on 29 January 2012
I have been aware of Rutland Boughton by reputation for a number of years, but this was my first encounter with his music. I have a Chandos disc which features a symphony by Bainton, so although not overly familiar with his work, I knew the type of music to expect.
What you have on this generously filled disc (77 minutes) are six tone poems, three by each composer. All are world premiere recordings by the Royal Scottish National Orchestra under Martin Yates, who rise to the occasion magnificently.
If lush, romantic music with grand, sweeping gestures (excellently recorded, I should add) appeals to you, then buy this disc.
This is the second of two CDs released (2010) in recent years by the Dutton Laboratories on the Epoch label of music by Bainton and Boughton. Edgar Bainton (1880-1956) and Rutland Boughton (1878-1960) were two contemporary English composers who, despite composing during the 20th century, wrote music that is immediately accessible, enjoyable and uplifting to the spirit: many 20th century compositions are quite challenging for the listener. The compositions of these two friends are thoroughly workmanlike rather than startlingly original and provide most satisfying listening. They are of the same tonal quality as works by the early 20th century English composers Hubert Parry and Charles Villiers Stanford: many 20th century compositions are quite challenging for the listener. These six short works, three from each composer and each lasting a little under a quarter of an hour, all date from the first decade of the 20th century. The orchestration of these pieces is quite superb for pieces by composers so relatively unknown on the world stage. They certainly deserve to be as well- known and as often played as the orchestral tone poems of Franz Liszt. They are played by the Royal Scottish National Orchestra conducted by Martin Yates and they are all World Premier Recordings. In this, Dutton have done music lovers a great service.
on 23 May 2013
Rutland Boughton was an English Wagner who, for a while successfully, produced his own operas at a Glastonbury Festival dedicated to his own music, before he fell foul of the establishment through his support of communism. Here he reveals a passionate and dark side with fine orchestral writing. The Bainton is also a powerful delight and these composers are surely worthy of further investigation. The performances and sound quality are good.