C. Breunig (Music); P. Miller (Lab)

C. Breunig (Music); P. Miller (Lab)  |  Mar 11, 2016  |  0 comments
In a lengthy booklet essay Manfred Honeck explains all his interpretative decisions: live recording, a large orchestra with divided violins, pizzicati continued right to the end of 7(ii) – as suggested to him by Kleiber when Honeck was an orchestral violinist – and various minutiae, with timing/bar reference details. He writes about changing styles since the very first recordings of No 5 in 1910/13. But – oh dear! – the motto theme in the first movement is slowed for every appearance: that’s a write-off for me, I’m afraid. There is also a distracting rhythmic pattern unearthed in the finale, 9m10s-9m 19s.
C. Breunig (Music); P. Miller (Lab)  |  Feb 12, 2016  |  0 comments
As with their Dvorák series with the Czech PO, Faust/Melnikov/Queyras are coupling a chamber work with a concerto – this time with a period-instrument orchestra. For the Schumann Concerto, Melnikov has elected to play a robust 1837 Érard; then an 1847 Streicher in the Trio – with more body than the one heard in their Trio No 3 [HMC 902196]. Clear and open, this is an attractive recording, with some subtle detailing mostly from Faust. The Concerto is more unsettling.
C. Breunig (Music); P. Miller (Lab)  |  Feb 12, 2016  |  0 comments
Kaufmann and Puccini – how could anyone resist, when his vocal artistry is so complete? He floats a line with infinite care then expands dynamics to meet every theatrical demand. Terrific warm backing from Pappano too. And the production adds variety by changing vocal perspectives for soloists and chorus – occasionally, though, I found Kaufmann almost too forward and spread. Every Puccini opera is represented with these arias except, of course, the all-female Suor Angelica.
C. Breunig (Music); P. Miller (Lab)  |  Oct 08, 2015  |  0 comments
Many young soloists have made their debut recordings in one or other of these works. Arabella Steinbacher – whom we associate more with 20th century concertos – says she’s never previously felt the need to record either until she began working with Charles Dutoit (there’s a 2009 Tchaikovsky video from Tokyo on YouTube). The problem is that she tends to slow the music to show off her beautifully cultivated sounds with the 1716 Stradivarius, although Dutoit could hardly be more accommodating. So I much prefer his 1983 Decca CD coupling with Kyung-Wha Chung, whose playing is utterly selfless (and the Mendelssohn finale has an elfin lightness).
C. Breunig (Music); P. Miller (Lab)  |  Oct 08, 2015  |  0 comments
Unusually, perhaps even a ‘first’, DG offers this at 192kHz/24-bit resolution. Kremer’s new programme – two really lightweight pieces and more substantial fare by Philip Glass and Giya Kancheli – was last month’s Album Choice CD [HFN Oct ’15] and, we thought, worth revisiting at this higher resolution. The eight-movement Glass Violin Concerto No 2 is a kind of response to Vivaldi’s ‘Four Seasons’ (although ‘Movement III’ is more suggestive of the Brahms). There’s some astonishingly wonderful music in it and the higher-resolution option certainly makes the reiterations of, for example, ‘Song No 1’ seem more purposeful.
C. Breunig (Music); P. Miller (Lab)  |  Sep 01, 2015  |  0 comments
96kHz/24-bit FLAC, BIS BIS-2100 (supplied by www. eclassical. com) As a violinist on the Denon label, Jean-Jacques Kantorow’s CDs were invariably well received in HFN/RR. Then he took up conducting and has amassed a considerable discography with his Finnish orchestra.
C. Breunig (Music); P. Miller (Lab)  |  Sep 01, 2015  |  0 comments
This new Schola Cantorum Basiliensis production offers eight of the Venetian composer Antonio Caldara’s early trio sonatas – four each from his Op. 1 and Op. 2 – together with a final chaconne (probably an homage to Corelli). These works appeared in 1693 and 1699; thereafter Caldara became best known for his vocal compositions.
C. Breunig (Music); P. Miller (Lab)  |  Aug 01, 2015  |  0 comments
96kHz/24-bit FLAC, BIS-2124 (supplied by www. eclassical. com) The Fifth Symphony has fared well on records, right back to the 1946 Koussevitsky/RCA and particularly with American orchestras. Prokofiev’s 1915 Diaghilev ballet commission for Ala et Lolli, a mythological Scythian concoction, met with rejection: the composer ‘did not understand a thing about dance’, said Balanchine.
C. Breunig (Music); P. Miller (Lab)  |  Aug 01, 2015  |  0 comments
Daniel Hope and colleagues (the pianist is the wife of former Emerson Quartet cellist David Finckel) recorded this programme live at Lincoln Center in March ’15. Mahlerians will want primarily to hear the fragment composed in 1876, not well represented in the catalogue. But it’s rather repetitive and Mahler only found his true voice a few years later in the Klagende Lied. The Brahms (First) Piano Quartet is the one orchestrated by Schoenberg.
C. Breunig (Music); P. Miller (Lab)  |  Jul 01, 2015  |  0 comments
You don’t get a booklet PDF with this download so you’ll need to see the web page for full track details. Obviously, there’s the Chopin Cello Sonata and the Grand Duo he co-wrote with cellist and friend Auguste Franchomme. Track 9 is a Nocturne by him, track 8 his setting of Chopin’s Op. 15:1.

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