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Reviews Written by
Rev. R. J. Fisher (Loughton, Essex, UK)
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Mahler: Das Lied von der Erde
Mahler: Das Lied von der Erde
Price: £10.31

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars one of the best concerts I've attended, 15 Jan. 2014
I was at the concert. You could have heard a pin drop: the LPO woodwind were outstanding, Sarah Connolly and Toby Spence were both in very fine voice and the conducting attended to the colour and detail of the score. The Abschied was the highlight: Connolly took us on a journey of intense pain and beauty. At the end there was a long silence that we did not want to break.

Well done to all concerned! Thank you for releasing it.


Haydn: The Creation
Haydn: The Creation
Price: £16.69

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars In my view, the best, 1 Jan. 2014
This review is from: Haydn: The Creation (Audio CD)
Haydn authorized an English version (He had a businessman's eye!) and McCreesh tidies up some of the original lyricist Van Sweeten's quaint phrases, as he explains in his booklet note. To my mind, it has freshness without the irritating archaisms.

The CD performance itself is simply outstanding: it emerged before the memorable large-scale Proms performance of 2009, which itself replicated early performances done during Haydn's lifetime.

The soloists, pace an above reviewer, are all very good. I would say that Mark Padmore is outstanding; what a story teller!

The choir and orchestra are also stars; the timpani are particularly punchy, and the grandeur and abundant range of Haydn's masterpiece is vividly conveyed.

It is as vital as a live performance and, because it is in English, has greater immediacy.

All in all, there is none better on record.


Most Grand To Die (James Rutherford/ Eugene Asti) (BIS: BISSACD1610)
Most Grand To Die (James Rutherford/ Eugene Asti) (BIS: BISSACD1610)
Offered by westworld-
Price: £9.98

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars very good, 3 May 2013
I find with a recording or a concert that artists can take me to another place.
The performance of VW's Songs of Travel did just this for me. It's idiomatic. Rutherford is in very fine voice; Asti's accompaniment quite wonderful. Recorded sound excellent. I concur with the excellent review in BBC music magazine mentioned here.


The Art of Lied
The Art of Lied
Price: £13.87

5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Beware - Dichterliebe not complete, 21 Feb. 2013
This review is from: The Art of Lied (Audio CD)
This does not have the complete Schumann Dichterliebe, op48, cycle on it, nor the complete Morike Lieder by Wolf - just some of the songs. The packaging is misleading and I'm disappointed, especially as they could have fitted it on.
However it does have all of Schwanangesang, so if you want it for that it is fine.


Schumann : Piano works
Schumann : Piano works
Price: £8.75

6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars great Schumann playing, 17 April 2012
This review is from: Schumann : Piano works (Audio CD)
I've listened to both this recording and that by Radu Lupu of the Humoresque just now and I find this the better of the two: more engaging and alive. Piotr understands the manic character of Schumann's music. His playing is rivetting.


Bruckner: Symphony No.4 (Symphony No.4 In E Flat Major Romantic)
Bruckner: Symphony No.4 (Symphony No.4 In E Flat Major Romantic)
Price: £15.04

2 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Inspiring interpretation, 18 Nov. 2011
I'm writing a review of this performance from a concert given by the London Philharmonic Orchestra in November 2012, presumably the same referred to above by the French person. I thought it was simply excellent. Osmo Vanska does get some Sibelian sounds out of the orchestra, but then again their dates do overlap so it's not really surprising. Mr Fortune gives a more balanced judgement here I think.


Rachmaninov Piano Concerto 1 and 2
Rachmaninov Piano Concerto 1 and 2
Price: £8.20

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Andsnes' Rach 2, 30 Jun. 2011
This for me is the best recording since Richter and thrills me every time I hear it. It comes from a live concert and I'm sure this contributes to the electric atmosphere. Need I say more? At this price it is a bargain.


Schubert: The Song Cycles - Die schöne Müllerin, Winterreise & Schwanengesang
Schubert: The Song Cycles - Die schöne Müllerin, Winterreise & Schwanengesang
Price: £12.80

21 of 22 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Moving wintereisse, 14 Jan. 2011
I've just finished listening to "Winterreise" on this recording and the thing I'm left with is a sense of just how close a musical partnership there was between DFD and Gerald Moore. They play as one, hand in glove and know where they are going with the music. This left me confident that I was in good hands, of "masters" as the previous reviewer states. The way certain songs were done left me particularly impressed through the characterisation that the artists gave to their interpretation ("Auf dem Flusse" and "Die Post" for example). I also found the last song very touching by the simplicity with which the pathos of the words were sung. It is not as dramatically sung as the recent Werner Gura/Christoph Berner recording which recently I have found even more engaging, but is still superb.

I personally would not be concerned about the quality of the recording here. It is not digital but is good analogue sound.

It is almost worth the asking price for this "Winterreise" alone so with the other two discs as well this is a snip.


Schubert - Die schöne Müllerin
Schubert - Die schöne Müllerin
Price: £7.38

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Werner Gura is wonderful in this repertory, 16 Dec. 2010
This is a very fine interpretation indeed. It receives 3 "gongs" in my edition of the Gramophone Good CD Guide (its highest accolade)and I would agree with its assessment. Its review talks of Jan Schultz's piano interpretation being "contraversial" but I am not enough of an expert to know why they said that. The sixth song is very beautifully done but the whole cycle hangs together coherently and the fact that Werner Gura is a German speaker gives it a naturalness. I was recently lucky enough to hear Gura at a concert and he is a master in this field. His more recent "Wintereisse" has the pianist Christoph Berners playing on it (he is an exceptionally sensitive player - he was playing for Werner Gura at the concert)so I look forward to hearing that at some stage. It is lovely to hear it done by a tenor with such a beautiful voice because I have been used to hearing DFD - this voice register sounds so much more youthful (surely appropriate) and with Gura...Incidentally, the artwork is a bit different from that shown but I prefer it. Good notes but no texts and translations. Recommend Richard Wigmore's Schubert song texts for those.


Gerald Finzi: Violin And Cello
Gerald Finzi: Violin And Cello
Price: £7.50

17 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Very fine recording of the Cello Concerto, 29 Nov. 2010
I've had this recording for several years and it's the one I keep coming back to. Raphael Wallfisch is a superb musician and the slow movement is particularly beautifully done; he also plays on a very good instrument because it sings out memorably in this mostly lyrical work. If you don't know Finzi's cello concerto I recommend it and this interpretation highly.


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