This is an enjoyable disc of works from either end of Stanford's composing career and demonstrates that, right from the start, he had a firm command of the concerto form, together with an original orchestral voice.
The cello concerto dates from 1879 and it is likely that this Lyrita recording is its first performance. It is hard to see why such a well-proportioned work with such careful and grateful writing for the solo cello has languished unplayed for so long.
Though the Germanic influences are strong, this is still a significant work.
It is a pity that the first movement is partly spoiled by Alexander Baillie's overlong cadenza, together with a glaring edit: I cannot believe that such an experienced soloist would provide a cadenza which does not resolve properly onto the linking note at the return of the orchestral tutti, and there is a clear difference between the solo cello acoustic and the orchestral sound which does not pass muster. That aside, the orchestral and solo contributions are fine.
The third piano concerto comes from the end of Stanford's career, and although there is a possibility that a full score exists somewhere, the current recording is based on the extant two piano score in an orchestration by Geoffrey Bush. The material is as forthright and pianistic as might be expected, given Stanford's earlier concertos for the same instrument and this is a worthy addition to the canon.
By and large- as might be expected from a Stanford devotee- the orchestration works extremely well, however, to these ears at least, the use of the brass section, especially the trumpets is rather more Bush than Stanford. No matter: the RPO under Nicholas Braithwaite, and Malcolm Binns' stalwart pianism make an admirable case for this music. Recommended.