Gramophone Magazine Editor's Choice

February 2007

Disc of the Month

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Wagner: Götterdämmerung

Awards:

Gramophone Awards 2007

Best of Category - Historic Archive

Gramophone Magazine

Disc of the Month - February 2007

Penguin Guide

Rosette Winner

BBC Music Magazine

Opera Choice - March 2007

Label:

Testament

Catalogue No:

SBT41393
(SBT4 1393)

Discs:

4

Release date:

27th Nov 2006

Barcode:

0749677139322

Medium:

CD
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Wagner: Götterdämmerung


Jutta Vulpius, Elisabeth Schärtel, Maria Graf, Gustav Neidlinger, Astrid Varnay, Maria von Ilosvay, Wolfgang Windgassen, Georgine von Milinkovic, Mina Bolotine, Hermann Uhde, Josef Greindl, Gré Brouwenstijn

Bayreuth Festival Chorus & Orchestra, Joseph Keilberth

Recorded live at the 1955 Bayreuth Festival

CD - 4 discs

$56.00

Usually despatched in 4 - 5 working days.

BBC Music Magazine

March 2007

*****

“…Götterdämmerung with white-hot immediacy. The cast is superb, from Norns and Rhinemaidens upward. Keilberth sweeps them all along the path of tragedy with compellingly balanced drive and spaciousness, arriving at an unusually serene vision of Valhalla's destruction. It's an altogether gripping experience...and takes its place alongside the Solti among the finest renditions on disc.”

Click here for alternative recordings of this work.

Editor's Choice

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Monteverdi: Combattimento

Monteverdi: Combattimento


Monteverdi:

Il Combattimento di Tancredi e Clorinda

Madrigals

Scherzi Musicali


“The atmosphere is electric. Villazón is pouring out Monteverdi’s beautiful lines of remorseful agony with spell-binding force. It’s his first foray into early music, but he tosses off the tricky idioms – the delicate, falling sospiri between notes, the hellishly difficult bouncing-ball repetitions on one note, the flexible tempi – as if he’s been doing them all his life. And what’s more, he invests them with thrilling urgency and passion. Even Haïm, directly form the harpsichord, seems amazed.” Gramophone Magazine

GGramophone Magazine

Editor's Choice - February 2007

CD Review

Critics Disc of the Year - December 2006

BBC Music Magazine

Choral & Song Choice - January 2007

Erato - 3633502

(CD)

$8.50

(also available to download from $13.00)

In stock - usually despatched within 1 working day.

Tchaikovsky - Overtures & Fantasies

Tchaikovsky - Overtures & Fantasies


Tchaikovsky:

Francesca da Rimini, Op. 32

Romeo & Juliet - Fantasy Overture

(1880 version)

Waltz from Eugene Onegin, Op. 24

Polonaise (from Eugene Onegin, Op. 24)

1812 Overture, Op. 49


Orchestra e Coro Dell’ Accademia Di Santa Cecilia, Antonio Pappano

“A generous Tchaikovsky spectacular in masterly hands” BBC Music Magazine, October 2009

“With chorus added in the 1812 as well as the Waltz from Eugene Onegin, this is an exceptional Tchaikovsky collection, a fine start for Antonio Pappano's recordings with his Italian orchestra.
What is very striking is how refreshing the 1812 is when played with such incisiveness and care for detail, with textures clearly defined. It starts with the chorus singing the opening hymn, expanding thrillingly from an extreme pianissimo to a full-throated fortissimo.
A women's chorus then comes in very effectively, twice over, for one of the folk-themes, and at the end the full chorus sings the Tsar's Hymn amid the usual percussion and bells, though Pappano avoids extraneous effects, leaving everything in the hands of the orchestral instruments. It is equally refreshing to have the Waltz from Eugene Onegin in the full vocal version from the opera, again wonderfully pointed, as is the Polonaise which follows.
What comes out in all the items is the way that Pappano, in his control of flexible rubato, is just as persuasive here as he is in Puccini, demonstrating what links there are between these two supreme melodists. So he builds the big melodies into richly emotional climaxes without any hint of vulgarity, strikingly so in both Francesca da Rimini and Romeo and Juliet. Pappano is impressive in bringing out the fantasy element in Francesca, and in Romeo the high dynamic contrasts add to the impact of the performance. There have been many Tchaikovsky collections like this, but with well balanced sound, outstandingly rich and ripe in the brass section, this is among the finest.”
Gramophone Classical Music Guide, 2010

“Like the very best music directors, you can’t pigeon-hole Antonio Pappano. He may have made his name with Puccini but he’s got an instinctive feel for structure and for style that makes him good at most things. His Tchaikovsky doesn’t disappoint, full of vigour, of tunefulness” Gramophone Magazine

GGramophone Magazine

Editor's Choice - February 2007

Building a Library

First Choice - May 2010

Warner Classics - 3700652

(CD)

$13.75

(also available to download from $10.00)

In stock - usually despatched within 1 working day.

Arnold & Lambert - Piano Music

Arnold & Lambert - Piano Music


Arnold:

Piano Sonata

in B minor

Three Piano Pieces (1937)

Variations on a Ukrainian Folksong Op. 9

Lambert, C:

Piano Sonata

Elegy

Suite in 3 movements

Elegiac Blues


As Andrew Achenbach intimates in his review, this is a classy recital from a classy pianist. Mark Bebbington pairs works by Sir Malcolm Arnold (for an 85th birthday tribute) and Constant Lambert to complementary effect. But he brings out the invention that is common to both, the individuality that perhaps kept each from really joining the mainstream. - Gramophone Magazine

“Mark Bebbington's 85th-birthday tribute to the late Sir Malcolm Arnold starts with his first substantial piano composition, the Piano Sonata in B minor from 1942. After a concise opening movement, a wistful Andante con moto leads without a break into the Alla marcia finale, whose element of ironic burlesque suggests an acquaintance with Prokofiev and Shostakovich. The Piano Pieces, completed the following year, already possess that bittersweet tang characteristic of the composer.
However, the meatiest Arnold offering here is the absorbing 1944 Variations on a UkrainianFolksong. Bebbington is a splendidly intrepidly communicative and an unruffled advocate.
He also benefits from a superbly rounded, firmly focused sound-picture.
Bebbington proves equally at home in the music of Constant Lambert. His interpretation of the magnificent 1929 Sonata that bridges the gap between The Rio Grande (1927) and the Piano Concerto (1930-31) has all the stylish aplomb, improvisatory freedom and infectious swagger one could wish for, yet with a touch more introspection and poignancy in the bluesy slow movement than either Ian Brown or John McCabe locate. The finale hurtles menacingly towards its grim apotheosis, after which the skies darken further still for the inconsolable Elegy that Lambert wrote in 1938. The three movement Suite from 1925 is full of daring, ear-tickling invention (sample the hallucinatory opening Andante) and a striking achievement for someone barely out of their teens. The sweetly touching Elegiac Blues of 1927 (written within days of the news of the early death of singer Florence Mills) rounds off another high-class collection from this intelligent and tasteful performer.”
Gramophone Classical Music Guide, 2010

GGramophone Magazine

Editor's Choice - February 2007

Somm - New Horizons - SOMM062

(CD)

$12.50

(also available to download from $10.00)

In stock - usually despatched within 1 working day.

Pilgrimage to Santiago

Pilgrimage to Santiago


anon.:

Music from the twelfth-century Codex Calixtinus

O Virgo Splendens

from the Llibre Vermell

Clemens:

O Maria vernans rosa

Sanctus

Dufay:

Rite majorem

Lasso:

Justorum Animae

Morales, C:

Parce mihi domine

Mouton, J:

Nesciens Mater

Palestrina:

Jesu Rex admirabilis

Victoria:

Missa O quam gloriosum

O quam gloriosum, motet

Vadam et circuibo civitatem


recorded: All Hallows, Gospel Oak, London - May 2005

“Unaccompanied, the Monteverdi Choir goes back to its roots in a programme which harnesses scholarship and singing of breathtaking beauty.” Gramophone Magazine, October 2008

“This is a staggeringly sung disc of some staggeringly beautiful music … an act of rapt devotion, be it religious or simply musical” Sunday Times

“This is an anthology that has been compiled with scrupulous care. It’s beautifully varied and exquisitely sung” The Guardian

GGramophone Magazine

Editor's Choice - February 2007

BBC Music Magazine

Choral & Song Choice - December 2006

BBC Music Magazine Awards 2007

Choral Finalist

SDG - SDG701

(CD)

$14.00

(also available to download from $10.00)

In stock - usually despatched within 1 working day.

Monteverdi: Flaming Heart

Monteverdi: Flaming Heart


Flaming Heart seeks to show the full Monteverdi, a Monteverdi of both beauty and horror, colourful, vivid, and always completely alive. Unlike the ‘complete edition’ approach this series presents a much more imaginative selection of his works, beginning with the prologue from L’Orfeo and continuing with the very best of his works for a capella ensemble, soloists and strings.

“some of the most exquisitely intense vocal music ever written” The Times

GGramophone Magazine

Editor's Choice - February 2007

Chandos - up to 40% off

Chandos Chaconne Monteverdi Series - CHAN0730

(CD)

Normally: $15.25

Special: $9.15

(also available to download from $10.00)

Usually despatched in 2 - 3 working days. (Available now to download.)

The Organ of Westminster Cathedral

The Organ of Westminster Cathedral


Brahms:

Academic Festival Overture, Op. 80

Variations on a theme by Haydn for two pianos, Op. 56b 'St Anthony Variations'

Wir wandelten, wir zwei zusammen Op. 96/2

Violin Sonata No. 3 in D minor, Op. 108 - Adagio

Dupré:

Prelude & Fugue in B major, Op. 7 No. 1

Prelude & Fugue in A flat major, Op. 36 No. 2

Prelude & Fugue in G minor, Op. 7 No. 3

Variations sur un Noël, Op. 20

Cortège et Litanie, Op. 19 No. 2

Wagner:

Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg: excerpts


Robert Quinney (Westminster Cathedral organ, Henry Willis III, 1922-32)

Recorded at Westminster Cathedral, London, 18 - 21 May 2004

“It’s quite an achievement to pull off orchestral transcriptions for the organ that don’t have you missing the original, but Robert Quinney manages this on the magnificent Westminster Cathedral instrument. He utterly convinces that even Wagner’s Meistersinger overture works as an organ piece in its own right – and findstranslucent textures rather than walls of sound.” Gramophone Magazine

GGramophone Magazine

Editor's Choice - February 2007

BBC Music Magazine

Instrumental Choice - December 2006

Signum - SIGCD089

(CD - 2 discs)

$22.75

(also available to download from $20.00)

Usually despatched in 2 - 3 working days. (Available now to download.)

Shapes of Sleep

Shapes of Sleep

Shapes of Sleep is presented in a six-panel board sleeve with a sixteen page booklet introducing the music.


Britten:

Nocturnal after John Dowland, Op. 70

Dowland:

Fantasia P72

Fantasia P7

Flow my teares (Lacrimæ)

(transcription by James Boyd)

Tippett:

The Blue Guitar


James Boyd (guitar)

Recorded in Snape Maltings Concert Hall, 31st October – 2nd November 2004

GGramophone Magazine

Editor's Choice - February 2007

James Boyd - JB2006

(CD)

$17.50

Usually despatched in 8 - 10 working days.

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