28 of 29 people found the following review helpful
An hour of lovely music.,
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This review is from: Moeran: In the Mountain Country [JoAnn Falletta, Benjamin Frith, Ulster Orchestra] [Naxos: 8573106] (Audio CD)
I must agree with Graham's review. This is one of the best Naxos CDs I have come across in a long time. The revelation for me was JoAnn Falletta's wonderful performance of Overture to a Masque, aided by a terrific recording. It is played with much greater urgency than usual and, in its wartime context, I found it oddly moving - reminding me of Douglas Lilburn's Aotearoa Overture. I rarely find a disc of shortish orchestral works that I can play from beginning to end and then want to play the CD all over again - but that is the case here. Some may find the climax of the overture a little fast compared to Boult's more expansive reading, but it works very well in JoAnn Falletta's overal conception. In the Mountain Country and the three Rhapsodies are all beautifully performed with a fine piano contribution from Benjamin Frith in the F sharp major Rhapsody. All these works, dating from 1921 to 1944 show Moeran at the hight of his powers and are a terrific introduction to Moeran's atmospheric and moving music. He was indeed a great composer and a seriously underrated one. All credit to the fine Ulster Orchestra. Atmospherically brooding cover art and informative notes from Paul Conway complete an outstanding release which is not to be missed.