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Mon 13 Nov, 2017:
James McCarthy: Codebreaker; Will Todd: Ode to a Nightingale

Codebreaker is an exceptional achievement on numerous counts. The very opening vies in its visceral impact with the opening of Vaughan Williams’s A...

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Mon 09 Oct, 2017:
Schoenberg: String Quartets – No 2, Op 10; No 4, Op 37

The “catchy little theme” (the sleeve-writer’s phrase) that opens Schoenberg’s Fourth Quartet (1936) always reminds me of Korngold’s Much...

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Wed 27 Sep, 2017:
Music for Troubled Times: The English Civil War and Siege of York – Choral Works by Byrd, Lawes, Hutchinson, Tomkins, Child, Wilson, Jeffreys and Locke

A country divided, politics in turmoil, religious intolerance on the rise… Nearly four centuries after the English Civil War, England seems barely...

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Tue 26 Sep, 2017:
Sibelius: Piano Works, Volume 2

The great Wilhelm Kempff was an admirer of Sibelius's agreeably pithy Sonatinas, Op 67, with their crisp textures and invigorating part writing....

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Tue 19 Sep, 2017:
Echoes of Land & Sea: Piano music by Britten, Stevenson, Ireland, Roderick Williams, Leighton and Holst

There are gems aplenty in this sensitively played and wholly absorbing survey of British piano music. Maria Marchant brings both power and delicacy to...

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Wed 06 Sep, 2017:
Dvořák: Cello Concerto in B minor, Op 104; Klid ('Silent Woods'), Op 68 No 5; Bloch: Schelomo

Marc Coppey gives one of the most sensitively shaped, engagingly perceptive accounts of Dvořák's towering Cello Concerto to have come my way in some...

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Mon 04 Sep, 2017:
Tchaikovsky: Manfred Symphony, Op 58

Volume Two in Semyon Bychkov's 'Tchaikovsky Project' for Decca Classics repeats the success of its predecessor (a superb coupling of the Pathétique...

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Wed 30 Aug, 2017:
Brahms: Piano Concertos – No 1 in D minor, Op 15; No 2 in B flat major, Op 83

A vein of melancholy stalks most of the first movement of No 1. Mark Elder’s pacing is certainly Maestoso, his balancing of instrumental lines very...

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Mon 21 Aug, 2017:
In Schubert's Company: Works by Schubert, Akhunov, Desyatnikov & Tabakova

Violist Maxim Rysanov has here assembled an innovative collection of viola music around the works of Schubert, including modern interpretations by...

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Wed 02 Aug, 2017:
Roger Doyle: Homemade Ivory Dreams

Homemade Ivory Dreams is a collection of pieces “that snuck out” while Roger Doyle was working on other projects. Which is not to suggest this is...

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Thu 27 Jul, 2017:
Sterndale Bennett: Piano Sonata in F minor, Op 13; Schumann: Symphonic Etudes, Op 13 (First version)

Rich in tone and possessing an enviably secure technique, the London-based Japanese pianist Hiroaki Takenouchi lends enormously persuasive advocacy to...

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Tue 11 Jul, 2017:
Tchaikovsky: The Seasons, Op 37b; Sonata No 2 in G minor, Op 37 (Grand Sonata)

My youthful entry point into Tchaikovsky’s ‘Grand Sonata’ was Sviatoslav Richter’s mono Melodiya recording, which to be truthful is, for all...

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Wed 14 Jun, 2017:
Brahms: Die schöne Magelone, Op 33

Brahms’s 15 Romances from Ludwig Tieck’s ‘The Wondrous Love Story of the Beautiful Magelone and Count Peter of Provence’ make up a romantic...

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Wed 07 Jun, 2017:
Gesualdo: Terzo Libro di Madrigale

Gesualdo’s Third Book of Madrigals (1595) marks a turning point, introducing the radical harmonies that would characterise his late work, while...

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