Nicholas Casley

Top Reviewer Ranking: 107
Helpful votes received on reviews: 88% (5,693 of 6,457)
Location: Plymouth, Devon, UK
Anniversary: 31 Dec
Birthday: 19 Mar
In My Own Words:
Because I know what I like, I rarely get to give a review anything less than three stars. This is not ONLY because I like to think I am a positive guy: it's just that I wouldn't buy gangsta rap CDs, or zombie movie DVDs, or books on cricket in the first place.

As for me, I am a forty-something, gay man who is in a civil partnership with my other half who I have been with for more than twenty yea… Read more

Making the most of life by travelling inwards as well as outwards.


Top Reviewer Ranking: 107 - Total Helpful Votes: 5693 of 6457
Haydn: The Complete Symphonies ~ Joseph Haydn
As the ‘father of the symphony’, anyone interested in the origins and development of the form needs at some stage to listen to Haydn. A full set of his symphonies was duly requested for Christmas, and all 104 of them were each listened to by me four times over the ensuing two-and-a-bit years. It was sometimes invigorating but also occasionally irritating work. These are my impressions.

For me, symphony 24 is his first mature work (in the modern sense) of his attempts in the form, whilst the Haydn expert, the late HC Robbins Landon, describes number 39 as the point where “Haydn has, in a word, become a mature and profound composer.” A Beethovenian soundworld is entered at number… Read more
The Making of Sheffield by Melvyn Jones
The Making of Sheffield by Melvyn Jones
The author Melvyn Jones perceptively points out in this book how “Sheffield has always been at a locational disadvantage, seen by outsiders as situated in a cul-de-sac on the lower slopes of the Pennines, distant from centres of power and influence.”

To a greater or lesser extent, that disadvantage has in fact worked in the city’s favour: ‘the biggest village in England’! For example, whilst its situation was perfect for the siting of early industry in medieval times, it had to work hard in later centuries to link itself to the canal and railway networks to get its goods to its customers. In this book Jones chronicles some of the bad times and the good of this ‘ugly picture in a… Read more
Toward the Unknown Region ; Malcolm Arnold - a sto&hellip <b>DVD</b> ~ Tony Palmer
Originally shown as part of the ‘South Bank Show’, Tony Palmer’s film about Malcolm Arnold – more than any of the others that he has done on twentieth-century British composers – lays bare the tragedy of the man.

Initially one thinks this is a standard biography, chronicling the man’s life and his compositions, but just over halfway through this 133-minute film, things turn dark, made all the more poignant by using the man’s own music as a soundtrack. At one moment, generous to a fault and the heart-and-soul of the party; at another, a bitter soul, lost in his own world when he felt that the world did not understand or respect him.

Skilfully edited both visually and… Read more

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