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24 of 24 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars "Exhilarating", 8 April 2004
By 
Michael F. Freer - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Rodrigo: Concierto de Aranjuez; Canzoneta (Audio CD)
The most popular work on this CD is the "Concierto de Aranjeus". This version is the best interpretation that I have heard. The recording is superb and exceeds that I have of the same recital by Pepe Romero on a double album.
The other Rodrigo works presented here compliment the consistently high quality. I commend it to you as a "must buy".
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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The best performance, plus, 10 April 2009
By 
Timothy Bates "Who is John Galt?" (Edinburgh, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Rodrigo: Concierto de Aranjuez; Canzoneta (Audio CD)
Why is Rodrigo so moving? One of few classical masterpieces composed in the 20th century, my insight into its power came upon learning that Rodrigo was inspired by the still-born death of his child. Whether or not Rodrigo was a scholar of Moorish spain, this approach allows him to access to an intelligent man's emotions, inspired by the story of the Alhambra - Moorish palace, an island of civilization and tolerance, destroyed, like a child, at its birth.

Like all great music, there are tremendous differences between performances - some appearing like MIDI files: played with mechanical precision (or not) but without understanding.

Romero reads between the lines, and this 1992 performance is sensitivity to the meaning of the music. Mariner conducts well, controlling, but not neutering the string and brass so essential to the canvas of this music.
The booklet includes more information, that helps the listening appreciate Rodrigo and the music, and the disk is packed with additional Rodrigo compositions, in addition to the "Concierto de Aranjuez" and "Fantasia para un gentilhombre"".

Recommended piece, and this is the disk to get.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Romero and Marriner take off--I didn't know Marriner could get this exciting, 4 May 2012
By 
Andrew R. Barnard (Leola, Pa United States) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Rodrigo: Concierto de Aranjuez; Canzoneta (Audio CD)
I've faulted Marriner in the past for lackluster conducting that never got off the ground. His band, the Academy of Saint Martin in the Fields, is one of the best chamber orchestras around, though. Marriner's greatest fault is that he doesn't always see the need to go beyond technically assured playing, meaning he wallows in the proficiency of his band.

But we're in for a big surprised here. In the classic guitar works by Rodrigo, he's joined by the famed Pepe Romero. The Concerto de Aranjuez opens with rich, deep tones from Romero that surpassed all my expectations. We also realize how good Philips' sonics are. Romero had past experience with the composer (he's shown sitting with the Rodrigo in the liner notes) and he plays with such conviction that it's no wonder the composer dedicated several of his works to him. As fine as his playing is, it's Marriner that shocked me. Suddenly ASMF takes off, playing with an involvement I've never heard from them before. Every detail is caught with clarity that makes your hair stand on edge. It was the 1st movement that gripped me the most, but everything is done well. As expected, there's no sentimental wallowing in the 2nd movement but instead we get a hushed, nocturnal approach. Overall, both Marriner and Romero are classicist, but that works like a charm in music evoking the glory of fallen Spain.

The Fantasia fares just as well, perhaps better. The open bars are an expansive sigh, just like they should be. Moving on, I catch a feeling of epic power. Marriner finds dark depth in the work; it's nostalgic and incredibly soulful. Yet the music is still fundamentally old-fashioned in texture, which is desirable in backward looking music. I think our musicians' greatest achievement is their ability to find new meaning and make a familiar piece sound fresh while still keeping the work's antiquity predominant. Suddenly Spain is before our eyes and we feel transported to its days of power.

Romero provides fillers with solo works from Rodrigo. I'm again impressed with his personality that finds everything memorable and emphasizes it.

This is a great disc. Romero's playing is phenomenal, and Marriner is caught at an artistic high. Everything's caught in recorded sound that nearly drove me mad, it's so good.
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1 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Concierto de Aranjuez, 30 Dec 2010
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This review is from: Rodrigo: Concierto de Aranjuez; Canzoneta (Audio CD)
Not much to say except that this is a very nice CD, that I bought for my wife who wanted it for a present.
We have played it specifically to listen to a very nice piece of guitar music and also as background music when entertaining friends at dinner.
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Rodrigo: Concierto de Aranjuez; Canzoneta
Rodrigo: Concierto de Aranjuez; Canzoneta by Academy of St. Martin in the Fields (Audio CD - 2000)
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