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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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Tue 03 Oct, 2017:
Bruckner: Symphony No 9 in D minor

Bit of a non-starter this one. Riccardo Muti goes for grandeur, opting for slow, fluid tempos throughout. But the results are leaden, with the music...

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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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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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Thu 17 Aug, 2017:
Brahms: Symphonies – No 1 in C minor, Op 68; No 2 in D major, Op 73; No 3 in F major, Op 90; No 4 in E minor, Op 98

Andris Nelsons leads his golden-toned Bostonians in memorably supple, entrancingly organic and thrillingly alive readings of all four Brahms...

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Wed 09 Aug, 2017:
Schubert: String Quartet No 14 in D minor, D810 (Death and the Maiden); Sibelius: String Quartet in D minor, Op 56 (Voces intimae)

Death, or the foreboding of it, infuses this pairing of Schubert and Sibelius quartets, to make you wonder why they have never been recorded together...

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Mon 07 Aug, 2017:
Mali in Oak

Recorded live in the Sam Wanamaker Playhouse of Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre in London during a series of concerts curated by guitarist John...

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Tue 18 Jul, 2017:
Brahms: Cello Sonatas – No 1 in E minor, Op 38; No 2 in F major, Op 99; Schumann: Fünf Stücke im Volkston, Op 102

Uncommonly sensitive and thoughtful music-making from these accomplished performers. Playing on a gut-stringed replica of a 1695 instrument by Matteo...

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Wed 12 Jul, 2017:
Dove: In Damascus; Out of Time; Piano Quintet

Composed from remembered impressions of a peaceful Syria to a war-torn text by native poet Ali Safar, Jonathan Dove’s ‘In Damascus’ proves a...

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Wed 28 Jun, 2017:
Golijov: The Dreams and Prayers of Isaac the Blind; Lindberg: The Erratic Dreams of Mr Grönstedt

Beware Swedish cognac. Over-indulgence took Christian Lindberg into a world of hallucinogenic make-believe, out of which came his delirious clarinet...

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Mon 19 Jun, 2017:
Mendelssohn: Symphony No 5 in D minor, Op 107 (Reformation); Clarinet Sonata: Andante (orch Widmann, 2016); Widmann: Versuch über die Fuge; Mozart: Adagio & Fugue in C minor, K546

Just a fortnight ago, I reviewed Antonello Manacorda’s Kammerakademie Potsdam version of the Reformation Symphony (Sony Classical), which unusually...

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