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Mahler & Stravinsky: Resurrection Symphony
Mahler & Stravinsky: Resurrection Symphony
Price: £14.64

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars This is a very good radio account of the Resurrection Symphony from 1959 and ..., 7 Jan. 2015
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This is a very good radio account of the Resurrection Symphony from 1959 and the Halle plays its heart out . The soprano soloist is good the mezzo less impressive and one can only wonder what a Barbirolli /Ferrier Urlicht might have sounded like .

If you are a Barbirolli collector then it is well worth having and for Mahlerians too . If I had to have only one Barbirolli Resurrection it would be the searing and magnificent 1970 Stuttgart RSO account for all its imprecisions of ensemble and wrong entry or two

Very good if not quite essential Barbirolli


Brahms: Symphony No.1; Weber: Oberon Overture
Brahms: Symphony No.1; Weber: Oberon Overture
Price: £11.66

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A very special Brahms 1, 14 Dec. 2014
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The Barbirolli Society have spoiled us with the three recent Barbirolli releases of live concerts- the Rubbra Sixth , the immensely moving and wonderfully played Czech PO Mahler 1 and now a rare treat Brahms' First Symphony from the Halle's 1958 European tour also recorded by Czech Radio . The sound is acceptable mono but better in the Brahms than in the Oberon overture .

This is apparently a work of which there are only two extant recordings by Barbirolli . 1954 Proms relay on Guild ( which is very good and deeply felt ) and the rather stately VPO performance which for all its incidental beauties and there are lots of them is significantly slower and lacks the tension of this reading )

This is on a different level altogether . It is a performance in the highest class - gloriously phrased throughout and the tempi are much closer to the 1954 account . The Halle players absolutely shine ( only a rather wobbly horn in the finale was a bit of a disappointment ) . This was a very good orchestra in the 1950s and the electricity of the live occasion is well caught . The coughers and rustlers evident in the opening Weber Oberon overture are silenced by the intensity of the performance .

Although obviously very different in many ways it has a similar extraordinary charge as a performance to the sensational Karajan BPO account on Testament from the Royal Festival Hall in 1988 - although whether any recording or performance before or since will ever have such a headlong tumultuous performance of the coda as the Karajan in the finale I doubt but Barbirolli and his players come pretty close .

Another wonderful live Barbirolli performance - very highly recommended to all .


Mahler: Symphony No.1; Barbirolli: Elizabethan Suite
Mahler: Symphony No.1; Barbirolli: Elizabethan Suite
Price: £11.75

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Treasure from Czech radio, 8 Dec. 2014
Barbirolli made an excellent recording of Mahler 1 for Pye in the late 1950s with the Halle but this live recording with the Czech PO in 1960 has an extra dimension. The sound is perfectly acceptable and the performance is quite stupendous .

The first movement is shorn of its repeat but otherwise it is splendid , the second movement starts with a proper tread and the third movement is just perfect .I have never heard it played more characterfully I was on the edge of my seat for every bar anticipating every fresh thrill .

The finale is terrific too and the Czech PO sound like they are having a ball throughout .

It has the freshness of Kubelik, the character of Bernstein and the warmth of Walter .

Highly recommended to all Mahlerians and fans of the conductor
Comment Comments (2) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Dec 14, 2014 10:16 AM GMT


Nellie the Elephant (Well Loved Childrens Nursery Songs & Rhymes) (Well Loved Songs & Rhymes)
Nellie the Elephant (Well Loved Childrens Nursery Songs & Rhymes) (Well Loved Songs & Rhymes)
by Audio
Edition: Audio CD
Price: £4.89

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Tigger and Big Bad Wolf for example but some of the arrangements are ..., 28 July 2014
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My three year old loves some of the songs Nellie the Elephant, Tigger and Big Bad Wolf for example but some of the arrangements are dreadful and the singing extremely variable . Clearly done on the cheap sounds like an old Bontempi organ from the 1970s is the accompaniment.

Small children may well enjoy it but parents may be tempted to throw it out of the car window !


Mahler:SYMPHONY NO.2 ABBADO
Mahler:SYMPHONY NO.2 ABBADO

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great performance but avoid this out of print pressing at these prices, 21 July 2014
Indubitably a great performance but you would be mad to buy these overpriced second hand Galleria copies - the symphony has been coupled now with the glorious Abbado Mahler 4 from his first cycle with von Stade on a 2CD set that can be bought on here far more cheaply new


Overture In D Minor, Cello Concerto, Falstaff (Boult)
Overture In D Minor, Cello Concerto, Falstaff (Boult)
Offered by shakedownrecords
Price: £19.99

3.0 out of 5 stars A mixed bag, 15 Jun. 2014
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Boult was one of the two greatest of all conductors of Elgar's music together with the very different but equally masterful Barbirolli .

Barbirolli definitely has the edge in Falstaff - a larger than life character who gets such a performance in Barbirolli's stereo recording. Boult is very good too especially at Falstaff's decline and death but there is just more character with Barbirolli.

Boult's recording is probably best bought in his big Elgar box or in the old studio coupling with the Sanguine Fan as the Cello Concerto recording is very cool , dull and uninviting to my ears . No doubt as a reaction to its immediate predecessor the du Pre/Barbirolli recording but Tortelier and Boult have seriously overdone it . Both made far superior recordings of the piece with others Boult with Casals and Tortelier made a superb recording with Sargent .


Bach, J.S.: 3 Concerti BWV 1044, 1055 & 1060
Bach, J.S.: 3 Concerti BWV 1044, 1055 & 1060
Price: £14.88

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Age does not wither, 10 Jun. 2014
The oboist on this recording David Reichenberg died all too young in 1988 from AIDS yet his wonderful playing does not age - there is no sense of these being old fashioned early " authentic " or HIPP performances . This record remains a treasure of the English Concert's time on Archiv .

Reichenberg steals the show both in the concerto for oboe d'amore and the double concerto for violin and oboe despite the excellent playing of Simon Standage ( and the triple concerto with Lisa Beznosiuk is special too ) . Amongst baroque oboe players I do not think I have ever heard anyone play with such a sense of style yet so movingly and expressively even over 25 years after his death .

I treasured my old cassette of this at university in the 1980s and I treasure the CD now . An indispensable record of Bach concertos.


Schubert: Symphony No. 8 & 9
Schubert: Symphony No. 8 & 9
Offered by best_value_entertainment
Price: £9.63

2.0 out of 5 stars Poor transfer, 5 Jun. 2014
My copy does include both symphonies but the sound quality is poor . They sound like transcriptions from far from perfect LP copies . Great performances but available cheaply from Decca.


Brahms / Beethoven / Tchaikovsky / Lalo: Artist Profile
Brahms / Beethoven / Tchaikovsky / Lalo: Artist Profile

5.0 out of 5 stars Stupendous, 17 May 2014
Record companies continue to baffle me . The endless regurgitation of old favourites in new budget or mid price labels yet these performances remain stuck in the vaults . This is a long deleted EMI issue now only available for ridiculous prices or at Arkiv music for a CD-R that won't necessarily play on all players.

The splendid account of the Tchaikovsky with Silvestri ( who also made a great recording with Ferras) has reappeared on budget labels yet it is in many ways the least remarkable in this box.

The other three recordings are standouts . The Beethoven concerto is quite magnificent . Silvestri and Kogan are a true partnership and the Larghetto is phrased with a beauty and simplicity that eludes all too many who leave it is a pretty interlude- this is up there with Menuhin and Furtwangler in 1947 .

The Lalo sparkles as it should but with Kogan its musical virtues are stressed rather than it being played as a display vehicle for a soloist. The Spanish rhythms are idiomatic and this is an intensely exciting account .

Perhaps topping it all is the Brahms - for all the wonderful records of the work that I have this is probably the first that comes close to dislodging my preference for Menuhin/Kempe . It is very different to that grand and thrilling performance and again excitement is the key . It is wonderful throughout but two points stand out . Firstly , when Kogan takes over from the oboe in the slow movement for once this is not a bit of an anticlimax but takes your breath away that he can play even more beautifully than that oboe tune and secondly, the finale - all too often this is treated as a simple gypsy romp to round the work off . Kogan is very exciting and there is plenty of romping but the little changes he makes to his tone are absolutely captivating and he makes this movement seem the true equal of the others .

If you can find it cheapish snap it up- otherwise Warner Classics a KOGAN ICON box please !!


Chopin: Piano Concertos 1 & 2
Chopin: Piano Concertos 1 & 2
Price: £13.25

11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Did I need another record of these concertos ?, 14 May 2014
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When the reviews started appearing of this record I thought do I need another coupling of these concertos. They have been very well served throughout recorded history - a few examples being Rubinstein's early 1960s couplings , Argerich's superb records with Dutoit and earlier with Abbado and Rostropovich , Perahia/Mehta , Zimerman ( both directing and with Giulini) , Vasary and Kulka and Semkow and that nonpareil of a recording of the E Minor with Pollini and Kletzki.

Ingrid Fliter's EMI disc of the Waltzes had to my ears marked her as a Chopin player of the first rank so I took the plunge and ordered this too. I found that record of the Waltzes to be enchanting and that adjective aptly describes this recording too . She is accompanied with enormous sensitivity by the SCO and Markl and the concertos sound newly minted . The E Minor is superb but the real triumph is the weaker , earlier concerto the F Minor named No 2 . This can sound wishy washy but in her hands it sounds like a masterpiece and the Larghetto is unmatched .

Probably a first choice now for anyone coming to the concertos as a pair for the first time and an essential purchase for lovers of Chopin .


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