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Friedrich Gernsheim

Symphonies Nos. 1-4

FRIEDRICH GERNSHEIM (1839-1916): Symphony No. 1 in G Minor, Op. 32, Symphony No. 2 in E Flat, Op. 46, Symphony No. 3 in C Minor, Op. 54 "Miriam", Symphony No. 4 in B Flat, Op. 62. By now Gernsheim will need little introduction; so many of you have been asking for this set since it was released in Europe in 1999 that his attractions seem to be well-known. Never imported by BMG, the Amazing Disappearing Classical Record Company, these discs were only available via direct mail-order from Europe. We have around 50 copies, with the hope of getting more if necessary. Now you can enjoy the most Brahmsian symphonies not by Brahms ever recorded (in the way that the Ries symphonies are the most Beethoven-like symphonies by any of Beethoven's contemporaries); Herzogenberg seemed to have Brahms' number when it came to chamber music but he was not a symphonist. Impassioned, heroic, idyllic and joyful: all your favorite Romantic qualities (plus great melodies!) are contained in the 16 movements of these four treasurable symphonies. 2 CDs. Budget-price. Special European Import. Staatsphilharmonie Rheinland-Pfalz; Siegfried Köhler. Arte Nova 74321 63635 2 (Germany) 05D001 $16.98

SIEGFRIED WAGNER (1869-1930): Scenes and Arias for Baritone from the Operas Der Bärenhäuter, Op. 1, Herzog Wildfang, Op. 2, Der Kobold, Op. 3, Bruder Lustig, Op. 4, Banadietrich, Op. 6, Schwarzschwanenreich, Op. 7, Sonnenflammen, Op. 8, Der Heidenkönig, Op. 9, Der Schmied von Marienburg, Op. 10 & Rainulf und Adelasia, Op. 14. Anyone who has sampled Siegfried's orchestral music (or purchased it all in cpo's recent mid-price box-set re-issue) but has not pulled the trigger yet on the operas which have been recorded by Marco Polo will find this a very attractive introduction. There is much highly enjoyable music here in the composer's fairly unique style and the booklet-notes are excellent in setting the scene of each scene; the CD ends with the first ever recording of an aria from Rainulf und Adelasia, a 1922 opera which has never been performed. German-English texts. Roman Trekel (baritone), (with Sabine Kallhammer - soprano, Ursula Kunz - alto, Wilhelm Hothen - tenor and Josef Otten - bass), Cologne Radio Choir and Orchestra; Werner Andreas Albert. CPO 999 684 (Germany) 08D002 $15.98

A.J. POTTER (1918-1980): Sinfonia "De Profundis", Finnegan's Wake, Fantasia Gaelach No. 1, Variations on a Popular Tune, Overture to a Kitchen Comedy. For some reason, this delightful release has not been offered in the United States, so we've brought in a limited quantity for collectors who have seen it offered in Gramophone or other English journals and would like to make sure they get it. Potter was a prolific composer of all sorts of genres, especially arrangements of Irish traditional music for radio orchestra broadcast in Dublin. The four shorter works recorded here are in a "light music" vein, not unlike Malcolm Arnold in his own light mode. The 1968 symphony, however is "serious" music in every respect. Potter grew up in a depressed part of Belfast, had a hard early life and served in World War II and was acutely sensitive to the horrors and injustices of the modern world. The anguish comes out in this five-movement symphony which uses traditional language to convey heartfelt, universal emotions. Special European Import. National Symphony Orchestra of Ireland; Robert Houlihan. Marco Polo 8.225158 (New Zealand) 08D003 $18.98

JULES MASSENET (1842-1912): Ève. Following in the tradition of Gounod, Massenet managed to be not quite as cloying in the suavity and sentimentality of his creations although his melodies remain imple, symmetrical and short-breathed, with extensive repetition. Éve dates from 1875 and is a good example, being the second in what would prove to be a life-long fixation with portraits of women, historical, mythical and fictional. Although we're dealing with original sin and the fall from grace, even the voices of hell are not particularly fierce or frightening in this three-part oratorio ("Adam and Eve"; "The Temptation" and "The Fall" & "The Curse") which features much lovely music of the type which might appear in a British Airways commercial but which always manages to stay on the right side of banality. Special European Import. Budget-price. French texts. Susanne Geb (soprano), Armin Kolarczyk (baritone), Angelo Simos (tenor), Three Nation Choir, Euregio Symphony Orchestra; Jeanpierre Faber. Arte Nova 74321 58964 2 (Germany) 08D004 $7.98

WILHELM FURTWÄNGLER (1886-1954): Symphony No. 1 in B Minor. This new recording of Furtwängler's 1943 first symphony, made in 1999 and released last year was never released in the U.S. The inclusion of the first movement repeat necessitated a second disc but, at budget-price, it still costs the same as the 12-year-old Marco Polo rehearse-and-record recording with a poorer orchestra. 2 CDs. Budget-price. Special European Import. Staatskapelle Weimar; George Alexander Albrecht. Arte Nova 74321 76828 2 (Germany) 08D005 $14.98

CARLOS LÓPEZ BUCHARDO (1881-1948): Bailecito, Campera, JULIÁN AGUIRRE (1868-1924): Gato, Triste No. 4, ALBERTO WILLIAMS (1862-1952): El rancho abandonado, Op. 32/4, PEDRO SÁENZ (1915-1995): Milonga, JORGE FONTENLA (b.1927): Atardecer en la sierra, CARLOS GUASTAVINO (b.1914): Bailecito, Gato, ASTOR PIAZZOLLA (1921-1992): Retrato de Alfredo Gobbi, Pigmalion, Milonga, 3 Danzas Argentinas, Canción de las Venusinas, Preludio para la Cruz del Sur, Chau Paris, Muerte. A very attractive recital of Argentinian piano works particularly interesting in the selection of non-tango Piazzolla works as well as the inclusion of several practically unknown composers who rarely see the light of recorded day. Special European Import. Budget-price. Carmen Piazzini (piano). Arte Nova 74321 56343 2 (Germany) 08D006 $7.98

HENRY BALFOUR GARDINER (1877-1950): Overture to a Comedy, ROGER QUILTER (1877-1953): 3 English Dances, Op. 11, Suite from Where the Rainbow Ends, EDWARD GERMAN (1862-1936): 3 Dances from Henry VIII, PETER WARLOCK (1894-1930): An Old Song, ARNOLD BAX (1883-1953): Mediterranean, EUGENE GOOSSENS (1893-1962): By the Tam, Op. 15/1, WILLIAM WALTON (1902-1983): Siesta. A collection of what could be described as British Light Music before British Light Music. The market for music designed simply to entertain has been an English specialty well before the categorization of music into "light" and "serious" boxes and Gardner's 1906 overture is a good example. Quilter, known almost exclusively for his songs provides a third of the disc's music with five excerpts of incidental music from a 1911 fairy play and the three concert dances from the year before. German's dances from 1892 show why he was generally accepted as Sullivan's natural successor; Warlock's 1917 An Old Song is derived from a Scottish folksong and is a highly atmospheric mood-piece of seven minutes while Walton's Siesta is a miniature tone poem from 1926 imbued with Mediterranean light and warmth. Northern Sinfonia; Richard Hickox. EMI CDM 5 66542 2 (England) 08D007 $11.98

The Romantic Piano Concerto - Vol. 26

HENRY LITOLFF (1818-1891): Concerto Symphonique No. 3 in E Flat, Op. 45 "National Hollandais", Concerto Symphonique No. 5 in C Minor, Op. 123. World Premiere Recording of the fifth concerto from 1870. Litolff's most mature work, it has the greatest technical challenges of all four extant concertos, is larger in scale, more dramatic in gesture and more harmonically experimental. The first movement has a brooding romanticism with Lisztian harmonies, the slow movement is a song-without-words with prominent cello and horn, the scherzo again reminiscent of Liszt in its Mephistophelean ethos while the finale manages to both look back to Beethoven and to function fully in the present (with a ferociously tough cadenza). The third concerto (1846) is all brilliance and good cheer, with a military-revolutionary first movement à la Méhul or Cherubini, a Dutch children's song as second subject in the scherzo which is impossible to get out of your mind, a nocturne-like slow movement recalling Field or Chopin and a scintillating, vivacious Mendelssohnian finale. This could put Prozac and its makers out of work. Peter Donohoe (piano), BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra; Andrew Litton. Hyperion CDA 67210 (England) 08D008 $17.98

JOHAN SVENDSEN (1840-1911): Symphony No. 1 in D, Op. 4, Symphony No. 2 in B Flat, Op. 15, Polonaise No. 2 in D, Op. 28. Svendsen is also an excellent antidote to melancholy and the clarity, vigorous rhythms (laced with Norwegian folk material here and there) and bright orchestral colors influenced several generations of Nordic composers, Carl Nielsen in particular. His two symphonies have been recorded before but they are far from standard repertoire and this new release has the addition of the premiere recording of an 1881 polonaise - not to be confused with the well-known Festival Polonaise but with plenty of delightful similarities. Danish National Radio Symphony Orchestra; Thomas Dausgaard. Chandos 9932 (England) 08D009 $16.98

JOACHIM RAFF (1822-1882): Piano Trio No. 2 in G, Op. 112, Piano Trio No. 3 in A Minor, Op. 155. As quickly as could be hoped, the other two of Raff's four piano trios appear and they are just as full of memorable melody, scintillating piano parts and open-hearted warmth and good nature as the first and fourth. The second is particulary genial, with Brahmsian melodies that have the heart-warming quality of those in that master's first serenade. The third's highlights include a slow movement which suddenly erupts into a pianistically virtuosic interlude of High Romanticism and a Hungarian-flavored finale. Trio Opus 8. CPO 999 800 (Germany) 08D010 $10.98

CLARA SCHUMANN (1819-1896): Complete Piano Works - Sonata in G Minor, Romanze in B Minor, Impromptu in E, Romanze in A Minor, Scherzo in D Minor, Op. 10, Deuxieme Scherzo, Op. 14, Präludium in F Minor, Soirées musicales, Op. 6, Étude in A Flat, Marsch in E Flat, 3 Preludes and Fugues, Op. 16, Variationen über ein Thema von Robert Schumann, Op. 20, 3 Romances, Op. 11, Romance variée, Op. 3, Caprices en forme de Valse, Op. 2, Souvenir de Vienne, Op. 9, Valses romantiques, Op. 4, Variations de Concert, Op. 8, 4 Polonaises, Op. 1, 4 Pièces Caractérstiques, Op. 5, 4 Pièces fugitives, Op. 15, Prelude and Fugue in F Sharp Minor, 3 Fugues on Themes by J.S. Bach, 3 Romanzen, Op. 21. This fine series was originally issued on the defunct Dutch label Partridge and fully half the pieces were first recordings. This less-than-mid-price reissue puts all collectors of romantic piano music in cpo's debt. 3 CDs. Special price. Jozef De Beenhouwer (piano). CPO 999 758 (Germany) 08D011 $26.98

SIR JOHN BLACKWOOD MCEWEN (1868-1948): Sonata in E Minor, Vignettes from La Côte d'Argent, 4 Sketches, Sonatina in G Minor, 3 Preludes, On Southern Hills. McEwen's complete published piano works are contained here, anchored by the 1903 Brahmsian sonata whose second movement funeral march is a remarkably personal statement. Most of the rest are occasional or pedagogical pieces but many are delightfully piquant, evocative and picturesque and will reward the collector of late Romantic byways. Geoffrey Tozer (piano). Chandos 9933 (England) 08D012 $16.98

ARTUR MALAWSKI (1904-1957): Highland Triptych, JULIUSZ ZAREBSKI (1854-1885): Tarantella in A, Op. 20, JÓZEF ELSNER (1769-1854): Sonata No. 2 in D, KAROL SZYMANOWSKI (1882-1937): 9 Preludes, Op. 1, IGNAZ PADEREWSKI (1860-1941): Variations in A, Op. 16/3, FREDERIC CHOPIN (1810-1849): Scherzo in B Minor, Op. 20. This collection of Romantic Polish piano music ranges from Elsner, Chopin's teacher, whose pre-1800 sonata has two movements, the first hearking back to Haydn and Mozart but the second looking ahead to the genre of the mazurka. Zarebski's piece is a lively and colorful genre piece while Malawski's triptych is a vigourous and vital stylization of three Tatra folk dances. Maria Korecka-Soszkowska (piano). Dux 0107 (Poland) 08D013 $16.98

RALPH VAUGHAN WILLIAMS (1872-1958): Sir John in Love. Vaughan Williams was in many ways the ideal composer to turn Shakespeare's great comic figure, with his complex amalgam of pathos and farce, into the subject of an opera. His musical style - expansive and generous as it is - works well in depicting the interplay between such a larger-than-life character and his surroundings (and the other characters, who are given more prominence here than in any other treatment of the story other than the original). The incorporation of actual folk tunes into an opera was boldly experimental for the time, and of course they dovetail imperceptibly into the composer's own music, as folksong-inflected as it is. This is a beautiful work, one of Vaughan WIlliams' most richly melodious, and deserving greater attention than it has generally received in the past. 2 CDs. Libretto included. Donald Maxwell (baritone), Susan Gritton (soprano), Mark Padmore (tenor), Stephen Varcoe (bass), The Sinfonia Chorus, Northern Sinfonia; Richard Hickox. Chandos 9928 (England) 08D014 $33.98

JAN DISMAS ZELENKA (1679-1745): Sub olea pacis et palma virtutis conspicua orbi regia Bohemiae Corona (Melodrama de Sancto Wenceslao). Commissioned by the Jesuits for the coronation of Charles VI in Prague in 1723, this is an allegorical play - one of a genre which were used as instructional, ideological and polemical aids in monastic schools from the 16th to the mid 18th centuries. Of the vast quantity of such plays, only four exist with both text and music and Zelenka's is one. The soloists portray allegorical figures and there are 18 arias linked by recitative with an opening sinfonia and a closing chorus. The orchestra is large (Czech and a Slovak period instrument groups are augmented by a French period wind ensemble) and the music, by and large, brazen, vivid and celebratory. 2 CDs. Latin texts. Noémi Kiss, Anna Hlavenková (sopranos), Markus Forster (countertenor), Jaroslav Brezina, Adam Zdunikowski (tenors), Ales Procházka (bass), Musica Florea, Musica Aeterna, Ensemble Philidor, Boni Pueri; Marek Stryncl. Supraphon SU 3520-2 (Czech Republic) 08D015 $33.98

JAN DISMAS ZELENKA (1679-1745): Missa Dei Patris. One of Zelenka's last three masses (1740-1), this is an impressive mixture of old-style motet-like and fugal sections with newer choral concerti, concertante fugues and quasi-operatic arias with solo ensembles. Latin-English texts. Mechthild Bach (soprano), Daniel Taylor (alto), Markus Brutscher (tenor), Gotthold Schwarz (bass), Stuttgart Chamber Choir and Baroque Orchestra; Frieder Bernius. Carus 83.209 (Germany) 08D016 $17.98

JAN DISMAS ZELENKA (1679-1745): Te Deum, JOHANN DAVID HEINICHEN (1683-1729): Missa No. 9 in D. Dating from 1726, Heinichen's mass was performed for Christmas and is a splendid, large-scale work of 45 minutes with virtuosic brass parts and wonderfully varied instrumentation, making great use of woodwind and string combinations. A concertino for flute, oboe and strings is embedded n the work between the Gloria and Credo. Heike Hallaschka, Martina Lins-Reuber (sopranos), Patrick van Goethem (alto), Marcus Ullmann (tenor), Jochen Kupfer (bass), Dresden Chamber Choir of the Carl Maria von Weber Hochschule für Musik, Dresden Baroque Orchesta; Hans-Christoph Rademann. Carus 83.148 (Germany) 08D017 $17.98

MATTHIAS WECKMANN (1619-1674): 6 Toccatas, 5 Canzones, Variations on "Die lieblichen Blicke", 5 Suites. While in Dresden, Weckmann apparently struck up a friendship with Froberger and these harpsichord works (performed on Flemish and Italian copies) have a strong affinity with the latter's keyboard music. The strength of Weck-mann's ideas, quality of his polyphony and the novelty of his harmonic idiom rival the best harpsichord works of the period. Noëlle Spieth (harpsichord). Solstice SOCD 790 (France) 08D018 $16.98

GIUSEPPE MARIA ORLANDINI (1676-1760): Serpilla e Barocco, RINALDO DA CAPUA (1710-1770): La Zingara. Orlandini was even more important to the genre of the intermezzo than Pergolesi and his Serpilla was probably the most performed stage piece in the 18th century. Rinaldo's 1753 intermezzo, like Orlandini's skillfully blends the witty, the sentimental and the popular and both figured in the "Bouffons des Querelles" in Paris. Italian libretti. Soloists, Swiss-Italian Radio Television Orchestra; Edwin Loehrer. Nuova Era 1271 (Italy) 08D019 $17.98

GIUSEPPE TARTINI (1692-1770): 6 Sonatas for Violin and Cello or Harpsichord, Op. 6. This collection dates from 1748 and shows Tartini's characteristic pre-Classical style in which the instrument sings, feels and expresses in the manner which would find its pinnacle in the empfinsamkeit style. Enrico Casazza (violin), Roberto Loreggian (harpsichord, organ). Tactus TC 692001 (Italy) 08D020 $11.98

GIOVANNI BATTISTA MARTINI (1706-1784): 12 Sonate d'intavolatura for Organ and Harpsichord. Martini's legendary counterpoint skills are on display as he unites the dense polyphonic writing of the late baroque with anticipations of early Classicism in this set of four sonatas (actually five movement suites) which date from the late 1730s. Susanna Piolanti (harpsichord). Tactus TC 701301 (Italy) 08D021 $11.98

CARL PHILIPP EMANUEL BACH (1714-1788): Flute Concertos in A, Wq168, D Minor, Wq22 & in G, Wq169. Each of these concertos exists in alternate versions for other solo instruments (cello, harpsichord and organ respectively); the recent discovery of horn parts for the outer movements of the D minor harpsichord version has moved the present performers to use them in this flute version also. Rachel Brown (baroque flute), The Brandenburg Consort; Roy Goodman (harpsichord, fortepiano). Hyperion CDA 667226 (England) 08D022 $17.98

LEONTZI HONAUER (c.1730-c.1790): Keyboard Sonatas with Violin Accompaniment in D, F Minor & in C, Keyboard Sonatas in F & in D. Excerpted from two sets of soantas (1761 and 1764), these accompanied keyboard sonatas come from the period when the clavecin was being replaced by the fortepiano and are balanced on the line between the Rococo and Classicism. Szilvia Elek (fortepiano), László Paulik (violin). Hungaroton HCD 31871 (Hungary) 08D023 $16.98

FRIEDRICH KUHLAU (1786-1832): Piano Works, Vol. 4 - Sonatas in C, Op. 26/2 & in E Flat, Op. 26/3, Fantasia on Swedish Songs in G, Op. 93, Fantasia and Variations on Swedish Songs and Dances in D Minor, Op. 25. The C major sonata (the opus dates from 1820) has significant affinities with Beethoven and its successor with Haydn while retaining Kuhlau's native inventiveness and gift for melody. The two sets of variations (1815 and 1829) are just two more examples of the composer's inexhaustible facility in ringing the changes on the many delightful Swedish folk songs in his repertory. Thomas Trondhjem (piano). Rondo Records RCD 8357 (Denmark) 08D024 $18.98

JOSEPH HAYDN (1732-1809): L'isola disabitata. Haydn's only setting of a Metastasio libretto (1779) is his most compact and (perhaps) satisfying score. Set on an island with no action, only four characters with a correspondingly small orchestra, brief arias, no duets or trios (just a finale for all four) and long accompanied recitatives, the work makes its impact subtly, gently and lyrically. 2 CDs. Italian-English libretto. Katharina Kammerloher (mezzo, Anke Hermann (soprano), Robert Lee (tenor), Furio Zanasi (baritione). Academia Montis Regalis; Alessandro de Marchi. Opus 111 OPS 30319 (France) 08D025 $35.98

JOSEPH HAYDN (1732-1809): The Early Divertimenti, Vol. 5 - in F, Hob.II:16, in C, Hob.II:14, in E Flat, Hob.XIV:I & in D, Hob.II:8. Works from 1760-62 for varying ensembles with only two horns present in all, from the F Major octet (with pairs of violins, english horns, and bassoons) to the brief C major (two clarinets); examples of occasional music from the very young Haydn but in which his unorthodox treatment of the rules of composition look ahead to the wit and humor of his mature works. Haydn Sinfonietta Wien; Manfred Huss. Koch Schwann 3-6783-2 (Germany) 08D026 $16.98

JOHANN CHRISTIAN BACH (1735-1782): 6 Symphonies, Op. 18. Published in 1781, this collection is evenly divided between works for double and for single orchestras. The single orchestra works are actually either opera overtures or put together from opera overtures and incidental music. The doubles are joyful exploitations of the possibilities inherent in the interplay between two full string sections with winds unevenly divided between the two. The Hanover Band; Anthony Halstead. CPO 999 752 (Germany) 08D027 $15.98

IGNAZ PLEYEL (1757-1831): Grande Sinfonie in F, Op. 27, JOSEPH LEOPOLD EYBLER (1765-1846): Clarinet Concerto in B, MICHAEL HAYDN (1737-1806): Cassatio in D. Pleyel's symphony (not one of the three on Chandos' "Contem-poraries of Mozart" series) is a pleasant, generally lyrical four-movement work from 1798; Eybler's 1798 concerto is the longest work here, a beautiful piece in high Classical style with a percussion-enhanced, Janissary-type finale; the cassation may or may not be by Michael Haydn (the manuscript is in Georg von Pasterwiz' hand) but is a lovely work in the manner of Mozart's early serenades. Peter Rabl (clarinet), Concilium musicum Wien; Paul Angerer. Cavalli Records CCD 414 (Germany) 08D028 $17.98

LUDWIG VAN BEETHOVEN (1770-1827): The Creatures of Prometheus, Op. 43. We offer this CD for admirers of Katsaris' Beethoven/Liszt series on Teldec. Here he performs Beethoven's own piano version of the Prometheus ballet on the first disc - which would have been quite enough. Unfortunately, there is a second CD - at 22:50 - containing Katsaris in four languages talking about the composition and finishing with hsi performance of the extant fragment of Beethoven's own piano version of the slow introduction to the Symphony No. 7 (2:57). 2 CDs. Cyprien Katsaris (piano). 21 Piano 21001 (France) 08D029 $33.98

JOHANN NEPOMUK HUMMEL (1778-1837): Mandolin Concerto in G, Freudenfest Overture in D, Ballet Music for Das Zauberglöckchen, Trumpet Concerto in E. All but the trumpet concerto are premiere recordings - the mandolin concerto using a newly discovered score which shows affinitites to the op. 75 piano concertino; the overture (1814) uses three national tunes (including God Save the King) as its material while the five pieces of ballet music from 1837 are lively and colorful. Alison Stephens (mandolin), Urban Agnas (trumpet), London Mozart Players; Howard Shelley. Chandos 9925 (England) 08D030 $16.98

JOHANN NEPOMUK HUMMEL (1778-1837): Complete Works for Cello and Piano - Grande Sonate, Op. 104, Variazioni alla Monferrina, Op. 54, Oberons Zauberhorn - Grande Fantasia, Op. 116 (transcr. Czerny). First recordings of the variations and of the Fantasia, the latter a work for piano and orchestra whose popularity led Czerny to transcribe it: the cello is more an accompanist to the virtuosic piano but does have its moments to shine as well. Arturo Bonucci (cello), Aldo Orvieto (piano). Dynamic CDS 286 (Italy) 08D031 $17.98

FRANZ SCHUBERT (1797-1828): Arias from Die Zwillingsbruder, D647, Des Teufels Lustschloss, D84, Alfonso und Estrella, D732, Die Freunde von Salamanka, D326, Der Graf von Gleichen, D918, Adrast, D137 and Die Bürgschaft, D435. The baritone voice was the first to excite the young Schubert, with the result that there are many fine arias for this voice in his dozen or so operas (most written for Johann Michael Vogl). This hour's worth of music is given the "Schubert Edition" treatment in its 92-page booklet. German-English texts. Oliver Widmer (baritone), Hungarian National Philharmonic Orchestra; Jan Schultsz. Hyperion CDA 67229 (England) 08D032 $17.98

FRANZ LACHNER (1803-1890): König Oedipus. This is stage-music in the tradition of A Midsummer Night's Dream - acompanied spoken word (melodrama), broken up by large-scale choral-orchestral pieces. The work dates from 1852 and, as one might expect, is predominantly tragic, not to say funereal. 79 minutes. German notes and texts. Speakers, Male Voices of the Bavarian Radio Choir, Munich Radio Orchestra; Jörg-Peter Weigle. Audite 97.425 (Germany) 08D033 $16.98

FRANZ LACHNER (1803-1890): String Quartets, Vol. 2 - No. 2 in A, Op. 76 & No. 4 in D Minor, Op. 120. Written between 1843-48, these quartets offer attractive and sophisticated music in the traditional four-movement format with the first violin and the cello tending to stand out from their mates. Expressively, these pieces are in the early Romantic tradition of Lachner's great friend, Schubert, running the gamut from stormy passion and exuberance to solemn cantabile and grave nobility. Rodin Quartet. Amati ami 0003/1 (Germany) 08D034 $17.98

HALFDAN KJERULF (1815-1868): Complete Piano Works - 25 Selected Norwegian Folk Dances, 42 Selected Norwegian Folk Tunes, 5 Sketches, Bonde-Idyl in D Minor, Efterklang fra Fjeldreisen, 8 Song Transcriptions, Polka in E Flat, Caprice in D, 5 Elegies, Berceuse in D Flat, Menuet in A, Humoreske in G Minor, Idyl in A, Lullaby in F Sharp, Allegro vivace in G, 3 Impromptus, 3 Scherzos, Spring Dance, Intermezzo, Song without Words, Notturno, Barcarolle, Albumblatt. As Norway's first internationally recognized composer, Kjerulf paved the way for Grieg and Svendsen although his own compositions were quickly overshadowed by those of the latter two. Steeped in the Romantic tradition, Kjerulf followed in the footsteps of Mendelssohn and Schumann both in genre and in style while also paying attention to his own heritage in his more audacious Norwegian-inspired compositions which anticipate many of the national characteristics to be found in Grieg's music (as a glance at the title list above will indicate, Kjerulf was particularly interested in arranging and adapting Norwegian folk tunes from pre-existing published collections.) 3 CDs. Einar Steen-Nøkleberg (piano). Simax PSC 1228 (Norway) 08D035 $56.98

FRIEDRICH HERMANN (1828-1907): Duo brillant for Violin and Cello, Op. 12, JOSEPH RHEINBERGER (1839-1901): Pastoral-Sonate No. 3 in G for Organ, Op. 88, Suite for Violin, Cello and Organ, Op. 149. Hermann's 1850s duo shares form and some close thematic reminiscences with Beethoven's Triple Concerto; two aspects of Rheinberger's art are shown by the brief (11-minute) organ sonata and the 38-minute suite although both are characterized by simplicity of line, clarity of form and the beauty of their melodies. Goldnagl Duo, Michael Hartmann (Vleughel organ of the Bürgersaal Church, Munich). Antes Edition BM-CD 31.91456 (Germany) 08D036 $17.98

EMMANUEL CHABRIER (1841-1890): Joyeuse marche, España, Suite Pastorale, Danse slave & Fête polonaise from Le Roi malgré lui, Prélude pastoral, Bourrée fantasque, Menuet pompeaux, Overture and Légende de Gwendoline (w/soprano) from Gwendoline, À la musique, Larghetto for Horn and Orchestra, Habanera, 3 Valses romantiques, La Sulamite for Mezzo-Soprano, Women's Chorus and Orchestra All of the well-known Chabrier is here as well as many rarities: the two Felix Mottl transcriptions (3 Valses romantiques and Bourré fantasque), the mixture of Wagner with Gallicism in the Gwendoline music, the proto-Impressionistic Song of Songs adaptation that is La Sulamite and the luminous simplicity of the "Ode to Music" of 1890, written for the house-warming of friends. French texts. 2 CDs. Mid-price. Special European Import. Barbara Hendricks (soprano), Susan Mentzer (mezzo), Pierre Del Vescovo (horn) Womens voices of the Choir of Toulouse Midi-Pyrénées, Orchestre du Capitole de Toulouse; Michel Plasson. EMI 7243 5 74336 2 (France) 08D037 $19.98

RUGGERO LEONCAVALLO (1857-1919): Zaza. Pagliacci is never far away in this 1900 work whose title character stars in a sleazy music-hall and French café elements blend with the impassioned Italian versimo as the various low-lifes manipulate, betray and lie to each other. Italian-English libretto. Lisa Houben (soprano), Sergio Panajia (tenor), Rome Philharmonic Orchestra and Choir; Silvano Frontalini. Bongiovanni GB 2289/90 (Italy) 08D038 $33.98

CHARLES GOUNOD (1818-1893): 19 Mélodies londoniennes. In 1871, Gounod got himself involved in a complicated, career-destroying affair with a married woman/amateur singer in England. She was merely one of several reasons the composer spent the better part of three years in that country - producing oratorios, ballads and songs for a voracious (and high-paying) English population. This is a selection of the latter which have almost unanimously been described as "maudlin", "saccharine", "banal" "tasteless" and "sentimental". And... it's all true! This is a true guilty pleasure - so bad it's good (Mystery Science Theater anyone?)! We imported a very limited number for obvious reasons. But, if it goes fast, we'll get more!!!! English-French texts. Varda Kotler (soprano), Véronique Barraud (piano), Philippe Barry (cello). REM 311333 XCD (France) 08D039 $16.98

BEDRICH SMETANA (1824-1884): Dalibor. This 1868 work, Lisztian/Wagnerian in its use of thematic metamorphosis, derived from Czech history, condemned by many for being a Czech Fidelio (a passing similarity in part of the plot but none in character motivation), failed at its premiere, becoming popular only two decades later. This historical recording dates from September 1950. 2 CDs. Mono. Mid-price. Czech-English libretto. Beno Blachut (tenor), Marie Podvalová (soprano), Václav Dednár (baritone), Prague National Theatre Chorus and Orchestra; Jaroslav Krombholc. Supraphon SU 3541-2 (Czech Republic) 08D040 $21.98

ENGELBERT HUMPERDINCK (1854-1921): Die Heirat wider Willen. Humperdinck had a driving passion to write comic operas and this 1905 work, to a libretto by his wife after Dumas' Les Damoiselles de Saint-Cyr, looks to revive the light touch of such predecessors as Lortzing, Auber and Rossini. 1949 live recording. Also includes Hopf as Fra Diavolo (full second act) from 1944 in Dresden (Elmendorff conducting). 2 CDs. Mono. German libretto. Hans Hopf (tenor), Karl Hoppe (baritone), Käthe Nentwig (soprano), Bavarian Radio Chorus and Orchestra; Hans Altmann. Myto 012.H057 (Italy) 08D041 $35.98


ALEXANDER MACKENZIE (1847-1935): String Quartet in G, JOHN BLACKWOOD MCEWEN (1868-1948): String Quartet No. 8 in A "Biscay", THOMAS ERSKINE (EARL OF KELLY) (1732-1781): String Quartet in A, THOMAS WILSON (b.1927): String Quartet No. 4. These four quartets by Scottish composers range from classical to modern in style. Erskine studied with Johann Stamitz, and his quartet is certainly as good as any from the other well-known Mannheim composers. Mackenzie's will remind you of late Mendelssohn, but with a splash of Glenlivet. Wilson's is in one, tightly structured movement, and bears a resemblance to Bartok's efforts in this medium. McEwen's is actually a seascape composed at Cap Feret on the Bay of Biscay. It is in three, titled movements, which are atmospheric to the point of being almost impressionistic. Upon hearing it, one can only hope that his other quartets will be recorded soon. The performances are excellent. Edinburgh Quartet. Meridian CDE 84445 (England) 08D042 $17.98

MAURICE RAVEL (1875-1937): Alyssa, Alcyone, Myrrha. These three cantatas are absolutely gorgeous, and all lovers of late, French, romantic opera will love them. Just don't expect them to sound like the Ravel you normally hear. Written between 1901 and 1903 in hopes of winning the Prix de Rome competition, these pieces are in the Delibes-Massenet-Saint-Saëns tradition. They show the young composer could beat his contemporaries at their own game, and even surpass some of his teachers. Academic jealousies and bickering kept him from winning, but posterity is all the more fortunate for having these early efforts. The performances and recorded sound are superb. These works are more than mere curiosities, and definitely worth knowing! Special European Import. Véronique Gens, Mireille Delunsch, Norah Amsellem (sopranos), Orchestre du Capitole de Toulouse; Michel Plasson. EMI 7243 5 57032 2 (France) 08D043 $18.98

ANDRÉ CAPLET (1878-1925): Le vieux coffret, Viens! Une flûte invisible, La croix douloureuse, Détresse, Écoute, 3 Fables de la Fontaine, 5 Ballades françaises. Volume 14 of this fine La Mélodie Française series contains about half of Caplet's published songs, ranging from the Debussian, flute-accompanied Une flûte... of 1900 to his last song, the 1924 Écoute (also flute-accompanied). The fables (1919) are in the ironic vein of Ravel's Histoires naturelles; 1917's Le vieux coffret sets insipid and clumsy poetry with brilliance, Impressionism now mixed with the mature composer's warm lyricism while the Ballades (1920) contain some of the purest gems of French song. French-English texts. Lionel Peintre (baritone), Alain Jacquon (piano), Étienne Plasman (flute). Timpani 1C1058 (France) 08D044 $18.98

OTHMAR SCHOECK (1886-1957): Spielmannsweisen, Op. 56, HANS HUBER (1852-1921): 4 Burckhardt Lieder, Op. 44, VOLKMAR ANDREAE (1879-1962): Der Spielmann, Op. 5, WILLY BURKHARD (1900-1955): 9 Morgenstern Lieder, Op. 70, FRIEDRICH HEGAR (1841-1927): Liederzyklus, Op. 19, PETER MIEG (1906-1990): 3 Gesänge nach Hofmannsthal. "Swiss songs between the romantic and the modern age" is the title of this interesting and agreeable programme. It should be emphasized that the modern age does not intrude itself much into these fine, if predominantly conventional lieder. All are conventionalyl melodic, and more than a few are closely allied to the great examples of Schubert and Wolf. In fact, if the Lied is your thing and you mistrust the tenndencies in vocal writing in the last century, then this disc will provide a great deal to enjoy. German texts. Bernhard Hunziker (tenor), Jean-Jacques Dünki (piano). Musikszene Schweiz MGB CD 6179 (Switzerland) 08D045 $18.98

MAX REGER (1873-1916): Piano Works, Vol. 10 - 7 Charakterstücke, Op. 32, Aus der Jugendzeit, Op. 17, Marsch der Stiftsdamen, Fughette über das Deutschlandlied, 3 Albumblätter. Although composed in consecutive years (1898-99) the two major works recorded here couldn't be more different: the Jugendzeit shows Reger as Schumann devotee par excellence with many of the twenty short pieces making it up bearing titles almost identical to some from Kinderszenen and Album für die Jugend. The Charakterstücke, on the other hand are pianistically thorny and passionately serious in the grand concert style. Five brief pieces (four less than a minute) from the same two years and from 1914 & 1916 make up the antepenultimate volume of this complete cycle. Markus Becker (piano). Thorofon CTH 2320 (Germany) 08D046 $16.98

ISSAC ALBÉNIZ (1860-1909): Complete Piano Music, Vol. 3 - Iberia (Third Book), España - 6 hojas de album, Op. 165, Barcarola, Op. 23, Rapsodia Cubana, Op. 66, Angustia, Zambra granadina, Pavana muy fácil para manos pequeñas, Op. 83. The large-scale color, sensuality and emotion which set Iberia at the pinnacle of Albéniz' career are prefigured in the six-piece suite España of 1890, the oriental flavor of 1891's Zambra and the indolent sweetness of the Rapsodia Cubana (1887) while the Barcarola and Angustia of the early 1880s show the composer in the salon style of Mendelssohn or Chopin. Miguel Baslega (piano). BIS CD-1143 (Sweden) 08D047 $17.98

PADRE HARTMANN (1863-1914): San Francesco. Paul Eugen Josef von An der Lan-Hochbrunn became Padre Paul Hartmann after taking Franciscan orders and held various musical posts in northern Italy, composing more than half a dozen sacred oratorios as well as a Te Deum and numerous masses, motets and organ works. This three-part oratorio on salient events in the life of St. Francis of Assisi dates from 1901 and opens with an orchestral prelude followed by seven numbers comprising one aria, a duet and four choral sections with much accompanied recitative. The orchestra, with a particularly large complement of winds and brass, is joined by an organ and mixed choir; the music is predominantly slow and meditative, a choral fugue ending the first section and a transcendent finale standing out in particular. Collectors of the Perosi oratorios will no doubt be interested in this musical compatriot. Latin texts. Sylvia Rieser (soprano), Barbara Hölz (contralto), Frieder Lang (tenor), Vito Maria Brunetti (bass), Chorus "I Musici Cantori", Haydn Orchestra Bolzano-Trento; Karl Martin. Agora AG 271.1 (Italy) 08D048 $18.98

FRANZ SCHREKER (1878-1934): Complete Lieder, Vol. 2 - 3 Lieder von Vincenz Zusner, 5 Gesänge für tiefe Stimme, 2 Lyrische Gesänge, Ave Maria (two versions), Und wie mag die Liebe, Lied der Fiorina, Waldeinsamkeit, Überwunden, Die glühende Krone from Der ferne Klang (arr. Berg), Entführung, Das feuriger Männlein. This second and final disc again provides an overview of Schreker's song uvre, from prize-winning early conservatory efforts to his masterpiece in the genre, written in 1923 at the height of his international fame, two songs from Whitman's "Leaves of Grass" (which Monica has probably never heard) in German translation. The elegiac mood of the texts brings out the best in Schreker's harmonically extended language and he produces fine and responsive evocations of Whitman's expansive grandeur. German-English texts. Sibylle Ehlert (soprano), Jochen Kupfer (baritone), Anne Buter (mezzo), Reinild Mees (piano). Channel Classics CCS 14398 (Netherlands) 08D049 $17.98

DARIUS MILHAUD (1892-1974): Viola Sonata No. 2, Violin Sonata No. 2, Sonata for Flute, Oboe, Clarinet and Piano, Suite for Violin, Clarinet andPiano, Piano Quartet, Op. 417. This collection spans most of Milhaud's career, from the 1917 violin sonata (using his trademark polytonality but sounding more Impressionistic than most of his music) and the flute-oboe-clarinet sonata of 1918 (full of exotic tone colors, South American folk elements and syncopated rhythms) via the Suite (1936 and adapted from film music) and viola sonata (1944) to the 1966 piano quartet in which tender and tentative lyricism in the slow movement contrasts violently with the stormy, dissonant outer movements and which is remarkable for the independence of the voices. Ensemble Polytonal. Channel Classics CCS 13998 (Netherlands) 08D050 $17.98

DARIUS MILHAUD (1892-1974): Suite française (Philharmonic Symphony Orchestra of New York; 1/2/46), Piano Concerto (Marguerite Long, Orchestre National; 4/5/35), Violin Concerto No. 2 (Louis Kaufman, L'Orchestre de la Radiodiffusion Française; 10/49), Concertino de printemps for Violin and Orchestra (Louis Kaufman, L'Orchestre de la Radiodiffusion Française; 10/49), Scaramouche for 2 Pianos (Phyllis Sellick & Cyril Smith; 11/9/48), Concertino de printemps for Violin and Orchestra (Yvonne Astruc, Orchestra; 1933). Two versions of the 1934 Concertino de Printemps, with its sensuous melodies, youthful verve and bright colors, are offered here - the original from the year of its composition performed by its dedicatee and the better-known one from 15 years later by Kaufman. The larger-scale 1946 second violin concerto has great intensity in its first movement, a warm and lyrical second movement and a rhythmically jaunty finale. All conducted by Darius Milhaud. Budget-price. Dutton CDBP 9711 (England) 08D051 $5.98

ERNEST BLOCH (1880-1959): Dans les montagnes, Concertino for Flute, Clarinet and Strings, Concerto Grosso No. 2, Baal Shem for Violin, Clarinet and Strings. A couple of rarities spice up this Swiss offering: the 1948 Concertino, commissioned by the Juilliard School, with a fresh and flowing first movement, a modal andante and a fugue which ends in a polka. "In the Mountains" is a 1925 two-movement work for string quartet in which Bloch, from Cleveland, expresses his longing for Switzerland in "Dusk" and "Rustic Dance". Baal Shem is heard here in an arrangement by the conductor while the 1952 Concerto Grosso is both abstract and complex and harmonically and melodically rich. Michel Westphal (clarinet), Robert Thuillier (flute), Orchestre de Lancy-Genève; Roberto Sawicki (violin). Gallo CD0-066 (Switzerland) 08D052 $18.98

RAYMOND CHEVREUILLE (1901-1976): Violin Concerto No. 2, Op. 56, EUGENE YSA×E (1858-1931): Poème élégiaque for Violin and Orchestra, Op. 12, HENRI VIEUXTEMPS (1820-1881): Violin Concerto No. 2 in F Sharp Minor, Op. 19. The disc is an appreciation of this member of the "Belgian Violin School" but offers not only the rare Ysaÿe (c.1895), by turns gloomy, melancholy and impassioned, but also the concerto by Chevreuille - an important Belgian composer who had eight symphonies, three violin concertos, two cello concertos and six string quartets among other works at the time of the publishing of the New Grove in the mid-70s. The concerto dates from 1956 with outer movements of obsessive motivic juxtapositioning which leads to incessant, rhythmic action that builds to an exhausting and exhausted climax. while the central movement is a nervous, highly-strung meditation. Mono recordings (1953-73). Mid-price. Carlo van Neste (violin), Orchestre Symphonique de l'INR; Franz André, Daniel Sternefeld, RTB Chamber Orchestra; Edgar Doneux. Pavane ADW 7452 (Belgium) 08D053 $10.98

GEORGES IVANOVITCH GURDJIEFF (c.1866-1949)/THOMAS DE HARTMANN (1885-1956): Music for the Piano, Vol. 4 - 10 Hymns from a Great Temple, The Great Prayer, 6 Fragments from the "Struggle of the Magicians", 4 Early Pieces, The Essentuki Prayer, Return from a Journey, The Initiation of the Priestess, The Bokharian Dervish Hadji Asvatz Troov. The final volume in this unusual and remarkable series contains a set of ten "hymns" which go direct to the heart of Eastern Christianity; the Great Prayer's slow, unrelenting repetition of a bass note and austere modality create a sense of deep mystery. The Struggle of the Magicians was a ballet which Gurdjieff proposed but which was never produced; the "early pieces", of 1924, are of an Asian character. Of the remaining pieces, The Essentuki Prayer is the first known piece by Gurdjieff (1918), its title taken from a village in the Caucasus where he lived after the Bolshevik Revolution, while the Initiation of the Priestess is the longest single work of this entire collection: initially designed to accompany a dance-drama, it evokes the various stages of a rite of ceremonial grandeur and intimate personal feeling. 2 CDs. Charles Ketcham (piano), Laurence Rosenthal (piano). Wergo WER 6643-2 (Germany) 08D054 $39.98


HEITOR VILLA-LOBOS (1887-1959): Symphony No. 6, Symphony No. 8, Suite for Strings. Like New York Skyline, the sixth symphony (1944) is partially based on the graphic mapping of a set of physical objects, in this case a mountain range near Rio de Janeiro. Regardless of the source of the motifs, Villa-Lobos uses them to produce typically rhythmic fast movements, the finale being particularly dance-like, with a slow movement slightly mournful and impressionistic in quality. The eighth symphony (1950) was dedicated to Olin Downes and is the composer's most classically structured work, with no national musical colors, building rather on motifs and abstract themes in the style of the 18th century symphonists. The suite is an early work of 1912-13 whose three movement titles: "Timide", "Mystérieuse" and "Inquiète", indicate an attempt to depict characters in music which is simple and intimate yet powerfully expressive. Stuttgart Radio Symphony Orchestra; Carl St. Clair. CPO 999 517 (Germany) 08D055 $15.98

EDMUND RUBBRA (1901-1986): Prelude and Fugue on a Theme of Cyril Scott, Op. 69, Sonatina, Op. 19, Fukagawa, Introduction, Aria and Fugue, Op. 104, 8 Preludes, Op. 131, Nemo Fugue, 4 Studies, Op. 139, Invention on the Name of Haydn, Op. 160, Fantasy Fugue, Op. 161, 9 Teaching Pieces for 2 Pianos, Op. 74. Refined and warm-heartedly romantic, Rubbra's music combines the best elements of the early 20th-century English tradition with a restrained classicality which underlines the sincerity of utterance and meticulous craftsmanship of the composer's inspiration. The two most pianistically challenging works here, and the most extended, are the early sonatina and the late eight preludes, the latter perfectly capable of standing alongside such major if unconventional and off-the-beaten-track English piano composers as Foulds or Truscott. An interesting oddity is the little Fukagawa, based on a Japanese folk tune and reflecting the composer's interest in the art of the Orient. Michael Dussek (piano), Rachel Dussek (second piano). Dutton Epoch CDLX 7112 (England) 08D056 $16.98

MARGOT WRIGHT (1911-2000): Cello Sonata in C Minor, Piano Quintet in D Minor, 3 Northumbrian Folksongs for Viola and Piano, Improvisation for Solo Clarinet, 3 Songs with Clarinet Obbligato for Mezzo-Soprano and Piano, Fear No More the Heat o' the Sun for Mezzo-Soprano and Piano. Another composer left behind by contemporary music trends, Wright became known mostly as a well-loved piano teacher. The two early works here, the sonata and the quintet (the former from 1930, the latter near to it), show a composer of extraordinary maturity and of musical conservatism, imbibing of the same waters drunk by Bax, Holst and Vaughan Williams (i.e. Parry and Stanford). English folk song is everywhere apparent, not only in the 1998 Northumbrian Folk Songs and these works will appeal to anyone who enjoys the above-mentioned composers. Frank Mol (piano), Camilli String Quartet, Rachel Ann Morgan (mezzo), Nancy Braithwaite (clarinet). Dutton Epoch CDLX 7109 (England) 08D057 $16.98

ARTHUR BENJAMIN (1893-1960): 5 Negro Spirituals for Cello and Piano, Sonatina for Violin and Piano, Pastoral Fantasy for String Quartet, Viola Sonata, 3 Violin Pieces, A Tune & Variations for Little People. The composer of "Jamaican Rhumba" was of course also a pianist of considerable accomplishments, and a composer of a wide variety of 'serious' music. The prevailing tone of these chamber works might best be characterised as English in the sense of Vaughan Williams with a dash of Lambert and French influence. The Pastoral Fantasy is lovely, and will remind many of Moeran; although there is a sweetness and absence of the sense of looming tragedy which makes Lambert's works, even the lighter ones, so powerful, there is genuine emotional depth here, especially in the first movements of the sonata and sonatina. Locrian Ensemble. Dutton Epoch CDLX 7110 (England) 08D058 $16.98

ARNOLD BAX (1883-1953): Violin Concerto, Symphony No. 3 in C. This recording of the violin concerto was made on Feb. 23, 1944 in the Bedford Corn Exchange, the BBC's wartime home. Part of a series of BBC "Special Music Recordings" made for broadcast during the small hours to India, the Pacific and the West Coast of the U.S., it has never been issued until now. Kersey was a leading soloist during the war but her career was cut short by her early death at the age of 40 five months after this recording was made. Barbirolli's recording of what was Bax's most popular symphony at that time is known for its broad tempos in the slow sections and headlong drive in the faster ones. Eda Kersey (violin), BBC Symphony Orchestra; Sir Adrian Boult (2/23/44), Hallé Orchestra; Sir John Barbirolli (12/31/43 & 1/12/44). Dutton Epoch CDLX 7111 (England) 08D059 $16.98

IVOR GURNEY (1890-1937): 5 Elizabethan Songs, Epitaph in Old Mode, You Are My Sky, All Night Under the Moon, The Folly of Being Comforted, By a Bierside, Severn Meadows, In Flanders, Even Such is Time, Ha'nacker Mill, Bread and Cherries, Most Holy Night, Desire in Spring, Nine of the Clock, A Cradle Song, An Epitaph, The Fields are Full, Down by the Salley Gardens, The Cloths of Heaven, The Singer, I Will Go with My Father A-Ploughing. These songs belong to the intense period of activity after the composer's demobilization from the army (1919) and before his incarceration in the mental institution (1921) he was to die in. They are typified by an exceptional sensitivity to word setting, the emphasis always on the mood of the poem and never on pictorial or dramatic illustrations. Paul Agnew (tenor), Julius Drake (piano). Hyperion CDA 67243 (England) 08D060 $17.98

ERLAND VON KOCH (b.1910): Symphony No. 2 "Sinfonia Dalecarlica", Nordic Capriccio, Op. 26, Viola Concerto, Op. 33, Suite No. 1 from the Ballet Cinderella, Op. 24. This music was written in the 40s and belongs to Koch's romantic period. The Nordic Capriccio, one of his most popular works, is very energetic with a prominent timpani part, which may remind you of William Schuman. The symphony is a pastoral affair with Swedish folk music overtones. Its scherzo is in places rhythmically reminiscent of American, western film music. All viola enthusiasts should take note of the concerto. It is very well written and a welcome addition to the few, existing concertos for this instrument. Koch has composed a lot for films and the stage. The suite from his ballet Cinderella shows him in a lighter, more lyrical mood. In short, here is some really good music from one of Sweden's lesser, known composers. Johanna Persson (viola), Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra; B Tommy Andersson. Phono Suecia/Musica Sveciae PSCD 710 (Sweden) 08D067 $16.98


PÁL JÁRDÁNYI (1920-1966): Vörösmarty Symphony, Concertino for Violin and Orchestra, Harp Concerto, Vivente e Moriente for Orchestra, Foreword for Chorus and Orchestra. Járdányi was a student of Kodály and, like his teacher, an ethnomusicologist also. The 1952 symphony, in five movements to a program concerned with the Hungarian people's sense of identity as expressed by the 19th century poet Vörösmarty, has elements of an idealized folk music like Kodály's (later) symphony. The harp concerto (1959) is a luminous work in a similar vein while the late Concertino and Vivente e Moriente (1964) are much more austere in comparison although the Hungarian national element is still audible. Zsófia Járdányi (violin), Elisabetta Devescovi (harp), Szent István Király Oratorio Choir and Symphony Orchestra; János Ács. Hungaroton HCD 31742 (Hungary) 08D068 $16.98

EINOJUHANI RAUTAVAARA (b.1928): Fiddlers, Op. 1, Divertimento, Suite, Hommage à Liszt Férenc, An Epitaph for Béla Bartók, Hommage à Kodály Zoltán, Cantos I-IV, Ballad for Harp and Strings, A Finnish Myth, Ostrobothnian Polska. This reissue of two full-price Ondine CDs contains the complete works for string orchestra by this prominent Finnish composer, covering a span from the early, Ostrobothnian folk-music influenced Fiddlers, Divertimento and Suite (1952-3) to the last of the four Cantos (1992). 2 CDs. Mid-price. Ostrobothnian Chamber Orchestra; Juha Kangas. Ondine ODE 983-2D (Finland) 08D069 $24.98

VAGN HOLMBOE (1909-1996): Flute Quartet, Op. 90, Sonata for Solo Flute, Op. 71, Sonatina Capricciosa for Flute and Piano, Op. 27b, Sextet for Flute, Clarinet, Bassoon, Violin, Viola and Cello, Op. 114. Holmboe is one of those composers of whom one feels that every note is there for a reason; nothing is wasted, and there is no padding. In some of his larger-scale works this leads to an incredibly concentrated dramatic tension, but in these chamber works with flute, ranging from the early Sonatina to the relatively late Sextet there is a relaxed sense of pastoral, folk-influenced easy-goingness, reminiscent of Nielsen's bucolic interludes in this vein. Holmboe's classical restraint is very much in evidence here, and his great respect for (and highly individual use of) traditional forms. A most enjoyable disc, and a great way to approach this major figure in 20th century music. Claus Ettrup Larsen (flute), Anette Søgaard Jensen (clarinet), Antal Mojzer (bassoon), Erkki Palola (violin), Atso Lehto (viola), Kirsti Väyrynen (cello), Leonid Maximov (piano). Rondo Records RCD 8362 (Denmark) 08D070 $16.98

JEAN LANGLAIS (1907-1991): Suite Armoricaine for Piano, Op. 31, Suite for Piano Four-Hands, Op. 14, Mouvement perpetuel for Piano, Op. 23, Pièce for Trumpet and Piano, Op. 168, 5 Mélodies for Mezzo-Soprano and Piano, Op. 86, Hommage à Louis Braille for Mezzo-Soprano and Piano, Op. 184, Vitrail for Clarinet and Piano, Op. 241, Diptyque for Piano and Organ, Op. 179. The composer-organist's chamber music is practically totally ignoredso this release is doubly welcome. The suite for four hands and the Mouvement Perpétuel (1934 and 1930 respectively) are pedagogical/student works but the Suite Armoricaine of 1938 evokes Brittany with its modal harmonies. Langlais' only song cycle appears (1954) also; Diptych (1974) revisits the Mouvement for its two main themes and the 1980 Vitrail, harmonically dense has an obsessive and haunting quality. Alain Raës (piano) Sylvie Mallet (four-hands piano), Janine Collard (mezzo), Jean Langlais (piano), Claude Faucomprez (clarinet), David Guerrier (trumpet), Marie-Louise Langlais (organ). Solstice SOCD 180 (France) 08D071 $16.98

EINOJUHANI RAUTAVAARA (b.1928): Toccata, Op. 59, Laudatio Trinitatis, ta tou theou, Op. 30, HENRYK GÓRECKI (b.1933): Kantata, SOFIA GUBAIDULINA (b.1931): hell und dunkel, ARVO PÄRT (b.1935): Mein Weg hat Gipfel und Wellentäler, trivium, Annum per annum, Pari Intervallo. Another fascinating programme from Kevin Bowyer, who stands so far from the conventional norm of organists that it will soon be necessary to find a new term for his profession - it has become almost commonplace to welcome his discs as studies in innovative programming and astounding musical insight. We all know what Pärt does, and his ecstatic and uncomplicated religious inspiration is at least as well served by the organ as by any other forces for which he has written. The real eye-openers here are the Rautavaara works, by turns virtuosic and serious, not lacking in affinity with Messiaen, but as taut and powerfully individual as this composer always is. The Gorecki is interesting - a good deal more dissonant and extrovert than might be expected by those familiar only with Ýhe Third Symphony - one is reminded of Ligeti at times. If you enjoy 20th-century organ music, buy this. Kevin Bowyer (Marcussen organ of St. Augustine, Tonbridge School, Kent). Nimbus NI 5675 (England) 08D072 $17.98

HENRI LAZAROF (b.1932): Choral Symphony (Symphony No. 3) for Alto, Bass-Baritone, Chorus and Orchestra, "Encounters" with Dylan Thomas for Soprano and Chamber Ensemble. From its impressive, granitic opening gestures it is immediately apparent that Lazarof's symphony is a work conceived and executed on a grand scale, and so it turns out to be. Setting a polyglot text by the composer, this non-programmatic work functions like a series of dramatic scenes which seem obliquely to be dealing with subjects akin to the Greek tragedies, or of Biblical scope. The musical language is Lazarof's own too; for the most part it is best heard as tonal with episodes of (sometimes extreme) dissonance. The orchestra is huge; the choral contribution is all that those familiar with the obvious examples of Mahler and Havergal Brian might wish, and the whole is a mighty and mightily impressive achievement. The little Dylan Thomas settings that fill up the CD (the symphony, by the way, lasts over three-quarters of an hour) are scored for a variety of odd ensembles drawn from a chamber group, which subtly etch an accompaniment for the plaintive and subtly disturbing imagery of the texts. Sheila Nadler (alto), Terry Cook (bass-baritone), Phyllis Bryn-Julson (soprano), Seattle Symphony and Chorale; Gerard Schwarz. Centaur CRC 2519 (U.S.A.) 08D073 $16.98

ROEL VAN OOSTEN (b.1958): Ostinazione, GEERT VAN KEULEN (b.1943): Gestel, PETER-JAN WAGEMANS (b.1952): Fantasy on "Erlkönig", GUUS JANSSEN (b.1951): Toestand, WIM LAMAN (b.1946): Vortex, WILLEM VAN MANEN (b.1940): Take Care, MAARTEN VAN NORDEN (b.1955): East Rock. "Dutch Masters" is the punning title of this CD, meaning in this case composers chosen to symbolise Dutch contemporary music in the same way that Rembrandt or Vermeer come immediately to mind when the phrase is usually used. There has been something of an uniformity of style, or at least many elements in common, in much Dutch contemporary music, for some decades now, and so it is here. Big blocks of sound, lots of energy, low-register saxophones and clarinets, ostinati and hocketing, humor and sly, winking homages to classical and pre-classical models, all adding up to a very approachable and non-academic face of contemporary music, which one can easily imagine being enjoyed equally by open-minded music lovers whose tastes normally run to Bach or Pettersson or Wagner . . . or hard rock. Orkest De Volharding; Jurjen Hempel. Donemus CV 95 (Netherlands) 08D074 $18.98

TEIZO MATSUMURA (b.1929): Musique pour Quatuor à Cordes et Piano, Piano Trio, String Quartet, Courtyard of Apsaras for Flute, Violin and Piano. Despite the composer's assertion that thoughts of Western concert tradition were abandoned when writing these pieces, they do not sound particularly Japanese, and indeed it is possible to point to a number of areas of contact with string quartet repertoire of the West, especially early 20th-century France and mid-century Russia. A kind of impressionistic haze hovers over Matsumura's music, with the suggestion of drones and repetitive figures providing an aura of exoticism. T he music is basically tonal and relatively conventional, which is not to say uninteresting; the two most recent, the piano trio and string quartet are the most concentrated and will appeal more to those who find late 20th-century Impressionism with an Eastern flavor just a little too meditative to hold their attention. Le Quatuor Ravel, Kaori Kimara (piano), Chamber Music '70, Tokyo Piano Trio, Saschko Gawriloff, Sonoko Numata (violins), Serge Collot (viola), Christoph Henkel (cello). Camerata 28CM-617 (Japan) 08D075 $17.98

GYULA FEKETE (b.1962): Roman Fever - One-Act Chamber Opera, Elegia - in memoriam Hannah Senesh for Soprano, Baritone, Mixed Choir and Orchestra. Lyrical and romantic, Fekete's opera, based on a story by Edith Wharton, might appear as an anachonistic throwback were it not for the sheer quality of the music, judged without reference to its place in music history. In searching for apt comparisons one is drawn to the more lyrical moments in Bluebeard's Castle (perhaps not surprisingly), Janacek (also predictably) but also the Italian operatic tradition, and even the harmonic warmth of Vaughan Williams or Delius which is probably a coincidence. In the elegy for the poet Hannah Senesh, the same early 20th-century romanticism (Elgar? Franz Schmidt?) is also present, and the melodic expressiveness and flexibility of the vocal lines are characteristics which one simply does not expect to enccounter to such a degree (and without irony) in works this recent. Hungarian-English texts. Judit Rajk (mezzo), Gyöngyvér Emese Sudár (soprano), Budapest Chamber Symphony; Zsolt Hamar, Ildikó Cserna (soprano), Ákos Ambrus (baritone), Budapest Tomkins Vocal Ensemble, Budapest Chamber Symphony; László Tihanyi. Hungaroton HCD 31914 (Hungary) 08D076 $16.98

MAGNUS LINDBERG (b.1958): MOTO, HENRI DUTILLEUX (b.1916): 3 Strophes sur le nom de Sacher, LEEVI MADETOJA (1887-1947): Suite Lyrique, FRANCIS POULENC (1899-1963): Cello Sonata. The Madetoja is a gorgeous, lushly romantic work which makes an ideal companion piece to the French works here. Poulenc's Sonata, comparatively familiar, is a most atrractive work, of greater musical substance than some of the composer's lighter fare, though never lacking his characteristic charm and melodic flair. The two remaining works explore the uncompromising dynamism and tautness typical of their composers. Dutilleux' Strophes, written for Rostropovich, combine a sensuous melodiousness with the composer's characteristic economy and closeness of argument, while Lindberg's tumultuous and highly virtuosic work is, as the name suggests, a study in restless energy and perpetual motion. Eeva Rysä (cello), Juoko Laivuori (piano). Alba ABCD 128 (Finland) 08D077 $16.98

WERNER EGK (1901-1983): Irische Legende. The composer wrote his own libretto for this opera using ideas from a W.B. Yeats play based on an old Irish legend. It concerns the age-old issue of selling one's soul to the devil, and at one point Faust's image is even conjured up. This is an austere work compared to the Egk opera offered last month (07D083), with music that is more declamatory and mysterious. Still Egk's incredibly imaginative, orchestral writing will grab your attention, and makes for a very rewarding listening experience. A live, world premiere recording, the performance is excellent. Some legendary singers are featured under the definitive direction of George Szell. The audience is pretty well behaved with only a couple of noticeable appearances. 2 CDs. Mono. German libretto-English synopsis. Inge Borkh (soprano), Kurt Böhme (tenor), Walter Berry (baritone), Vienna State Opera Chorus, Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra; George Szell. Orfeo d'Or C 564 012 I (Germany) 08D078 $33.98

VLADIMIR MARTYNOV (b.1946): Come In! for Chamber Orchestra, Solo Violin and Celesta, Autumn Ball of the Elves, L'après midi du Bach. Martynov's Come In! is a mind blower. It's a musical contemplation of the Buddhist teaching that enlightenment is within yourself, and you must knock on the door of your inner soul to find it. Scored for two solo violins, celesta, strings and a wooden block, which does the knocking, it is a mesmerizing combination of Pachelbel's Canon, Richard Strauss's Metamophosen, Ives' Unanswered Question, and the music of such spiritualist composers as Kancheli, Pärt and Tavener. Autumn is a nostalgic poem for strings about the elfin mischief and magic of a summer night with references to Vivaldi, Bach, Mendelssohn and Tchaikovsky. L'après... is a minimalist, musical representation of compulsive, compositional thought processes as might have been experienced by J.S. Bach. This CD contains some really fascinating music, and is not to be missed. Ensemble Opus Posth.; Tatiana Grindenko (violin). CCn'C 01412 (Germany) 08D079 $18.98

GALINA USTVOLSKAYA (b.1919): Symphony No. 3 WOLFGANG RIHM (b.1952): Musik für Klarinette und Orchester, BERND ALOIS ZIMMERMANN (1918-1970): Photoptosis. The common factor that links these three very different works appears to be their deliberate intensity and concentration, as they seem to have little else in common. Ustvolskaya's symphony is effectively a prayer for forgiveness for the twentieth century, and occupies an appropriately somber and unyielding, even forbidding, world. Rihm's clarinet concerto ascends from a perhaps surprisingly melodic opening, quite tonal, to the kind of prodigious instrumental virtuosity typical of the composer, with all the expressive power that typically accompanies it in his works. Another master of large and complex forms, Zimmermann is represented by his massive and expressionistic Photopsis effectively a romantic tone-poem in a post-serial vocabulary redolent of barely suppressed violence, shadowy textures and the same psychoanalytical preoccupations which oocupied the surrealist painters of a decade or so earlier (with the same implications, in this case, of ambiguity and concealment as essential features of art). All these works are emotionally and intellectually challenging and rewarding, and in these terms, any one of them is worth the price of the disc. Jörg Widmann (clarinet), Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra; Markus Stenz, Sylvain Cambreling. Col Legno 20083 (Germany) 08D080 $19.98

DIETRICH EICHMANN (b.1966): Piano Quartet "The Late 92", Stinkfinger Joe the Mass Murderer Meets Leather Lilly in Hong Kong's Morning Twilight, Vorlaüfig namelose Komposition für Flöte und Klavier. The very first sentence of the booklet note reassures us that the composer is no relation whatsoever to the Nazi war criminal with the same name, and in the interests of the public good, we repeat this consoling fact here. Looking at the titles led to a momentary concern that he might turn out to be another sort of criminal altogether - the kind that produces in the guise of 'installation art' sensitive meditations on the human condition expressed through the medium of bits of broken-up plaster and plexiglass glued together and spattered with housepaint, but the music isn't like that. The piece for four pianos has an energy and dynamism which reflects, but does not sound like, its original conception as a piece for pianos and rock band. This kind of restless energy, with shifting cross-rhythms and nervous pulsating accents is typical of the pieces here, and provides the music with a degree of momentum which prevents it ever sounding fragmentary, and a freshness which certainly relates to the composer's background in improvised free jazz. Stimulating and different for those steeped in the Darmstadt-Donaueschingen tradition; surprisingly approachable for those who wouldn't go near that sort of thing. Special European Import. Ensemble Ottomani. Wergo WER 6550-2 (Germany) 08D081 $19.98

THANOS MIKROUTSIKOS (b.1949): Good-day Mr. Hadjidakis, Doodle, Ballet Music, Lacrima. The composer writes of his use of improvisation at the piano as a means of relaxing, or exercising the musical muscles, and it is very apparent from these fluent and attractive works that pianistic expression is as natural to him as breathing. He uses a wide range of models for these pieces, predominantly tonal and approachable to the listener. So light music rubs shoulders with minimalism, with Satie-esque elegance and detachment, with romantic expressiveness, with the kind of long-phrased intensity and drive not infrequently found in Soviet-era Russian music. Never less than approachable, always quirky enough to hold interest and very pianistic, this is music which is easy to enjoy. Special European Import. Danae Kara (piano). EMI CDC 5 57126 2 (England) 08D082 $18.98

DAVID STOLL: Piano Quartet, Piano Sonata, Sonata for 2 Pianos, String Trio. The composer based these instrumental chamber works on the Upanishads and the Bhagavad Gita, the philosophical preoccupations of which are of especial interest to him. The music is basically of two kinds, both extremely accessible and always tonal; on the one hand, slow meditations based on very simple material; on the other, more active music which resembles Bach or sometimes Beethoven, occasionally with a dash of minimalism or the occasional discord thrown in. Given that the underlying message is all about harmony (in the philosophical sense), stillness and reflection, the music may be seen to work well on its own terms. Noel Skinner (piano), The Pro Arte Trio, David Ward (piano). Meridian CDE 84448 (England) 08D083 $17.98

Unusual repertoire deletions of several labels which have expired or given up American distribution and of others which have moved to different distributors who are not carrying deep back-catalogue. Quantities on hand range from seven to two. No back-orders. First come, first served.


BERND ALOIS ZIMMERMANN (1918-1970): Ekklesiastische Aktion for 2 Speakers, Bass and Orchestra, Sonata for Solo Violin, Sonata for Solo Viola, Sonata for Solo Cello, 4 Kurze Studien for Solo Cello. Soloists, Münster State Symphony Orchestra; Will Humburg. Stradivarius STR 33340 (Italy) 08D084 $11.98

ANDRÉ JOLIVET (1905-1974): Mandala for Organ, Hymne à L'univers for Organ, Hymne à Saint-André for Soprano and Organ, Arioso Barocco for Trumpet and Organ, Nocturne for Cello and Piano. Daniel Roth (Dunand organ of the Basilica Saint-Victor, Marseilles), other artists. Arion ARN 68299 (France) 08D085 $11.98

CLAUDE BALLIF (1924-): ...cendres for 3 Percussion Groups, L'habitant du labyrinth for Perucssion, Timbres et Postes for 6 Percussionists, Op. 51. Percussions Rhizome; Alexandre Damnjanovic. Arion ARN 68289 (France) 08D086 $11.98

GUY ROPARTZ (1864-1955): Ouverture, Variations et Final, Musiques au jardin, Nocturne No. 3. Françoise Thinat (piano). Arion ARN 68184 (France) 08D087 $11.98

JEAN WIENER (1896-1982): Accordion Concerto, Cello Sonata, Concert pour Orchestre et un Piano Principal. Gilbert Roussel (accordion), Pierre Pénassou (cello), Jean Wiener (piano), Orchestra; André Girard. Arion ARN 68186 (France) 08D088 $11.98

DARIUS MILHAUD (1892-1974): Violin Sonata No. 2, Op. 40, Sonatina for Flute and Piano, Cello Sonata, Op. 377, 3 Opéras-minute. Various soloists. Arion ARN 68195 (U.S.A.) 08D089 $11.98

LOUIS VIERNE (1870-1937): Suite bourguinonnne, Op. 17, Solitude, Op. 44, Ainsi parlai Zarathustra, Op. 49, Le glas, Op. 39, 2 pièces, Op. 7. Georges Delvallée (piano). Arion ARN 68312 (France) 08D090 $11.98

GIROLAMO ARRIGO (1930-): Una grande festa sul mare, Souvenirs bibliques, Improvvisamente l'autunno. Jean Louis Steurmann (piano). Arion ARN 68345 (France) 08D091 $11.98

RUDOLF KAREL (1880-1945): Thème et Variations, PAVEL HAAS (1899-1944): Suite, Op. 13, GIDEON KLEIN (1919-1945): Piano Sonata, VIKTOR ULLMANN (1898-1944): Piano Sonata No. 6, Op. 44. Francesco Lotoro (piano). Arion ARN 68339 (France) 08D092 $11.98

ALEXANDER TANSMAN (1897-1986): Bassoon Sonata, Sonatine Transatlantique for Piano, Suite for Oboe, Clarinet and Bassoon, Suite for Bassoon and Piano, 3 Préludes en forme de Blues for Piano. Various soloists. Arion ARN 55401 (France) 08D093 $9.98

JOHN TAVENER (1945-): The Repentant Thief. Andrew Marriner (clarinet), London Symphony Orchestra; Michael Tilson Thomas. Collins Classics 20052 (England) 08D094 $7.98

ROBERT SAXTON (1953-): In the Beginning, Muisc to Celebrate the Resurrection of Christ. BBC Symphony Orchestra; Matthias Bamert, English Chamber Orchestra; Steuart Bedford. Collins Classics 20032 (England) 08D095 $7.98

JUDITH WEIR (1954-): Blond Eckbert. Vocal Soloists, Chorus and Orchestra of English National Opera; Sian Edwards. Collins Classics 14612 (England) 08D096 $11.98

CARL NIELSEN (1865-1931): Commotio, PER NØRGÅRD (1932-): Partita Concertante, Op. 23, FRANZ SYBERG (1904-1955): Präludium, Intermezzo og Fugato, NIELS W. GADE (1817-1890): 3 Tonestykker, Op. 22. Kevin Bowyer (Marcussen organ of Odense Cathedral, Denmark). Nimbus NI 5468 (England) 08D097 $11.98

FRANZ XAVER RICHTER (1709-1789): Piano Trio in B, Flute Sonata in G, String Quartet in G, Op. 5, Sonata in A for Harpsichord, Flute and Cello, Piano Trio in G. Le Parlement de Musique-Strasbourg, Apponyi Quartet. Adda 581226 (France) 08D098 $11.98

HERBERT HOWELLS (1892-1983): Hymnus Paradisi for Soprano, Tenor, Chorus and Orchestra, Fantasia for Cello and Orchestra. April Cantelo (soprano), David Johnston (tenor), Three CHoirs Festival Chorus, Royal Philharmonic Orchestra; Donald Hunt, Alexander Baillie (cello), BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra; Norman del Mar. Carlton Classics 15656 91982 (England) 08D099 $9.98

ARTHUR BLISS (1891-1975): Morning Heroes. Richard Baker (narrator), BBC Symphony Chorus and Orchestra; Sir Charles Groves. Carlton Classics 15656 91992 (England) 08D100 $9.98

EDMUND RUBBRA (1901-1986): Piano Concerto in G, Op. 85, Symphony No. 4, Op. 53. Malcolm Binns (piano), London Symphony Orchestra; Vernon Handley. Carlton Classics 15656 91932 (England) 08D101 $9.98

ALAN RAWSTHORNE (1905-1971): Violin Concerto No. 1, Violin Concerto No. 2, Improvisations on a Theme by Constant Lambert, Divertimento. Theo Olof (violin), New Philharmonia Orchestra; Sir Adrian Boult, Manoug Parikian (violin), BBC Symphony Orchestra; Rudolf Schwarz, BBC Concert Orchestra; Frank Shipway, BBC Northern Symphony Orchestra; Bryden Thomson. Carlton Classics 15656 91952 (England) 08D102 $9.98

ARTHUR BLISS (1891-1975): Metamorphic Variations for Orchestra, Meditations on a Theme by John Blow. BBC Symphony Orchestra; Vernon Handley, Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra; Sir Charles Groves. Carlton Classics 15656 91682 (England) 08D103 $9.98

GERALD BARRY (1952-): The Triumph of Time and Deceit. Vocal Soloists, The Composers Ensemble; Diego Masson. Largo 5135 (Germany) 08D104 $11.98

STEFAN WOLPE (1902-1972): Early Piece, Passacaglia, Zemach Suite, Sutdies, Part I, 2 Studies for Piano, Part II, Form, Form IV. Katharina Wolpe (piano). Largo 5120 (Germany) 08D105 $11.98

HK GRUBER: Violin Concerto No. 1, Der rote Teppich wird ausgerollt from Revue für Kammerorchester, Op. 22, 6 Episoden for Piano, Op. 20, 4 Pieces for Solo Violin, Op. 11, Bossa Nova for Violin and Piano, Op. 21/e. Ernst Kovacic (violin), London Sinfonietta; HK Gruber, Paul Crossley (piano). Largo 5124 (Germany) 08D106 $11.98

FRIEDRICH CERHA (1926-): Eine Art Chansons. HK Gruber (chansonnier), Martin Jones (piano), Robin McGee (double bass), James Holland (percussion), Gerhard Rühm, H.C. Artmann (readers). Largo 5126 (Germany) 08D107 $11.98

ROBERTO GERHARD (1896-1970): Libra, 3 Impromptus, Concert for 8, Gemini, Leo. Nieuw Ensemble; Ed Spanjaard. Largo 5134 (Germany) 08D108 $11.98

EMIL NIKOLAUS VON REZNICEK (1860-1945): String Quartet No. 1 in C Sharp Minor, ERICH WOLFGANG KORNGOLD (1897-1957): String Quartet No. 1 in A, Op. 16. Franz Schubert Quartett - Wien. Nimbus NI 5506 (England) 08D109 $11.98

HUBERT H. PARRY (1848-1918): An English Suite, Suite in F "Lady Radnor's Suite", EDWARD ELGAR (1857-1934): Elegy, Op. 58, Sospiri, Op. 70, Serenade in E Minor, Op. 20. A coupling which makes apparent how close the musical ethos of these two composers was, all the works being for string orchestra and imbued with similar qualities of wistfulness, elegy and vernal lyricism. Parry is a bit more backward-looking in his two suites (one of six, one of seven movements) which imitate the baroque model of prelude-and-dance-numbers. Original 1984 EMI release. City of London Sinfonia; Richard Hickox. EMI CDM 5 66541 2 (England) 08D110 $11.98

GEOFFREY BURGON (b.1941): Canciones del Alma for 2 Countertenors and 13 Solo Strings, Acquainted with Night for Alto and Chamber Orchestra, Nuc dimittis for Voice, Trumpet and Strings, Worldës Blissë for Countertenor and Oboe, This Ean Night for 2 Countertenors, Lunar Beauty for Medium Voice and Guitar. Many of our readers will recall that Burgon first came to the attention of the larger public as a result of two immensely successful television scores written for British TV in the 1980s - "Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy" and "Brideshead Revisited". Without these fortunate successes he would likely not have achieved the recognition that hedeserves. The influence of established masters of the 20th century is very apparent (Vaughan Williams and Shostakovich especially), but especially in these works setting richly evocative texts for the unusual medium of countertenor in various ensembles, it is the natural facility of Britten that most readily comes to mind. Always tonal and extremely approachable, Burgon is an important composer in British music, and individual without apparently feeling the need to blaze any avant-garde trails in the manner of the complexicists or new simplicists with whom he is more or less contemporary. Original 1988 EMI release. James Bowman, Charles Brett (countertenors), City of London Sinfonia; Richard Hickox. EMI CDM 5 66527 2 (England) 08D111 $11.98

BENJAMIN BRITTEN (1913-1976): The Heart of the Matter for Tenor, Speaker, Horn and Piano, 2 Songs by Thomas Hardy, Beware! - Three Early Songs, Not even summer yet, 2 Songs by W.H. Auden, The Oxen, 3 Rhymes by William Soutar, 3 Realizations of Henry Purcell, Serenade for Tenor, Horn and Strings, Op. 31, Now Sleeps the Crimson Petal for Tenor, Horn and Orchestra, Rossini Suite, Suite of Songs from Orpheus Britannicus, Die Forelle (Schubert orch. Britten), Frühlingsnacht (Schumann orch. Britten), The Bonny Earl o'Moray, Oliver Cromwell. These recordings from the 1987/88 are usefully gathered together in this 2-disc compilation which will be of interest to Britten enthusiasts and anyone with even a general interest in English song. Britten's elegant lyrical sensibility and unmatched gift for word-setting shine through every one of these works, from his perhaps inappropriately unabrasive Edith Sitwell settings to his uncanny confluence of inspirarion with Auden's quirky yet direct commentaries to his realisations of earlier music, classical, romantic and folk. 2 CDs. Mid-price. 1987-88 EMI original releases. Neil Mackie (tenor), Roger Vignoles (piano), Barry Tuckwell (horn), Sir Peter Pears (speaker), Scottish Chamber Orchestra; Steuart Bedford. EMI CDM 5 74346 2 (England) 08D112 $23.98


The typical lavish, full-color booklets which distinguish this series are as desirable as these wonderful scores which Bernard fans will rejoice to have on CD at last.


JAMES BERNARD (b.1925): The Devil Rides Out - Original Motion Picture Soundtrack. Orchestra conducted by Philip Martell. GDI Records GDICD013 (England) 08D113 $18.98

JAMES BERNARD (b.1925): Frankenstein Must Be Destroyed, The Curse of Frankenstein, Frankenstein Created Woman, Frankenstein and the Monster from Hell - Music from the Original Soundtracks. Also contains brief excerpts from orignial soundtracks of The Horror of Frankenstein (Malcolm Williamson), The Evil of Frankenstein (Don Banks) and The Revenge of Frankenstein (Leonard Salzedo). GDI Records GDICD011 (England) 08D114 $18.98

JAMES BERNARD (b.1925): She, MARIO NASCIMBENE (b.1913): The Vengeance of She. Nascimbene is rarely represented on CD these days yet he is one of the most highly thought-of soundtrack composers of the mid 20th century. There is a three-minute conversation with him at the end of the 1968 Vengeance soundtrack. Original Motion Picture Soundtracks. Orchestras conducted by Philip Martell and Franco Ferrara. GDI Records GDICD018 (England) 08D115 $18.98

GERARD SCHURMANN (b.1928): The Lost Continent - Original Motion Picture Soundtrack. This 1968 adventure was scored by Bernard Frankel but rejected by Michael Carreras who turned to Schurmann and gave him a full six months to finish a concert composition before tackling it. Schurmann had scored Horrors of the Black Museum, Konga and The Camp on Blood Island prior to this (the latter also a Hammer film); astute collectors can find the two motifs from The Lost Continent which were to appear later in Schurmann's Six Studies of Francis Bacon! GDI Records GDICD015 (England) 08D116 $18.98

JERRY GOLDSMITH: Rio Lobo - Original Motion Picture Soundtrack. Limited numbered edition. Orchestra Conducted by Jerry Goldsmith. Prometheus PCR 511 (Belgium) 08D117 $18.98

ROBERT CASADESUS (1899-1972): Piano Concerto No. 2, Op. 37, Flute Sonata, Op. 18, CLAUDE DEBUSSY (1862-1918): 12 Preludes (2e livre), DÉODAT DE SÉVERAC (1873-1921): Cerdaña, GABRIEL FAURÉ (1845-1924): Prélude No. 5 in D Minor, Op. 103, Impromptu No. 5 in F Sharp Minor, Op. 102, MAURICE RAVEL (1875-1937): Jeux d'eau. Casadesus the composer wrote in an identifiably French style, Ravel and Poulenc being among the audible influences - the latter especially in the flute sonata written for the performer inthis 1935 recording - but with Prokofiev also evident in the bright, often brittle piano concerto composed in 1944-45 (yet showing no signs of wartime angst or drama) and caught here in a March 14, 1948 live recording in New York. Mono. Robert Casadesus (piano), René Le Roy (flute), New York Philharmonic Symphony Orchestra; Leopold Stokowski. Cascavelle VEL 2012 (Switzerland) 08D118 $17.98

LEOS JANÁCEK (1854-1928): 4 Folk Male-Voice Choruses, 4 Male-Voice Choruses, 4 Male-Voice Choruses, Kantor Halfar, Marycka Madgonova, Seventy Thousand, The Czech Legion, The Wandering Madman, 3 Male-Voice Choruses, True Love. From the early, folk-based Ploughing to the polyphonically complex The Seventy Thousand, this collection demonstrates the scope of Janácek's choral writing and is performed by the very choir whose foundation in 1903 spurred his interest in choral compositions. Czech-English texts. Moravian Teachers' Choir; Lubomír Mátl. Naxos 8.553623 (New Zealand) 08D119 $5.98