends of the 20th century. While being in the spirit of Kurtag, the composer plunges us into Grisey, Boulez, Scelsi... all while keeping the essence of his writing. These Soliloques are like marvelous little sequences to be savored like great dishes of French cuisine revisited by a great starred chef', observed Stéphane Sordet about the piece. After having passed through jazz and improvised music, Stéphane Sordet quickly turned to contemporary music and creation.  He creates many new works and shows each year, and participates in the promotion of the new repertoire to various audiences. Anxious to develop and present the repertoire, he collaborates and works with many ensembles and participates in many new works with composers of various backgrounds and aesthetics. As a 'crossover' saxophonist, he plays all saxophones (from bass to sopranino), and enjoys encounters and crossings of the arts, mixing musical styles and artistic practices. He performs in orchestras, in chamber music, but also with actors and plays with eclectic formations mixing improvised music, learned and electronic music or jazz and world music, but also with other artistic practices such as dance. Stéphane Sordet is supported by Selmer, Vandoren, and JLV with whom he collaborates. He is vice-president of the Association of French Saxophonists and member of the repertoire committee of the Confédération Musical de France (CMF).  He is currently a professor of artistic education at the Conservatoire à Rayonnement Régional de Brest.  Robert Lemay has composed numerous works and received many international awards. His music is mainly inspired by poetry, literature, cinema, visual arts, politics, social events, and includes two series of tributes: one to filmmakers and another to abstract painters. The saxophone plays a predominant role in his work. His music has been performed in over 30 countries, including Canada, the United States, Asia, Europe, South America, Israel, Mexico, and Australia. Several of his pieces have been broadcast on radio in Canada, Germany, Luxembourg, Poland, Austria, and Australia. Twenty-two of his works are featured on twenty different recordings in Canada, Europe, and the United States.

 

12 AUGUST 2022

Malcolm Galloway: Patterns
Glass Castle Recordings GC4161
Release: 12 August 2022
A collection of instrumental classical contemporary/minimalist music by Malcolm Galloway. This album, his sixth solo classical/minimalist album, is a cross between a new album (containing thirty minutes of new music) and a retrospective of favourite tracks from some of his previous releases, and mostly consists of material not previously available on Bandcamp.  Most of these pieces are minimalist, in the sense of the bustling interaction of relatively simple material to form more complex emergent patterns, rather than in the sense of sparsity of sound. Malcolm Galloway has been greatly inspired by Steve Reich, a pioneer of this style of music. Although individual patterns may repeat, they are often juxtaposed with repeating patterns of different lengths, so although the sound may appear repetitive, very few bars are identical. Galloway used to be a doctor - a neuropathologist  - and medical school teacher. During his medical training, he spent a year doing a degree in developmental biology and neuroscience. He was very interested in how something as complex as the brain can develop given our limited number of genes. As in other areas of nature, the interaction of simple chemical gradients, and processes involving iterative feedback can produce remarkable complexity of form and function. These patterns in nature are an inspiration to him, and led to the title of this collection.


11 JULY 2022

Tania León: Teclas de mi piano
Adam Kent, piano
Albany Records TROY1893
Release: 11 July 2022
Pulitzer Prize winner Tania León is proud to announce the release of Teclas de mi piano, a collection of works performed by pianist Adam Kent and released by Albany Records. The eleven pieces on this CD of piano music by León were composed across a span of almost fifty years, from student works (Rondó a la Criolla, Homenaje a Prokofiew, Preludes 1 and 2) written in the mid-1960s when León was doing post-graduate work at the Amadeo Roldán Conservatory in the municipio of Marianao, La Habana, to going ... gone, the brilliant reworking of Sondheim's 'Good Things Going' she crafted in 2012. Born in La Habana, Cuba, León moved to the USA as a young pianist in 1967 and became a founding member of the Dance Theatre of Harlem. Her many honors and awards include the New York Governor's Lifetime Achievement award and honorary doctorates from Colgate, Oberlin, SUNY Purchase and The Curtis Institute. As León explains in the program notes, the 'keys to my piano' are what remains of the upright piano her grandfather purchased for her when she was five years old. Her grandmother had given her a toy piano before she was one, and her family's support and the music of Cuba which surrounded her helped to launch her lifelong career as a composer, conductor, educator, and music advocate. Repertoire includes Homenatge, Tumbao, Momentum, Rondó a la Criolla, Rituál, Homenaje a Prokofiew, Mística, Prelude No. 1 – Sorpressa, Prelude No. 2 – Pecera, going ... gone, and Variación. Tania León's music also appears on In Motion (TROY1284); Dark Fires (TROY266); We've got (poly)rhythm) (TROY087); and Sonic Rituals (TROY242). Teclas de mi piano is available online at albanyrecords, amazon; and for digital download at all major sites including iTunes, and Spotify.  Tania León (born La Habana, Cuba) is highly regarded as a composer, conductor, educator, and advisor to arts organizations. Her orchestral work Stride, commissioned by the New York Philharmonic, was awarded the 2021 Pulitzer Prize in Music. Recent premieres include works for Los Angeles Philharmonic, Arkansas Symphony Orchestra, NDR Symphony Orchestra, Grossman Ensemble, International Contemporary Ensemble, and Jennifer Koh's Alone Together. Appearances as guest conductor include Orchestre Philharmonique de Marseille, Gewandhausorchester, Orquesta Sinfónica de Guanajuato, and Orquesta Sinfónica de Cuba. among others. Upcoming commissions feature works for the NewMusic USA Amplifying Voices Program, the League of American Orchestras, The Musical Fund Society in Philadelphia to celebrate their 200th anniversary, and Claire Chase, flute, and The Crossing Choir with text by Rita Dove.

 

Posted 31 August 2022 by Keith Bramich

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